Sex, Lies, and Christianity: Reclaiming Biblical Sexuality

Article ID: JAFE363 | By: Melanie Cogdill

Reclaiming Biblical Sexuality

This article first appeared in the From the Editor column of the Christian Research Journal, volume 36, number 03 (2013). For further information or to subscribe to the Christian Research Journal go to: http://www.equip.org


If you have been a subscriber for the past several years, you may have noticed that we have featured several articles on the millennial generation and have described what they believe and how to reach them. Recently we asked a class of students at a Christian college for a list of apologetic and discernment questions they would like to see addressed. One of the questions posed was not a surprise—”Is masturbation OK?”—but the fact that it was posed by a female instead of a male student prompted us to reexamine our past articles on sexuality. The focus of “Porn and the Male Brain” (vol. 34, no. 5, 2011) was obvious, and while “Pornography: The Darkening of Our Minds” (vol. 27, no. 3, 2004) did address female use of pornography, it was largely geared toward men. Thus the article “Sexual Sanity for Women” by Ellen Dykas came out of our discussions to make available a biblically sound perspective on sexuality directed especially to women.

In January 2013 the Barna Group released a survey called “Temptations and America’s Favorite Sins” and broke down the results by gender and age. Men and women almost equally admitted to sexually inappropriate behavior (10 percent and 8 percent, respectively), and while it’s true that more men look at porn on the Internet (21 percent), about 8 percent of women also do so. Furthermore, while only 15 percent of baby boomers look at porn on the Internet, almost double that amount (27 percent) of millennials view porn online.1

We also took note of the “mommy porn” phenomenon that is the Fifty Shades of Grey S&M bondage book series, which has been a world-wide best-seller and is still #3 on the New York Times Best Sellers list after more than one year. And we noted that Christian women in churches were also reading the books.2 We have a sidebar specifically written about Fifty Shades of Grey.

Our sex-saturated culture proudly revels in its exhibitionistic sexuality so much that sexual behavior once considered on the fringe, “specifically BDSM (bondage/discipline, domination/submission, sadism/masochism), OTK (over the knee; in other words, spanking),” is now considered hip. Even Harvard has an on-campus club for students interested in these practices.3 Our culture is so far from healthy biblical sexuality that the biblical admonition for sexuality within marriage is perceived by many to be abnormal, repressive, and boring.

In Genesis 1:28 sexuality was created and given to Adam and Eve before the fall. It was ordained by God, and it is essentially good. However, since the fall, sinful humanity has done much to pervert, defile, and abuse this good gift of God. Sexual sin has touched every single one of us so that sexuality is far from the original beautiful gift that God created for our enjoyment. After all, Adam and Eve were naked and unashamed before the fall.

There are consequences to sexual sin that Christians rarely think about when they click their mouse to watch porn. There is a human toll that is exacted to keep up with the obsessive thirst that never is quenched by those drawn deeper into the lures of porn sites. Pornography is about sexual exploitation. One human tragedy of pornography is the many women and children who are sexually exploited as victims of sex trafficking.4 These victims are forced into sex acts that are made into pornography. CRI’s headquarters is located in Charlotte, North Carolina, the “Queen City.” But it has a dark underbelly. North Carolina is in the top 10 for states with active sex trafficking, and “more cases of sex trafficking are reported in Charlotte than any other city in the state.”5

Christians should not be defeated by the declining morality of our culture. We must understand a biblical view of sexuality, and in this issue we equip women in particular to think through what a Christ-centered sexuality should look like. For almost twenty-five years the JOURNAL has been at the forefront of Christian publications addressing sexuality issues so that the body of Christ can have cogent and biblical answers to communicate boldly to a sex-obsessed culture. Our approach has never been to address those confused about sexuality in a harsh or self-righteous manner but rather with compelling arguments and compassion.—Melanie M. Cogdill


 NOTES

  1. “New Research Explores the Changing Shape of Temptation,” The Barna Group, January 4, 2013, available at http://www.barna.org/culture-articles/597-new-years-resolutions-temptations-and-americas-favorite-sins.
  2. Adelle M. Banks, “‘Fifty Shades of Grey’ Moves Evangelicals beyond Black and White Sexuality,” Religion News Service, November 29, 2012, available at http://archives.religionnews.com/culture/gender-and-sexuality/fifty-shades-of-grey-moves-evangelicals-beyond-black-and-white-sexuality.
  3. Matt Haber, “A Hush-Hush Topic No More,” New York Times, February 27, 2013, available at http://www.nytimes.com/2013/02/28/fashion/bondage-domination-and-kink-sex-communities-step-into-view.html?_r=0.
  4. Ana Stutler, “The Connections between Pornography and Sex Trafficking,” CovenantEyes: Breaking Free Blog, September 7, 2011, available at http://www.covenanteyes.com/2011/09/07/the-connections-between-pornography-and-sex-trafficking/.
  5. “Sex Trafficking Survivor Jillian Mourning Finds L.O.V.E.,” Creative Loafing Charlotte, December 26, 2012, available at http://clclt.com/charlotte/sex-trafficking-survivor-jillian-mourning-finds-love/Content?oid=2955072.

 

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