There is only one path to peace with God, and that’s His Son Jesus Christ, the Word made flesh. He is the personified revelation of God for living in this fallen world. He is a Person, not a mere proposition. He is divine truth. His teachings are summed up in what we call Biblical Law; that body of teaching together manifests the implications of following Jesus Christ.
Biblical Law is a covenant. It is not possible to please God outside of this covenant. This covenant is inherently feudal and tribal. God intends for us to live together in a feudal tribal covenant community. This isn’t about going to Heaven; whether or not you are reborn spiritually is 100% in the hands of God. This spiritual rebirth is the only way possible we could embrace Biblical Law, so the Word is all about how to live out the implications of that spiritual birth. Spiritual birth comes before all else.
So the business of obeying Biblical Law and claiming shalom is not simply a nice thing to have on top of divine “fire insurance” — it is a mandate from the very start. Everything we can talk about regarding human existence in this world begins with the dire necessity of building a covenant existence, a critical element in shalom. It’s possible you will be alone in this endeavor locally, but the ostensible goal is to build a covenant community. That is the fundamental nature of your walk in Christ. Everything you do must be tied to that essential task in human life.
Naturally that includes sex. There is only one permissible motive in human sexual activity: building up the marriage covenant as part of a covenant community. All other motives make sex evil. Sex can never be right unless it serves a covenant purpose. And of course, Scripture makes it plain as day that the only legitimate sexual activity is between covenant husband and wife. Period. All those legally married couples out there having marital sex outside of a heart-led covenant endeavor are sinning. It’s sin because they are outside the covenant in the first place.
Civil marriage or church weddings are a poor substitute for a genuine heart-led covenant before the Lord. We can stand back and see how they do contribute to civic stability, but in the long run, that is a damned poor substitute for shalom.
Oh, and did I mention being heart-led? Yeah, everyone involved must have their conscious awareness centered in the heart, not in the head or anywhere else. If you aren’t presumably walking according to convictions in your heart, by a commitment of faith in Jesus Christ as Lord, you are living in sin. You can do nothing righteous otherwise. You can do a lot of things that will tend to have a salutary effect on the world around you, but without conviction of faith, it is all sin.
Yes, the Word of God is really that strict. The US has never been under a valid biblical covenant. Your state has never been under a valid biblical covenant. Your local county and city government cannot claim your full loyalty until they step away from the Constitution and embrace any good manifestation of Biblical Law. Your community must be a feudal tribal covenant community in order to have validity in the eyes of God. The whole point of Romans 13 is summed in the middle of the chapter. Verse 10 says, “Love works no ill to its neighbor, therefore love is the fulfilling of the law.” In the context of all that chapter says, it should be clear to you that the sacrificial love of Christ is the fulfillment of the secular law because it is a superior Law of God.
Biblical Law is inherently sacrificial; it is the proper expression of His compassion at work in you. It’s equivalent to saying, “walk in faith.” Faith fulfills God’s requirements in regards to the demands of human government. And it sure as Hell isn’t for non-covenantal human government to decide what is good, moral and loving. It’s between you and God, speaking through your convictions and your sense of divine calling, how you’ll respond to evil demands from an evil government, but Paul’s guidelines leave room for resistance if your faith can accept the consequences. He played both the Jewish and Roman governments against each other, and did everything he could to keep himself free to attend to his gospel mission, so you shouldn’t imagine he was cowed and obsequious before human government.
Keep in mind that at His arrest, Jesus could have called thousands of angelic troops to extricate Him from that problem, and the Father would have sent them, because both the Jewish and Roman government were outside the applicable covenants. However, by His compassion He fulfilled His mission to die on the Cross. Mostly that’s how we approach things, but it can vary in context with your individual mission calling.
So, how you live in an evil society that rejects His Word is a matter of conviction. It depends on your mission. As noted above, virtually all human sexual behavior is immoral. We don’t have to make note of this or that perversion; it’s all perverse because it’s outside the covenant purpose. And we can’t do a damned thing about it, unless it involves someone under our covenant authority. We cannot in any way influence secular laws to do the right thing, as long as secular authority ignores the demands of Biblical Law.
We can infiltrate and use existing law, as Paul did, to protect the gospel mission, but we must never trust human authority to do the right thing. We can say in general that we trust in the Lord to make things happen according to His glory, but your particular tactical choices must reflect your convictions and calling. Your convictions tell your faith what you can believe God to do for you in serving Him.
Without faith (AKA feudal submission) it is impossible to please God. If you start today taking the road of faith and commitment to the Lord, you’ll learn soon enough how to handle the conflicts between where you are now and where you should be under Biblical Law.