Where Sex Education Begins
“8 If only you were to me like a brother,
who was nursed at my mother’s breasts!
Then, if I found you outside,
I would kiss you,
and no one would despise me.
2 I would lead you
and bring you to my mother’s house—
she who has taught me.
I would give you spiced wine to drink,
the nectar of my pomegranates.
3 His left arm is under my head
and his right arm embraces me.
4 Daughters of Jerusalem, I charge you:
Do not arouse or awaken love
until it so desires.” Song of Songs 8:1-4
Hmmm. This is a challenging passage for me and honestly, one that I’m not sure I am ready for. In verse 2, Abishag identifies where she got her sex education from:
“2 I would lead you
and bring you to my mother’s house—
she who has taught me.”
Abishag reminds me that it is not the school system that should educate my children about sex. It is us as parents! This is challenging to me because I have been married for 12 years and have 2 kids. My parents still have not had “the talk” with me about sex, relationships, and marriage! In our culture, teaching kids about sex can such a taboo topic that we farm it out to our school system to take care of.
Abishag reminds me that sex education ought to begin at home. It is sad that because so many parents (Christian parents included!) don’t teach their children about sex, our children often have to learn about sex from their elementary and middle school classmates, the television, and internet! Because sex is a powerful gift from God, it is far too important a topic to leave to classmates, television, internet, and even to our school teachers to teach our children about. We cannot ignore our responsibility as parents to teach our children about sex. While it is uncomfortable to speak to our kids about sex and it can be challenging, Abishag serves to remind us that mothers should speak to daughters about how to be a godly wife and fathers should talk to sons about how to be a godly husband.
Abishag’s mother was the one who taught her how to be a godly wife to her husband. When there were challenging times in marriage, Abishag didn’t need to turn to Dr. Phil or Oprah for relationship advice. She found instruction from a godly momma!
Sex can be viewed in one of three ways:
1 – Sex as god – When people see “sex as god,” sex can be worshipped. People give their life, money, time, energy, and effort to sex. Many people find their identity from it and their lives can be about it. In our culture, sex has become the all-encompassing thing that sells products, drives up ratings on television shows, and brings in billions of dollars through the porn industry. Sex has entered the political real in the form of same sex marriages, contraceptives, and re-defining of families.
Porn is a 60 billion dollar industry. 12 billion is spent by Americans. This is more money than pro baseball, basketball, and football combined. It produces more revenue than ABC, NBC, and CBS combined.
2 – Sex as gross – As a reaction to living in a culture where “sex is god,” we can grow into fundamentalists that teach “sex is gross.” What we communicate is that sex is dirty, nasty, disgusting, and wrong… so save it for the one you love in marriage! This somehow doesn’t sound like the right doctrine to teach our next generation either.
3 – Sex as a gift – I would argue that according to the Bible, sex is absolutely not god, and sex is not gross. Rather, it is a gift from God for a husband and wife in marriage.
When learning about this gift there are some things that I will be trying to do with my kids. I read this in a book I was looking at recently and thought it was helpful.
“Friends bring gifts to a wedding. God has a special gift for husbands and wives too. It is called sex. God’s rules say that only people how are married to each other should have sex. It is God’s way of making strong families.”
My son is 10 years old and I am struggling with talking to him about sex. I talk with him about being a young man after God’s own heart.
I must caution about my kids about the consequences of sex outside of marriage – Of course there are devastating consequences for sex outside of the context of marriage such as pregnancy when we are not ready or STD which needs to be communicated.
While the consequences of sex for kids can be important and powerful to communicate, sex also has important moral implications. If we focus only on the negative consequences of sex, it can communicate that sex is neutral and what matters most is trying not getting a disease and not to get pregnant. To be faithful to the Gospel, there is more that needs to be communicated.
I must re-enforce the value obedience to God – While there are devastating consequences to misusing sex as a gift of God, it is important not only to teach my kids about the dangerous consequences. I also need to teach that about valuing obedience to God. John 14:15, and 23) teaches that if we love God, we will obey what He says. We can rest assured that God wants the best for us and we should be obedient to His Word, but the next question that arises would be, “Why is it best for us not to engage in sex before marriage?”
I must teach my kids to value unity – The world wants us to believe that the physical act of sex is a neutral biological act that is to be judged only by the consequences is produces. By God’s design however, sex has a uniting and unifying power. God means intercourse for the context of a marriage between a man and a woman because it is meant to be a unifying force in the relationship. In Genesis 2:24, it is pointed out that a man and woman shall “become one flesh.” I believe that Scripture makes it clear that any sex outside of marriage makes it progressively harder and harder for us to bond with the person God intends to be our lifetime partner. By engaging in casual sex then, we train ourselves to be unable to bond in marriage.
I must be an ask-able parent – Though these are tough things to address as a parent, it is likely naturally uncomfortable for my kids to ask me about sex as they grow older. Therefore, I need to intentionally be an ask-able parent, who is open to hear the hard hitting questions or thoughts my kids have about sex and relationships. Whew!
Lord it is uncomfortable to even think about talking to my kids about sex, but You are God of the comfortable and uncomfortable. Empower me to teach my kids to honor You with not only their hearts, but also with their bodies. I pray for their purity in both their hearts and bodies. May my wife and I live a godly example to our kids of what a relationship ought to look like. In the strong name of Jesus Christ, amen.