God creates a man and a woman in His own image, places them together in a wild garden, and blesses them to enjoy forever the goodness of His creation. Adam sings and Eve dances into his arms. Within the blessing and delight of God, they enjoy naked-in-the-garden sex. Two become one in every way possible — touching and kissing and frolicking and tasting. Yep. Profoundly, in all of this, they are ‘naked and without shame’. Can you imagine living in a world without shame? It was never God’s intention to bring shame to sex. In the garden, when God had the world exactly the way He created it and desired it to be, this man and woman were naked and without shame. Naked. No shame. No comparing and no pretending. No living up to someone else’s standard of beauty. No lust, no fantasy, no objectifying, no pornography. No pressure to be someone else; to be thinner, darker, taller, sexier. Adam and Eve are beautifully naked, with nothing to hide and nothing to prove. Bodies are enough and reality is enough. Created in the beautiful and breathtaking image of God, they have found their value and worth in simply being children of God. And it was good.
Yet somewhere along the way, we lost our Story. We lost our way. We compromised the real thing for an empty imitation. Sex cheapened to a weekend event, a Friday night fling, flesh on flesh, an orgasm, before we’re off to the next thing. Millions of women are starving themselves daily to live up to some insane, plastic Barbie Doll image of beauty. Husbands are so addicted to online pornography that their flesh and blood wives are no longer attractive to them. 43 percent of today’s college students will have had at least five sexual partners before graduating college. Not to mention the average middle-aged man will have more than twenty sexual partners in his lifetime. Tragically, for every one hundred hours that the average teenager spends absorbing shallow and perverted images of sex and love from today’s pop-culture, they will spend one second learning about true intimacy and God’s design for love, sex, and marriage.
Although God has designed us for love and intimacy, our sex-obsessed and Hollywood-shaped culture has ripped sex out of marriage and, in doing so, ripped marriage out of covenant. Richard Foster writes, “One of the real tragedies in Christian history has been the divorce of sexuality from spirituality.” The sacred goodness of sexual purity has been hijacked by the world and, in many ways, shamed by the church. Neither of which have produced a healthy culture of sexuality.
Let’s be honest. We’ve wandered far from the garden and even further from our Story.
And yet, we’re finding that across the earth, many of us are waking up to ‘who we are’ and, more profoundly, ‘whose we are’. Discovering once again the image, the blessing, the delight, and the design of God for sexuality, we are experiencing a deeper joy, a stronger grace, and the most fulfilling love. Is it possible for a generation to once again experience the promise and presence of God in and for sexuality? Could it be that if God is in everything good, that God might actually reveal Himself through the profoundly breathtaking act of sex, too? It’s not that we don’t think about sex (the average man thinks about sex every twenty seconds), it’s that we don’t think deeply enough about sex.
Sex is so much more than two people fumbling around beneath the sheets. It’s about something deeper. It’s about a story. And we’re finding it again.