“Let’s talk about sex.”
These were lyrics of a popular radio song. Contemporary culture has moved from an invitation of different ideologies on sexuality, to a full blown megaphone on our billboards, screens and magazines.
The church has sometimes been silent in engaging where the culture is shouting. Of late, my speaking engagements have been around this issue. I was requested to put a write-up that can be used for youth training seminars in my church denomination. The following details in summary how we as the Church can approach sexuality and LGBTIQAA+ issues from a biblical perspective.
You can access a Word version of the Seminar on Christianity and Sexuality through the download link below:
PART I: AIMS
Sexuality as an identity and expression is a popular topic in our lives. This session aims:
- To explore LGBTIQAA+ issues
- To consider biblical wisdom for sexuality
- To offer biblical resources for hope and healing in the area of sexuality
PART 2: LGBTIQAA+ ISSUES
LGBTIQAA+ is a term that captures the understanding of sexuality in popular culture. Popular culture looks at sexuality through the lens of individual freedom, self-gratification and rejection of God’s wisdom. It seeks to widen the biblical understanding of gender as male and female, and to allow for divergent expressions of sexuality.
- L: Lesbian i.e. women who have romantic or sexual relationships with other women.
- G: Gay i.e. men who have romantic or sexual relationships with other men.
- B: Bisexual i.e. those who are attracted to or have sexual relationships with both male and female genders.
- T: Transexual i.e. those who identify themselves in an different gender to the one they were born with.
- I: Intersex i.e. those who have both male and female sexual organs.
- Q: Queer i.e. those whose gender identity or sexual relationships cannot be objectively defined.
- A: Asexual i.e. those who do not experience sexual attraction.
- A: Aromatic i.e. those who do not experience romantic feelings.
- +: to show the ever-expanding terms in sexuality.
Other terms that are used in the conversations of sexuality in popular culture are:
- Gender identity– who I am. the internal sense of being male, female, both or none.
- Gender expression – how I express my gender identity in public.
- Sexual orientation – attraction to same or other genders.
- Gender non-conforming – those who don’t conform to “stereotypical” definitions of gender.
- Medical transitioning– what some transgender people decide to go through (medical procedure) in order to change their gender identity.
- Gender dysphoria – negative feelings arising from clash between assigned gender and gender identity
PART 3: BIBLICAL VIEW OF SEXUALITY
- We want to define sexuality based on what we feel, think or want, rather than what God’s Word says (“did God really say” Gen 3).
- Sex and sexuality is part of who we are as humans (Gen 1:27-28, 2:18, 2:34; Song of Songs).
- Gender Identity: is objectively binary, that is, Male or Female (Gen 1:26-28, Jesus says so in – Mt 19:4/Mk 10:6).
- The Fall & Sex: the reality of sin and the fall in Genesis 3, is the beginning of the distortion in the goodness of sex and sexuality. Thus, we see homosexuality (Gen 19, See also Mt 10:15, Rom 1:24-25, 2 Pet 2:6-9); Rape (Dinah – Gen 34, Tamar – 2 Sam 13), Adultery (David & Beersheba), Incest, Bestiality etc. It may also be the reason of people being born with both organs at birth – this is not the norm, but God is able to work all things out for his good. Wisdom and grace are needed in how to address some of this unique circumstances.
- A restored relationship with God through faith in Jesus Christ is the pathway to a healthy view of sexuality (Rom 12:1-2; Col 3:1-11; 1 Cor 6:9-20). These scriptures:
- “call a spade, a spade” – they define distorted sexual identities and actions as sinful
- Address the solution to our sin
- Offer us new life through faith in Christ
- Show us how the new life sets us free from past and present guilt and shame e.g. in cases of sexual sin or rape
- Show us that change and transformation is possible
- The Holy Spirit empowers us to live in light of the new nature that is ours in Christ Jesus.
- The gospel helps us to reach out to those who don’t live in light of God’s wisdom with BOTH Grace and Truth (See John 4).
- Who is the ultimate authority in my definition of sexuality?
- Why do we question God’s wisdom in the area of sexuality?
- How does the gospel of Jesus Christ offer hope, healing and freedom in the area of sexual sin?