Living Purely in Our Sex-Crazed Culture

What is the cost of porn and not only porn but our sex-saturated culture on America? It used to be that in order to access porn, one had to ask for it over the counter, walk into a windowless adult bookstore or peer at it over the shoulder of a friend who had it. Today, one can find it everywhere. It can come in discreet packaging to your door, in pay per view or content on one’s cable subscription, not to mention all over the internet. Added to that is the increased sexualization of music and advertising being marketed even to our children.

Mike Stock, part of an 80’s songwriting trio, had written an opinion piece in the British Daily Mail. It is entitled, “Why This Pop-porn Will Damage a Generation of Children.” In it he laments that a Britain’s Got Talent program had two finalists who were 11 and 12. They weren’t the problem, a former Pussycat Doll was. As the invited special guest, she chose to perform a song with the lyrics, ‘Come on baby, put your hands on my body . . . right there’ while dressed in a “knicker-skimming mini-dress.” Her whispered lyrics, “I like it dirty” seemed totally inappropriate to the family audience, not to mention the presence of these two pre-teens. He sees this as one example of the lyrics of pop songs becoming too sexualized added to music videos and performances that should be considered soft porn. Mr. Stock’s point is that he feels that marketing songs and singers in such provocative ways to ever younger audiences must be damaging to them. Other examples are raised in the article and the impact on children includes the sales of padded bras for five year olds and ten year olds moving and dressing like hookers, in the opinion of the writer.

My wife worked in a nominally Christian-run daycare. She told me of some pretty shocking behavior of some very small children including the singing and gyrating of a three year old to a totally inappropriate Britney Spears’ song. Obviously, some parents and relatives find this cute without realizing the price to be paid by these children as they grow and develop into tomorrow’s teens and young adults.

While such “artistry” is a concern for our children and thus the future of our Western society, the impact of porn on adult males is getting a lot of attention due to the bad behavior of some politicians of late. Naomi Wolf, in “Is Pornography Driving Men Crazy,” states that “therapists and sexual counselors were anecdotally connecting the rise in pornography consumption among young men with an increase in impotence and premature ejaculation among the same population. These were healthy young men who had no organic or psychological pathology that would disrupt normal sexual function.” Her point was that pornography was systematically desensitizing men to the sexual appeal of their own partners.

Though she is by no means a friend to family values, we can see some truth in what she says as Christian men are damaging their relationships with their wives through the use of pornographic materials. God created men to be wowed by their wives’ bodies as he instituted marriage as the place for sexual pleasure to be enjoyed. Thus sex was to be a type of emotional and physical adhesive that would enable a man to leave his father and mother and cleave to his wife and for the two of them to become one flesh. This intimacy was to enable them to obey the command “That what God has joined together, let no man separate.”

The oversexualization of our culture and the availability of pornography create a huge temptation and even the “re-wiring” of men’s brains, as Wolf calls it. So, instead of men waiting for marriage to have sexual relations, they are taught and tempted to do so earlier and without consequences through the use of condoms or to pressure their partner toward the abortion option. Once married, these men struggle with images and lusts and thus the possibility of acting out on those images or desires with someone not their wives. Real women in real marriages cannot compete with the airbrushed models their husbands are lusting after.

Young women are given the impression that to be popular, cool or to keep a guy they need to give in to the baser desires of their male counterparts. Even they begin to succumb to the experimentations of their peers for fear that they are missing out on something great or will look like the oddball. “Friends with Benefits” becomes a way to have your cake and eat it too while leaving one or both partners with a void that stings, if not an STD or worse.
So, what is a Christian parent, young adult, single or married person to do in such an over-sexed society? Do we bury our heads in the sand, refusing to watch any videos, movies, boycotting almost everything in a zeal to keep such images at a minimum? Unfortunately, it is not limited enough for such a strategy to work.

The Bible gives us some much needed truths and thus advice for the raising of our kids and for our own sexual sanity, whether married or single.

1. Sexual union is for marriage alone

God created sex for the union of a man and a wife in marriage and for the raising of children. At an appropriately early age, children should be taught this as God’s will for our lives. They need to know what God’s design is for sex inside of marriage and how outside of marriage, sex brings consequences that far outweigh the initial joy and excitement. We need to remind ourselves of this often.

2. Viewing the nakedness of another is prohibited outside of a marriage relationship

Nakedness is a condition designed for sex inside of marriage alone. The Bible prohibits uncovering the nakedness of one who is not your spouse. The simple reason for this is that God has wired men in such a way that the very image of a naked woman begins a preparation in him for sexual activity. He has a chemical and even bodily response. Outside of marriage this would be lust but in a marriage, it is proper and good. Today, we uncover the nakedness of another through our face-to-face sinful activity, by opening that pornographic magazine, typing that porn URL and viewing the pages or by clicking on certain cable TV options among other like activities.

3. Lust is to be avoided at all costs

David decided to make a covenant with his eyes after his sin with Bathsheba. Notice that King David was in a place where he could see Bathsheba bathing. The king saw her bathing. That was not sin in itself. He could have done what the Bible advises at this point: flee. However, he chose to continue to look and to lust. This lust turned into a fantasy that he decided to make real. Adultery and murder became the outcome. Make a covenant to look elsewhere when your eyes, men, catch an image, whether digital or real, that begins to get your mind going in a direction to be avoided. Focus your attention on something else and thus flee with your mind. Avoid the scantily-clad, outrageous performances of today’s “artists” who blur the lines between go-go-girls and pop singers.

4. Sexual temptation will ultimately overtake you if you don’t obey the Bible and flee

As was mentioned, David lingered and he gave in to temptation. A contrast to this is the example of Joseph in Egypt who fled and had the victory. What is nice about the Bible’s recording of Joseph’s response is that it wasn’t problem free. Doing the right thing doesn’t mean that life will be easy. It is tough to do what is right. People who are part of this world’s system don’t appreciate our values, especially when we stick to them. Expect opposition but it is better than the alternative: disobedience, giving in, and bringing dishonor to God, to yourself and to your family.

5. Masturbation is sex outside of marriage

This is a controversial point but, men, this is self-sex thus sex outside of God’s design for marriage. Also, this behavior is usually linked to fantasy, often with someone not your wife.

John Piper, in his DesiringGod.org, addressed masturbation as follows:

“Is masturbation wrong? Let me address the issue mainly for men. I cannot imagine sexual orgasm in the loins without sexual image in the mind. I know there are nocturnal emissions, which I regard as innocent and helpful, but I doubt that they are ever orgasmic apart from a sexual dream that supplies the necessary image in the mind. Evidently God has constituted the connection between sexual orgasm and sexual thought in such a way that the force and pleasure of orgasm is dependent on the thought or images in our minds. Therefore in order to masturbate, it is necessary to get vivid and exciting thoughts or images into the mind. This can be done by pure imagination or by pictures or movies or stories or real persons. These images always involve women as sexual objects. I use the word “object” because in order for a women to be a true sexual “subject” in our imagination she must in reality be one with whom we are experiencing what we are imagining. This is not the case with masturbation. So I vote no on masturbation. There may be other reasons why it is wrong. For now I rest my vote on the inevitable sexual images which accompany masturbation and which turn women into sexual objects. The sexual thoughts that enable masturbation do not help any man to treat women with greater respect. Therefore masturbation produces real and legitimate guilt and stands in the way of obedience.”

Lou Priolo, in The Complete Husband, adds:

“Masturbation, although not identified by name in the Bible, must be viewed as sinful for at least three reasons. First, masturbation is a perversion of the intent of sex. It’s selfish rather than loving – it’s taking rather than giving. God did not give you your sexual organs so that you could please yourself with them, but rather so that you could bring pleasure to your wife, and so that she can express her love to you by giving you sexual pleasure. Second, masturbation almost always involves sinful lust. Jesus made it absolutely clear that everyone who looks on a woman to lust for her has committed adultery with her already in his heart (Matt. 5:28). Third, masturbation is an activity that causes Christians who practice it to experience guilt. The Bible is also very clear about the sinfulness of Christians who willingly participate in any activity for which their consciences condemn them (Rom. 14:22-23).”

In conclusion, I must say that while this article only skims the surface of the issue of sexuality in our culture and our chosen responses to the temptations that inevitably come, I trust that it is helpful to you or to someone you love. For further help on porn addiction or even kicking the porn habit, please go to xxxchurch.com . Further study on Joseph and David can be found in Genesis 39 and 2 Samuel 11. Other verses referenced above include Gen. 2:18-25, Leviticus 18, 1 Cor. 6:18, Heb. 13:4 and James 1:12-18. God bless you and cause your life to be one of greater purity as the years unfold before you.


1. Stock, M. (2011, June 21). Why This Pop-porn Will Damage a Generation of Children. Retrieved July 4, 2011, from Daily Mail: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/tvshowbiz/article-2006043/Why-pop-porn-damage-generation-children.html#ixzz1QDrlkAoh

2. Wolf, N. (2011, June 30). Is Pornography Driving Men Crazy? Retrieved July 4, 2011, from globalpublicsquare.blogs.cnn.com.

3. Piper, J. (1984, September 10). Missions and Masturbation. Retrieved July 4, 2011, from www.DesiringGod.org: www.DesiringGod.org

4. (1999). In L. Priolo, The Complete Husband (p. 174). Calvary Press.

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