Podcast 65: Christian Views of Sexuality (Apologetics 15)

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Apologetics 15: Gender and Sexual Ethics (Objection 3)

This lecture covers some basic Christian sexual ethics, including marriage, divorce, pornography, homosexuality, cohabitation, and adultery.  Sadly, since this was the last lecture, time did not permit a thorough analysis of these subjects.  Even so, I touched on each briefly and biblically in an effort to stake out a Christian position on each and give some evidence to equip you to give an answer to those who critique us.

If you would like to take this class for credit, please contact the Atlanta Bible College so you can register and do the necessary work for a grade.

Notes:


on all of these controversial issues

  • comes down to whether or not the bible is true and authoritative
  • how to interpret the bible
  • statistics of success/failure
  • reason from creation (again depends on scripture)
  • remember Satan is working on culture to make it hard to understand the gospel (Mt 13.19) and to blind people’s eyes from seeing it (2 Cor 4.4)

Marriage

  • live together before marriage
  • divorce of you don’t get along
  • God invented sex for marriage
    • who do you think designed our genitals, packing them with a ridiculous concentration of erotogenic nerve endings?
    • God’s vision of the world included: naked vegetarians living in a garden making lots of babies
    • God proclaimed the first two people married (Gen 2.23-24)
  • Jesus speaks on divorce & remarriage
    • “whoever divorces his wife, except for sexual immorality, and marries another, commits adultery” (Mt 19.3-9)
  • Paul speaks on singleness vs. marriage (1 Cor 7.1-17)
    • good to be single
    • wife does not have authority over her own body..husband does not…
    • don’t deprive each other of sex except for a time of prayer otherwise Satan will tempt you b/c of your lack of self-control
    • remain single
    • better to marry than burn (with passion)
    • Lord says: wife should not separate from her husband
      • if she does anyhow, she should remain unmarried
      • or be reconciled to her husband
    • if spouse is unbeliever, don’t divorce him/her
      • spouse is made holy by believer (and kids too)
    • if unbelieving spouse separates, let it happen
    • marriage represents relationship between Christ and the church (Eph 5.31-33)

three views of marriage

  • western: it’s good so long as I’m happy or at least not miserable
    • the individual is at the center of the western cultural view towards marriage
  • traditional: it’s good so long as it helps the family/clan
  • biblical: my marriage is a living illustration of Christ and the church

Sex Outside of Marriage

God designed sex for marriage in the beginning. Thus, sex within marriage is godly and holy and enjoyable and not shameful.

  • problem is when someone takes sex out of this boundary
  • it’s like a nuclear reactor
    • so long as it is contained behind a lead barrier
    • w/ plenty of cooling systems functioning
    • all is well and this immensely powerful reaction does good
    • but take it out from that protected system and you have Fukushima or Chernobyl

Jesus on sexual purity

  • Mat 5.8 “Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.
  • Mat 5.27-30
    • don’t look at a woman w/ lustful intent
    • same as committing act of adultery
    • need to be extreme here (gouge out eye, cut off hand): he’s really talking about lust!

Paul on purity

1 Thessalonians 4.3-8
3 For this is the will of God, your sanctification: that you abstain from sexual immorality; 4 that each one of you know how to control his own body in holiness and honor, 5 not in the passion of lust like the Gentiles who do not know God; 6 that no one transgress and wrong his brother in this matter, because the Lord is an avenger in all these things, as we told you beforehand and solemnly warned you. 7 For God has not called us for impurity, but in holiness. 8 Therefore whoever disregards this, disregards not man but God, who gives his Holy Spirit to you.

sexual immorality = ἡ πορνεία = fornication = “consensual sexual intercourse between two persons not married to each other” (m-w)

what does that include?

  • pre-marital sex
  • adultery
  • homosexual sex
  • bestiality
  • incest
  • prostitution

cohabitation (trial marriages)

  • living together in sexual relationship prior to marriage
  • today about 60% of all marriages are between people living together
  • reasons for cohabitation
    • reduce divorce b/c they can figure out compatibility
    • saves money
    • gets out of parents’ house
    • security, companionship
  • reasons not to cohabitate
    • God says it’s wrong (can’t defy what God says and expect it to be good
    • secular reason: it doesn’t work! =>marriage preceded by cohabitation is 46% more likely to end in divorce
    • secular reason: it’s bad for kids => 40% of cohabitating households have children
      • very insecure for kids who flourish living w/ both parents
      • after 5 years 50% of these couples split up (compared to only 15% of married parents)

adultery

  • this sexual sin is so severe that even Jesus recognized it as a marriage breaker
  • in ages past adultery societies punished adultery with death (which actually prevented violence!)

bottom line:

  • if you’ve committed these sins, you can find forgiveness and you can conquer this

Homosexuality

three primary texts: Lev 20.13; Rom 1.26-27; 1 Cor 6.9

Lev 20.10-13
10 “If a man commits adultery with the wife of his neighbor, both the adulterer and the adulteress shall surely be put to death. 11 If a man lies with his father’s wife, he has uncovered his father’s nakedness; both of them shall surely be put to death; their blood is upon them. 12 If a man lies with his daughter-in-law, both of them shall surely be put to death; they have committed perversion; their blood is upon them. 13 If a man lies with a male as with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination; they shall surely be put to death; their blood is upon them.

Rom 1.26-28
26 For this reason God gave them up to dishonorable passions. For their women exchanged natural relations for those that are contrary to nature; 27 and the men likewise gave up natural relations with women and were consumed with passion for one another, men committing shameless acts with men and receiving in themselves the due penalty for their error. 28 And since they did not see fit to acknowledge God, God gave them up to a debased mind to do what ought not to be done.

1Co 6.9-10
9 Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality, 10 nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God.

  • if someone could not change whom they find attractive, what advice would you give them if they wanted to become a Christian?
  • should Christians expect non-Christians to follow our morals
  • homophobia, called to love people, if someone’s struggling w/ this they need compassion not judgment

Pornography

what is porn: watching, reading about a depiction of nudity and/or sexual behavior intended to cause excitement

shocking facts about porn

  • sex industry is largest in the world
    • including prostitution, strip clubs, phone sex, and pornography
  • the world produces 13,000 adult videos annually, totalling $13 billion in profit
    • Hollywood only releases 507 videos annually, totaling $8.8 billion
  • porn industry makes more than NFL, NBA, MLB combined
  • at any moment more than 30 million unique visitors view porn
  • teen porn is the fastest-growing genre, search term
  • half of the internet contains either porn or porn related content
  • most guys are exposed to porn at age 10
  • 25% of all daily searches in the US are for pornography (68 million)
  • the US is the top producer of pornographic dvds and websites
    • every 39 minutes the US puts out a new porn film
  • 20% of American men admit accessing porn at work
  • in the UK, porn receives more traffic than social networks, shopping, gaming, finance, and travel
  • nearly 2/3 of Christian men watch porn each month (same as non-Christian men)
  • for Christian men 18-30:
    • 77% look at pornography at least monthly
    • 36% view pornography at least daily;
    • 32% admit being addicted to pornography (and another 12% think they may be).
  • for bible-believing born-again Christians
    • 54% look at pornography at least once a month
    • 44% viewed pornography at work in the last 90 days
    • 31% had a sexual affair while married!!!!!

this enables you to lust after others which Jesus says you should combat with extreme prejudice

problems with pornography

  • Coolidge effect leads to addiction and escalation of novelty
  • porn can cause intense feelings of shame and guilt
  • messes up your marriage later b/c
    • sets unrealistic expectations of what sex is really like
    • wife feels like she has to perform to be up to a standard
    • man feels inadequate in comparison to porn stars
  • can cause serious addiction
  • degrades women from equally created in God’s image to an object to be used for pleasure
  • diminishes your attraction for real women
  • diminishes your drive for life

Eph 4.17-20
17 Now this I say and testify in the Lord, that you must no longer walk as the Gentiles do, in the futility of their minds. 18 They are darkened in their understanding, alienated from the life of God because of the ignorance that is in them, due to their hardness of heart. 19 They have become callous and have given themselves up to sensuality, greedy to practice every kind of impurity. 20 But that is not the way you learned Christ!—

ways to overcome a sin

  • admit you have a problem and need help
  • confess it to God and ask for his help to do better every time
  • tell a pastor, parent, or friend you can trust to hold you accountable
  • get some filtering software on your computer to make it harder
  • fast! you’ll be so worried about food you won’t focus on other desires
  • get help: covenanteyes.com, provenmen.org

Gender Roles

bible portrays men and women as distinct roles

You can find an an interesting list of male/female differences from at wikipedia and on biblicalgenderroles.com

transgender, hermaphrodites, bisexuals, and homosexuals who want to be Christian

equality before God (complementarian view)

  • equal heirs of salvation, but different function within marriage and church

walk through Genesis 2

  • rib from side
  • God’s design is that men and women become one flesh

Gal 3.27-29
27 For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ. 28 There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is no male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus. 29 And if you are Christ’s, then you are Abraham’s offspring, heirs according to promise.

w/in marriage

  • Eph 5 gives headship of marriage to the husband

w/in the church

  • leadership roles

One thought on “Podcast 65: Christian Views of Sexuality (Apologetics 15)

  • A lot of interesting scriptural related material covered on this subject. I like the point about Jesus really talking about lust in Matt 5:27-30. I thought that ties in with James 1:14,15.

    We know that Satan has the ability to truly mess up what God has created, though not without limit, thankfully. We don’t have to look very far to see in today’s world how successful he has been in this area.

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