Ariella Nyssa sometimes feels guilty when she has sex with her boyfriend. Staying “pure” for a future husband by abstaining from any sexual activity was something she and her fellow church members valued. But in the wrong context, purity messages can be harmful. An extreme example is “purity culture” in Protestant Christianity , which has been widely criticised for leading to feelings of shame around sex, Dr Whitaker says. Tanya Koens is a sexologist in Sydney and says some of her clients have similar stories to Ariella’s, where cultural and religious beliefs have impacted their ability to enjoy sex or fully embrace their sexuality. Ms Koens says it can be hard to flip a switch and embrace sex once it’s “allowed”. There was a big purity culture movement in evangelical Christianity in the US during the late ’90s and early s, explains Dr Whitaker. In its best form, she says it was about young Christians living holy and pure lives through moral thoughts and behaviour. In the census, more than 60 per cent of Australians identified with an organised religion. She says growing up feeling ashamed of sexual desire to suddenly being expected to have fantastic sex on your wedding night is a “huge psychological leap”.
How purity culture can affect sex life
What does it take to begin a relationship with God? Do you need to devote yourself to unselfish religious deeds? Must you become a better person so that God will accept you? Learn how you can know God personally.
Posted by Amy Orr-Ewing Morality. The question you have most been dreading comes — What is wrong with sex before marriage? What on earth are you going to say? In the gospels, Jesus was asked many difficult questions and he frequently responded with a question, before answering more fully. He did this so often that I think we are probably meant to notice it and learn something.
What question might we ask here? What is wrong with sex before marriage?
Christian Singles and Sexuality
Please continue reading with an open mind and I hope it blesses you in some way. Two extremely important mini disclaimers before we begin! They do have slightly different proper meanings.
A few years ago the Ramsey Colloquium—a group of Christian and Jewish scholars—published a sharp critique of “the gay and lesbian cause” which they titled “The Homosexual Movement. It hardly needs to be said that entering the debate in this way exposed the Ramsey Colloquium to angry denunciation and was, for some of its members, an act of courage.
My purpose is not to criticize the declaration’s reasoning but to draw your attention to one paragraph as the starting point for our conversation:. This is a profoundly counter-cultural vision of human sexuality and one that can be helpful as we struggle with the moral question that is before us: should the church affirm faithful relationships between same-sex partners? The Ramsey Colloquium, rightly in my opinion, calls into question the ethic of “sexual liberation.
And who could be opposed to freedom? We always live in the tension between personal freedom and social discipline, so we want to liberate ourselves from this tension and live in the light of a pure freedom that never says “no” to human possibility. Defined in this way, freedom is the doctrine of personal sovereignty, the private property of the ego that has to be seized and defended. So words like “discipline,” “order” and “structure” also provoke a “reflexive recoil”—the recoil of the individual ego when we encounter boundaries that limit our freedom of action.
Naturally, in a culture that defines individuality as self-determination and self-assertion, discipline is at best suspect, at worst oppressive.
Sex and the Single Evangelical
The relationship of homosexuality to Christianity is one of the main topics of discussion in our culture today. There are a number of other books that take the opposite view, namely that the Bible either allows for or supports same sex relationships. Over the last year or so I and other pastors at Redeemer have been regularly asked for responses to their arguments. The two most read volumes taking this position seem to be those by Matthew Vines and Ken Wilson.
The starting point for a Christian understanding of human sexuality is the belief that all humans are made ‘in the image of God’. God created man in His own image.
It is witnessed on billboards, in movie trailers and on television series that air at 8. It is talked about on morning radio and discussed in magazines, both adult and teen-focused. Sex loses reverence and respect each passing day. If we go one step further and relate to young adults and youth that identify with the Christian faith then one can notice a very big challenge. Single Christian young adults and youth face a predicament that has not been experienced on a similar scale by previous generations.
Young single Christians who are both serious about their faith and struggling to navigate their sexuality appropriately are subsequently left confused about, and lacking knowledge of, their sexuality and how to express it. With this all in mind, how should Christian young adults and youth respond to their own sexuality in a sex-dominated society, especially when people are now single for much longer than they were in previous generations?
The people of the Old Testament understood sexuality as explicitly relating to marriage, procreation and family. It was essential to have a strong family network as large numbers could provide more production and security. Male children were especially crucial, as males were perceived as legitimate heirs to the family possessions and as heads of the house. Thus, the only socially and religiously acceptable context for sexual intercourse was within marriage and as a result, marriage was a societal norm.
Biblical outlines for sex in the Bible was therefore assumed to exclusively belong to faithful heterosexual marriage, as this was the only way to procreate. The New Testament saw an age of additional security and stability as societies were structured around permanent cities and the Roman Empire.
How Should Christians Have Sex?
I wrote earlier on celebrating sexuality within a Christian worldview. I still think the world yearns for affirmation of our sexuality from God’s point.
What to avoid on dates. Don’t spend your time in wild parties and getting drunk or in adultery and lust, or fighting, or jealousy. Dating should not include a sexual relationship. No other sin affects the body as this one does. When you sin this sin it is against your own body. Keep yourself pure. To keep from hurting ourselves, sexual desires and activities must be placed under Christ’s control.
Aug 2, When women ask their honest questions about sexuality, the most common ones typically relate to whether certain things are right or wrong for Christian women to engage in. They want to know where the boundaries lie. There are plenty of opinions available on each of these questions.
And that seems to be where many Christians fall short. You’ve been told why you shouldn’t have sex before marriage, but did anyone actually tell.
There are some myths out there that people assume to be gospel about dating, especially among Christians. Christian culture is like any other in that we develop truisms that we accept without verifying. There are ” Christian dating ” ideas floating around that have little or nothing to do with the Bible. Most are well intended and contain a nugget of truth. Some are flat-out wrong. Dating is hard enough without sifting through all this erroneous information, so let’s debunk some myths around Christian dating.
There are plenty of them, but let’s focus on what I believe are the top five myths that make dating harder for Christian singles. Good luck finding this one in the Bible. There is plenty of stuff about God’s will for his people, God wanting good things for you, and God’s ultimate plan. Nowhere, however, does it say that God picked out a spunky brunette whom he’s waiting to spring on you at the right moment.
I’m not saying that he doesn’t.
Talking About Sex While Dating
It is commonly believed among Assemblies of God constituents that lenient attitudes toward sex before or outside of marriage are completely contrary to the clear teaching of Scripture. It is also felt that uncontrolled and irresponsible expressions of affection and sexual permissiveness are directly responsible for the breakdown of much in our society. Dating and premarital courtship as practiced in 20th-century America are entirely different from the process of mate selection in Bible days.
In ancient times dating and courtship were virtually nonexistent.
Twenty years later, that ritual strikes me as almost innocuous — how much power do we give to the scribbled signature of a teenager who had only the faintest idea what sex was? Yet it also carried a psychological burden that many of my peers and I are still unloading. It held out the promise that if I remained pure, then God would reward good behavior with a husband — surely before I turned 30 so that we could have lots of children. Twenty years later, I no longer subscribe to purity culture, largely because it never had anything to say to Christians past the age of Yet lately, I also find myself mourning the loss of the coherent sexual ethic that purity culture tried to offer.
Is consent culture the best that we have in its place? Rather than emphasize the gift of sex within marriage, purity culture typically led with the shame of having sex outside of it. At each turn, someone would spit in the cup, until the last person had a cup full of spit. In light of its damaging effects, several Christian leaders have recently suggested a more gracious sexual ethic.
He admitted that much of what he taught was not actually scriptural. The Rev. I am 34, unmarried and a committed Christian, and have, over time, not held to the purity standards I inherited from my faith community.
Next Live Stream: Women in the Word — please wait. Watch Now: Women in the Word. What if my girlfriend or boyfriend sleeps on a separate bed when they sleep over? Is that okay?
My first relationship to desire was to give in to it. As a teenager in the early aughts, I believed that life was found by identifying my desires and rushing toward their satisfaction. I played this out in academics and especially in sexuality. Unbeknownst to me as a nonChristian, the purity movement was running in parallel. Those who experienced that movement from the inside have spent recent months breaking down its excesses and missteps.
Their conclusion and mine is that repression and avoidance are unbiblical responses to desire, no more Christian, perhaps, than my teenage, atheistic abandonment to it. In the midst of these reoccurring public square discussions, the tension between libertinism on one side and repression on the other leaves most of us yearning for the reasonable via media , the middle way between failed extremes.