The bride-to-be was clearly excited about her upcoming wedding day. “Only two more weeks,” she announced on social media, “and the curtain comes down!”
This young woman thought of herself as a Christian. Although she already shared a home with her fiancée, they had agreed to wait until their wedding night before they became sexually intimate.
Thus the announcement of the curtain coming down.
This was not the first time I’d seen such an announcement. As always, I had mixed feelings about it.
On the one hand, at least this young couple appeared to be making an effort to obey God’s commands concerning sexual morality.
On the other hand, they didn’t exactly carry out their engagement in an unquestionable way.
They put themselves in the same position as the character Willy in the old story preachers used to tell.
Willy liked to eat between meals, the story goes, so he was told not to help himself to the contents of the pantry. One day Willy’s Momma called out, “Willy, where are you?”
“In the pantry,” came the muffled reply.
“What are you doing in there?” Momma asked.
“Avoiding temptation,” Willy confessed.
Wouldn’t it be better to stay away from the pantry? (Or live in separate places until the wedding? Or steer clear of gossip-y conversations?)
Whatever your “pantry” is, hanging out there is not helpful.
Let’s offer the benefit of a doubt and say the “curtain” bride and groom successfully waited until they got married before having sex.
Given that sexual immorality is today’s norm, and given how rampant skepticism is in our culture, how many non-Christians do you suppose would believe that they waited?
Most would likely dismiss the flimsy curtain scenario with an eye-rolling, Yeah, right.
Contrast this approach to that of another couple, where the groom-to-be moved not once, but twice in the months leading up to the wedding day.
When he finally moved into their apartment after the wedding, it was his third move in six months.
Financially and practically, it would have been much easier and more convenient for this young man to join his fiancée in their apartment right away instead of moving several times.
They could have just put up a curtain, right?
Not so much. This couple chose to live above reproach. They not only obeyed God –they made the appropriate sacrifices to demonstrate their obedience.
That’s the kind of behavior which makes a watching world take notice.
Not lip service. Not easy-believism. Not Jesus is my homey, and we just dialog over coffee.
More like an authentic, Jesus-is-actually-my-Lord kind of faith. More like, I obey even if it costs me.
The Scripture refers to this character quality as being “blameless.”
It’s living in such a way that others find it hard to point fingers. Being in-accusable. Faultless. Irreproachable.
Blameless believers don’t ask how much they can get away with. They’re far more concerned with the honor of Jesus’ name. They take his Lordship seriously.
Noah stood out in a culture given over to all manner of depravity. He is described as being “blameless in his generation.” (Genesis 6:9)
Are we blameless in our generation?
The Apostle Paul writes,
“May God himself, the God of peace, sanctify you through and through. May your whole spirit, soul and body be kept blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. The one who calls you is faithful, and he will do it.” – I Thessalonians 5:23-24
See the hope in this passage?
God himself is the one who sanctifies you. He’s the one who keeps you blameless. His grace empowers you to obey.
For the sake of my beautiful Savior, I want to be a blameless believer.