In the gospels, Our Lord tells us that there will be no marrying or giving in marriage in heaven. That certainly does not mean that the people who were married on earth will not love another in eternity, but that their relationship will no longer be based upon sexuality, physicality, or exclusivity, but will be far more elevated to the level of the spirit, mind, and soul. In heaven, we will be raised to the full potentiality of the human person, made in the image and likeness of God who loves with a totally selfless and universal love.
We are all aware of the ocean of lust in which we are living these days. You can’t pick up a newspaper or magazine; you can’t turn on the radio or TV, without seeing or hearing images or ideas that are filled with sexual connotation. I am particularly aware of the evil of lust right now, since I am involved in counseling one married couple who are going through the misery of divorce based upon adultery, and of another divorced man who has embarked upon a life of promiscuity, trying to fill up the loneliness and frustration in his life. According to the reports of the children who saw Our Blessed Mother at Fatima, she stated there that more souls are lost through lust than by any other way. That certainly seems to be borne out in our daily experience. And we see very clearly that lust leads not only to the death of the soul, but also of the body in many cases. The various sexually transmitted diseases, especially AIDS, have killed millions, and will continue to do so. And then millions more are killed by the abortionists of the world who deal with the results of lustful sex by killing the babies conceived in that way.
Our God has made us sexual beings—man and woman—so that the human race may be propagated and new human beings will be brought into being who will, if his plan is followed, take their place with him in heaven and share his eternal joy, which is the reason for human creation. And God attached to our sexual ability the attractiveness, joy, and pleasure which lead most of humankind to engage in it. However, because sex is the source of human life, it is most sacred and must be exercised with great care and responsibility. Unfortunately, many seek the pleasure of sex with no concern for its divinely-appointed purpose, and even in such a way as to thwart that purpose. The desire for sexual pleasure outside of God’s plan for its use is what is called lust; it is one of the capital sins. If we are to live so as to achieve our ultimate purpose, namely, eternal salvation, we must use our sexual ability as God intends. Otherwise, it may be for us a source of death rather than life.
I remember one time a young man saying to me, “If there isn’t going to be sex in heaven, I don’t want to go there.” That is just one step away from the 3-year-old who doesn’t want to go to heaven unless he can have his puppy there with him. It simply betrays a total misunderstanding of what the fullness of human life is all about. Those of us who are trying to live according to God’s holy will, whether it involves sex in a valid marriage or continence in or outside of marriage for one reason or other, should pray for our fellow men and women who are caught in the tentacles of lust and are thus being alienated from God and their eternal destiny. Thank you for seeking God’s truth. God bless you. Father Victor Brown, O.P.
Note: This message was composed some years ago.