Corruptions of Sexuality Mean Opportunities for the Truth
Recently in the “Powerline Blog,” John Hinderaker wrote that when Scott Johnson and he launched the site in about 1990, they “never imagined that someday, we would have to write about sex-change operations and mastectomies carried out on 13-year-old girls.” He noted he is “much more comfortable writing about economic data and the like. But unfortunately, the Left has mounted a campaign against America’s youth that it is impossible to ignore.”
This is something with which we can all identify. The transgender movement has been perhaps the most unexpected in the history of the “sexual revolution,” the 1960s-based radical reshaping of American views and practices concerning sexuality.
The corruption of human sexuality didn’t start in the 1960s, though. It has been under attack since the days of our earliest ancestors. Genesis recounts the moral debauchery rampant in the days of Noah, such that “the Lord regretted that He had made man on the earth, and it grieved Him to His heart” (6:5-6). The flood followed and, as history moved along, so did a renewed descent into immorality.
Satan’s eagerness to debase those who bear God’s image is seen clearly in the ways in which he has used what God planned for good as an instrument of destruction. The beauty of sexual intimacy within the covenantal union of one man-one woman marriage has been distorted universally in every imaginable way.
When sexual pleasure and selfish desire join in an unholy union, their progeny cannot but be grotesque. One example: The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has announced that in 2020, there were 2.4 million reported cases of sexually transmitted disease in the United States. The CDC report states that syphilis in the United States is an “epidemic.”
Another example: According to Pew Research, nearly 60% of Americans between the ages of 18-44 have at some time cohabited — lived together without benefit of marriage. This, despite evidence that “married adults have higher levels of relationship satisfaction and trust than those living with an unmarried partner,” according to the Pew survey.
And one more: Readers of The Washington Stand know only too well the toll abortion-on-demand has taken on our country for so many years. The more than 63 million abortions that have taken place since 1973 are a mute and gruesome testimony of a culture more concerned with fostering desperation and minimizing the gift of life than with that gift’s celebration and cherishment.
As New York Times columnist Ross Douthat has written, advocates of “sex uber alles” (my phrase, not his) “want hookup culture to be governed by affirmative consent, for prostitutes to become empowered sex workers, for misogynistic porn to be balanced out by feminist alternatives (and) for dangerous patriarchal polygamy to give way to safe egalitarian polyamory.”
So, then: The question is, as the onslaught continues, what are we to do?
As FRC reports frequently, from protecting religious liberty to standing against the LGBTQ agenda, many Christians are “seeking the welfare of the city (and are) praying to the Lord on its behalf, for in its welfare (we) will find your welfare” (Jeremiah 29:7). The “city,” in our case, can be our local communities, our states, and our country as a whole.
We also need to be mindful of the root cause of our cascade of sexual evils. As Alistair Begg, general editor of the CSB Spurgeon Study Bible and senior pastor of Parkside Church in Cleveland, writes, “We’re in such a mess because we worship modern-day Baals rather than the living God. … The actual immorality isn’t the cause; it’s the evidence. It’s what happens when we turn in upon ourselves.”
We have become our own idols. We have stomped our puny feet and demanded that we get what we want, when we want it. Personal gratification is one of the Molechs of our time. Upon its altar we offer our moral purity, the well-being of those we profess to love, and even our unborn children.
The idol of the self can require more than one kind of sacrifice. Materialism, professional advancement, divorce as a matter of preference, political ascendance, or whatever other thing we choose to adore come invariably at the cost of family, dignity, meaning, and fellowship with God.
By modeling holiness of life — including sexual abstinence prior to marriage and fidelity within it — and by showing grace and truth to those whose struggles have left them broken, Christians can demonstrate that lives patterned after the guidance given in inspired Scripture are not always easy but are always good. Good not in the sense that they make us superior but in that such lives demonstrate the goodness of a kind and generous Heavenly Father. This means opportunities to share the power of the cross of Christ to people looking for hope everywhere but in Him. What a tremendous opportunity for all who follow the Risen One!
Rob Schwarzwalder is Senior Lecturer in Regent University's Honors College.