Righteous Masculinity – Part 2

There is, without question, a tsunami of perversion sweeping through our society.  The facts supporting this statement are for another post which I will gladly and hopefully soon write.  This wave of absolute perversion is carried upon a current of misogyny and sexism which is beneath the dignity of the species called man, and certainly beneath those within the church.

“You’re making a mountain out of a molehill!”, you may say.  Perhaps, but what I do know is that the Lord has called His people to “be holy as He is holy.”  I know…every time I hear that verse I almost cringe.  That verse that is often used as the basis for people to say, “Don’t do this or that…” whatever they deem inappropriate and as a way to sort of control others into a facade of righteousness so they can feel okay.  But hear me out on this one.  There IS a standard of holiness, applied without control, that the Lord is calling (drawing, alluring, and beckoning) us as a people into.  “You are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation…” 1 Peter 2:9.

I also know that the Lord is seeking a Bride, “pure and spotless” one who “keeps herself unspotted from the world.”  A Bride who is worthy of the Spotless Lamb of God, who is a crown for her husband, and a delight in His eyes.

There wouldn’t have been a charge from the Lord to “keep yourself unspotted from the world” if it wasn’t inclined to leave a generous stain.  But we as a people are so inclined to give in to sensual pleasures, to seek other lovers so even at the end of the age the Lord must call to His people, “Come out of her (Babylon), my people, so that you may not have fellowship in her sins, and so that you may not receive of her plagues.”  And again in Jeremiah, “Flee from Babylon! Run for your lives!  Do not be destroyed because of her sins.”

I submit to you that we, as a generation, are in the fight of our lives.

What fight?  Listen, we may live in the midst of the most pornified culture ever recorded.  Never in the history of mankind has pornography or sexuality been so prevalent, accessible, and pervasive.  Ancient societies such as the Greeks, Romans, or Babylonians have been noted for their excesses in the realm of sexuality but they didn’t have the megalith of the internet bearing down on them at all times.  Data shows that in only 13 years porn sites increased from 900 to 2,500,000!  That data was five years ago too.  According to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children’s Child Victim Identification Program has seen a 432% increase in the child porn submitted for identification between 2005 and 2009 alone.  In a one year period they found over 21 Million unique IP addresses dealing in child pornography.  This hyper-sexualization of culture is exponentially multiplying and we as a society are mostly unaware.

You can’t hardly drive down the freeway, turn on the TV, or listen to music without sexuality being glorified and unleashed into your atmosphere.  I remember one TV ad for cranberry juice that almost made me laugh if it hadn’t been so ridiculous.  The voiceover was a woman’s and in the most seductive tone I’m sure she could muster, touted the pleasures of cranberry juice as the images on screen showed it pouring from a model’s hand…What?!…Cranberry juice seductive?!  Wow.  Just wow.

Porn is no longer the illicit magazine hidden under the bed.  Pornography is simply paid sex.  Sex is more than the physical act.  It is an essence.  And the essence is suffocating us.  You no longer have to seek out illicit sexual services.  Models get paid to arouse the senses, to suggest pleasure and awaken desire.  Women are hired solely for their attractiveness for the “breastaurant” industry, which is the fastest growing restaurant segment by the way.  Actors are exploited for their beauty or sex appeal, and products are marketed as the ultimate “thingy” guaranteed to catapult you into the life you always wanted: a life full of love, passion, desire, and adventure.  Manufacturers will never say it that blatantly but the not-so-subtle undertones are clear enough.

Why is this so dangerous?  Sex without covenant kills what the human heart was created for: real intimacy with another human.  Intimacy is to be fully known and fully loved.  Porn, or hear me out here – objectification – the reducing down of an individual for what they offer YOU, destroys the longing of the heart and the very image of God within.  Porn is a lie.  Objectification is a cruel twisting of the heart of man.  It offers the promise of intimacy with none of the risk, none of the vulnerability, and none of the courage.

The sweeping tide of a hyper-sexualized culture is crashing around us and we are mostly unprepared.  Lives and marriages are shipwrecked on the rocks of abused sexuality and lifeboats are few and far between.  For those who are brave enough to reach for these scarce lifeboats the social stigma and shame of sex or porn addiction adds insult to injury.  It’s no wonder that 25% of Christian women admit to porn addiction and of that 25%, 75% have never reached out for help.  Pornography has become a scourge in the church and many congregations are waffling under its domination.

In Revelation the Lord declares that “all nations have drunk of the wine of the passion of her (Babylon’s) immorality”…then He goes on to call His people out…”Come out of her My people..”  No one is exempt.  All nations, all peoples have participated in the distortion of sexuality.  The good news is that we aren’t exempt from being His Bride if we have participated in sexual immorality, even to the utmost degree.  The terrifying news is that we don’t get to ignore His call either.  In Genesis when Lot urged his sons-in-law to flee the city “they thought he was joking.”  Let us not persist in closing our ears to the cry of holiness and purity!  Oh that the Spirit of the Fear of the Lord would be released in our day!

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