Radio Broadcast

Human Sexuality: The Search for Truth About Sex, Part 1

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Parents! In this message, Chip will be talking about human sexuality. It’s direct, straightforward, and at some points, perhaps even shocking. Depending on your children’s ages you may want to preview this message before letting them hear it.

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Transcript

Never in the history of the world has a culture and its values shifted concerning sexuality as fast or as drastically as America in the last forty to fifty years. I’m not saying that there hasn’t been morality far worse or equivalent to America.

But never in the history of this planet has a view of sexuality moved as fast and as far in as short amount of time.

I want to chronicle the shift. I want to talk today about sex. The search for truth about human sexuality. What’s really true?

Here’s the shift. In the 19, late 1940s, 1950 about five percent of girls in high school and about ten percent of boys in high school were sexually active. Fast forward fifty to sixty years, seventy percent of girls, eighty percent of boys are sexually active in high school.

Today, fifty percent of all women under thirty cohabitate, live with someone prior to marriage if they are married. The divorce rate in the late forties, decade of the fifties, single digits. Divorce rate today? Over fifty percent.

In fact, the problem, by the way, don’t get this that there are these terrible things that have happened out there. This is in the Church.

1969 we entered into “no fault” divorce. Morality had been changing, doesn’t matter why. By 1996 evangelical Christians’ divorce rate was four percent higher than the national average. And in the Bible-Belt it was fifty percent higher than the national average. I’m talking about the shift inside of sexuality, in family, in the Church.

Well the shift in truth, the search for freedom in the sixties and the seventies, the bad teaching in the Church. We’ve done a terrible job. Before I opted out of church, I never heard a message on sex. Most people won’t hear a message on sex.

In fact, some of our heroes of the faith, Calvin and Martin Luther and others had a very warped view. They did a lot of things well. They had a pretty warped view about sex.

There’s been this picture of this Victorian, snobbish, sex is dirty, sex is bad, or you don’t say anything about sex and it’s off limits and you get around Christians, or kids grow up with parents, and if sex comes up and their parents are uncomfortable. Kids read from that, “Well, it must be bad. Or God’s anti-sex, who knows?”

Well then you have Fifth Avenue, who realized early on, that once the moral floodgates are opened sex sells. You want to sell toothpaste? Sex. You want to sell cars? Sex. You want to sell beer? Right? Sex.

And so now we’re bombarded in ways like never before.

The impact spiritually is a Church that’s impotent. When you meet someone and they talk about, “Why don’t you come to my church?” Or, “I really believe in Jesus. He’s made a difference in my life.” And two people are living together or you’re having an affair or you visit porn sites, guess what? They don’t think you have anything to say. You’re no different than me.

Scandals of the eighties, the televangelists, we’ve got the clergy and the ongoing issues in the Catholic church.

Relationally, divorce rate has skyrocketed, a million to two million people divorce every year, which leaves one million kids without a home or a family that they had the year before. Mom’s here, dad’s there, someone left. We have a fractured family, we have dysfunction like never before. Relationally unwed teens, people struggling, emotional scars, abuse, damage, dysfunction.

Not to mention AIDS, herpes, incurable gonorrhea all time high. And then the cost. The cost spiritually is the Church’s reputation. But the cost, if I did not believe in God, okay? If I was not a Christian and if I didn’t believe the Bible I would tell you, if I was an economist, the dumbest thing that’s ever happened in America the last fifty to sixty years is our sexual morals.

We’ve spent billions, and billions, and billions of dollars to help unwed mothers, a whole welfare system, and billions more on research for what? Sexually transmitted diseases and then on sex education, which, by the way, we’ve learned that when we do sex education, without values, and we teach our high school and junior high students their activity goes up instead of down.

All I want you to get is something big happened and we want to talk about the truth about sex. Human sexuality. Are you ready for this? You are a sexual being and so am I. How you think about sex impacts your identity. Your view of God. Your relationship with others.

And I’m going to suggest that you have been fed lies most of your life, whether you’re a Christian, not a Christian, married, or single.

And I want to look at the top six lies that you’ve been fed and I’ve been fed and then I want to flip it around and talk about God’s truth.

Myth number one is that God is anti-sex. The truth of the matter is God is so pro-sex He created it.

He created it to provide physical pleasure, procreation, relational intimacy, and to be a spiritual object lesson of Christ in the Church.

In Genesis chapter 1, it’s the story of creation. Chapter 2 gives us the specifics. “Then God said, ‘Let us make man in our own image, in our own likeness and let them rule over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air and over the livestock and over the earth and all the creatures that move along the ground.’ So God created in His own image, in the image of God He created them male and female.”

And then here are His first words, “God blessed them and said to them, ‘Be fruitful and increase in number, fill the Earth, subdue it, multiply it, be fruitful.’”

Now, if God is anti-sex I have a thought for you. Let’s get out of your religious thinking and that we happen to be in a building where we worship God, and take some of your baggage and let it go.

I want to take you, for a moment, to Eden in a perfect environment and an all-knowing, and all-loving, and good God who has created these beings in His image, and we’re going to learn in chapter 1 He made mankind.

A little bit later, in chapter 2, He’ll talk about how He’ll take a part of mankind, mankind is both male and female, and in His image it’s male and female and He’ll take part of that out, so that there’s this corresponding part and this draw, and magnet toward one another - male and female.

And then as they’re in the garden the very first words they hear, are you ready for this? “Be fruitful and multiply.” Translation: the first thing God said to our original parents was, “Make love.” Can I be a little more graphic? Have sex!

That’s how you’re fruitful. You don’t get fruitful, you don’t multiply unless you have, are you ready? Out loud, sex! It’s holy. It’s sacred. God’s for it. And, by the way, He designed their bodies like He designed yours. He designed bodies, well when people come together in a monogamous relationship that God’s heart’s desire, He looks on the marriage bed as holy, as pure, as a gift, as sacred. He wants it to be deeply pleasurable.

And then He wants it for procreation - for children. And then He, you learn in chapter 2 verse 18, that it’s not good for a man to be alone. It’s not good for a person to be alone. God gives the gift to certain people and they have a unique set of desires to serve Him in ways where they want to be celibate and be single.

But for most of us there is a yearning in your heart and my heart and there’s an attraction to the opposite sex to want to be known, and to be loved, and to be connected.

And you want to be known and loved, and connected intellectually, and spiritually, and emotionally, and psychologically, and physically. And so at the end of that it’s not good for a man to be alone, He tells us the story of Adam and Eve and creation, and a man will leave his father and mother and cleave to his wife and they become one flesh and they were naked and unashamed, is the end of that chapter.

And they were naked and unashamed, not just physically. They were emotionally transparent. They were psychologically transparent. There was connection.

There are three Hebrew words for sex when it happens in the Old Testament. One is “to lie with.” Second is, “to go into.” And the third is, “to know.” When David lies with Bathsheba, when a man goes into a prostitute, when sex isn’t sanctioned by God He uses words like, “they lie together” or “he goes into her.”

And yet when He describes Adam and Eve it says, “Adam knew Eve.” See far from some lustful act it was about intimacy, it was about connection, it was about knowing, it was about self-revealing, it was the climax in terms of the physical reality of what they were sharing at the heart and the spiritual level.

And that’s God’s design. It’s His design for you. Sex is awesome, it’s a gift, and it is holy. He’s not anti-sex.

Myth number two: Christians’ sex lives and views of sex are dull, boring, and out of touch. I grew up with that. I wasn’t even a Christian but I don’t think I saw my mom and dad kiss two or three times. I didn’t see them be affectionate.

And then when I came to Christ, since I’d never heard any messages on sex, it was like taboo, I figured if people really became Christians they became holy, and Victorian, and so I don’t know what it’s like to be a Christian married but I don’t think I’d be one of them. I’m not sure what they do at night.

You’d be surprised how many, especially Christian women, have grown up in that environment and despite maybe some later teaching otherwise, have some major issues with sex in their marriage, because of that sense of “something is wrong. It’s dirty.” Instead of a beautiful gift from God.

The truth is is that the Scriptures command God’s people to be downright, you can go ahead and write this word in, erotic in their marital love.

Not suggested. Not, “it would be a nice idea.” God is pro-sex, He created sex for the reasons defined, and inside of marriage He commands us, literally, to be erotic. To deeply enjoy one another.

Listen to the wisest man on the earth. Solomon. He says to a man, “May your fountain be blessed and may you rejoice in the wife of your youth. A loving doe, a graceful deer, may her breast satisfy you always, may you be captivated by her love.” Literally, the word “captivated,” may you be intoxicated by her love.

Translation: may you be turned on by your wife. That’s God’s will. It’s God’s desire.

I Corinthians chapter 7 verses 2 through 5, Paul is making some corrections. You need to understand you don’t live in the most sex saturated time, although there is the internet that would maybe argue otherwise.

If you came to Christ in Corinth there were temples on every corner and spirituality and sexuality are very, very close. And so in most of the pagan religions there was a prostitute, male or female, that was a part of their religion.

And the Canaanite religions, they were prostitutes, there were all kind of sexual things that always got connected with spirituality.

So in Corinth these people became Christians and as they came to know Jesus as the Messiah and the forgiver of their sins, and began to follow Him, they had two grave errors.

One group of people, it was like this, is the food is for the stomach and the stomach is for food. In other words, that if you have a sensual desire, in other words, if you want food God gave you a desire for food, eat. So if you want sex you should have sex anytime, anywhere, with anyone.

That’s how they grew up.

And so Paul says, “No, no, no, no that’s not exactly what God says.” Paul says no, see, God put a box around sex. It’s called a fireplace. And He wants the fire to burn hot and passionate inside the fireplace of marriage where it brings light, and heat, and warmth, and intimacy.

But when you take it out of the fireplace and you put it on the living room floor, or as we see here in California, you know forests? It burns wild and does destructive things.

The other group wasn’t sex anytime with anyone. They had this Greek background and Greek had a dualistic thinking. They thought the body was evil and the spirit was good.

And so they came to Christ and they said this, “We’re not going to have sex, even inside of our marriage, because it’s dirty and unholy.” Listen to what the apostle Paul says to this group.

We pick it up in verse 2 of I Corinthians 7:

“But since there’s so much immorality, each man should have his own wife and each woman her own husband. So the husband should fulfill his marital duty,” (translation: sex) “to his wife. Likewise, the wife to her husband. The wife’s body does not belong to her alone but also to her husband and in the same way the husband’s body does not belong to him alone but also to his wife. But do not deprive each other, except by mutual consent and for a time, so that you may devote yourselves to prayer. Then come together again so that Satan will not tempt you because of your lack of self-control.”

The apostle Paul basically is saying, and we have not taught this well or clearly in the Church, you are one before God. Your body, your mate, you are to serve your mate with your body and she, or he, is to serve you. And the apostle Paul is saying this is such a dynamic part of the marriage relationship, far from being some small, little area, it’s a part of the bonding process. It’s a part of the mental, physical, and relational that God desires.

He commands us to, literally, be erotic and passionate in our relationship with one another.

Walt Larimore who is a psychologist and a doctor. And he has a great article that talks about what happens in a man’s brain when he has sex.

And they’ve just discovered where there is a bonding that happens in a man when he has sex with a woman that also causes him afterwards to have a desire to open up and self-reveal.

God designed the sex act in marriage to build an incredible core and bond in relationship. And that’s why it’s so important.

Now here’s what’s interesting. You know, my background was doing all these studies and I always get a kick out of a study that says, “Oh, by the way, God really was right.”

In 1994, (every few decades, maybe three or four, there’s this exhaustive study) in 1994, the University of Chicago did an exhaustive study on sexuality. Probably the biggest one before that was the Kinsey Report that was very flawed in terms of how it was done.

But in 1994 it became the book, a landmark book, Sex in America: A Definitive Survey by Robert Michael, John Gagnon, and Edward Laumann, and Gina Kolata. And in it, it’s very interesting, basically they say, “Everything people think about how sex works in America is far from the truth. America, TV, commercials you would think the hottest sex is single people in the swinging lifestyle.”

The report: single people have less sex than married people and have it fewer times than married people and then it goes into this crazy part. “The people that are most satisfied sexually, that have sex the most often, and have the greatest experience in sex,” it’s kind of crazy! Be careful here. “People in monogamous, marital relationships with what they call ‘orthodox conservative’ views often that are highly religious.”

So those Christians may be a little embarrassed to talk about their kids but they’re having a lot of fun.

And here’s why. You know what? Because you gotta communicate if you love your wife, as a Christian man. There’s vulnerability. There’s trust. And see at the end of the day sex is far from technique. Sex really is about vulnerability and love and trust and serving your partner rather than what you can “get.”

And that principle of give and it will be given unto you as you care and love and a woman feels nurtured, as one author says, she opens up like a flower. And as a man learns to serve and care for his wife.

See God is far from anti-sex. He’s not only pro-sex but He commands us to be outright passionate in our relationships.