Note: This topic was something I always planned on talking about this year and now I can. This blog post was inspired by Genesis 2:18-24; where God created Eve out of Adam’s rib after seeing that Adam was lonely and by himself.
Disclaimer: I will be discussing some mature content (i.e. sex), so if you are a young reader please ask your parents first before reading.
What does it mean to be joined with Christ?
Well, in my opinion, I believe that being joined with Christ doesn’t just mean a Father/Son/Daughter relationship but also a relationship built around trust, commitment, and love for one another.
God loved us so much that He sent Christ into the world to redeem us; likewise, we as Christians and as human beings should do the same. Like Gomer in the Book of Hosea; who was an adulterer, we as Christians today can “flirt” with the desires of our flesh and through it; can become “lost” in this fallen world.
Hosea 2:19-20 (NKJV)
“19. I will betroth you to Me forever; Yes, I will betroth you to Me. In righteousness and justice, In lovingkindness and mercy; 20. I will betroth you to Me in faithfulness, And you shall know the Lord.”
What I found very fascinating about this passage of Scripture is that while it describes God’s love for His wayward children; the people of Israel, it is also describing His love for us as human beings because we all have “flirted” with the temptations of this fallen world and have become consumed by it.
In the same vein as the story of Hosea and Gomer, Jesus Christ is like the husband Hosea; since He paid the ultimate price in order to bring us back into a relationship with Him through His death at Calvary and His resurrection.
“… Jesus Christ is like the husband Hosea; since He paid the ultimate price in order to bring us back into a relationship with Him through His death at Calvary and His resurrection.”
Just like Hosea continued to love Gomer despite her adulteries, Jesus Christ continues to love us despite us going astray and thinking that “I don’t need God to be happy.” We see this story play out back in the Garden of Eden where Adam was naming all the animals but had no companion for himself and as we all know the story, Eve was created from Adam’s rib.
Now, have you ever asked yourself this question: Why was Eve taken from Adam’s rib and not just created like Adam was?” Well, the reason why was because by taking a bone from his side, God implied equality and mutual respect instead of a toe (implying Adam rules over her) or Adam’s head (implying Eve’s rule over Adam) (see Genesis 2:18-22).
We see in Genesis 2:24 that it was through Adam and Eve that a man leaving his parents became the basis for marriage according to God’s Word. Genesis 2:24 says, “24. Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and they shall become one flesh.”
What I really found interesting about this verse is that this passage of Scripture should become the way we as Christians view not only marriage but also any romantic relationship that we have; through the lens of respect and trust but also through equality.
“Christians should learn to honor the relationships they have but through the lenses of respect, trust, and equality for each other.“
In her blog post entitled, “How to Honor God in Your Romantic Relationships” Caitlyn of Salt and Light speaks on this topic in a really compelling way that should make us as Christians stop and contemplate how we view the relationships we have in our lives.
In her blog post, Caitlyn said, “True love in romantic relationships is rather hard because it’s a sacrifice… a true Godly couple stays together and continues to love one another even in the trials.” And what I like about this quote is that it really focuses on the relationship between a husband and his wife but I feel that it also focuses on how we as Christians are to have an intimate relationship with the Father.
Like a committed husband and wife, we as Christians are to develop and even deepen our relationship with our Heavenly Father because if we don’t; it’s going to be like a husband and wife who slowly drift apart until they get a divorce.
I feel that as Christians, in order to be joined with Christ, we have to develop our relationship with the Lord first by beginning to read His Word as often as we can and even praying for guidance in understanding Scripture even if it’s for 10 minutes a day. God doesn’t care about how long we pray or read our Bibles so much as our heart behind it.
Are we really reading God’s Word or praying from a heart willing to listen to the Holy Spirit? Or,
Are we doing it because it’s just something we must do?
As we read through the Bible, we see that being joined with Christ is very similar to how a husband and wife and how they are to honor and respect each other. In 1 Peter 3:7, the Apostle Paul is speaking to the Christians of his time but also to us modern-day Christians men about how we are to honor the women in our lives.
1 Peter 3:7 says, “7. Husbands, likewise, dwell with them with understanding, giving honor to the wife, as to the weaker vessel, and as being heirs together of the grace of life, that your prayers may not be hindered.”
What I can understand from this passage of Scripture is that Peter is trying to teach us as Christians men; who are married or are future husbands; we are to be intimately aware of our wives’ needs, strengths and weaknesses, and her goals and desires. Also, as husbands or future husbands, we should know as much about her as possible in order to respond in the best way to her.
“As Christian husbands or future husbands; we should learn to recognize that we have the responsibility of being a leader in our households as well as in the Church.”
This is where I feel that as Christians, whether romantic or just as friends; we should be an example for others to see the love of Christ. However, as human beings but especially as Christians, we have to understand that sometimes, we may not get married or even into a relationship but that is actually okay.
In Matthew 19:12, we see that Jesus is responding to a question asked by the Pharisees about a man divorcing his wife and his answer goes together with this topic.
Jesus responded in Matthew 19:12 saying, “12. For there are eunuchs who were born thus from their mother’s womb, and there are eunuchs who were made eunuchs by men, and there are eunuchs who have made themselves eunuchs for the kingdom of heaven’s sake. He who is able to accept it, let him accept it.”
What I liked about this verse is that it goes with this theme of being “joined” with Christ. Like a married couple who stay together because of their respect, trust, love, and sense of equality for each other; there are some Christians who are single and may stay single but NOT everyone is meant to get married.
In my opinion, singleness can be a blessing because it allows you to put your focus on God and His Word and serve the Kingdom of God; however, the intimacy that would be reserved for your significant other could then be used to grow in your walk with Christ.
C.S. Lewis said, “Chastity is the most unpopular of the Christian virtues. There is no getting away from it; the old Christian rule is, “Either marriage, with completely faithfulness to your partner, or else total abstinence.”
I recently read an amazing blog post by T.R. Noble of Inside Cup about how we are to honor our bodies called, “Truth Of Honoring Our Body Beyond Modesty & Intimacy With God.”
In her blog post, T.R. said, “Honoring Him with our body is beyond modesty. It is living the right walk and life with Christ, to be Christ-like, so that our love for Him pours out of us. It can’t stay contained inside. His love for us washes over us, and we are constantly filled with His Spirit. That’s where our honor comes from. Our love and desire for Him.”
Something I loved about this quote is that it should describe how our relationship with God should be. Intimate, but long-lasting. Also, in her blog post; T.R. has some excellent quotes that cause of as Christians to stop and think about our own spiritual and romantic relationships or friendships and if they are in-line with God’s Word.
- “How we honor the Lord with our body is a reflection of our walk with Him and the state of the temple His Holy Spirit lives in. How we honor Him with our body is an inward reflection.”
- “The closer we get to Him the more natural we will make changes to our lives.”
- “We are His temple. If we destroy the temple with sin, seeds of lust, envy, jealousy, anger, bitterness and more they will continue to grow, rot, and decay within us. If we destroy our temple, we have destroyed ourselves.”
- The core of our intimacy with the Lord is selfless. It is not about gaining anything, truthfully, except Him, and because of Him, we gain everything.”
T.R. Noble said, “How we honor the Lord with our body is a reflection of our walk with Him and the state of the temple His Holy Spirit lives in. How we honor Him with our body is an inward reflection.”
This quote from T.R. about how honoring our bodies is a reflection of our walk with Him is such an amazing quote that I hope we all as Christians come to recognize as a truth. This leads me into this “second” part of this topic where I’ll be discussing more in-depth about how Jesus Christ; who is the faithful husband to His people while we as human beings represent the idolatrous bride of Christ.
In the book of Genesis, after Adam and Eve eat the fruit of the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil; God tells Eve that her desire will be for Adam while Adam shall rule over her. Now, when I initially read this verse, I was confused but after some more reading; I found that God was telling Eve that she will begin to desire or long for her husband Adam while he will rule over her, but not dominate her.
Essentially, God was saying this (paraphrase): “You will now have a tendency to dominate your husband, and he will have a tendency to be a tyrant over you.” In Genesis 3:16 it says, “16. … Your desire shall be for your husband, And he shall rule over you”
Unfortunately, as humanity fell deeper and deeper into sin, the man and woman’s desire for each other dissipated and we as human beings turned towards sexual immorality instead of going to God or His Word.
In her blog post entitled, “LET’S TALK ABOUT SEXUAL PURITY” Krystal Nicole of Three Days Free said this, “God blessed the union between husband and wife and told them to be fruitful and multiply. The Bible does not shy away from the topic of sex.”
What I liked about this quote is that because of this world that we live in, we are brought up hearing two versions of what it means about sex: One in the church and one through the world. As Krystal said, God blessed sex as a union between a husband and a wife, but the world has perverted the meaning of sex into looking at the outward appearance.
In her blog post, Krystal also has several quotes that I feel we as Christians should think about.
- “Instead of being chained to sin in the dark, we need to open up and start having honest conversations.”
- “… I had a misconception about purity. It’s more than just physical. It’s about our body, mind, and heart.”
- “He commands us to RUN. There is no rationalizing or tiptoeing close to the line. We are to flee from sexual immorality.”
Krystal Nicole said, “God’s design for sex is within marriage, yes, but his purpose isn’t abstinence, but purity. He wants our hearts transformed. He wants the lives of his followers to reflect His grace and love. When our hearts our transformed, we seek to honor him in all things, including purity.”
In Matthew 5:28, Jesus Christ talks about this and about how we as Christian men aren’t to look at a woman with lust or even desire for her in a sexual way.
Matthew 5:28 says, “28. But I say to you that whoever looks at a woman to lust for her has already committed adultery with her in his heart.” As we see in this verse, even though we as Christians know this, that doesn’t mean that we don’t fall prey to this trap.
This reminded me of a very good blog post by Efua of Grace Over Pain entitled, “The Power of Nudity | The Spirit of Lust” and in the blog post, she said, “God didn’t make a mistake by making us the way He did. We are to honour Him with our bodies. Please let’s not allow the spirit of lust control us.”
Something that I liked about this quote from Efua is that she doesn’t just include men who commit adultery/lust but also women but that stems from how the world perceives the human body: as an object not as a person.
What I also liked about Efua’s quote is that it should a constant reminder to us as Christians that God made us ALL unique and nothing He ever makes is imperfect and that includes our bodies. We are called to be temples of the Holy Spirit but when we give into our lust, we become temples of spirit of lust and not of God.
Efua said, “God didn’t make a mistake by making us the way He did. We are to honour Him with our bodies. Please let’s not allow the spirit of lust control us.”
This for me brings us back to what it means to being joined with Christ. In my opinion, while reading God’s Word and prayer are essential parts of building a strong and open relationship with the Father; I also think that it’s imperative that we begin to recognize the similarities between a Godly husband and wife and our own relationship with Jesus Christ.
Jesus Christ was not only the Son of God and the Sacrificial Lamb on the Cross, but also that He was a leader. Likewise, we as Christian men and women should become leaders in our churches; however, when it comes to marriage, as I said, Christian men are meant to be leaders in their homes in order to help their wives.
This reminds me of a song by Christian group Sanctus Real called, “Lead Me” and it’s such an amazing song about how, in order for a Christian husband to lead his wife and children; he has to let God lead him.
In the end, though, being joined with Christ is something that should be treasured by every Christian. When we begin to develop and deepen our relationship with the Lord, we also begin to deepen our relationships with the people around us.
As Christian men and women, we should remember to let God lead us and let Him show us the way so that we don’t fall into the temptations of lust and adultery; like Gomer.
I’d love to see what you guys think about this topic.
So, in your opinion, what does it mean to be joined with Christ?
As Christians, do we let God lead us instead of us taking the lead?
Are we willing to come back to Christ even after we’ve “flirted” with temptations?
Caitlyn. “How to Honor God in Your Romantic Relationships”, 17 Jun 2018, youaresaltandlightblog.wordpress.com, https://youaresaltandlightblog.wordpress.com/2018/07/17/how-to-honor-god-in-your-romantic-relationships/ , Accessed 20 Jul 2018.
Efua. “The Power of Nudity | The Spirit of Lust”, 15 Jun 2018, graceoverpain.com, https://graceoverpain.com/2018/06/15/the-power-of-nudity-the-spirit-of-lust/ , Accessed 20 Jul 2018.
Lewis, C.S. “Chastity is the most unpopular of the Christian virtues. There is no getting away from it; the old Christian rule is, “Either marriage, with completely faithfulness to your partner, or else total abstinence.”, https://quotefancy.com/quote/781734/C-S-Lewis-Chastity-is-the-most-unpopular-of-the-Christian-virtues-There-is-no-getting . Accessed 20 Jul 2018.
Nicole, Krystal. “LET’S TALK ABOUT SEXUAL PURITY”, 2 Jul 2018, threedaysfreed.wordpress.com, https://threedaysfreed.wordpress.com/2018/07/02/lets-talk-about-sexual-purity/ , Accessed 20 Jul 2018.
Noble, T.R. “Truth Of Honoring Our Body Beyond Modesty & Intimacy With God”, 21 Jun 2018, nobledevotionblog.wordpress.com, https://nobledevotionblog.wordpress.com/2018/06/21/how-we-honor-our-bodies-to-christ-for-his-glory-as-an-example/ , Accessed 20 Jul 2018.
“Sanctus Real – Lead Me (lyrics)”, YouTube, uploaded by Dan, 8 years ago, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ffBG7JAvBiw , Accessed 20 Jul 2018.
Author Unknown. “Genesis 2:24”, http://www.bibleverseimages.com/marriage-bible-verse-4.htm , Accessed 20 Jul 2018.
Author Unknown. “Genesis 3:16 Multiply Your Pain In Childbirth (red)”, https://images.knowing-jesus.com/i/genesis-3-16-multiply-your-pain-in-childbirth-red-7470 , Accessed 20 Jul 2018.
Author Unknown. “1 Peter 3:7”, https://www.flickr.com/photos/hsga/23519525014 , Accessed 20 Jul 2018.
Hope Factory. “Hosea 2:19-20”, http://www.everydaydevotionals.co/2018/05/hosea-2-19-20.html , Accessed 20 Jul 2018.
Lee, Paul. “Matthew 5:28: Purity of Heart”, https://www.heartlight.org/gallery/1399.html , Accessed 20 Jul 2018.
Martell, Hamza. “Matthew Chapter 19”, https://slideplayer.com/slide/1646732/ , Accessed 20 Jul 2018.