Once again, my words are being twisted to further the agenda of people who refuse to take the time to read my book. The Sioux County Conservative facebook page posted some of my words on the topic of pornography to make it look like…well, I’m not sure what they’re trying to do. Once again, important sentences and paragraphs have been left out. Here’s what they posted on the website:

Too often the Christian community settles for purity propaganda on one side or cultural assimilation on the other. Both are unable to the experiences of young people as they live into their sexuality…Holding to outdated and abstract notions of purity can have negative consequences as young people deny their sexuality, or it can lead to descriptive forms of shame if they do engage in various forms of sexual activity…Giving in to the cultural ideology of sexuality does not provide young people with a relational understanding of sex and the implications of promiscuity and pornography. As I tell my students, the problem with pornography is not the sex, it’s that the sexual relationships are not real.” – page 205

Here’s what the book actually says:

“Another important issue evolution and youth ministry can address together is sexuality. Too often the Christian community settles for purity propaganda on one side, or cultural assimilation on the other. Both are unable to sustain the experiences of young people as they live into their sexuality. The purity emphasis ignores the embodied aspects of our humanity—that we are created beings with biological drives that develop and change. Holding to outdated and abstract notions of purity can have negative consequences as young people deny their sexuality, and it can lead to descriptive forms of shame if they do engage in various forms of sexual activity. On the flip side, just giving in to the cultural ideology of sexuality does not provide young people with a relational understanding of sex and the implications of promiscuity and pornography. As I tell my students, the problem with pornography is not the sex, it’s that the sexual relationships are not real. Unfortunately, the Christian community struggles to find a middle ground between these two poles, usually falling on one side or the other. “

An incarnational engagement of evolution provides a way to engage the issue of sexuality and gender biologically and biblically. Recognizing that humans are animals with sexual drives that are good and healthy allows youth ministry to seriously present a positive, life affirming, view of sexuality. When the biology of sexuality is presented, young people are allowed to recognize the beauty and purpose of difference. We are not all created the same, we are each a unique embodied person. We are able to recognize how the biological dimension of sex and sexuality are an important part of what it means to be a human person made in the image of God. Not only does this affirm the goodness of sex and sexuality, but it also places it within in the context of transcendence and relationality. We approach God, not as sexless spiritual beings, but as sexual, embodied, creatures. We encounter each other in the same way, which is why, biblically speaking, sex should occur within a covenantal commitment—what we call marriage. It has nothing to do with purity and everything to do with the vulnerability of sex as an act where we are physically and spiritually laid bare before our lover. Lew Smedes, in his book Sex for Christians, argues that because of the vulnerability and intimacy involved in sex, it is most life giving and life affirming when done in the context of committed vows—a promise to be faithful to each other—to avoid the pitfalls of shame and anxiety. Framing sex in this way helps young people understand why it should be reserved for marriage, while affirming it as a good part of our created being.” (205-206)

This is a biblical, reformational, approach to sexuality as a good part of creation that sin has distorted. Pornography is wrong because it abstracts sex from embodied (real) relationships (marriage). Please note–I affirm marriage and the importance of “keeping the fire in the furnace”. My pastor used to say, “Fire is good, it keeps us warm, but when it gets out of the furnace it burns the house down.”

Again, I have no problem with people disagreeing with me. I only ask that they read what I’ve written instead of misrepresenting my words to further their own agenda.

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