Conversations about sex and gender are front and center this month. Consequently, our children and teens. . . and even ourselves. . . are swimming in a directive cultural soup that maps out what to believe about sex and gender, along with how to live out our understanding of sex and gender. Is the culture getting it right? Sadly, not usually.
As parents and youth workers, we must use our voices to teach our children and teens what God really did say if we hope to help them find their way through the cultural narrative’s lies on sex and gender. At the very minimum, there are 10 truths on sex and gender God’s Word we must continually teach and talk about with our children and teens. While not exhaustive on the matter of sex and gender, they are foundational to setting our kids on a lifetime journey of glorifying God through knowing and doing His will for sex and gender. Collectively, these truths recognize both God’s sovereignty over our lives, and the inherent dignity/value of all human beings.
Over the course of the last couple of weeks, I’ve been sharing these 10 truths here on this blog. Today, we look at truths 6 through 10. The descriptions that follow each are included to help you unpack and explain God’s revealed will on sex and gender as you talk with your kids . . . .
God’s design for sex and marriage is clear. God has established marriage to be a covenantal, lifelong, monogamous, one-flesh, heterosexual union between one man and one woman. God has given humanity the good and beautiful gift of sex to be shared and experienced only within the context of marriage between one man and one woman. Marriage is the place for sex. The purpose of sex as God has given it to us is to consummate and seal the marriage relationship between a man and a woman, to foster continued mutual intimacy, to enable mutual pleasure, and to respond to God’s command to “be fruitful and multiply” (procreation). God calls us to chastity in singleness, and faithfulness in marriage.
God recognizes that we will all struggle at some level with sex and gender. God knows that we are all sinners. We must recognize that due to sin and brokenness in the world, all human beings will struggle personally with sexual brokenness, and that we will encounter difficult temptations to wander from God’s will and way for sex and gender. God makes it clear that any form of sexual immorality (including but not limited to adultery, fornication, LGBTQ+ behavior, bestiality, incest, sexual abuse, sexual harassment, sexting, sex trafficking, polyamory, objectification, and the use of pornography) is sinful, outside of God’s plan, and harmful to one’s self and others.
God uses our sex and gender struggles for His glory and our good. We must understand that our own personal experience of sex and gender is not always that which God the Creator originally designed and intended. All of us live with broken and misplaced desires as they relate to sex and gender. While these are difficult and sometimes strong, we are to endeavor to glorify God and experience the fullness of our humanity by living out biblical faithfulness in all areas of our lives, including sex and gender. In so doing, we recognize that when God does not rescue us from battling these broken desires, He is at work to redeem us and to walk with us through our struggles.
God is with us in our struggles as we wait for them to end! The good news is that God in His grace offers redemption and restoration to all those who confess and turn from their sexual sin, seeking His mercy and forgiveness through Jesus Christ. And, we know that living the life of Christian discipleship in this still-sin-marred now-but-not-yet-fully-realized Kingdom of God is always difficult, requires sacrifice, and involves some level of continued self-denial and struggle for all. Yet, as disciples of Jesus Christ we live and struggle with geat hope as we expectantly wait for that final full rescue and restoration from whatever unique forms of sexual brokenness we experience when Jesus Christ comes again to restore all things for all eternity. . . including sex and gender! (Revelation 21 and 22).
There is help for you when you struggle with sex and gender. In Romans 7, the Apostle Paul tells us about his first-hand struggle with sin. His struggle is so great that he even cries out, “What a wretched man that I am!” But he also knows who and where to run to as he struggles with his sin. He asks, “Who will deliver me from this body of death?” And then he gives us the answer: “Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord!” God is with us in all our struggles with sin. That’s why we can never stop running to Him. Never stop immersing yourself in God’s Word. Run to it. Live in it. Engage with it when you are alone and when you are with your Christian friends. Whenever you feel Satan trying to derail you by getting you to question what God has really said, run. . . RUN! . . . to Jesus and God’s Word to remind yourself of what God has really said. There is grace, strength, hope and forgiveness for all who turn from their sin and put their trust in Jesus Christ.
If you are currently struggling to navigate issues of sexuality and gender, don’t despair. You are not alone. . . either in your experience or in your effort to navigate your feelings and confusion. God is not calling you to walk through this alone. Go to a trusted Christian adult (parent, youth pastor, pastor, etc.) who will not only listen to you, pray for you, and guide you, but who can connect you with a qualified Christian counselor who can yelp you get answers to your questions on gender and walk with you through your struggle. As a starting point, I recommend you check out the valuable guidance, resources, and help available from our friends at HarvestUSA.
To download a helpful handout with all ten truths listed, check out “God’s Plan For Sex and Gender: 10 Teaching Points For Home and Church” , click here.