By Jody Bennett
Do you sometimes wish you could be in charge of the universe and make all the rules? I think many of us believe we know best how others should live and wish we could tell them!
But a lot of people don't believe that God knows best how they should live; they think God is a kill-joy, making rules to spoil their fun. They struggle to understand that the commands in the Bible are not there to make our lives onerous but are acts of love to protect us and ensure us the greatest long term happiness.
It is almost impossible to imagine what our world would be like if all God's rules were obeyed by everyone, but after seeing two articles in the news the other day about women being gang raped, I got to day dreaming about how different the world would look if just one of God's commands was obeyed totally: "sex is only for marriage" (Marriage is honourable among all, and the bed undefiled; but fornicators and adulterers God will judge. Hebrews 13:4).
Can you imagine? There would be no rape, no paedophilia, no prostitution, no child sex trafficking, no sexually transmitted diseases, no AIDS, no unmarried pregnant teens, much fewer unwanted pregnancies and therefore almost no abortion.
Can you imagine how much safer women would feel, and how much less complicated inter-gender relationships would be?
Every child born would have a father and mother that are known and present.
The knock-on effects of that single fact would be enormous for lower levels of suicide, depression, crime, alcoholism and drug use.
And I imagine confining sex to marriage would almost eliminate pornography, with all its associated problems for relationships and women's self-image, and lead to a much less sexualised society all together.
The ripple-effects would be felt in art, movies, TV shows (how much of our current shows would be left without the illicit sex scenes?), advertising and the clothing industry, just for a start.
It is almost too much to get our minds around isn't it? But I'm sure almost all of us would agree it would be a friendlier, safer, healthier world.
Now, if you were a loving God who wanted the best for people and could see all the future repercussions of their actions, wouldn't you make as one of your laws that sex is only for marriage?
And it isn't too hard to see how commands like "Do not commit murder" or "Do not steal" or "Do not lie" are also intended for our good, to make our world a better place to live, where the vulnerable are not exploited.
God is a loving God, His commands are good and His Word, the Bible, is a trustworthy manual on how to live in the most fulfilling, mutually beneficial way.
King David of Israel knew this, in Psalm 119 he wrote: "You are righteous, Lord, and your laws are right. The statutes you have laid down are righteous; they are fully trustworthy. ... Teach me, Lord, the way of your decrees that I may follow it to the end. Give me understanding, so that I may keep your law and obey it with all my heart. Direct me in the path of your commands, for there I find delight" (vs. 137-138, 33-35).
Why not read the Bible for yourself to find out??