Sexual arousal is natural, but natural is not always good.

Posted on October 17, 2014 · Posted in Culture, Parenting

Shepherd Press has just released Everyday Talk about Sex & Marriage, a biblical handbook for parents.

Here is an excerpt.


When helping your children address the temptation of sexual arousal before marriage, the first consideration is encouraging your children to focus on bringing honor to God instead of following the path of self-pleasure. Parents and church leaders must teach our teens, by precept and example, not to yield to temptations to think sexual thoughts about someone to whom they are not married. 

The Bible does not condone a “try before you buy” policy with regard to sexual relations. According to Matthew 5:28, lust in the heart is as wrong as sexual sin in the flesh; sex is part of the marriage covenant and has no place outside of marriage, mentally or physically… Sexual activity, including the feelings of sexual arousal for another person to whom you are not married, does not honor God. It is the sin of lust.

Sexual arousal, therefore, is not a random, biological reaction as our culture teaches. Sexual arousal is always deeply personal. It can be really good or really devastating, but it is always personal. When this arousal occurs outside of marriage it is a personal offense to God and his directive that sex is designed for marriage. Sexual longings outside of marriage rail against the path that God has called you and your teenagers to follow. Sexual arousal towards someone you are not married to is a willful, sensual use of another person for your own selfish indulgence. It is an attempt to gain pleasure from someone else without their knowledge. This kind of lust is a form of mental stalking, wherein someone else’s body is used to gain pleasure. This practice only reinforces the notion that sex is innately selfish and an entitlement. 

Make no mistake. Sexual arousal outside of marriage is natural – just as greed, anger, lying, and jealousy are also natural; being natural, however, is not always a good thing. We are born with natural desires that condemn us to hell apart from the saving work of Christ. No one has any trouble saying that giving into the natural desire of anger as a justification for violence is a bad thing. Yet, when it comes to sexual arousal, it is somehow okay for our natural desires to dominate. Natural anger left unchecked will result in bullying, violence and even death. Natural sexual arousal left unchecked results in even more devastating consequences than anger does. It is time for Christian parents and leaders to step up and encourage our children to honor God when faced with sexual arousal. We must teach them that only honoring and loving God will help them reserve these desires for marriage. 

From Chapter Six of Everyday Talk about Sex & Marriage

Everyday Talk About Sex and Marriage

Jay Younts
Jay Younts is the Shepherd Press blogger. He is the author of Everyday Talk and other materials on parenting. He has been teaching and speaking on parenting issues for 30 years. Jay and his wife, Ruth, live in Fountain Inn, South Carolina. He serves as a ruling elder at Redeemer Presbyterian Church in Moore, South Carolina. He and Ruth have five adult children.