I will never forget my first sexual education experience. I sat in a classroom next to a dozen of my pre-pubescent friends as we stared at various atrocities flashing across a projector screen. Each passing slide displayed the horrors of “pre-marital sex” and “un-safe sex." I walked away horrified by the ghastly images and my appetite ruined for at least a week.
If I had to guess, you probably had a similar experience at some point in your childhood. Thankfully, I had caring parents and a church community who taught me the truth about sex. As I grew older I learned that God designed sex and designed it to be good. I also learned that there is a purpose for sex and that it can be freely and unashamedly enjoyed within the context of marriage.
It doesn’t take long to look at our culture today though to realize there is something very wrong with the way we view sexuality. We are living in a world where an erotic fantasy movie depicting BDSM creates box office records and a movie about male strippers is so popular it gets a sequel. We are faced with the daunting challenge of raising godly children, who will respect their bodies, in a world that glorifies degrading them.
[sharequote align="center"]We want to raise godly children to respect their bodies, in a world that glorifies degrading them.[/sharequote]
As Christians, I’m afraid that we can no longer remain silent and hope that a sex education class, a purity pledge or someone else will save our children from developing a morally depraved view of sex.
A Barna Research study recently revealed that now just one-third of Generation Xers and millenials endorse the idea that sex should unite a man and woman in marriage. Changing this mindset will be a tough challenge, no doubt. But this is a wake-up call I assure you that we can’t afford to ignore.
Are You Not Entertained?
We no longer live in a world where we can wait for the perfect time to talk about the “birds and the bees” with our children. Mainly, because we don’t live in a culture of the “birds and the bees;” we live in a culture of “Netflix and chill."
Sex is no longer something that awaits teenage boys and girls who are finally old enough to drive a car and get away from mom and dad. Sex is on our TVs, our cell phones and our iPads. And hauntingly enough, each of these devices we make easily accessible as soon as our kids begin talking.
Sex sells and marketers realize that. We now have TV shows like “Dating Naked,” video games with “hooker scenes” and iPhone apps specifically tailored for zero-commitment real life hook ups. Sexual content is making its way into every form of entertainment and as a by-product it is teaching our society that sex is just that – entertainment.
This is a gross reductive view of what God intended for sex. Sex is much more than entertainment. It is as much spiritual as it is physical with its original intention being to unite a man and woman together in marriage. (Genesis 2:24)
(Image source: Facebook)
If we choose to remain silent we are virtually choosing for pop culture to teach our children an alternative, disposable view of sex where it is simply a physical activity with a by-product of pleasure.
The truth is, however, it is more – much more. If sex is merely a physical expression of your sex drive then the memories produced from it would be as forgettable as that Big Mac you ate last week when you physically expressed your hunger. Where you might forget about your choice to eat a Big Mac; your choice to have sex will be a thought that sticks with you for years.
The entertainment industry obviously doesn’t show this aspect of the sexual equation. We are bombarded with images that show the excitement and pleasure of non-committal sex, but never the emotional and spiritual wreckage in the aftermath. While we can’t simply bash the entertainment industry and expect change - we can protect our children and we can promote the contrasting biblical view of sex.
It’s Not Someone Else’s Job to Teach Our Kids About Sex
We cannot simply sit back and allow the government to teach our children the ins and outs of sexual activity either. The goal of these programs range widely depending on which school system you attend. But they generally range from fear based abstinence-only curriculum to comprehensive sex education programs with condom distribution.
I’m not so foolish to think that handing out condoms won’t prevent unplanned pregnancies, because it will. Handing out condoms and telling teens to be safe though isn’t prevention, it’s permission. It’s the equivalent of handing your 2-year-old his booster shot and expecting him to be safe and use it the right way. Condoms and proper sex education may prevent unplanned pregnancies, but it doesn’t prevent the soul wrenching heartache that occurs from embracing a wrong view of sex.
That is why we should not depend on popular culture, the entertainment industry, the government or anyone else to teach our kids about sex. This life lesson is far too important to defer to a “substitute teacher.” It’s not enough to simply tell our kids that sex is wrong. In fact, we can’t tell our kids that, because that is an entirely unbiblical view. We must get over our prudery and teach what the Word of God actually instructs. This includes the uncomfortable parts of the Bible.
In this Oct. 8, 2015, photo, Justin Balido, peer health coordinator and senior health educator with Health Connected, speaks to a ninth-grade Teen Talk High School class at Carlmont High School in Belmont, Calif. Sex education in some American high schools is evolving beyond pregnancy and disease prevention to include lessons aimed at curbing sexual assaults. (AP/Jeff Chiu)
The parts where the Bible affirms the enjoyment and bliss of sex between a man and woman entering into a covenantal marriage. (Proverbs 5:18-19)
The parts where we see healthy, self-giving sex celebrated - not ignored. (Song of Solomon 4:9-16)
The parts where grace and truth is given to the promiscuous instead of judgment and condemnation. (John 4:16-29)
I refuse to sit silently and allow a TV show or a government sex-education class to degrade sex to a mere recreational practice or biological process. There is too much heart and soul at stake for the church to be silent as the world goes on believing that swiping through “Tinder” is the apex of the human sexual experience.
To the volume that we are silent about sex will be the vacuum created and filled with the lewdness of pornography and air brushed fantasy of modern entertainment. The Bible isn’t silent about sex so neither should we be.
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