Tag Archive | Teens and Sex

So-Called “Safe-Sex”

This article contains the full text of a recent newsletter from Dr. James Dobson, President of Focus on the Family. We do so in support of this fine organization, and as a service to our users. The radio programs of Focus on the Family can be heard several times a day on K-Praise (KPRZ) and K-Wave (KWVE). For broadcast times, please see the program schedules in Bulletins [8] and [9]. If you would like to contact Focus on the Family, you may do so by writing: Focus on the Family, Colorado Springs, CO 80995. Or call, 719/633-6287.

This information can also be downloaded as a text file from File Area 21 under the name DOBSON01.TXT.

February 13, 1992

Some of you may have seen the 90-minute ABC network television show on February 2 entitled “Growing Up in the Age of AIDS,” hosted by Peter Jennings. I was one of nine guests on that live program, including Dr.Antonia Novella, the U.S. Surgeon General, Dr. James Curran, of the Centers for Disease Control, and Dr. Timothy Johnson, ABC News medical editor. Unfortunately, the show’s producers attempted to pack too much into the program, granting each of us less than a minute or two to speak our minds. In my case, a single 45-second sound bite cost me a long journey and two hectic days in New York City.

As you will soon read in the March edition of ‘Focus on the Family’ magazine, I routinely turn down these kinds of network televisions’opportunities.’ In the past few years I’ve declined invitations to appear on “Nightline,” “20/20,” “48 Hours,” “Face to Face with Connie Chung,” “Crossfire,” Bill Buckley’s “Firing Line” and the morning network news programs. I have no desire for that kind of national exposure, and furthermore, the deck is usually stacked against those of us with a Judeo-Christian point of view. There are better things to do with my time.

When, then, did I travel to The Big Apple for such an insignificant role? Well, I had hoped for a few more minutes on camera. But more importantly, I felt a responsibility to express the abstinence position of national television, and I was afraid if I declined no one else would be asked. How long has it been since you’ve heard anyone tell teenagers why it is to their advantage to remain virgins until marriage? How sad that adolescents hear only the dangerous “safe-sex” message from adults who should know better. Maybe, I thought, I could get in a few plugs for abstinence and morality that would redeem the investment of time.

But here I am a few days later, flying home from New York with all the things I wanted to say still bottled up inside. Jennings permitted me one brief comment and then ignored my upraised hand through the remainder of the broadcast. So guess what? YOU get to hear those unspoken words. There is no issue…no social development throughout North America…that concerns me more than adolescent sexuality and what it portends for the future. The AIDS crisis and Magic Johnson’s infection have provided an unprecedented opportunity for Planned Parenthood and the other condom and abortion promoters to lobby virtually every teenager in the land. And believe me, they intend to exploit and indoctrinate the entire generation now in escrow.

We must not sit passively on the sidelines. If you have an adolescent in your family or know of one who will read a letter like this, PLEASE pass it on. They desperately need the truth that is being withheld from them. Yes, I meant to say “withheld”. There are facts that the “safe-sex” gurus will not tell the youngsters in their charge. As a result, teen promiscuity will continue and millions of kids…thinking they are protected…will suffer for the rest of their lives. Many will die of AIDS. Humanity will eventually lumber back around to the traditional understanding of morality, I suppose. Indeed, it MUST do so. Epidemics and pestilence will force a reconsideration, if the Lord tarries that long. But by then the consequences of defying God’s law will have wreaked havoc among us. How tragic!

What follows, then, is what I would have said on television if Peter Jennings had wanted to hear it.

“Why, apart from moral considerations, do you think teenagers should be taught to abstain from sex until marriage?”

No other approach to the epidemic of sexually transmitted diseases will work. The so-called “safe-sex” solution is a disaster in the making. Condoms fail 15.7 percent of the time in preventing pregnancy among married couples. They fail 36.3 percent of the time in preventing pregnancy among young, unmarried minority women. The overall failure rate is as high as 44 percent in preventing pregnancy among unmarried Hispanic women. The ‘British Medical Journal’, reported the failure rate due to slippage and breakage to be 26 percent. Given these findings, it is obvious why we have a word for people who rely on condoms as a means of birth control. We call them…”parents”.

Remembering that a woman can conceive only one or two days per months, we can only guess how high the failure rate for condoms must be in preventing disease, which can be transmitted 365 days per year! If the devices are not used properly, or if they slip just ONCE, viruses, bacteria, yeast and fungi are exchanged and the disease process begins. One mistake after 500 “protected” episodes is all it takes. The damage is done in a single moment when rational thought is overridden by passion. Those who would depend on so insecure a method must use it properly on every occasion, and even then a high failure rate is brought about by factors beyond their control. The young victim who is told by his elders that this little latex device is “safe” may not know he is risking lifelong pain and even death for so brief a window of pleasure. What a burden to place on an immature mind and body!

Then we must recognize, as implied above, that condoms cannot even be accurately tested for AIDS protection, since the virus is one-tenth the size of the smallest detectable hole. Viruses are 450 times smaller than sperm, and pass easily through even the smallest gaps. Researchers studying surgical gloves made of our latex, the same material in condoms, found “channels of 5 microns that penetrated the entire thickness of the glove.” The HIV virus measures between .1 and .3 microns. Given these findings, tell me what rational, informed person would trust her or her very life to such flimsy armor?

I’m sure this explains why not one of 800 sexologists at a recent conference raised a hand when asked if they would trust a thin rubbers heath to protect them during intercourse with a known HIV-infected person. I don’t blame them. They’re not crazy, after all. And yet they’re perfectly willing to tell our kids that “safe sex” is within reach and that they can sleep around with impunity.

There is only one way to protect ourselves from the deadly diseases that lie in wait. It is abstinence before marriage, then marriage and mutual fidelity for life to an uninfected partner. Anything less is potentially suicidal.

“That position is simply not realistic today. It’s an unworkable solution: Kids will NOT implement it.”

Some will. Some won’t. It’s still the only answer. But let’s talk about an “unworkable solution” of the first order. Since 1970, the federal government has spent over $2 billion to promote condom usage and “safe sex.” This year alone, $450 million of your tax dollars will go down that drain! (Compared with less than $8 million for abstinence programs, which Sen. Teddy Kennedy and company have sought repeatedly to eliminate altogether.) Is it time we ask what we’ve gotten for our money? After 22 years and $2 billion, some 57 percent of sexually active teens still never use contraceptives during intercourse! Of the remaining 43 percent many use condoms improperly or only occasionally. That is the success ratio of the experts who call abstinence “unrealistic” and “unworkable.”

Even if we spent another $50 billion to promote condom usage, most teenagers would still not use them consistently and properly. The nature of human beings and the passion of the act simply do not lend themselves to a disciplined response in young romantics.

“But if you knew a teenager was going to have intercourse, wouldn’t you rather he would use a condom?”

No, because that approach has an unintended consequence. The process of recommending condom usage to teenagers inevitably conveys five dangerous ideas: (1) that “safe sex” is achievable; (2) that everybody is doing it; (3) that responsible adults EXPECT them to do it; (4) that it’s a good thing; and (5) that their peers KNOW they KNOW these things, breeding promiscuity. Those are very destructive messages to give our kids.

Furthermore, Planned Parenthood’s own data show that the number one reason teenagers engage in intercourse is ‘peer pressure’! Therefore, anything we do to imply that “everybody is doing it” results in more…not fewer…people who give the game a try. What I’m saying is that our condom distribution programs do not reduce the number of kids exposed to disease…they radically increase it!

Want proof of that fact? Since the Planned Parenthood-type programs began in 1970, unwed pregnancies have increased 87 percent among 18- and 19-year-olds. Likewise, abortions among teens rose to 346,900 in 1988; unplanned births went up 61 percent. And venereal disease has infected a generation of young people. Nice job, Planned Parenthood. Good thinking, senators and congressmen. Nice nap, America.

Having made a blunder that now threatens the human family, the same people who got us into this mess are continuing to establish our approach to teen sexuality. When will we recognize that they ARE they problem, not the solution to it!

“Let me press you further. If you were a parent an know that your son or daughter was having sex, wouldn’t you talk to him or her about proper condom usage?”

Having said that the failure rate of condom usage is incredibly high, perhaps 50 percent or greater in disease prevention, why would I recommend this “solution” to my son or daughter? Suppose they were sky divers whose parachutes had a 50 percent failure rate. Would I recommend that they simply buckle the chutes tighter? Certainly not. I would say, “Please don’t jump. Your life is at stake!” How could I, as a loving father, do less?

But there is another reason for talking to our kids about abstinence rather than “safe sex.” It is even more important than the life-and-death issue cited above. I’m referring to rebellion against God and His promise to punish sin. Jesus said, “Fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell” (Matthew 10:28 KJV). Spiritual death is definitely worse than physical disability or death, and our kids deserve to know about this divine reality from the days of childhood.

Never! Never! Never would I withhold that vital information in favor of a “safe-sex” distortion.

“Again I say, kids won’t listen to the abstinence message. You’re just wasting your breath to try to see them a notion like that.

It is a popular myth that teenagers are incapable of understanding that it is in their best interest to save themselves until marriage. Almost 50 percent of all high school students are virgins today, even though hardly anybody has told them it is a good thing. (Even many churches preach the “safe-sex” message. I noticed while in New York City that Faye Wattleton, the former president of Planned Parenthood Federation of America, was scheduled to speak at the famous Marble Collegiate Church!)

As further evidence, I submit the record of an event held in Lexington, KY., several years ago. It featured ex-convict Harold Morris talking about abstinence, among other subject. The coliseum seated 18,000 people, but 26,000 teenagers showed up! Eventually, more than 2,000 stood outside the packed auditorium and listened over a hastily prepared public address system. Who says kids won’t listen to this time-honored message?

“Is AIDS God’s plague sent to punish homosexuals, lesbians and other promiscuous people?”

Let’s put it this way. If I choose to leap of a 10-story building, I will die when my body hits the ground below. It’s inevitable. But gravity was not designed by God to punish my folly. he established physical laws that can be violated only at great peril. So it is with His moral laws. They are as real and predictable as the principles that govern the physical universe. Thus, we knew (and He knew) with the onset of the sexual revolution back in 1968 that this day of disease and promiscuity would come. It is here, and what we do with our situation will determine how much we and our children will suffer in the future.

Well, that is but a small fraction of what I wanted to say on the Jennings television special. I also wanted to make a comment or two, with proper respect, about the hypocrisy of a program of that nature. All four networks and the cable television entities are wringing their hands about this terrible epidemic that has now invaded our bodies. They profess to be very concerned about those who are infected, and perhaps they are sincere. However, TV executives and movie moguls have contributed mightily to the existence of this plague. For decades, they have depicted teens and young adults climbing in and out of each others’ beds like so many sexual robots. Only the nerds were chaste, and they were to stupid or too ugly to find partners.

Of course, the beautiful young fornicators in those steamy dramas never faced any consequences for their sin. No one ever came down with herpes, or syphilis. or chlamydia, or pelvic inflammatory disease, or infertility, or AIDS, or genital warts, or cervical cancer. No patients were ever told by a physician that there was no cure for their disease or that they would have to deal with the pain for the rest of their lives. No one ever heard the human papilloma virus (HPV) kills more woman than AIDS, or that a strain is gonorrhea is not resistant to antibiotics. No, there was no downside. It all looked like so much fun. But what a price we are paying now for the lies we have been told. Pardon us, ABC, if your compassion seems a bit contrived. (By the way, it was on ABC that the young Doogie Howser said, “A man is a lot of things, but he’s not a virgin” Sept. 25, 1991).

Maybe this is why Peter Jennings didn’t ask for a further comment from me. He knew from my only remark that I was definitely not “politically correct.” I also learned since returning to Colorado Springs that Mr. Jennings served on the honorary committee for a homosexual political organization last fall. He shared this honor with Gloria Steinum, Bella Abzug, Phil Donohue and two homosexual members of Congress. That helps explain the philosophy that drives the man.

Before I leave this disturbing project, I want to share with you a brochure I received this morning from the federal Centers for Disease Control and the City of New York. It is entitled, “Teens Have the Right,” and is apparently intended to free adolescents from adult authority. Inside are six declarations that make up a “Teenagers’ Bill of Rights”, as follows:

– I HAVE THE RIGHT TO THINK FOR MYSELF
– I HAVE THE RIGHT TO DECIDE WHETHER TO HAVE SEX AND WHO(M) TO HAVE IT WITH
– I HAVE THE RIGHT TO USE PROTECTION WHEN I HAVE SEX
– I HAVE THE RIGHT TO BUY AND USE CONDOMS
– I HAVE THE RIGHT TO EXPRESS MYSELF
– I HAVE THE RIGHT TO ASK FOR HELP IF I NEED IT

Under this final item is a list of organizations and phone numbers that readers are encouraged to call. The organizations provide a range of services, including dispensing condoms to counseling “at-risk” teens. The philosophy of these programs reflects the homosexual agenda, which includes recruitment of the young.

Your tax dollars at work!

Ladies and gentlemen, I want to say something to you at this point that has not been written in any of my monthly letters. It is this: I NEED TO HEAR FROM YOU ON THIS SUBJECT. I’ve been airing radio programs, writing books and now, appearing (briefly) as a television guest in a lonely effort to counteract the assault on our kids. Frankly, the silence has been deafening at times. Gary Bauer and I expressed the danger in a book and a video series entitled “Children at Risk”, to which (according to the publisher) many pastors responded, “I don’t want to get involved.” Our inability to rally good people is depressing.

Frankly, I would find it very encouraging to know that YOU recognize the danger as well…that you are concerned about a generation of our best and brightest. No, writing a letter to me won’t change our precarious situation, but it will help us carry on with the struggle. At this moment, it seems like the opposition outnumbers our troops about 10,000 to one. A word or two of support would be welcome, and your prayers would be most appreciated.

I KNOW our cause is just. God bless you all!
signed: James C. Dobson, Ph.D  President

P.S. We are working hard on a television program and a school video onthis important subject. PLEASE pray with us specifically as we attemptto convey these ideas to today’s teenagers.

Note from Abba II:

Please share this information with your pastor, and let him know that Focus on the Family provides two 60-minute films in which Dr. Dobson and Gary Bauer describe ways you and your church can protect the next generation from the anti-family influences threatening your home. Based on the best-selling book, “Children at Risk,” this 16 mm presentation is available on a rental basis. For more information, contact Focus on the Family – Educational Resources at 1-800-932-9123, and ask for the Christian film distributor nearest you.

Also, if you would like to discuss these issues, please visit our Message Area. We look forward to your comments and/or questions.

Posted in AIS File Library, BSFM - Family and Marriage0 Comments

How to Help Your Kids Say “No” to Sex

HOW TO HELP YOUR KIDS SAY “NO” TO SEX

Teenagers growing up in the 90s face many of the same challenges that have tested previous generations: making college and career plans, choosing a mate, and finding one’s place in the world. But without a doubt, questions relating to sexuality present teens with some of their most difficult decisions. The risk of broken dreams, lost reputations, unintended pregnancies or sexually transmitted diseases have always been part of the gamble associated with sexual promiscuity. However, today’s sexually active teens are risking a new and deadly consequence: AIDS.

The emergence of AIDS at a time when many teens are sexually active has presented parents and educators with the serious dilemma of protecting teens from this deadly disease. One suggestion has been the so-called “safe sex” message promoted in public schools, mainstream media and popular youth culture. Standing opposite this approach is the timeless message of reserving sexual activity for marriage. This booklet provides a brief look at these two approaches and offers guidance for those interested in more information on abstinence education.

Sexual Pressure, Teens and Parents

“Having premarital sex was the most horrifying experience of my life. It wasn’t at all emotionally satisfying or the casually-taken experience the world perceives it to be. I felt as if my insides were being exposed and my heart left unattended.”

“It’s not a pretty picture. It’s not a TV soap opera either. The reality of pregnancy outside of marriage is scary and lonely. To have premarital sex was my choice one hot June night, forcing many decisions I thought I would never have to make. Those decisions radically changed my life.”

“It’s so hard sometimes-like last week, when I was over at Bill’s, and his roommate Tom started talking to me again. He knows Bill and I haven’t slept together and he’s basically told me I’m too Victorian. But what really hurt was his accusation that there’s something wrong with anyone who doesn’t want to have sex before marriage. I didn’t know what to say.”

These real life testimonies illustrate the tremendous pressure today’s teens are under to engage in premarital sex and the negative consequences that result. Television, movies and music seduce our children into becoming sexually active at an increasingly early age. On “Doogie Howser, M.D.,” a popular program on the ABC television network, Doogie states, “A man is a lot of things, but he’s not a virgin.” just before he sleeps with his girlfriend. Kids will see over 14,000 acts of sexual contact on television every year. Our youth culture conveys the idea that “everybody’s doing it,” contributing to the pressure teens experience from their peers. In fact, Planned Parenthood reports that the number one reason teens have sexual intercourse is peer pressure. Sexual gratification comes fourth, behind curiosity and thinking that “everyone else is doing it.”

A January 1992 Centers for Disease Control (CDC) survey found that 54.2% of U.S high school students (grades 9-12) have had sexual intercourse. This ratio increases dramatically through the high school years with 72% of our teens having lost their virginity by the twelfth grade. In addition, the CDC reports over I million teen pregnancies and over 3 million new cases of sexually transmitted disease for adolescents every year.

Since 1970, the federal government has spent $3 billion to promote contraception and “safe sex.” $450 million will go down that hole this year. In contrast, less than $8 million is earmarked to promote abstinence this year. In the twenty years since the inception of federal family planning programs there has been an 87% rise in pregnancies for teenagers between the ages of 15-19, unplanned births have risen 61 %, and syphilis rates have risen 6O%, for teens l5-l9 since 1985. The arrival of AIDS as a deadly STD has raised the stakes against our teens.

Public schools have stepped in to take over the parental role in teaching sex education but, in many cases, schools have merely joined in with the “teenage sex is inevitable” chorus. In the New York and Los Angeles school systems condoms are now distributed to high schools students without parental consent. More and more parents are finding themselves shut out of this crucial decision in their child’s life.

Parents must become their child’s primary source of information and guidance regarding sex. It’s a matter of life and death!

Study after study demonstrates what many people know as common sense: Parental involvement is the single most critical factor affecting the sexual activity of teens. A study of 10,000 high school sophomores conducted by the U.S. Department of Education found that strong parental values and parental supervision has the most significant effect on teen sexual activity. Parents who had a close relationship with their teenage daughters, supervised their school work and activities were able to curb the likelihood that their daughters would become pregnant by 42%. The study also found that schools were unable to reduce the sexual activity of adolescents and teen pregnancies with the usual comprehensive sex education programs which emphasize condoms.

Dr. Stan Weed, Director of the Institute for Research and Evaluation, has identified the five most influential factors which affect the sexual involvement of teenagers:

1. The child’s value system (their sense of right and wrong).

2. Their social system (the influence of family and peers).

3. Related risk behaviors (drug and alcohol use, steady dating, skipping school).

4. Personality system (personal efficacy, risk taking propensity, rebelliousness, future orientation, need for acceptance, and personal vulnerability).

5. Information (knowledge about sexuality, reproduction, and contraception).

The role of the family cannot be emphasized strongly enough. The breakdown of the family, and subsequently the lack of guidance children have received in the area of sexuality, has ultimately led young people to look to other areas for fulfillment and acceptance. It is in this type of situation that peer pressure can push a teenager into sexual involvement. Sex educator Josh McDowell writes,

“Our needs are compounded by the breakdown of the family . . . in times past . . . people could find a relative security and significance within the family. They had at least one place where they could be themselves and not have to perform. But that is not true in most cases today. Rather than have a haven from the world, for many teens the family setting is a place of discord and unrest, a place where spouses are put on a performance basis, knowing they will be discarded if they do not continually please the other. Any element of security the family may have held is removed, since people within the family are not loved for who they are, but rather for how they perform. Kids growing up in that kind of environment lack acceptance and security, which leaves them with an unhealthy sense of worthlessness. They don’t feel free to be themselves. They believe that if they were, no one would like them.

With a poor self-image brought about by lack of acceptance of them as unique individuals, teenagers may grab for the first thing that resembles security. Often this means sex . . . unfortunately premature sexual involvement often makes things worse.”

Abstinence vs. “Safe Sex”

Why should I teach my child abstinence? What’s wrong with teaching them to practice “safe sex”?

Apart from moral considerations, abstinence before marriage and a mutually faithful relationship thereafter is the only 100% effective means to prevent pregnancy and sexually transmitted disease. Abstinence is the only true comprehensive sex education and it provides complete protection physically, emotionally and psychologically.

By way of contrast, condoms present an unacceptable level of risk due to high failure rates. When used as the sole means of contraception, condoms have a standardized failure rate of 15.7% over the course of a year.” This rate is calculated to show a number that applies to all condom users, but failure rates for specific groups show even higher numbers. Among young, unmarried, minority women the annual failure rate is 36.3%; among unmarried Hispanic women it is as high as 44.5%.

Therefore, for the average user over the course of a year, chances of getting pregnant while using a condom are 1 in 6. But unlike pregnancy, which can only occur 2-3 days a month, you can get AIDS any day of the month, 365 days a year. In addition, there is no condom strong enough to shield a child’s self-esteem. And latex offers no protection against broken hearts and shattered dreams.

Under the best circumstances, condoms present an unacceptable measure of risk. Despite billions spent on “safe sex” education, most teens fail to use condoms properly-if they use them at all. Currently, much less than half of all sexually active teens use condoms. Planned Parenthood’s own data shows that educating teens about sexuality and contraceptives does not result in increased contraceptive use. The same data also indicates that teenagers are ineffective users of contraceptives because of their developmental stage.

According to Dr. Nicholas Fiumara, Massachusetts Department of Health, there are certain conditions necessary to ensure condom effectiveness:”…provided there is no preliminary sex play, the condom is intact before use, the condom is put on correctly and the condom is taken off correctly. However, the male population has never been able to fulfill the very first requirement.”

One third of teenage pregnancies occur while a contraceptive is being used!

What exactly is abstinence?

Some sex educators have tried to “re-define” abstinence to mean non-penetration, thus allowing for oral sex, mutual masturbation, etc. But this definition doesn’t keep one from catching sexually transmitted diseases. It also misses the purpose of abstinence education, which is best defined as preserving sexual intimacy, and the powerful bonds it creates, for the commitment of marriage.

Governor Douglas Wilder of Virginia put it very succinctly in an editorial for the Wall Street Journal. Governor Wilder stated:

“More than ever, our young people must understand that making mature decisions; making life-long commitments; making structured and loving families-rather than merely making babies; and making the most of the opportunities that do exist in every aspect of life; these are the actions that constitute the beginning of a passage into manhood . . .

But-as common sense tell us-there are precautions to be taken by the young and the unmarried, especially for those who know that they are not remotely close to being ready for the unending responsibility of parenthood. If you want to have a future, it is imperative that our young-male and female alike-embrace the ultimate precaution – abstinence.”

Abstinence Education at Home

When should I begin to talk to my child about sex?

Sex education author and mother Connie Marshner emphasizes that the role of parents in their child’s sex education begins at an early age:

“Nobody loves your child like you do. If you don’t give your child your instruction, someone else will give them theirs. Even though you might think they are too young to understand, they’re absorbing information and values. In the absence of a countervailing set of ideas from you, they’ll be automatically absorbing ideas from somewhere else.

By the time the child is in high school and ready to date, which is the time when patents say we should `have the talk,’ their minds are already made up. Their values and patterns of behavior are set. The approach to training in sex begins when your child is born … children at 2- 3 can observe men and women interacting with each other and they’re learning something from it. If you’re walking in the park with your 3-year old and you see a couple of teenagers necking on the bench and you walk by and say nothing, your child draws his or her own conclusion, `Well, there’s nothing unusual about that, Mommy didn’t say anything.’

Whereas if you walk by and say `Well, they certainly shouldn’t be doing that in public. I hope they’re married,’ then the child makes the connection that this sort of cuddling has something to do with marriage. It’s not sex-ed. per se but it’s the beginning of laying down a pattern and attitude toward how one will behave sexually.”

How do I get started?

Sex education professionals Margaret Whitehead and Onalee McGraw offer several suggestions on how to teach your child family values. Whitehead and McGraw urge parents everywhere to build a foundation of love, respect and personal dignity in the home; teach children good manners that show respect for others; teach that self-control and good habits are important; and help children to understand that there are consequences to their actions and give them age-appropriate responsibilities.

As children head into the elementary school years, Whitehead and McGraw give additional guidelines on how you can instill behaviors which will assist in teaching abstinence. Given the powerful influence of peer pressure, Whitehead and McGraw believe that by showing them the importance of personal goals and virtues and by encouraging them to keep busy with positive activities, children are more likely to resist peer pressure.” You can also counter cultural and consumer forces which try to “rush” children into pseudo-maturity by patiently helping them develop the intellectual, social, spiritual, and emotional traits necessary to achieve maturity.

As the child progresses through the elementary school years and heads into puberty, Whitehead and McGraw recommend that you seriously consider the rules and regulations concerning dating life, such as: starting age, supervision, curfews, purposes of dating, and attitudes towards going steady.”

All through this process, you need to continually encourage children to develop such virtues and character traits as self-discipline, honesty, courage, perseverance, responsibility, respect, and concern for others. Children at this age need to have their feelings and concerns taken seriously by you, and at the same time you should be willing to help children place their feelings and concerns in the proper context.

But will kids listen to abstinence?

A December 1991 USA Today poll calls chastity the “second sexual revolution.” The poll shows that more than half of all adults (54%) and almost two thirds of teenagers (63%) find the so-called “safe sex” message disturbing since it implies an endorsement of casual sex. The poll also shows that the majority of adults AND TEENS agree that today’s adolescents don’t hear enough about saying “no” to sex.

But aren’t some kids going to “do it” anyway?

Some kids will drink anyway, but we’re not bashful about saying “don’t drink.” Some kids will do drugs anyway, but we’re not shy about saying “don’t do drugs.” Why are we afraid to tell kids “don’t have sex?” What if we took that approach with drug education? Since some kids will do drugs anyway, should we teach them how and provide clean needles?

How much risk is acceptable when you’re talking about your teenager’s life? One study of married couples, in which one partner was infected with the AIDS/HIV virus, showed that 17% of the non-infected partners caught the virus while using a condom for protection. Suppose your son or daughter was joining a year-long sky-diving club with five friends. If you knew that one of their parachutes would definitely fail, would you recommend that they simply buckle the chutes tighter? Certainly not. You would say, “Please don’t jump. Your life is at stake!” How could a loving parent do anything less?

Isn’t it simplistic to “just say no”?

Indeed, it’s not enough to “just say no.” What are we going to say “yes” to? Are we teaching our children those things that are worth living for: marriage, family, love, sex, respect, true friendships, and hope in life? Sex is one of the most complex and crucial issues they’ll face and simplistic solutions, whether condoms or rules, will not work.
The one thing that most profoundly changes a person with respect to sex, is personal commitment on the part of parents.

Focus on the Family has identified a number of resources to help parents educate their children regarding sex:

BOOKS FOR CHILDREN

CONCORDIA SEX EDUCATION SERIES

Each book is targeted toward a specific age group and is designed, in its vocabulary and the amount of information provided, to answer questions most typically asked by children. The theme of human sexuality, including delicate subject matters such as abortion, premarital sex, and homosexuality, are dealt with in a very tactful and healthy manner, yet without compromise. A strong emphasis is on the understanding that sex is a God-given gift which is to be used responsibly. The series is available at local Christian bookstores or through Concordia Publishing House, 3558 S. Jefferson Avenue, St. Louis, MO 63118-3968, (800) 325-3040.

Book 1: Why Boys and Girls are Different by Carol Greene (Ages 3-5)

Through delightful pictures and simple words, this tool helps parents to delicately answer preschooler’s questions. An encouraging book for boys and girls that teaches how to accept their sexuality naturally, as God’s loving gift.

Book 2: Where Do Babies Come From? by Ruth Hummel (Ages 6-8)

Sensitive and carefully planned, this book shows your growing child God’s plan for new life, how boys and girls grow up to be fathers and mothers, how parents have a special love for each other and how God made their bodies to fit together, as well as how babies are born.

Book 3: How You Are Changing by Jane Traver (Ages 8-11)

This book speaks with understanding about the changes encountered in adolescence. A delicate, yet accurate explanation of the physiological aspects of sexuality, it offers a positive Christian perspective to help children develop a healthy, responsible view of God’s gift.

Book 4: Sex and the New You by Richard Bimler (Ages 11-14)

A sound description of the basic facts of sexuality: becoming a woman, becoming a man, sexual intercourse, conception, and birth. Relating sexuality to Christian concepts, answers are given to pre-teens most puzzling questions; including “How old should I be to date?” “What should I do on a date?” and “How can I show affection without going too far?” Questions on topics that aren’t easy to talk about receive special consideration as they relate to God’s plan: pornography, sexual experimentation, venereal disease, out of wedlock pregnancies, and homosexuality. It also encourages young people to discuss questions with parents.

Book 5: Love, Sex, and God by Bill Ameiss and Jane Graver (Ages 14 and up)

Following an explanation of male and female sexual systems, the authors confront the cruel myths regarding drugs, alcohol, and venereal diseases that often mislead teens. Included are biblical guidelines for social life; popularity, dating, setting limits, playing the field and going steady. A special section for older teens covers questions about love, marriage, sexuality within wedlock, and starting a family. As they face tough questions about sexuality, teens are urged to seek help from parents, pastor, and God.

Book 6: How to Talk Confidently With Your Child About Sex by Lenore Buth

Parent’s Guide. This guide will help parents feel confident with their own sexuality and prepare them to lay a solid foundation for their children. From toddler to teen to young adult, this reference book answers the many questions parents will encounter during each developmental stage.

BOOKS FOR PARENTS

Decent Exposure by Connie Marshner (Wolgemuth & Hyatt)

This valuable book offers insight on how to effectively teach children about modesty, the dangers of premarital sexual relations, and marriage.

How to Help Your Child Say “No” to Sexual Pressure by Josh McDowell (Here’s Life Publishers)

Beginning with a short discussion on the adolescent sexuality crisis, this book explores the causes, and shows how to prevent your child from becoming a statistic of today’s popular youth culture.

How to Teach Your Child About Sex by Grace Ketterman (Revell)

Ketterman offers a wholesome approach to raising sexually responsible, secure children.

Preparing For Adolescence by Dr. James Dobson (Vision House)

An insightful book for any adolescent. A discussion of topics that trouble teens most-inferiority, conformity, puberty, the meaning of love and the search for identity – is included.

Preparing Youth For Dating, Courtship and Marriage by Norman Wright (Gospel Light)

This teacher’s guide gives the instruction and material to prepare students for dating, courtship, and marriage. It includes 12 overhead transparencies and 4 masters for making copies.

Sex: When to Say Yes / Some Things Are Never Discounted (2 book set) by Fran and Jill Sciacca (Whitaker House)

These books challenge teens to share with God their struggles about sex. Each chapter includes a real-life story, personal study questions, and a summary on various aspects of dating and sexuality.

Sexuality and Sexually Transmitted Diseases by Dr. Joe S. McIlhaney Jr. (Baker Book House)

Dr. Mcilhaney frankly discusses the facts of sexually transmitted diseases (STD’s) and their future physical implications. He demolishes the myth of “safe sex” outside of marriage, demonstrating that the only safe and proper sex is with one partner in a monogamous marriage relationship. He also offers tips to teens on how to say “no” to sex.

Smart Kids, Stupid Choices by Kevin Leman(Regal Books)

This book discusses peer pressure, friends, sex, drugs, dating, self-esteem and communication.

When Schools Teach Sex by Judith B . Elhaniz (Free Congress Research and Education Foundation)

A handbook for evaluating your school’s sex education program.

Why Wait: What You Need to Know About The Teen Sexuality Crisis by Josh McDowell (Here’s Life Publishers)

This book offers practical advice on how parents can teach their children to remain sexually pure and offers insight into the reasons teenagers become sexually active.

VIDEO SERIES

How to Help Your Child Say “No” to Sexual Pressure

An eight-part video series for parents of teens and preteens presented from a Christian perspective. This set is designed to help parents become more effective as the primary resource of sexual values for their children. Available from Josh McDowell Ministries, Box 1000, Dallas, TX 75221, (800) 222-JOSH.

A Parent’s Guide: Teaching Responsible Sexual Behavior

This training workshop helps parents become children’s primary source and guidance regarding sex education. Five two-hour sessions. Available from Teen-Aid, N. 1330 Calispel, Spokane, WA 99201, (509) 328-2080.

Abstinence Education at School

While parental commitment and a healthy self-image are key in instilling the values of abstinence, today’s children will receive most of their sex education in the school system. Parents who have followed the principles outlined above can still feel hopeless when their child is turned over to a sex education curriculum which seeks to tear down the values that the parent has tried so hard to build.

Fortunately, curricula have been developed in recent years that support these values, instead of ridiculing and rejecting them. Many of these curricula have proven records of effectiveness. Sex education researcher, Dr. Dinah Richard, after following one program in Texas, notes that “70% of the students said that they were making a commitment to abstinence until marriage. At Canyon High School, the pregnancy rate dropped by two-thirds over a two year period after [the abstinence curriculum] was implemented.”

While both parents and students want to see abstinence taught in the public schools, they often face serious roadblocks by organizations which do not share their viewpoint. Planned Parenthood and the American Civil Liberties Union have challenged abstinence programs in court, because “abstinence is a principle taught in the Bible” and therefore it violates the separation of church and state. However, Dr. Richard points out that schools already teach that it is wrong to steal, cheat, lie, rape, and murder, all of which comes straight out of the Bible.

If your school board uses this as an argument to reject abstinence-based sex education, you can point out that the U.S. Supreme Court has ruled in Bowen v. Kendrick (1988) that abstinence programs serve a legitimate secular purpose and do not violate the separation of church and state.

Abstinence can be instilled at home and taught in the schools. For more information on abstinence curriculum, Focus on the Family recommends the following:

Facing Reality This is a new high school curriculum offered by Project Respect. Their address is Box 97, Golf, IL 60029-0097, (708) 729-3298.

Foundations For Family Life Education An informative guide book for professionals and parents interested in teaching abstinence-based sex education is available from Educational Guidance Institute, Inc., 927 S. Walter Reed Drive., Suite #4., Arlington, VA 22204, (703) 486-8313.

Has Sex Education Failed Our Teenagers? This special report by Dinah Richard, Ph.D contains detailed statistics, information, and additional resources to help concerned individuals find a solution to teenage pregnancy. This report is available through Focus on the Family, Colorado Springs, CO 80995 or (719) 633-6287. In Canada, P.O Box 9800, Vancouver, B.C. V6B 4G3, (604) 684-8333.

Healthy Sex Education in Your Schools: A Parent’s Handbook This companion to Has Sex Education Failed Our Teenagers? offers a plan for parents who want to see abstinence and moral responsibility taught in their child’s school. Available from Focus on the Family, Colorado Springs, CO 80995 or by calling (719) 633-6287. In Canada, P.0 Box 9800, Vancouver B.C. V6B 4-G3 or (604) 684-8333.

Families, Decision-Making and Human Development This curriculum invites junior and senior high students to live in ways which promote their future, encourage personal health and foster emotional well-being. The importance of family relationships, human reproduction, and AIDS is also dealt with. It is available from Pnuema Press, 2275 Westpark Court, Suite 201, Euless, TX 76040, (817) 267-6847.

Learning About Myself and Others (LAMO) This program is designed for children in grades 1 to 6 and is presented from a traditional perspective with an emphasis on premarital abstinence, traditional family, and marriage. To enhance communication between parent and child, parents are required to attend with their children. Available from Anne Nesbit, R.R.3 Orchard Circle, Pittsfield, MA 01201, (413) 698-2688.

Me, My World, My Future A fifteen-unit middle school program, it stresses the postponement of immediate gratification in exchange for future goals. Sexual activity is discussed from a family-values perspective and the consequences of drugs, alcohol, and tobacco are examined. Available from Teen-Aid, N. 1330 Calispel, Seattle, WA 99201, (509) 328-2080.

Sex Respect: The Option of True Sexual Freedom This values-based three-week program for junior or senior highers, offers separate workbooks for teens, teachers, and parents. Available from Respect Incorporated, P.0 Box 349, Bradley, IL 60915-0349, (815) 932-8389 or Project Respect, Box 97, Golf, IL 60029-0097, (708) 729-3298.

Sexuality, Commitment, and Family A three week, morality-based program for public high schools is available from Teen-Aid Inc., N.1330 Calispel, Seattle, WA 99201, (509) 328-2080.

Teaching True Abstinence Sex Education This is a teacher’s manual of “hands on” activities and suggestions for conveying the true abstinence message. It emphasizes the areas proven to be important factors in reducing sexual activity among teens. Contact Project Respect, Box 97, Golf, IL 60029-0097, (708) 729-3298.

Many school districts also mandate that AIDS education be incorporated into sex education classes. Focus on the Family recommends the following resources:

Who Do You Listen To? Sex In The Age of AIDS This is a thirty-minute AIDS education film created for the public school system. The film presents a positive message in a dramatic classroom setting. The teacher’s lecture and student-teacher interaction presents medical facts about AIDS with scenes of adolescents, struggling with moral decisions while in a dating situation, help to underscore the right choices for teens. A visit to an AIDS hospice helps viewers realize the tragedy of the disease and the importance of remaining sexually abstinence Available on free loan to public schools through Gospel Films, Box 455, Muskegon, MI 49443, (800) 253-0413. Film details can be obtained from Why Wait?, Josh McDowell Ministries, Box 1000, Dallas, TX 75221, (214) 907- 1000.

HIV: You Can Live Without It Developed by Teen Aid Inc., this AIDS curriculum stresses abstinence. Available from Teen-Aid Inc., N. 1330 Calispel, Spokane, WA 99201, (509) 466-8679 or (509) 328-2080.

AIDS: A Risky Business For Everyone Developed by Colleen Mast as a supplement to the Sex Respect curriculum, this program discusses the high fatality rate of AIDS, the levels of infection, the transmission of the virus, and prevention through the avoidance of drugs, premarital
sex, extramarital sex, and homosexual activity. It refutes the “safe sex” myth via condoms. Available from Respect Inc., P.0 Box 349, Bradley, IL 60915- 0349,(815)932-8389.

AIDS and Young People Written by Robert Redfield, M.D., of the Walter Reed Army Institute of Research, and Wanda Franz, associate professor of family resources at the University of West Virginia. It covers the definition of AIDS, the origin of the virus, how people die from AIDS, the means of transmission, the extent of the disease, the categories of people infected, tests for AIDS, how to avoid getting AIDS, and the myth of “safe sex”. Available from Concerned Women for America, Coalition for Appropriate Sex Education, 370 L’Enfant Promenade S.W., Suite 800, Washington D.C. 20024, (800) 458-8797 or Project Respect, Committee on the Status of Women, Box 97, Gulf, IL 60029-0097, (312) 729-3298.

No Second Chance An emotionally charged film presented by Kathy Kay, R.N., it addresses the issues of AIDS and sexual abstinence. A public school version is also available. Contact Jeremiah Films, Dept. B, P.0. Box 1710, Hemet, CA 92343, (800) 828-2290 or in California (800) 633-0869.

Will “Safe Sex” Education Effectively Combat AIDS? An informal paper developed by the Department of Education, it refutes the fallacy of “safe sex”. It cites seventy-eight sources that show why condoms are not effective in preventing the transmission of the AIDS virus, and why premarital abstinence and marital fidelity are important. Contact the U.S Department of Education, 400 Maryland Avenue, S.W., Room 4019, Washington D.C. 20202, (202) 732-4024.

If you would like more information regarding abstinence or other family matters, contact Focus on the Family, Colorado Springs, CO 80995, (719) 633-6287.

(The above information was published by FOCUS ON THE FAMILY, 1992)

Christian Information Network

Posted in AIS File Library, BSFM - Family and Marriage0 Comments

Teens & Sex: The Moral Purity Challenge

Teens & Sex: The Moral Purity Challenge
By Stephen Arterburn

Recently, Jim spoke at a large high school in central California on the subject of sex and dating. In a school poll taken before he spoke in favor of abstaining from sexual intercourse until marriage, the kids were asked to choose one of the following:
1. I will choose to have sexual intercourse before marriage.

2. I will choose to not have sexual intercourse before marriage.

3. I am undecided.

When school counselors tallied up the results, 68 Percent of the student body were undecided! After Jim’s presentation, only 24 percent were undecided. The vast majority chose abstinence. They made a commitment to wait until marriage. Many kids don’t take the “sexual-purity challenge” simply because it’s not offered to them. Let’s look at what one husband and wife are doing in this area.

The Sexual-Purity Challenge

As busy parents, John and Carolyn do a marvelous job when it comes to helping their three beautiful daughters deal with one of the most dominant issues of life: SEX. Along with several thousand other concerned parents, John and Carolyn are offering the “sexual-purity challenge.”

Between the ages of 10 and 13, each daughter has accompanied her parents on a special weekend outing. Each one picked the place to stay (within financial reason) and whatever fun experience she wanted. Tawnie chose a play in Los Angeles. Stephanie wanted to hang out at the beach. The youngest, Amber, chose a Los Angeles Lakers basketball game. How’s that for diversity

During each special outing, John, Carolyn, and one of the girls played hard and ate fun food. The theme of each weekend was the sexual-purity challenge. They talked a lot about the birds and the bees. They listened to a tape together and read a chapter from Jim’s book Radical Respect. Each daughter was different. The two more outgoing girls talked and talked, asking questions that made John and Carolyn blush a little. The quietest child listened, took it all in, had a great time, but didn’t say much.

On Sunday, before they returned home, John and Carolyn asked each daughter, “Are you willing to say to God, ‘I commit my sexuality to you and will refrain from sexual intercourse until marriage’ ?“ Each girl said yes without pressure, and the parents gave each daughter a little necklace as a reminder of taking the sexual-purity challenge.

Let’s be honest. Will every kid who made a decision at school or with parents to remain abstinent until marriage actually do so? No. Depending on which poll you look at, at least 50 percent of the teenagers in the United States have already had sexual intercourse by age 18. But “everybody” isn’t doing it. We parents need to help our kids make the right and wise decision to refrain, and our efforts will make an impact.

A couple who attended Jim’s youth group decided years later to get married. Jim had the privilege of doing their premarital counseling and performing the wedding. During the counseling, he always has a session on sex. Frankly, couples usually squirm a bit in that session. In today’s world, most people who enter a marital relationship after age 18 aren’t virgins —including Christians.

Derrick started the session by saying, “I know we are going to talk about sex today, and we wanted to tell you a story.” Immediately Jim got ready for a negative one. But to his surprise, it was quite positive. Derrick continued: When Jennifer was in tenth grade, she sat in a Sunday school class you were teaching, and you asked the group to make a commitment to remain sexually pure. She made that commitment and kept it. At camp a few years before that, you were giving your “sex talk” and asked us to wait until marriage. At that camp, I made a commitment to do just that. Just yesterday, Jennifer and I were talking about the fact that we are the only virgins we know and how even for us it hasn’t been easy. I asked her what kept her from “going all the way.” She told me her Sunday school story. I told her my camp story. We sit here today to tell you this stuff works!

Jim’s response? Not surprisingly, he got choked up. Jim speaks to more than one hundred thousand students a year about sex, and he still finds the latest statistics hard to believe.

• Twelve million teens are sexually active. Eight out of 10 males and seven out of 10 females report having had intercourse while teenagers.

• If present trends continue, 40 percent of today’s 14-year-old girls will be pregnant at least once before age 20.

• By age 20, 81 percent of today’s unmarried males and 67 percent of today’s unmarried females have had sexual intercourse.

• Fifty percent of all sexually active 19-year-old males had their first sexual experience between the ages of 11 and 13. Among nonvirgins, 50 percent of the boys and 18 percent of the girls first had intercourse at age 18 or younger.

• Seventy-four percent of teenagers say that they would live with someone before marriage or instead of getting married.

• More than 500,000 babies are born each year to unmarried American girls under age 18. Furthermore, about 80 percent of these teenage mothers are from low-income families.

• Teenage mothers cost taxpayers about $16 billion a year in welfare benefits alone. (The cost in dollars is only a minor aspect of what happens in the lives of pregnant teenagers and teenage married couples. The emotional and spiritual damage done to sexually promiscuous young people creates even greater damage.)

Contrary to what many kids learn today, there’s no such thing as “safe sex.” The safe-sex movement in our world has relegated sex to an action without taking into consideration the emotional, psychological, and spiritual issues. The sexual-revolution crisis is perceived quite differently today, depending on people’s perspectives. The popular, secular view is that the crisis is the “result” of promiscuity: AIDS, venereal disease, and unwanted pregnancies. However, the Christian perspective is concerned with the development of healthy morals and values—right and wrong—and deals with the issues of sin and obedience to God. The Christian view of sex takes into consideration a responsibility for one’s actions and people’s relationship with God.

Unfortunately, most young people receive their sex education from the media. As mentioned previously, the average high school student had the opportunity to watch 14,000 acts of intercourse or innuendo to intercourse on prime-time TV in 1991, and he or she will watch an average of 10 hours a week of MTV this year. Kids today are fooled into “instant intimacy” because of such blatantly promiscuous sex. Television, movies, and much of rock music glorify sex and fill kids’ senses with activities, images, and remarks about sexual activity while downplaying the responsibility that sexual activity requires.

However, even more unfortunate than the media’s treatment of sex is the fact that only about 10 percent of children today receive positive, Christian sex education. Did you? Probably not. Even with the outstanding material on sexuality available to families and churches today, it’s sad to say that we, as Christian parents, have done a poor job overall of helping our young people deal with this dominant issue. Sexuality isn’t an easy subject to discuss with our kids but it’s unfortunate that so many parents and churches have remained more or less silent.

Our silence is really hurting this generation of young people who desire to hear the truth. Many kids have learned myths rather than facts about sex and its powerful consequences. An entire generation of young people has been left to experiment and learn about sex on its own. The lack of positive moral standards and basic understanding about sex often leads young people to participate in premature sexual activity.

You Can Make a Difference

We believe that most parents really desire to talk with their kids about sex. Unfortunately, most parents didn’t receive positive, healthy sex education when they were growing up, so they have few or no role models to guide them in helping their children. If you’re one of the vast majority of parents who care deeply about their children and yet aren’t exactly sure what to say about sexuality or how to bring up the subject, don’t be alarmed. Here are a few suggestions:

Be Willing to Talk About Sexuality

Kids need adults — especially parents — who will talk openly and honestly about sexuality and will listen. By doing so, you may prevent your kids from having some very negative experiences. You will also be giving them the gift of a healthy attitude toward sexuality and encouraging them to use one of God’s most special gifts to us as He intended.

Parents always ask us, “What do we say to our children, and at what age?” To answer that question, we want to tell a joke.

One afternoon, seven-year-old Johnny came home from school, walked into the kitchen, and asked his mother, “Hey, Mom, what’s sex?” Her face tuned bright red, but not wanting to appear too shocked by the question she fumbled for the right words to say. Where my husband when I need him? She thought. This question was supposed to come about six years from now!

Composing herself, she asked Johnny to sit at the kitchen table, poured him a glass of milk, and placed a plate of cookies in front of him that he happily received. She then proceeded to explain every detail of the birds and the bees to Johnny for the next 45 minutes. Johnny didn’t say a word; he just ate those cookies! When she finished telling Johnny basically everything she knew about sex in explicit detail, Mom took a deep breath and said, “Well, Johnny, do you have any questions?”

He looked up, puzzled, and said, “Yeah, just one. How am I supposed to put all that on this soccer application where it says; Sex, M or F, please circle?”

Of course, Johnny’s mother misread his question, but her situation illustrates a key point. As parents, we need to discuss sex in a positive, healthy way with our kids. However, sex education must be age appropriate. Our secular media and even our public school system have given kids too much too soon. It’s like feeding a piece of steak to a baby who has no teeth. The baby chokes. But the opposite extreme is also dangerous. Some parents wait until it’s too late. Let’s quickly review a few more facts.

More than half of the high schoolers in the United States have had sex, according to a Centers for Disease Control survey. The following breakdown by grade reveals how high the percentages are;

• 9th grade —40 percent

• 10th grade —48 percent

• 11th grade —57 percent

• 12th grade—72 percent

When Jim speaks to junior high and high school students about sex, he encourages them to write out questions. Here’s a sample of the questions asked recently at a “Handling Your Hormones” youth event that more than 800 kids attended at Chuck Swindoll’s former church in Fullerton, California. (Most of the kids were Christians.)

• How far is too far?

• Is it possible to get the pill without your parents knowing?

• How often do married people usually have sexual intercourse?

• Is oral sex okay?

• How do girls masturbate?

• How do boys masturbate?

• At what age do boys have their first erection?

• When is a girl’s most dangerous time of the month? Is the pill expensive? Is the pill dangerous?

• What types of VD are there?

• I’m afraid of AIDS. What can I do to not get it?

• If you participate in oral sex, are you still a virgin?

• Will God condemn you if you have premarital sex? Will He forgive you?

• What can a guy do if he has a problem of lust toward other guys? How can you handle it without having to be gay?

• Does God forgive Christians who have had abortions?

• After someone has been sexually abused for years and hasn’t told anyone about it, how can someone try to forget and deal with it?

As you can see, kids aren’t just interested in the biological aspects of their sexuality. These types of questions are always asked. Interestingly, in recent years, kids are asking more and more questions about sexual abuse, homosexuality, pornography, oral sex, abortion, and birth control.

Teach Biblical Sexuality
We believe that today’s generation of kids actually desires morals and values. Growing up in a basically value-neutral society hasn’t given kids a healthy sexual foundation. A 17-year-old woman recently told Jim, “This is the first time in my life I’ve ever heard that God wants me to abstain from intercourse until marriage. Now that I think about it, it makes a lot of sense.”

It’s important for kids today to realize that the Bible speaks to important issues of the day. God created sex, and He views His creation as being very good. He wants the best for His children; that’s why He places limits on premarital sexual activity.

Here are six Scripture passages that directly speak to our children (and us parents) about sexuality. We took this from an excellent article in Discipleship Journal by John Nieder:

Genesis 1:27-28 and 2:18-25:

1. God created two distinct sexes.

2. God told the man and the woman to have children.

3. The man was created incomplete and in need of a helper.

4. No other creature could meet the man’s need.

5. God made a woman to meet the man’s need (and vice versa).

6. The man and the woman were supposed to join their lives and their bodies for life.

7. The sexual relationship was commanded before sin entered human experience.

Samuel 13.1-20:

1. Inappropriate sexual desire can lead to sin.

2. Wrong friends encourage wrong behavior.

3. Sexual sin often involves deception.

4. We should avoid potentially compromising situations.

Intense sexual desires can cause irrational actions.

When lust is fulfilled and desires diminish, the ensuing guilt may result in hatred. Once the immoral act has occurred, irreparable damage has been done.

Alienation, hatred, and even violence can result from sexual sin.

Proverbs 5:

1. Children should follow their parents’ wisdom.

2. We should watch out for and avoid sexual temptations and sensuous allurements.

3. Sexual sins have terrible consequences.

4. We should flee temptation.

5. Sexual immorality can lead to disease.

6. Sexual intercourse should occur only in marriage

7. Marital love is to be enjoyed.

8. God watches everything we do, including our sexual activity.
1 Corinthians 6:9-20:

1. Sexual sins can be forgiven.

2. Our bodies are devoted to God, not to sexual immorality.

3. Our bodies are important enough to be resurrected.

4. We should flee, not fight, temptation.

5. Sexual sin hurts us and can harm our bodies.

6. God owns us.

7. Jesus died to purchase us, so we should honor Him with our bodies.
1 Corinthians 7:1-9:

1. Unmarried people have a greater freedom to serve God.

2. Sex outside of marriage is always wrong.

3. The solution for passion is a marriage partner, not a boyfriend or a girlfriend.

4. God wants married couples to have free access to each others’ bodies.

5. Men and women, husbands and wives, have strong sexual desires.

6. A couple’s spiritual union should be more important than their physical union.

7. Free access to one’s spouse reduces sexual temptation.

1 Thessalonians 4:1-8:

1. Living a pure life pleases God.

2. God’s will is that we avoid sexual immorality.

3. God wants us to learn how to control our bodies.

4. Our methods of controlling our desires must be holy and honorable.

5. The way we control our bodies will differ from the methods of unbelievers.

6. Gratifying our sexual desires outside of marriage offends and detracts from the other person.

7. We shouldn’t take advantage of another person in order to satisfy our sexual desires.

8. These standards come from God, not from man.

9. If we disobey these instructions, we reject God.

The Bible isn’t a sex manual, yet it’s very clear on certain sexual issues. Far too many kids today believe that God is the great killjoy when it comes to sex because they honestly don’t know what the Bible says about it. A whole group of kids today has heard only what appear to be negative verses or unreal expectations when biblical sexuality has been discussed.

As parents, we must present biblical sexuality positively. God created sex. In the confines of marriage, it is wonderful. He put sexual boundaries in the Bible because He loves us and wants the best for us. Far too many young people are moving into marriage with a great deal of sexual-related baggage from previous relationships. God knows how devastating that baggage can be.

Following are questions we ask young people who have been having sexual intercourse or who are close to compromising their virginity. We’re convinced that any couple contemplating premarital intercourse should look at and deal with these questions honestly.

1. Will premarital intercourse lessen the meaning of intercourse in marriage for either of you? (Notice that in all these questions, both people are included in the decision-making process.)

2. Does your conscience make you feel uneasy during or after sexual intercourse? Could this be the Holy Spirit challenging you?

3. Are you both equally committed to each other?

4. Are you totally convinced in your hearts that the other person is “the one” forever?

5. What do you believe the Bible has to say about premarital sexual intercourse? Here are a few verses to look at: 1 Thessalonians 4:1-8; 1 Peter 2:11; 1 Corinthians 6:13, 18-20; Ephesians 5:3; and Acts 15:20.

7. Will having sexual intercourse before marriage damage in any way your relation ship with each other?

8. Could premarital intercourse damage your communication or result in either a loss of respect for or mistrust of each other?

9. Will premarital intercourse help, hinder, or not affect your spiritual relationship with each other?

10. Have you thought through the possibilities of parenthood and marriage because of pregnancy?

11. What are your motives for having sexual intercourse? Are they pure?

Find Positive, Healthy Resources to Share with Kids

There are many excellent resources available for kids and parents on this subject. Use the gifts and abilities of others to help your child receive appropriate sex education.

We know there’s hope. As parents, we can make a difference! Please don’t leave all the responsibility of sex education and prevention of pregnancy to people who care less about your kids than you do. Listen to the words of Alice, age 18:

6. You both seem to desire God’s best for you. Will having sexual intercourse affect your usefulness to God or your relationship with Him?

I really believe I’ll be a virgin on the day of my wedding. My parents were always open about sex with me. They challenged me to give my body to God. I’ve done that. It’s not always easy, but my commitment is strong, thanks to the input I received from my folks.

This article may not be written by an Apostolic author, but it contains many excellent principles and concepts that can be adapted to most churches. As the old saying goes, “Eat the meat. Throw away the bones.”

Posted in AIS File Library, YMGE - Youth Ministry0 Comments


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