I just got off the phone with a dad whose son has been viewing porn and sexting strangers. The boy is just 15 but already he’s exhibiting signs of sexual addiction.
Why did God create sex to be so powerful?
God did create sex powerful, but this boy, like so many, is not dealing so much with the power of sex, he’s dealing with the power of sin. And there’s a big difference between the two.
The power of sex comes from the complete self-giving of a husband to his wife and a wife to her husband. In this context, sex says, “I give you all of me to you for your good.” That’s love. (Read more about this in last week’s post here.)
In Mumford and Sons’ song Sigh No More, they sing, “Love, it will not betray you, dismay or enslave you, it will set you free, [make you] more like the man you were made to be.”
How clarifying when trying to discern if the sex we’re talking about is according to God’s design or the counterfeit of sexual sin.
Sexual sin does betray, dismay, and enslave. Sexual sin (sex that misses the mark) has no regard for who you were made to be. It actually works in contrast to your design:
• God created two biological sexes: male and female. Increasingly, our culture suggest male and female are not biological realities.
• God created a man and woman’s bodies to fit together sexually. Our culture suggests it “fits” if it feels good.
• God created sex to be procreative. Our culture often seeks to ignore or even reverse this intrinsic part of sex.
• God created sex to bring bliss. Sin tries to separate out the pleasure to use at will.
Let’s look at this last one for a moment to see how, in contrast to God’s design for sex, sexual sin can be so enslaving.
We try to isolate the pleasure of sex through pornography, fantasy, masturbation, or hook-ups, but doing so literally changes a person’s brain, rewiring it and enslaving it to sexual sin.
In Wired for Intimacy: How Pornography Hijacks the Male Brain, William Struthers describes how regular porn use messes with neurotransmitters in the brain associated with craving, bonding, well-being, and pleasure. In turn, those using porn lose their ability to enjoy simple pleasures of life and have to seek out sexual titillation with more frequency and intensity in order to feel the same “high” they experienced previously.
In Hooked: New Science on How Casual Sex is Affecting Our Children, authors Joe McIlhaney and Freda McKissic Bush describe how when a young woman is regularly engaged in hook-ups, her brain shuts down oxytocin production (oxytocin is the neurochemical connected to bonding), so she loses her ability to form healthy bonds with others.
Both these examples don’t happen because of sex, but because of sin. Sin, not sex, is what overpowers us. Sin, not sex, is what really should draw our ire.
And sin, not sex, is what Jesus came to rescue us from. He’s not against your sexuality. He wants to untwist it from sin.
So next time your tempted to shake a fist at God and ask, “Why did you create sex to be so powerful?” instead thank him for the good gift of sex, and ask Him to untwist sexuality from the awful power of sin.
Leave a comment below.
Grateful for sex,
This is a difficult blog to react to because the effect of sin is so subtle and we want to deny being in its grip. But I believe it is important to point out the damaging effects of sinful practices which our culture wants to take lightly. When a woman is promiscuous, she may try to convince herself that she is just exercising her right to express herself. But every time she settles for less than God’s divine plan, she loses a little more of herself. And I think the same can be said for men. When they demean women, they ultimately demean themselves as well. I didn’t realize there was actually research to explain what I have thought is true. Thank you for tirelessly drawing God’s plan to our attention. We need to tirelessly pass this on to the next generations as well. Sin almost always has glitter and allure and promise initially. But it winds up damaging and failing to deliver what it promises.
What’s a gay Jewish guy like you doing pretending you’re a straight Christian guy? What’s an old man like you doing telling a father that his gay post pubescent son is a sinner?? Like the kid’s life isn’t enough of a struggle already. Fie on you. Shame!
This is very helpful because we can become so discouraged with how tempting lust can be.