When I was asked to be a part of Proverbial Thought, I felt honored not only because some level of esteem was ascribed to my writing, but also from a gender perspective—they wanted a “woman’s point of view” (whatever that is in the 21st century…)
Which means I’m having a hey-day with this week’s chapter of Proverbs, challenging my beloved brethren to not mince any words. (Giggle.) Just let it rip, guys. I’m not touchin’ it.
On the other hand, there is another point worth mentioning (from a woman’s point of view, mind you.) For reference, the whole of chapter five is emphatic with warnings to men against prostitution and other illicit sexual encounters and, by implication, pornography. (The medical evidence alone concerning the personal and societal effects of porn is enough to convict said “freedoms of speech”, but another post perhaps.)
But the chapter here implies, for the attentive reader, that there also exist the same emphatic warnings for women. No, a woman’s typical physical and emotional wiring doesn’t tend to offer much temptation in the area of seeking out pornography or prostitution. Fairly safe to say that, for most women, sex is more about relationship, acceptance, and security, at least in some context, rather than mere physical pleasure. (Which is also not a bad thing, just sayin…)
So, just how does Proverbs chapter five relate to women?
Just ask companies like Harlequin Romance that proliferate on new and used bookstore shelves. Even the Christian genre has jumped on the wagon! Then there are the “soap operas” that came out not long after TV made its own nefarious debut, and women began to refer to their faves as “my stories”.
Ever wonder why these are so popular? Hollywood isn’t stupid; they know how to make money, and they know sex sells for men, and relationship sells for women.
The reality of it is this: both of these were created by God, and He calls everything He made “good”. The issue is that, as John Eldredge puts it, we tanked the whole project by the third chapter of Genesis.
And it’s been a struggle for clarity and satisfaction ever since.
It’s about intimacy, and how we (both men and women) tend to look for it in all the wrong places; how the broken places of our hearts no longer care and maybe have stopped even caring to try to care. Even the “immoral woman” spoken of in this chapter still had a soul, albeit a wounded one—there was some reason that she went in that direction. Even in that culture, if given a choice, I doubt prostitution would have been her first one.
Jesus knew that. Our sexuality doesn’t intimidate Him, even our fragmented sexuality. That’s only a sign of our broken intimacy, just another thing He is able to mend.
I’ll let the guys talk about the finer points of Proverbs chapter five. Here’s my verse:
The scroll of Isaiah the prophet was handed to him. He unrolled the scroll and found the place where this was written:
“The Spirit of the Lord is upon me,
for he has anointed me to bring Good News to the poor.
He has sent me to proclaim that captives will be released,
that the blind will see,
that the oppressed will be set free,
and that the time of the Lord’s favor has come.”
He rolled up the scroll, handed it back to the attendant, and sat down. All eyes in the synagogue looked at him intently. Then he began to speak to them. “The Scripture you’ve just heard has been fulfilled this very day!”
That goes for men and women alike!
Luke 4:17-21 Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright © 1996, 2004, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.