The word “sex” never fails to catch our attention. Whether we hear it in conversation or it catches our eye on a page, it somehow always sparks our curiosity. But not everyone feels the same way about this stimulating word. To some, it symbolizes freedom and pleasure. To others, it’s considered dangerous and forbidden – a word that can only be whispered and accompanied by an uncomfortable giggle. So, what are we supposed to think about this taboo subject?
There’s no doubt that in today’s culture, having a “sex life” is considered a birthright similar to breathing or eating. We often hear people say, “It’s just a natural part of life” or “It’s my body. I can do what I want with it.” Modern society constantly fills our heads with images of sexuality and tells us that following our heart is what truly matters but we know that God doesn’t say the same. As Christians, we recognize that the Bible speaks out against adultery and sexual immorality, but what does that really mean? Despite what we see in movies, music and television shows, God’s definition of sexual immorality involves any sort of wrong-doing in sexual matter. That includes cheating on our spouses, having sex before marriage or even looking at a guy with sexual desires. God takes sex very seriously and nowadays, that fact is easily overlooked.
Only 3% of Americans successfully wait until marriage to lose their virginity.
79% of teenage girls who become pregnant are unmarried.
By their 19th birthday, seven out of ten teenagers will have already had sex for the first time.
These firm warnings in the Bible often cause us to focus on the negative when it comes to God’s view of sex. Christians often think that sex is disgusting, evil and uncomfortable to talk about. But that’s not entirely true. Sex is actually a beautiful part of God’s creation and is meant to form a unique and sacred bond between a husband and wife. Why would God tell married couples to stay away from something He created for their own enjoyment? To truly understand the word “sex” and what it means for our lives, we must look at it from God’s perspective.
Sex is God’s Creation:
Men and women are extremely different. We’re different physically, mentally and even emotionally. Sometimes it seems like we see the world in completely separate ways. But somehow, we’re still attracted to each other and can provide what the other lacks. This isn’t an accident. God knew what He was doing when he created men to be one way and women another. Just think of the creation of Adam and Eve in Genesis 2. God created Adam to be a worker and caretaker of all His creation. But even with such an important role, Adam was lonely and in need of support. So God, in His infinite wisdom, took one of Adam’s ribs – the closest bone to his heart – to create the perfect companion, helper and friend. While Adam was a strong leader, Eve was a gentle helper. Together, they made up the first and most ideal marriage. Despite their outward differences, Adam can now call his new bride, “the bone of my bones and the flesh of my flesh” (Genesis 2:23). Although woman is made differently, the fact that she comes from man creates a unique and special bond between them. We’re then told, “That is why a man leaves his father and mother and is united to his wife, and they become one flesh,” (vs.24). Here, God shows us the first ever marriage and expresses the importance of such a relationship between one man and one woman through sexual unity. Like Adam, it’s not good for us to be alone. While it may seem that guys and girls come from different planets, the Genesis story shows us that diversity between us is a profound blessing and actually helps unite us in love. The ability to come together physically, mentally and emotionally in a marriage despite our differences shows us the perfection of God’s creation and just how much He’s looking out for us.
The world constantly fills our heads with images of sexuality and tells us that following our heart is what truly matters but we know that God doesn’t say the same.
Sex Creates Pleasure and Unity:
Having a healthy sexual relationship is also a great source of enjoyment and pleasure. Although the world is fully aware of this in a physical sense, it fails to realize that this pleasure goes much deeper than the desires of our bodies. Sex is also necessary for creating children, experiencing intimacy and developing a solid relationship with one’s husband. In the Old Testament book, Song of Solomon, poetry is used to show us how loving and sacred marriage is and how sexual closeness creates an exclusive bond that should only strengthen the love for a spouse. If married couples didn’t engage in regular sexual activity, then their relationship would be no greater than that of roommates or close friends. Sex allows a couple to grow closer together in a profound way and unites them physically, mentally and spiritually. To “become one flesh” not only refers to the union of two bodies, but also the deep connection between the hearts and minds of individuals. It’s in an incredible bond that’s unlike any other. That’s why God only blesses it to those who have given vows to one another before Him. In Ephesians, Paul refers to such intimacy as “a profound mystery” that even relates to Christ and His love for the church (5:32). Sex is simply a physical representation of that strong, unconditional and self-sacrificing love that makes up a Christ-centered marriage. The physical and relational satisfaction that we get from a healthy sexual relationship is just another way of reminding us about the goodness of God’s creation and His sincere desire for us to enjoy it.
Sex is actually a beautiful part of [God’s] creation and is meant to form a unique and sacred bond between a husband and wife.
Straying From God’s Plan Causes Pain:
So if sex is such a wonderful part of life, why do we only ever hear about it in warnings from our parents, teachers and pastors? Doesn’t talking about sex in such a negative way make it appear more dangerous and sinful than it actually is? The fact is, we’re given these warnings so often because we need to hear them. Think of how often sexual scandals are blasted on the television or plastered on the fronts of magazines. To have a godly view of sex in such a carefree and perverse society seems impossible. Just like with many other aspects of God’s creation, man has taken the idea of sex and totally distorted its original purpose. To a world that doesn’t recognize the gifts of God, sex is just a natural part of life and should be enjoyed by everyone whenever they feel like it. But God calls us to a higher standard and a stronger sense of self-control. Taking our sexual lives into our own hands can only create problems that will harm us down the road whether it’s through unplanned pregnancies, Sexually Transmitted Diseases or emotional damage.
To truly understand the word “sex” and what it means for our lives, we must be mature and look at it from God’s perspective.
Why do we even feel the need to have sex? Is it our need for attention? Our overwhelming loneliness? Or maybe our self-image is so poor that we’re willing to do anything to make ourselves feel beautiful again. So often, sex is the result of an emotional void or a desperate seeking for love. But will that really solve these deep-rooted issues? Can we really fix them on our own? Controlling our own lives in this way only separates us from the role we’re intended to have: that of God’s beloved. His desire is for us to experience such intimacy and closeness only with our spouse. The fact that He doesn’t desire sex outside of marriage only shows us that He has our best interest at heart. It’s through this profoundly strong relationship that God shows us His incredible protection and power to heal our brokenness. The love of a husband should be like the love of God: complete, unconditional and selfless. When we hand our burdens over to Him, He will give us the desires of our hearts. God understands that as human beings, we’re created with sexual desires. To have a crush or to be attracted to a boy is not wrong, but we must learn to control ourselves and act in a holy way by allowing God to change our hearts. Instead of focusing on romantic feelings, start preparing yourself to become the woman your husband will want to love, help and protect every day. If we resist our desires and force ourselves to wait, we’ll be blessed in marriage and given the opportunity to enjoy all that God has planned for us.
So next time you hear the word “sex” don’t think of it as a dirty and evil part of life. Instead, consider it from a mature and godly perspective and look forward to it as something being specially saved for your future marriage. At the same time, if you’ve already fallen into sin in this area, don’t think that you’re beyond God’s grace. Christ has already paid for that sin on the cross. If Jesus can forgive an adulterous woman by simply telling her to leave her life of sin, will He not do the same for us? Thank the Lord every day for His amazing grace. Through the power of the Holy Spirit, you’ll control your desires and appreciate sex as the incredible gift He intended it to be.
Learning to Stay Pure: Tips to Encourage Abstinence
Stay in the Word:
There’s no greater defense against sin than the Holy Word of God. Reading the Bible every day will not only remind you of His laws and plans for your life, but it will also serve as an incredible encouragement and drastically shape the way you begin to view important things like sex and marriage.
Have Accountability Partners:
Sometimes battling with sin just can’t be done on your own. Allow others that God has placed in your life to help you! Find someone you trust like a parent, youth group leader or close friend to share your thoughts with and who will encourage you when things get tough. In the same way, make yourself available to help them with a difficult issue in their life. Help steer each other away from temptation and spur each other on towards righteous living.
Only Date Christian Guys:
The Bible is very serious about the dangers of being “unequally yoked.” Don’t trick yourself into thinking that “missionary dating” will work. Dating a non-Christian guy is bound to be difficult and can easily serve as a stumbling block to you and your spiritual growth. Knowing that your boyfriend is on the same page as you is a huge blessing and will give you the opportunity to stay pure and grow closer to God together.
Just because you’re dating a Christian guy doesn’t mean that sexual temptation won’t be there. If you’re in a relationship, establish boundaries to help keep each other from sin and maintain self-control. Limit kissing to just the face, avoid lying down together and be conscious of how modest your clothes are and how they may affect your boyfriend. Setting boundaries is a great way to hold each other accountable and keep yourselves focused on God’s greatest intention for you both.
Know Your Self-Worth:
Don’t allow negative thoughts to invade your mind and keep you from living the righteous life God desires. If you’re feeling broken, helpless or insecure, sex is not the answer. Remind yourself every day that you are worth so much more! Leave notes around your mirror to remind yourself of true beauty and only put value in what the Bible calls true and lovely.