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Is American Obsession with Sex Creeping into the Church?

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Published on: August 23, 2018

“Meats for the belly, and the belly for meats: but God shall destroy both it and them. Now the body is not for fornication, but for the Lord; and the Lord for the body.” (1Cor 6:13) 

The preoccupation with sexual orientation and transgenderism seems to have no bounds in our ever changing culture. Sexual deviancies appear to be amalgamating into a nebulous convocation where it is hard to tell the difference between victims and perpetrators. 

A notable example of the great mix-up has been the report showing that a prominent head of a child abuse charity has been arrested for trying to have sex with two children, ages 2 and 9. 

Joel Davis, the head of a charity that campaigns against sexual violence was arrested in New York and accused of trying to set up a liaison with children for the purpose of sex and soliciting an undercover FBI agent to send sexually explicit videos of minor children. 

Davis began by starting an organization to end sexual violence against children and now it is alleged that he has crossed over to become a sexual predator himself. 

What has gone wrong and is it spreading to the church? 

Fixation with everything sexual started at the outset of the sexual revolution of the 70s, but today the obsession has reached breakneck speed and has inundated to the church in several visible ways. 

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Nothing illustrates this point better than the announcement that theologian John Piper’s recent podcast, “Ask Pastor John” has reached 1,570,100 plays which was titled “Is Oral Sex Okay.” A total well over one hundred million has been reached for all Piper’s podcasts. 

Is this all that the church is thinking about? 

General moral pollution in the world is to be expected. The unregenerate mind of the ‘natural man’ (1 Co 2:14) is prone to fulfill the lust of the flesh by nature, and while it is not an excuse, it serves tacitly as an answer. 

Not only is the standard for the Bible-believing church different, the result of carnality among believers has a far more outreaching and devastating effect. 

By way of example, the recent resignation of Pastor Bill Hybels from the Willow Creek Community Church in Illinois has caused the church’s Global Leadership Summit to lose three main speakers and has seen the dropout of 111 host sites. 

The personal doubt and loss of confidence among believers of the church may be inestimable. We can only hope that none will leave the faith as a direct result of the controversy. 

Lamenting the accusations and subsequent resignation of Hybels, Pastor Daniel D. Meyer, of the multi-campus Christ Church Oak Brook and Downers Grove announced that his church would not be among those hosting the leaders’ summit. 

Meyer said, “Both the Christian and the American traditions have seen the value of stopping normal activities to observe a moment of silence … or to lower a flag to half-staff … or to issue a collective cry of lament — in the face of significant crisis, turmoil, or loss.” 

Should the church be conducting investigations and forming special boards to deal with sexual indiscretions, or should we accept the simple admonition of the scripture to “abstain from fleshly lusts?” (1Pet 2:11) 

Southern Baptist Convention International Mission Board President David Platt recently announced that two separate investigations are underway dealing past sexual misconduct allegations within the ranks of the Southern Baptist leadership. 

We cannot decry any effort to confront these allegations, but there is no substitute for a strong message of contrition and full repentance of all sexual sins. Those who have not left the lust behind should never be considered for leadership in the church of Jesus Christ. 

Leadership can be lonely. 

No one doubts that some Christians can hide in a large congregation and never deal with their temptations. A small group or church could be the remedy for that, but mega-churches are trendy today, even though, by their very nature, they produce both weak believers and in some instances – total casualties. 

If believers can hide in big churches then we must understand that leaders can get lost in the megachurch. 

Perhaps the fledglings learn most of their lessons through trial and error, but leaders cannot be afforded that luxury. 

A constant reaffirmation of the guiding principles of the Scripture is still the surest way to keep things in check. Obedience never goes out of style and it never displeases the God who has called us to sanctification. 

We must take seriously the admonition to keep our bodies in subjection to the great gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ, to wit: 

“But I keep under my body, and bring it into subjection: lest that by any means, when I have preached to others, I myself should be a castaway.” (1 Co 9:27) 

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