Married Sex: Is it OK for us to _______? (Post #3; Day 2)

There was a recent comment that we need to address on the topic of sex. We hope that the other posts will also address this, but for now here are our thoughts. 

Anonymous said... 

I appreciate the candid blog.. BUT! That I was hoping to actually hear a bit more on how this is played out in the bedroom. Not graphic details.. but I think one thing that is lacking in our Christian Communities is more people talking about Sex and the different ways to experience it. We as Christians feel somewhat guilty if we provide Oral Sex to our husband for instance. Why? Is this wrong? Is everything accepted in the bedroom. Are their things you can do that will draw you closer to each other than apart? If so, please do tell us.. anyone? Anyone?

Matt Chewning said...

In reference to the question above, here are my thoughts..... The Bible says that “Marriage should be honored by all, and the marriage bed kept pure, for God will judge the adulterer and all the sexually immoral" (Hebrews 13:4). Scripture never says what a husband and wife are or are not allowed to do sexually. Husbands and wives are instructed, “Do not deprive each other except by mutual consent and for a time (1 Corinthians 7:5a). This verse perhaps lays down the principle for sexual relations in marriage. So, whatever is done, it should be mutually agreed upon. No one should be encouraged or coerced to do something he or she is uncomfortable with or thinks is wrong.

If a husband and wife both agree that they don't mind an would like to try it, (e.g., oral sex, different positions, sex toys, dirty talking, role playing, etc.), then the Bible does not give any reason why they cannot.

However, 2 things I would warn against are..... 

1. Adultery is sin even if your spouse allows, approves, or even participates in it. Therefore, any sexual act is for the married couple ONLY!

2. Pornography appeals to the “lust of the flesh and the lust of the eyes” (1 John 2:16) and is therefore condemned by God as well. A husband and wife should never bring pornography into their sexual union.

Beyond that, there is nothing that Scripture explicitly forbids a husband and wife to do with each other as long as it is by mutual consent. Now, if there are selfish motives or degrading activity that leads to sin or one party being hurt or uncomfortable, that's different. Beyond that, feel free to get your freak on in any which way your two little hearts desire. Feel no guilt or shame in doing it and as long as it is mutually enjoyable have as much fun as you like. There is no part of your body or your spouses body that God says should be off limits as long as nobody feels abused, degraded or has a check in their conscience. Actually, there is great holiness to be found in fully giving yourself to your spouse.

I would encourage every married couple to experiment as much as they desire, with their spouse, in achieving the maximum about of pleasure you can by the grace of God in your marital union.

Have fun!!

For even more thoughts on this, check out this post. "What's OK and What's NOT"

Season of Sowing (Netcast Update)

The past 4 weeks at Netcast have been very eye opening for me. For one, I am more aware than ever that ministry is a calling and not a job. I am not a professional (although I need to be professional) or the CEO of an organization (although I need to be organized), but rather a simple man of God who has been anointed with the weight and calling of leadership within the Bride of Christ.

Because of that, the tension between family life, work life, play, and being a normal disciple who is deeply in love with his Savior, is not something that I am able to balance with a schedule. Over the past month I see so clearly that ministry is seasonal; some seasons have storms, some seasons are relaxed and beautiful, seasons vary in length and some seasons are busy and not extremely productive while others are full of busyness with lots of fruit. The goal is to faithfully endure each season with joy and worship.

Right now, Netcast is in a sowing season. It seems that with all the people who have coming through the doors and all the stories of God's grace, we need to continue to sow more than ever. We need to sow into leaders, processes, organizing, structuring, etc. We need to evaluate the areas where we are unhealthy and need to mature. We need to get better at the things we are good at and improve upon our weaknesses. We need to sow into relationships and call each other to holiness and repentance. We need love the gospel by serving together, giving together, gathering together, and being on mission together.

When Netcast first got started, we saw a quick harvest. People were getting saved every week, the church was growing at an untamed rate and we were able to manage much of the workload. Today, God is still at work. This weekend we will be baptizing a number of new believers, the Holy Spirit has been so powerful as we gather and communities are getting deeper. Yet, we are operating with the leadership and resources of a church ½ our size with the expectations of a church with 10 times more tenure. That said, I passionately believer what we are experiencing is minimal compared to the harvest ahead.

Rest assure another massive reaping season is around the corner. Thousands will know Jesus because of God's grace on us. Thousands will be influences by our faithful hands and feet. Thousands will benefit from our generosity and love for Greater Boston. But for now, it is vital that we labor well, that we work together, stay unified, continue to walk in authenticity and press into the Lord with all of our hearts, souls, minds and strength.

GALATIANS 6:7-9  For whatever one sows, that will he also reap. 8 For the one who sows to his own flesh will from the flesh reap corruption, but the one who sows to the Spirit will from the Spirit reap eternal life. 9 And let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up.

"SHOOP" & Sex Is Not A Reward. (Netcast Sex Post; Day 2)

Below is a testimony from a husband and wife who attend Netcast. This is one post you will not want to miss. I praise God for their wisdom and authenticity.

He Makes Me Wanna Shoop.

When I first saw that Pastor Matt was asking us to consider writing about sex for the church, I have to admit that my first thoughts were the lyrics to a couple of Salt ‘n’ Pepa songs from my high school days. Does that make me old or what? Then my husband came up to me and said, “I saw that email from Matt and all I can think of is, “You make me wanna shoop, shoop-ba-doop…” (For those who didn’t hit their teens in the late eighties/early nineties, “Shoop” was one of the songs I was thinking of…and it’s also a euphemism for sex.)

And that reminded me once again that a) it’s nice that my hubby is even older than I am, and b) he is my perfect match. But being reminded of the amazing connection that God has blessed us with – mental, emotional, and physical – wasn’t exactly enough to make me want to write about it for the rest of the world to see. While I have written professionally throughout my career and even shared many of the details of my life through personal blogs, I have never written about our sex life. Never even considered it. In fact, I really don’t disclose much of what goes on behind our closed doors to even my closest friends.

On girls’ nights out, when intimate details (and often complaints) start flying after a few glasses of wine, I typically just sit back and smile to myself thinking, “If only they knew how good it could really be.” If only the world in general knew how good sex could be! Oh, they think they know, don’t they? “They” being the creative geniuses that try to define ‘hot’ sex and even sexual attractiveness for us and our children through TV, movies, and other scantily clad images. I don’t personally watch a lot of TV or movies these days, but everything I do manage to watch seems to revolve around sex. Yet nothing about those sex scenes looks anything like the scenes that take place in our house, which are typically very happy and often filled with laughter. Instead, they look shallow, fiercely determined, uncomfortable, awkward…or often downright painful!

Good sex shouldn’t just be about two naked people pawing passionately at each other for a couple of minutes – or even a couple of hours. And yet, all the cues I am getting from the media (and the stories I have heard from people I actually know) lead me to believe that most people believe these kinds of sexual encounters are perfectly OK. So I guess with that in mind (and after praying about it) I finally decided to write about this just to state very clearly – for the record – that there is a better way. And it starts with marriage, yes. But not just any kind of marriage.

In full disclosure, I was married once before and the sex in that relationship was nothing like what I’ve experienced with my current husband. No…I think to experience true intimacy in the way God intended it, you have to start with a marriage in which two people are not only fully committed to each other, but also fully committed to God. Eew. Creepy, right? Why do Christians always have to say weird things like “you have to serve God to really enjoy sex”? Trust me…I wouldn’t say it if I hadn’t experienced the truth in that statement from both sides of the coin. In my life, I have seen that only through a relationship with God can we (as individuals) truly understand how to give and love selflessly in the way that He designed. And when only one person in a marriage is living that way, it just doesn’t work quite as well.

From the world’s perspective, sex is all about “getting some.” Satisfying your own needs. When you see some guy on TV chase after an attractive woman after saying something like “I want some of that,” do you think he has her needs in mind – either physical or emotional? Not a chance. And I guarantee when that scenario happens in real life (as it does thousands of times every day), no matter how much fun that encounter may be in the moment, it leaves both participants feeling just as empty afterward as they did going in – probably even more so. On the other hand, when you have two people who are thinking about every aspect of the other person’s needs, sex is so more than just nudity and passionate pawing (although there’s plenty of that too). You’ve heard the expression that “it’s better to give than to receive.” Well, that certainly holds true in the bedroom. If you go into a sexual encounter thinking, “How can I make him happy?”… you’ll find ways to do it. And you won’t walk away disappointed, no matter what’s in it for you. And if he’s thinking the same way…well, chances are that he will be equally successful. And you will both find even more emotional pleasure in knowing that you have satisfied each other in the way that only the two of you are able to do. This is human connection at its very deepest level.

The security of sex within a committed marriage also enables you to enjoy each other without inhibition, knowing that no matter what happens, the other person won’t be judging you or talking about it behind your back…or even worse, posting something about it on Facebook. I can’t imagine being able to truly give myself to someone in any other scenario. In our marriage, sex is the glue that holds us together. That’s not the same as saying our relationship is built solely around physical desire. It means that when we get to share intimacy on a regular basis, we function at our best – both as a couple and as individuals. When we can’t have sex, we both miss it. We dream about it. And we have to work much harder to maintain the connection that keeps us so tuned in to each other’s needs on every other level…and helps our passion survive the normal daily grind of working, maintaining a household, and raising a family.

Whether you’re still single or you’re wondering why the sex in your marriage still leaves you feeling unsatisfied or lonely (again, I’ve been there), these are the best words of wisdom I can offer. Prayerfully seek a marriage that is built around God, with you being willing to lead the example of selfless love – both inside the bedroom and out. I guarantee that once you and your partner have experienced this kind of intimacy, it will change the way you think about sex. None of the temptations that the world could throw at you will ever hold any appeal. How could any shallow imitation ever compare to the fullness of joy that you find in being “one” with your chosen mate? Impossible.

The Bradley Coopers and Channing Tatums of the world may be nice to look at. But it’s only when I look at my man that I ever think, “He makes me wanna shoop!”

Sex: It’s Not a Reward 

Since my wife started the theme about connectedness and selfless love, I’ll continue with the topic, but with a “what not to do” perspective. I have lots of married friends, both saved and unsaved, that have varying degrees of happiness in their relationships. Guys do talk about sex and marriage, but it tends to be surface conversations, usually with one impressive sexual feat thrown in (“hour and a half last night…no lying”). But you know that the sex (and usually the relationship) is bad, when one of your friends doesn’t ever talk about his wife. Or on the rare occasion that he does, it’s to complain that they haven’t had sex in weeks or longer.

I’m fortunate. My wife and I both view sex the same way: a way for us to connect, have fun, and relieve the stress of life (oh yeah, and our kids are a nice bonus). Unfortunately, a segment of married women view sex as a reward for their husbands when they behave the way the wife deems acceptable. This permeates our sitcoms and romantic comedies – a controlling wife and a bumbling idiot for a husband who will drop everything for sex. Ok, the ‘drop-everything-at-anytime-for-sex’ part is pretty much true for all guys (How many husbands can pop out of a dead sleep if they get that hand on the back and hear, “Are you still awake?” “Of course I’m awake…I was only fake sleeping until you were ready to have sex”). But it’s always shown as a one-way street.

Unfortunately, Hollywood isn’t too far off on this one. A number of my friends talk about how good sex was early on, but that at some point it stopped being a priority to their wives. I’m not trying to pin too much on the woman in the relationship – I know there are tons of things a guy can do to ruin a sex life – but on this particular topic, NOT wanting to have sex usually isn’t one of them. I’ve actually heard friends’ wives joke about it at parties, “You’re not getting laid until you fix that hole in the wall I’m been asking you to fix for two weeks!” And from what I know, it’s no joke. And you know what? I can tell you personally that those husbands have stopped thinking about their wives as their primary sexual focus. I’m not saying it’s right, or that we don’t have a personal responsibility as Christians (although some of my friends are not) to obey God regardless of how our spouses behave, but there is a reality to that situation. And it’s hard to keep your spouse as your sexual fantasy, when her behavior indicates that she doesn’t care if she is. My wife cares. She loves our time in the bedroom, and it makes me think about her all the time we’re not in the bedroom. She turns me on and keeps me engaged on a physical level, and that encourages my emotional connection to her.

If you want your husband to be more in tune to how you feel, who you are…have sex. Have lots of sex! It draws them in and fulfills a God-ordained impulse in marriage. But if you treat it as a reward, or a duty you have to do sometimes, you’ll never have the connection you want…and he’ll probably never be the guy you are trying to turn him into.

Porn and Grace (Netcast Sex Post #1 Day 1)

Author: Anonymous Netcast Couple

We are a dating couple.  We love Jesus, and we love each other.  We have something to say that many of you need to hear.  

From the man to the men: Guys, I know your secret.  I know your secret because it was my secret too.  I know many of you are addicted to pornography.  I know the pit in your stomach that you feel right now. I know because I've been there.

The greatest power pornography had over me, is that I kept it a secret.  Satan had convinced me that I must fight this battle alone, that if anyone else (especially a woman) ever knew this secret, that I would be unloveable.  This is a lie, perhaps a bigger lie than the lie that tells you that porn will satisfy you.

You see, the reason porn is such a useful tool for Satan is that is an easy avenue to something every Christian feels at some point: shame.  I would succumb to temptation, but the real damage would be done after the fact.  My shame felt unbearable, and this shame sent me further into secrecy.  My secrecy yielded powerlessness.  And because I was powerless, it was only a matter of time before I started the cycle again.

When we started dating, I told my girlfriend that porn was a thing of my past in the hopes that it would raise the standard, and I would meet it because I cared about her.  But it was a lie.  I was unable to be honest and say that I was addicted, and that I wanted to get better.  So months went on, and I kept it to myself just like I was used to.

Our relationship became more serious, and I felt worse about my addiction, but still did not act.  I broke down during Christmas, when we were visiting my family.  I had given her pieces of the truth, but not the real truth.  The Holy Spirit did a mighty work in me, and I was able to actually be honest; I told her that I was still struggling with porn, and that I had been the whole time.  She reacted in a way that I didn't even know how to expect: with grace, forgiveness, and compassion.  I felt a freedom I had never known.  I didn't just feel like I didn't want to look at porn again, I felt like I didn't have to go back to it.

It was The Gospel, lived out for me, right before my eyes that set me free.  Her ability to look at my junk and forgive me pointed me straight to Jesus.  In 2 Corinthians 12, Paul talks about boasting in weakness to make much of Jesus.  And as I confessed my weakness, I felt Jesus say to me "My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness" (2 Corinthians 12:9).  Hallelujah, peace like a river.

To experience this, you must come out of your shell.  You must be courageous, and face what you are most ashamed of.  IF YOU HEAR NOTHING ELSE I HAVE SAID, HEAR THIS: NOTHING YOU HAVE DONE HAS PUT YOU OUTSIDE OF THE LOVE OF GOD.  There is hope for you, sinner.  You will be made a saint if you give up your act, confess that you are dirty, and desire to be made clean.

From the woman to the women: As my boyfriend and I have walked through this journey, I have learned a very clear lesson. My response to forgive when he comes to me in confession has nothing to do with porn, and everything to do with sin. As girls, it is so easy to look at a man’s struggle with, or addiction to pornography and to think ‘shame on him.’ That response, honestly, is what almost every man expects from us. That response is also the reason why men feel so driven to keep this sin from us. The church and the culture that comes alongside the church has taught us that the sin of struggling with pornography, when confessed in a genuine repentance demands a response that says ‘shame on you.’ My response to this ‘shame on you’ reaction is, how dare you? Shame on you, church, for this reaction.

When we are dating men in the church, and when we are married to them, it is so easy to forget the first role that they should play in our lives. We coin them our crushes, our boyfriends, our fianc├ęs and our husbands so easily. In resorting to these phrases, we forget that they are first our brothers in Christ, and members of our church community. When he came to me in an honest repentance and shared his struggle with me, I had to turn to my Bible and to my God to learn how to react to him. When I turned to prayer and scripture, I came up with two very clear answers that were supposed to dictate my response. I was called to forgive and to love.

The actual definition of ‘forgive’ in the dictionary means ‘to give up resentment of…to cease to feel resentment against.’ This is modeled in Matthew 18:27 when Jesus explains forgiveness and explains that the Master ‘let him off, erasing the debt.’ By erasing, Christ is explaining that forgiveness means removing the sin so that it can no longer become a part of your future relationship, or future conversations, including arguments. If I was called to forgive him for a sin, I was called to give up the power that I could hold over him through his repentance. When I spoke the words “I forgive you,” that meant that I was committing to not use his sins in future arguments. It meant that I could not use his sin to manipulate him to do things for me. It also meant that I could not use his sin as an excuse to feel sorry for myself, or play the victim. I was called to look at him, to tell him I forgave him and to force my actions to show that every time he stumbled.

As much as I was called to forgive, I was called to love. To not see him differently for his sin. It is so easy to look at a confession of addiction to pornography and to blow it out of proportion. It is such a scandalous word in the church that when people hear of an addiction to porn, they typically place it in the category of hard drugs, pre-marital sex and drunkenness. They view it as a ‘worse’ or ‘bigger’ sin than the others, like fibbing, cheating or gossiping. In reality, sin is sin. Period. I had to learn that when God heard the confessions of what my boyfriend had seen, and when God heard the confessions of my ungrateful heart, God was as disgusted with my actions as He was with my boyfriends. God did not view his sins as worse than mine. God did not view my sins as better than his. Sins are sins and they are all equally vile and revolting in the eyes of the Lord.


When I learned this lesson, I learned the depths of my brokenness and the depths of my Saviors own love for me.

LADIES: PLEASE HEAR THIS -learning to forgive true repentance taught me the forgiveness of my Savior in a deeper way than I could have ever dreamt of. I learned how hard it was to forgive and how good it was when I did. My relationship with my boyfriend and my relationship with my God have never been stronger, and I fully believe that is because of my obedience to be willing to forgive in the same way God forgave me.

PLEASE, do not short-change yourself in learning about the relational intimacy that is experienced through forgiveness just because you are prideful. You will never regret it if you choose to forgive. 

We leave you with what we will pray over this post:

Ephesians 3:14-21
"For this reason, I kneel before the Father, from whom every family in heaven derives its name.  I pray that out of His glorious riches He may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith.  And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the Lord's holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge - that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.  Now to him who is able to do immeasureably more than all we ask or imagine, according to His power that is at work within us, to Him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen."

Reminder: Sex Sunday

Just another reminder....

 This Sunday we will be having a very frank conversation on sexuality and God's design for sex. Because of this, I want to be sensitive to those of you who may have children or young teenagers in the room and would not want them exposed to such conversations in church. Personally, I believe that the bible has much to say about this topic and the church historically has done a terrible job addressing it.

To be clear, if the words "Penis, Vagina or Orgasm" are offensive to you in any way, note that they may be used this Sunday. Please bear with me as I am trying to do everything I can to create clear expectations with no surprises yet at the same time not shy away from being authentic about the beauty of Gods design for sex.

 All for the glorious name of Jesus.

Sex at Netcast

The Harmony Series is coming to an end. This weekend we will close out the series talking about Sex. I am emailing you because I want to give you ample time to emotionally prepare for what may be an uncomfortable conversation in a church setting as well as inform you that all children under 12 should be in Kids Ministry. If you feel comfortable with your child being in service, that is fine and totally up to parental discretion. However, we recommend children 12 and under to not be in service.

If you are bringing guests this Sunday, please let them know so nobody is surprised. I am praying that God will continue to move mightily among us as we close this series out. I believe that it has been transformational for many of us at Netcast and pray that God's working sustains us for years to come.

If you have any questions, concerns or comments; don't hesitate to email me. Also, expect homework after Sunday :)

All in Jesus Name!!
Pastor Matt

15 Hopes for the women at Netcast Church

This past weekend we talked about what it looks like to pursue biblical woman. At the end of the message I listed my 15 hopes for the women at Netcast. Those, as well as a quote inspired by the writings of Pastor John Piper is below.

“True womanhood is a distinctive calling of God to display the glory of his Son in ways that would not be displayed if there was no womanhood.” There are certain ways that man cannot display God's glory. When God described the work of his Son as the sacrifice of a husband for his bride, he was telling us why he made us male and female. He made us this way so this relationship would describe more fully the relationship of his son and his son’s blood-brought bride. If you reduce woman to biological features you not only reduce the value of womanhood but reduce the glory given to God in his beautiful creation. Whether a woman is married or single. Do not waste your God-Given womanhood, for it was made by and made for the glory of Christ.”

15 Hopes that I have for the women at Netcast. 

1. That all of your life, you'll be devoted to finding hope and beauty in Jesus.

2. That you won't stop modeling gentleness & compassion to us hard-hearted men at Netcast.

3. That you be women of the bible and not blame your church or a man for your lack of discipline.

4. That Jesus and the meditation on biblical truth be the source of your hope and faith; not a man.

5. That you fight to be heard at Netcast and in the community. Never letting fear quite your voice.

6. That you be women of prayer and faith; and grow in your influence at home and Netcast.

7. That you work to understand the deep mysteries of the gospel.

8. That you be totally committed to ministry within Netcast, whatever your role.

9. That you not waste God-given time on pointless TV shows, social media stalking or gossiping.

10. That, if you're married, you lovingly support the servant leadership of your husband and help him to die to himself as the Lord has called him to.

11. That you encourage, not belittle your husband when he is wrong and you are right.

12. That you develop a fearless war mentality when it comes to worshiping your King Jesus.

13. That you fight for transparency and authenticity, yet be honorable and respectful to others.

14. That you mentor and raise up the younger women at Netcast so they might love Jesus well.

15. That your motivation for the discipleship of others not be your own perfection, but rather your humility. Because young women need to know that imperfect women are loved by a perfect God.