(In 2017, I wrote this series for the 40 days prior to Easter to prepare our hearts and minds for the significance of Jesus’ resurrection. I’m reposting the series now for the 40 days after Easter to encourage us to follow through, living in the risen Savior and King.)
One weekend a few years ago, my wife and I were supporting a Christian teen conference sponsored by a military ministry at Fort Benning, Georgia. The subject was sexual purity. They’d had the first one the year before, and even more teenagers came out the following year. There were even notably more guys than gals, which was a pleasant surprise to me, given the topic.
The speakers, music, practical exercises, and fellowship were consistently great. Families from chapels all over the large installation hosted groups of youth by gender and age each night. I had rarely seen such practical, Christ-centered, well-founded ministry.
One of the repeated themes was that only God can offer what so many seek in sexuality, whether that’s in a physical relationship, dirty jokes, pornography, etc. That is so true, and I hoped the kids were hearing and understanding that true good news in God’s Word. I wonder if we adults hear and understand it. Probably not as clearly as we should, due to the unfortunately common understanding of the term, “purity”.
When a culture rejects believing in objective Good and Truth, that culture not only might turn to experiment with whatever “works” for their individual goals (my pleasure, my success, my safety, my reputation, my ___, even if I have to use you to get it), they must experiment. After all, there’s nothing left.
What does that have to do with purity?
Those who give up on Good and True are willing to settle for less. Less than pure commitment. Less than pure honesty. Less than pure joy. Less than pure acceptance. Less than pure strength. Less than pure intimacy. Sex (and many other good things God created) can offer all of these without God’s restraints, if you’re willing to settle for less than _________.
But don’t we want more rather than “less than”? We need more. We need pure pure commitment, pure honesty, pure joy, pure acceptance, pure strength, pure intimacy. We need a pure relationship with God through the grace of His Son, Jesus Christ, by the power of His Spirit.
Purity is only boring in the sense that it bores down to the very core of our soul’s needs. Needs that were created to be fulfilled by our Creator and the Re-Creator of our spirit: the Lord Jesus.