The Big Question 85: What Does The Bible Say About Sex?
Feb 22, 2022 139
What does the Bible say about sex?
Surprisingly, the Bible has quite a lot to say about sex.
And, perhaps even more surprisingly, the most important thing it has to say about sex is that its good.
This might come as a bit of a shock to people who think that Christianity is all about repressing sexuality and seeing it as evil. But you won’t find that in the Bible.
The Bible says that the first man and woman were created naked, and they felt no shame. And God declared that the way he had created them was “very good.” Now, it’s true to say that the issue of sexuality, like everything else, has been corrupted by the entry of sin into the world, and things have changed. But it’s important to remember that God created sex, and it was “very good.”
Also, according to the Bible, sex isn’t just about having kids. While it’s true that procreation is an important reason for sex, it’s not the only reason, and it’s not even the most important reason. The Bible, talking about the first union between Adam and Eve, says,
That is why a man leaves his father and mother and is united to his wife, and they become one flesh (Gen 2:24, NIV.)
What this is talking about is the ideal union between husband and wife, which means not just physical, but also emotional togetherness in the deepest sense of the word. Even becoming “one flesh,” as the Bible puts it. And sex is a very important means of achieving and reflecting this.
Something comes through repeatedly in the Bible is that sex is a privilege reserved just for married couples. That’s because we aren’t just animals, in a mindless universe. Sex is about so much more than just pleasure or having kids. God wants us to form the deepest possible connection with another. In fact, in the Bible, God consistently presents the marriage relationship as a metaphor for the relationship that he wants to have with us!
Outside of marriage, sex doesn’t really fulfil its purpose, and in fact it can be positively harmful.
Another thing that the Bible says about sex is that it should be mutual. This is particularly relevant in an age in which the topic of consent is frequently discussed in the media and among legislators. Too often sexuality is about one person exerting power over another. But that’s not how it should be. It’s about mutual submission between equals.
Now, while the Bible tells us that sex is good, it’s not the ultimate good. Our culture has in many ways put it at the centre of life, but it isn’t.
The greatest good is having a great relationship with God. From that, everything else will flow.