Friday, September 30, 2011

Sexual Abstinence In Our Pornified Culture

Young Christians today are not waiting for marriage to have sex. That's the report given in Relevant Magazine and duplicated by CNN. This is not a shock for anyone who is a pastor or youth leader.

The report says:
  • 80 percent of unmarried evangelical young adults (18 to 29) said that they have had sex.
  • Many young Jesus-followers who take purity pledges abandon their pledges.
  • "Relevant theorizes about why it’s so hard for so many young Christians to wait, including the saturation of sex in popular culture, the prevalence of pornography and a popular “do what feels good philosophy.”" (CNN)
  • In biblical times people married earlier. The average age for marriage in America has been increasing over the last 40 years. New Testament scholar Scot McKnight says: "Sociologically speaking, the one big difference – and it’s monstrous – between the biblical teaching and our culture is the arranged marriages of very young people. If you get married when you’re 13, you don’t have 15 years of temptation."
So what can we do? Here are some ideas, a few of which have been field-tested.
  • Have compassion. Always love. Many older Christians have been there, done that.
  • Forgive, as you have been forgiven.
  • Put together and communicate a biblical theology on sex. My opinion is that many of today's Jesus-followers do not understand the biblical ideas on sex as reserved for marriage. If they think they are doing something wrong by engaging in premarital sex, it may only be because some Christian authority figures are upset about this. We need to give today's young Jesus-followers a compelling story. Do more in helping them understand the reasons for chastity.
  • Encourage new beginnings and "renewed abstinence."
  • Don't belittle or misunderstand how difficult it is to abstain in today's sex-obsessed culture.
For more see: