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This question came through the blog last week. The question referenced a book by Patricia Beattie Jung, which explores the possibility of sexual relationships in heaven and, by indication of the title, hopes to apply heavenly sex as an ethic by which earthly sexual relationships could or should ideally operate. As a disclaimer, I have not read Jung’s book, so I cannot say anything about her faithfulness to the Scriptures or her trustworthiness as a theologian. She currently works at a Methodist university and has been endorsed by at least some Catholics as an advocate for unity among the various Christian faiths in favor of what she refers to as God’s all-inclusive love (which is not an attribute of God described anywhere in the Bible).
As I understand it, the basic argument for the possibility of sexual relationships in heaven is as follows (this isn’t necessarily representative of Jung’s argument):
- God created sex and called it good.
- People enjoyed sex before people sinned.
- People will enjoy sex after sin is gone.
- Why would God do away with sex if it is good?
Is there any validity to this thought? Is this something that we should be too concerned about? My goal in this post will not be to answer the question for you because Scripture isn’t clear enough to give an answer. To help you answer this question we will observe some basic Biblical truths. Click on these truths below to see more explanation. Take your time. Soak up the Scriptures.
- Everything about God’s creation exists for God’s glory alone.
- Men and women were created by God, and the institution of marriage was given by God in order to demonstrate His relationship with His own creation.
- Human sexuality is designed to reveal something about God.
- Life in Christ brings the people of God to deny themselves and find their ultimate pleasure in Christ, not in self-satisfaction.
Sex, as it is provided on this earth, is a parable of the truth that people find their ultimate satisfaction in Christ. If we only considered this Biblical emphasis, then we might realize that Heaven will be much less about us than we would like to believe. If our ultimate satisfaction is in Christ, I am not sure we will care as much about sex as we do in our current sex-saturated age on this earth. Christ will be our pleasure and complete satisfaction. No, not in a weird way.
Furthermore, having a relationship with Jesus Christ causes us to not be so concerned with our own satisfaction or with what we will get. Scripture even goes as far as to instruct God’s people to no longer be conformed to the ways of the world (which are self-seeking, #4 above). Paul would write to the church in Corinth, saying that it is desirable for a person to abstain (not even being married) so that he or she can be undistracted in his or her devotion to God (1 Cor. 7).
The Biblical answer to this question, then, is that we are focussed on the wrong thing if this is what we are concerned about. The Scriptures call us to be devoted to God, not worrying about what we will get or not get in Heaven. Think about these things. Let us consider our ways. Take your time learning the Biblical principles above. As to whether or not there will be sex in heaven (or on the new earth), I don’t know. It is not really something I personally care about. The Scriptures do not say. We cannot know. Sex is not mentioned in the creation account, only presumed because it is necessary for multiplication. All of Scripture points to the ultimate and true satisfaction of people being found only in Christ, not in sex. These truths ought to serve as profound clues as we answer this question for ourselves. The New Earth, as God’s creation, will exist to glorify God. Every aspect of human relationships on the New Earth will glorify God.
My dear brother,
I read in Luke 20:27-40 that our Lord instructs us that the dead will neither marry nor be given in marriage. Do I misread/understand? Looking forward to your reply.
In His love,
No, brother. I din’t think you are misreading. This article did not deal with marriage. I looked at this question several years ago as a newlywed (of course, I am still a newlywed and will always be). Here is the link.