Is it Biblical for the Wife to Initiate Sex?

I could answer that question with a resounding “yes” and hit “publish” on my blogging dashboard.  And be on my way.

BUT I’m much more sensitive than that.

I know there are wives who struggle with initiating for no other reason than they genuinely believe it is wrong, maybe even sinful, to initiate sex — even with their husband.

I truly believe much of this is rooted in the sad experience of so many women who were told when they were teens that it was their responsibility as the girl to “put on the brakes” and tell the guy “no” when it came to sex.

(How ironic that we as a body of believers are all about genuine Christian manhood, yet we put the majority of responsibility for sexual integrity squarely on the shoulders of the girls, not the boys.  Hmmm. If that’s not a skewed paradigm, I’m not sure what is).

Anyway. I digress.

It’s not surprising that when all a woman heard when she was young was “sex is bad” (or some version thereof), then it is difficult for her to switch to “sex is totally hot and fun” after she has a ring on her finger.

It’s not that it is wrong to teach young single women to walk with modesty and maintain appropriate boundaries when it comes to sex.  Duh.  But we generally have done a crappy job of how we have done that.

For some women, their difficulty initiating is because they associate sexual initiation with how they behaved in their past sexual promiscuity.  They falsely believe that any sexual initiation is forever chained to being sexually promiscuous.

As a married woman, if all you heard was “sex is bad” or if someone told you it was wrong for a wife to initiate or if you only associate initiation with sex you had before you were married, I have some encouraging redemptive news for you.

Despite all of those false and skewed tapes playing in your head, God is ready for you to release those shackles you’ve put yourself in.  He wants you to enjoy and pursue sex in your marriage.

God is all about husbands and wives both thoroughly enjoying sex and initiating.

From the sexual pleasure standpoint, God is an equal opportunity provider.  God equipped both a husband and a wife to be able to have an orgasm.  Yeah God! Yeah us!

As for scripture, we see nowhere in God’s Word where God commands that only a husband can sexually initiate.  We just don’t see that.

If anything, we see more scriptural support for husbands and wives both being intentional about nurturing sex in the marriage bed.

1 Corinthians 7 tells us this…

“The husband should fulfill his marital duty to his wife, and likewise the wife to her husband. The wife’s body does not belong to her alone but also to her husband. In the same way, the husband’s body does not belong to him alone but also to his wife. Do not deprive each other except by mutual consent and for a time, so that you may devote yourselves to prayer. Then come back together again so Satan will not tempt you…”

Oh my.  Those verses are drenched in mutuality…  Soaking wet with the truth that sex in a marriage is a shared responsibility.

In the book of Song of Solomon (considered by many to be an allegorical and metaphorical representation of intimacy in a marriage), we get a picture of mutual pursuit between the husband and the wife.

The entire book is worthy of study, but consider these verses where the wife is talking to the husband…

“Awake, north wind, and come, south wind! Blow on my garden, that its fragrance may spread abroad. Let my lover come into his garden and taste its choice fruits.” (Song of Solomon 4:16)

“Come, my lover, let us go to the countryside, let us spend the night in the villages. Let us go early to the vineyards to see if the vines have budded, if their blossoms have opened, and if the pomegranates are in bloom — there I will give you my love.” (Song of Solomon 7:10-12)

Hey, I wasn’t a classical literature major, but even I can get what those verses are saying.

Even if we put scripture aside for a moment, we would still discover that God equips us to use our minds and hearts to discern His plan for a healthy marriage.

When a man and woman make marriage vows, they are choosing a life of one flesh (figuratively and literally).

And sex is an aspect of that one-fleshiness that cannot be compartmentalized into “roles.”  It just can’t.

When a husband and wife both feel the freedom and motivation to initiate sex (and initiate it regularly), they more often than not discover profound sexual connection. AND their marriage gets stronger.

And honestly gals, I just think there is a lot of healthy power and affirmation in you being able to arouse your man.  No one else in his life gets that God-approved privilege.  You’re it.

You can open the door purposely and passionately and give the man you love unequivocal access to you sexually.

Or you can put all the responsibility on him to knock on the door.

If he is like most men, he gets tired of being the only one knocking on the door.

Don’t just take my word for it.

If you are a wife who rarely or never initiates, try to change things up a bit. Start going to him more often and expressing with your heart, hands, words and body that you want him — you really want him.

I think you’ll get a unanimous vote of approval all the way around — from your husband.  From God. And from the Bible.

For more reading, consider these posts:

3 Things Your Husband Wants in Bed
3 Things to Do Now if You Don’t Like Sex
Has Your Husband Stopped Initiating Sex?
You Are Not Being Punished for Your Past Promiscuity

Copyright 2015, Julie Sibert. Intimacy in Marriage Blog. Links may be monetized.

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9 thoughts on “Is it Biblical for the Wife to Initiate Sex?

  1. Pingback: » Is it Biblical for the Wife to Initiate Sex?

  2. JustWant2BOne says:

    Some wives have to initiate otherwise sadly there would be no sexual intimacy at all. I love my husband and I’m not trying to be funny but sometimes I feel like I am married to a neutered tomcat who just wants to eat and sleep. I don’t want to often feel like I am married to a neutered animal.

  3. Married Man says:

    Great article! I completely agree that both husband and wife should mutually and equally make each other feel desired, wanted, and loved. Both deserve to be honored and shown affection and that he/she is wanted sexually. Thank you!

  4. Pingback: Best Christian Sex Links of the Week | Married Christian Sex

  5. Pingback: 4 Devastating Assumptions About Sex In Marriage | Intimacy in Marriage

  6. chioma says:

    This is a great post and I’m so glad you touched on the impact of cultural and christian perspectives on the role of the woman when it comes to sex. Thanks again for this piece.

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