Christians Speaking Out of Both Sides of Their Mouths About Sexual Sin – Choices and Actions and How You Teach This Stuff Has Consequences
The over-riding point I wanted to make in my post from yesterday, but I do not think I was clear enough about it (I was half asleep when I wrote the last blog page) is that Christians speak out of both sides of their mouth on the sexual sins front, but then, ironically, have the nerve to complain about sexual sins.
On the one hand, a lot of American, socially conservative Christians complain, whine, and cry about the high rates of fornication, adultery, and homosexual sex and homosexual marriage in American culture, but then turn around and downplay, ridicule, or water down the Bible’s teachings about sexual purity, virginity, and celibacy in their blogs, magazines, sermons, television appearances, and pod casts.
If you want to know one reason homosexuality has taken off or received an embrace among evangelicals to the degree it has, and why there is more fornication now, even among Christians, it’s because the church does not esteem, defend, and respect adult singleness, virginity, and celibacy.
Good lord knows churches either insult adult singles or refuse to help them, something I’ve written of before in several posts, including this one:
Ignoring adult singles and their needs, a respectable amount of whom are staying celibate, or insulting adult singles, and treating them like second class citizens, acting as though singleness and celibacy are not as good and worthy as marriage, or acting as though adult singles are failures (and many married Christians do in fact behave in these ways or adhere to these stereotypes), is contributing to the rise of sexual sin in the church.
Even socially conservative Christians have taken it upon themselves within the last several years to be influenced by emergents, liberal Christians, and post-evangelicals to water-down virginity and celibacy, if not ceasing to preach about the worth of both altogether.
These groups – no longer the post-evangelicals and liberal Christians only, but also the conservatives now – are attempting to re-define terms and words, as well.
Some want to do away with the word “fornication,” for example, because they feel it is too old-fashioned or too judgmental.
Starting around ten years ago, I started hearing Christians on Christian talk shows use phrases such as “born again virgin” or “secondary virginity” which are phrases that are applied to Christians who have committed sexual sin, to make them feel less guilty about having sexual failings.
I do believe that the terms “sexual purity” and “virginity” are inter-changable, but I am seeing more and more Christians try to divide the two, by explaining that sexual purity is not tantamount to virginity – and I disagree.
That is not to say that a fornicator cannot cease having pre-marital sex, because a fornicator can make a change and stop fornicating. That is true.
But, it is also true that virginity is a form of sexual purity. But more and more Christians today are denying that “virginity = sexual purity,” because a lot of self professing Christians have failed to keep their virginity intact until marriage.
It’s so strange to me, and an abject travesty, that Christians are seeking to change biblical teachings, to move the goal posts on what constitutes acceptable and un-acceptable behavior, all based upon people’s failings, sins, and feelings.
It seems to me that robbery is on the increase in the last several years.
Why are we not seeing these same Christians, who are so willing to pardon sexual sin and downplay celibacy – saying things like,
- “Let’s not refer to robbery as “stealing” anymore, let’s call it by a euphemism, so as not to hurt the feelings of bank robbers. Let’s stop sermonizing against theft, because if we keep insisting the God of the Bible is opposed to theft, it might hurt the feelings of all the kleptomaniacs out there. Let’s not positively teach about, or encourage, honesty and holding down an honest day’s labor at a 9- to- 5 job.”
Why would you re-define standards and rules, all to spare the feelings of people who fail to keep those rules and standards, who do not even attempt to keep the rules?
If a person keeps failing at something (as in sexual abstinence), rather than encourage that person to buck up and improve, the majority of the Christian culture very oddly has decided a winning strategy is to go the opposite direction, which is quite un-biblical, and say, “hey, we get it – you cannot help but fail in this area, so don’t even try. Just give up, cave in, and later call yourself a ‘born again virgin.'”
FFS, Christian people. You cannot sit there and say virginity, sexual purity, and celibacy are really not all that important, as is your habit, and tell people you expect them to fail at biblical sexual ethics, then turn around and complain that homosexual and hetero fornication rates are sky rocketing.
Your laissez faire attitude towards sexual sin is one of the very factors contributing to the increasing rates of sexual sin, or acceptance of it.
It’s a little like telling your audience that a steady diet of sugar, fats, salts and fried foods are no big deal, and hey, everyone is eating that way, so go ahead and consistently eat mountains of Snickers candy bars and french fried potatoes, deep fried in lard.
And then you have the audacity to complain when people in your audience become obese and diabetic.
My god, do you not see the connection?
You don’t want to offend the Fatty McFat Fats in your audience about their girth.
So instead of condemning gluttony, poor food choices, and lack of exercise, you choose to go the opposite route and downplay the dangers of poor diet or neglect to mention the topic at all, lest it wound the pride and ego of the overweight people in your audience.
It might hurt their feelings to get a sermon about proper eating habits, self discipline in eating, and the need for regular exercise. And God forbid you raise the ire of NAAFA (National Association to Advance Fat Acceptance); you fear their disapproval and wrath.
But then you complain in your other sermons, TV interviews, blog pages, or pod casts, about how 90% of your church members have double chins and weigh 800 pounds.
I mean, really? You either avoid preaching against fatty foods, lack of exercise, and dietary self discipline, so as not to offend or hurt the feelings of your congregants….
Or, you preach on the topic, but over-emphasize God’s forgiveness of gluttony to the point you make it sound like God is basically dandy and fine with an all-junk food diet (he will totally forgive your gluttony, so go ahead and have three bowls of ice cream and two pizzas when you get home from the church service)…
But then you also complain about high rates of obesity among your congregants?
Gee, might your preaching, your watered-down preaching, or avoidance of the topic altogether, might be playing a role in the very problem you are complaining about?
If we have a parallel situation with food among Christians as we do with sex, in my analogy here, you would have your blogs and Facebook groups by lay persons, that is, your emergents, post-evangelicals, and liberal and moderate Christians, who whine and complain about fat discrimination, lack of fat acceptance, and how Christians need to shut up about dieting and exercise, because to talk about such issues shames the overweight out there, and it is not inclusive.
I would not advocate shaming fat people intentionally by pointing at them in public and screaming at them, “Hey you are a big fattie, you big porker!,” but these types of people I am talking about would not so much as accept a preacher politely explaining from the pulpit,
- “Hey, over-eating and lack of exercise can be bad for your health. Please consider cutting back on calories and fat and jogging a few times a week.”
No, you cannot even do that much.
Christians are dismissing virginity (and celibacy), some are out-right attacking it and putting it down, some so-called Christians are claiming they see no support in the Bible for remaining a virgin until marriage (though the Bible does in fact teach this), while others are saying to either water down virginity teachings or omit them entirely because such teachings hurt the feelings of fornicators, and on and on.
You cannot simultaneously insult or omit the Bible’s insistence on sexual purity (which, yes, includes remaining a virgin until marriage) and then wonder why so many self-professing Christians are having pre-marital sex or condoning homosexuality now.
It should not be a mystery that one reason sexual sins are rampant among even Christians, when many Christians these days, including men who work as preachers, are completely rejecting what the Bible plainly teaches about sex, or are re-defining what the Bible says, to gloss over sexual sin, or make sexual sins seem palatable.
If you want to counter the rising amount of sexual sin, start speaking out against it unequivocally. Stop coddling sexual sin and sexual sinners.
By glossing over, or so easily dismissing, sexual sin, many Christians are in effect rewarding people for their sexual failures. This is a form of positive re-enforcement and so will not halt the large amount of sexual sin going on among Christians.
Previous post (part 1 to this post):
(Link): Christian Gender Complementarian Group (CBMW) Anti Virginity and Anti Sexual Purity Stance (At Least Watered Down) – and their Anti Homosexual Marriage Position
Related posts this blog:
(Link): How the Sexual Revolution Ruined Friendship – Also: If Christians Truly Believed in Celibacy and Virginity, they would stop adhering to certain sexual and gender stereotypes that work against both