Thursday, April 19, 2018
FaithHot Topics

If You Can’t Beat ‘Em…

For years, Christian pastors have urged their younger members to wait to have sex until they get married. Apparently realizing, finally, that the abstinence strategy isn’t as effective as it should be, some clergymen are now advocating marriage at an earlier age.

Something’s seriously wrong with this picture.

Approximately 80% of conservative Protestants between the ages of 18 and 23, in relationships and active in their faith had had premarital sex. Some clergy feel that the way to combat this ever-growing number is to intensify the teaching against sex before marriage. This, naturally, makes it that much more desirable to someone of that age.

Clergy on the other side of the argument seem to feel that since they’re not going to talk most kids out of sex, anyway, at least get them hitched early so that they can get it on without the guilt.

Yet young marriage is the number one predictor of divorce. Doesn’t sound like the right reason to marry to me.

In conservative Saudi Arabia, pre-marital sex is illegal, and unrelated men and women are not permitted to mingle at all. That apparently didn’t stop a man from doing it anyway, then boldly spreading TMI on state television. A clergyman there said this guy should be given a “deterring” punishment.

No telling what that might be.

If true love is really worth the wait, as many churches continually argue, it’s their job to talk about why waiting is better, not why sex is worse. It’s the same as any other kind of sin: you have to be honest about the temptation and dealing with it, not try to just sweep it under the rug.

Or down the aisle.


  1. It strikes me that disconnecting the act of sex from “love” would go a long way towards fixing this problem. Wanting to have, or actually having, sex is not (necessarily) the same as being “in love” or loving (or even liking) the other person. It’s spectacular when you do actually love the person, but it can be pretty darn good even if you don’t know your partner.

    Or so I’ve heard. 😉

    I don’t think this comment will make me too many friends in the abstinence or Christian youth group cirlces. Which is pretty funny, considering I am a youth leader at my church. But I just keep hearing the last verse of Paradise by the Dashboard Light run through my head when I read your post, the part about praying for the end of time….

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Patrick is a Christian with more than 26 years experience in professional writing, producing and marketing. His professional background also includes social media, reporting for broadcast television and the web, directing, videography and photography. He enjoys getting to know people over coffee and spending time with his dog.