Are Christians our own worst enemy??

Today I had the privilege of being a part of a Q & A session at a high school Christian lunch time group. On any given week the group is usually about 30 kids. Today it was 45. It’s an unusual group because about half of the 30 regulars are not Christians. Obviously the Christian were out numbered today.

A few months ago the group set up a board in the school asking students to complete the following – “My biggest problem with Christianity is…”

Over the last few months the leader of the lunch time group has set out to address the issues people have. Today’s challenge was to answer the question of what Christianity has to say about homosexuality. It was a tough gig but very worth while I think.

Something that really hit me as I was listening to their objections, was the way they were very quick to attack what the Bible says, without actually knowing what the Bible says. Of course Leviticus was mentioned more times than I could count, but there was a complete ignorance to anything else the Bible has to say about homosexuality, or in fact, any kind of sexuality. There were some genuinely shocked faces when I said the Bible has lots to say about sex.

But I don’t really blame them. I suspect they are repeating the only info they’ve ever heard about the Bible and homosexuality. A week ago I meet with a teenaged Christian girl to think about these same issues. When I asked her “why does the Bible say homosexuality is wrong” she had a hard time answering. Eventually she said “I don’t know, all I know is that the Bible says its wrong”.

I’ll admit I’m kinda thinking out loud, but I feel like this is our fault, for having the wrong conversation for so many years. We need to not talk about the fact that the Bible says its wrong (cause everyone knows that anyway) and instead talk about the presuppositions that sit behind the conversation. For example, some things I noticed that all the students today assumed are – all desire is good, sex is a right for every person, and sexuality is integral to identity. The Bible has a lot to say about these 3 assumptions and without addressing them, anything the Bible says about homosexuality makes no sense.

I think unless we start moving the conversation we are our own worst enemy. What do you think?

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9 thoughts on “Are Christians our own worst enemy??

    • it was quite interesting that one of the most passionate responses from the students was after I challenged the idea that sexuality equals identity. One guy in particular was not happy about the suggestion that we should try to separate the two

  1. The homosexual lobby has done a thourough and sustained job of equating sexuality and identity. To say your behaviour is wrong is now to say your very being is wrong. That’s why we end up with songs like Lady Gaga’s Born This Way.

  2. you’re right. There’s a positive heterosexual sexual ethic that courses through the Scriptures. Not only that, it’s a reflection of the gospel itself. And yet often all that is spoken about is the prohibitions.

    Maybe part of our problem, then, is not teaching sex positively. I think you’re also right to try and help them see the assumptions they’re working under. But a bunch of teenagers is always going to be a tough crowd. Into the lion’s den. Bring it.

    • “Maybe part of our problem, then, is not teaching sex positively”

      We definitely don’t do enough of this – especially with teenagers. part of the problem with the girl I was chatting to last week is that the only thing she’s every heard from her church leaders on sex is when its wrong.

      as for teenagers being a tough crowd – this is true, but they’re so much fun! it did make me miss youth ministry. *sigh*

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  4. great post.

    “Maybe part of our problem, then, is not teaching sex positively”

    this is good. i like the thoughts discussed above.

    here is a blog post i wrote 5 years ago about regularly preaching on sex with teenagers rather than having the heightened ‘sex talk’ once a year.
    http://davemiers.com/2006/08/10/youth-ministry-sex-talks/
    that’s still more or less my principle – probably nuanced a bit.
    scott petty (christ church st ives) is good at regularly preaching on sex – both a positive biblical sexuality – and a critique of cultural teaching on sexuality. not that it is necessarily the main point of his talk, but rather will often be used as part of the application in a talk.

  5. Good post mate

    As Christians we need to get better at “showing our working”. Soundbite answers invariably come across as unloving, but it’s when you walk people through the line of thinking that ground is made.

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