What’s the Answer for a Sex-obsessed Society?
A torrent of sexual misconduct by persons in places of influence and power has been unleashed and the floodtide continues to wash up more victims and victimizers.
Over the past several months a number of powerful men have been fired or placed on suspension over allegations of sexual misconduct, horrific behavior that ranges from masturbating in front of female subordinates to pay-for-play. And time and time again we hear the words Everybody Knew!
After The New York Times and The New Yorker reported on allegations against the powerful Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein, the sexual misconduct tide has sweep out actors Kevin Spacey and Louis C.K., and prominent journalists, including Mark Halperin of NBC and Michael Oreskes of NPR, who have been fired or suspended from their jobs. CBS News fired one of its own morning anchors, Charlie Rose, after years of alleged sexual misconduct on his part. Then the flood of politicians that are about to be exposed has already begun by the washing up of the likes of Senator Al Franken and Representative John Conyers with credible accusations of their sexual misconduct.
Then to the shock and dismay of many, high profile Matt Lauer, the longtime left-wing anchor of NBC’s Today Show, was fired today over allegations of sexual misconduct.
Without question, we live in a sex-saturated, sex-obsessed society. Sex is an ever-present theme on television, the Internet, and in movies, music, and books. Western culture has not only become obsessed with sex, it has also perverted it.
Our obsession with sex has caused many to identify with the girls in a Time magazine cartoon published during the so-called “free-love” period of the sixties. There were two college girls engaged in deep conversation. One said to the other, “To tell you the truth, I wish I’d been born before they invented sex!”
What’s the answer for a sex-obsessed people?
Author Nancy Pearcy points us in the right direction as she writes, “The New York Times has a sobering article saying at the heart of the sexual assault epidemic is “the often ugly and dangerous nature of the male libido.” The author says we must to acknowledge “the implicit brutality of male sexuality.” But the piece offers no answers.
Historically, Christianity was born into a very similar culture, where powerful males had sexual access to just about anyone they wanted.
Enlarging on this fact of history, Nancy Pearcy, in her new book, Love Thy Body, writes: “Critics argue that the Christian church must change its sexual morality or risk being left behind — being “on the wrong side of history.” But history proves the exact opposite. The church’s sexual morality is one reason it grew so explosively in the early centuries, especially among women.
In the surrounding Roman society, wives had little status. Freeborn men married wives to obtain legal heirs, but it was accepted that they would seek sexual satisfaction with girlfriends, mistresses, prostitutes, courtesans, other men, and, household slaves — male and female, adults and minors. Wives had to compete with a host of other people for their husband’s love and attention.
Most infidelity took the form of sleeping with one’s own slaves.
In the ancient world, virtually no sexual activity was considered immoral in itself, as long as it was practiced in “moderation.” The early church had to muster the courage to stand against a culture in which there were few limits on sexual behavior. From the beginning, Christians have not defended “traditional values.” They have stood for truth against prevailing cultural norms.
Christianity was radical because it channeled male sexual desire into marriage as the only acceptable outlet. “Marriage should be honored by all, and the marriage bed kept pure” (Heb. 13:4). As a consequence, Christianity greatly elevated the status of women while protecting everyone else from being treated as fair game for sexual seduction or predation. No wonder so many women were attracted to the Christian faith!”
Dr. Ed Young was right on target when he said, “We have an appetite for the mysteries of sex like no other people who have ever lived, yet there is not a subject on the planet about which we have more information and less insight. We have become a culture that is more and more sexually active and less and less sexually satisfied. We have unprecedented sexual freedom with unprecedented sexual disappointment. We are caught in a deceptive trap of our own design. Far too many of us are physically sick, psychologically scarred, emotionally unsatisfied and spiritually numb. We’ve accepted an imitation for the genuine article — and are only just beginning to realize the tragedy of our error.”
Our sexuality is an important window into the heart of God. What was His purpose? He gave us sex to arouse and satisfy a hunger for intimacy, for union, yea, for ultimate union with God.
In creation, God split is own image in half — male and female — and that is why man and women move toward each other; to reunite and become one flesh; the original image of the whole God. Gordon Dalby writes: “Today, therefore , as always, we are drawn to the opposite sex not to make babies, not to perpetuate a species, but because from the roots of our creation we share a sacred memory of the species, an ancient inner-recall that at one time we were man and woman. Sexual desire is an archetypal recall, the voice of the Creator/Spirit/God crying out, “Come back, return from your separateness to the oneness out of which I created you!”
Marriage and physical intimacy is a window into the heart of God. It is to be a foretaste of the final union of the Bridegroom and His Bride in an eternal bliss. All mankind’s perversion of sex stems from the sinfulness of the human heart and a reluctance to be in a passionate, dependent, intimate, satisfying relationship with a Loving Father/God!