Christians and Dirty Sex: Subtle Like Cancer

Posted | 4 comments

Saying sex is dirty, is pretty uncool these days.

So Christian folk don’t say it out loud. We’re much more subtle now. However, instincts as ancient as our dirty-sex ones, don’t go away easily. In our case, they just went underground.

Which makes them harder to deal with, because we don’t see them (or their toxic results).

Have a listen,




  1. I watched the movie Ex Machina recently. It’s a movie about a sexy female robot who convinces a lonely computer programmer to help her escape and, well, it doesn’t end well for the programmer. I don’t think this movie is about artificial intelligence. For me, at least, the movie is about the fear that some men have, maybe especially nerdy guys like me, that our female love interests don’t really reciprocate our affection. Rather, we fear, they are exploiting our sexuality to manipulate us to their advantage.

    My point is that the impulse to denigrate and suppress women and female sexuality may come from someplace more primal than Plato. Maybe there is something deeper and more immediate than toxic myth at the root of this. In fact, the toxic myth probably wouldn’t have hung around for thousands of years if it wasn’t speaking to something deeper.

    I think the impulse comes from this fear that we are not truly loved, but are being manipulated. The fear is an ego-defense strategy against a deep “unlovable,” “unworthy” insecurity that many of us carry. This fear in the heart of a man who has power over his family, church, or nation leads to the denigration and oppression of women.

    It occurs to me that this may be misconstrued as a sympathetic defense of those who denigrate and oppress women. Of course, that isn’t what I intend. On the other hand, if this psychological wound is at the heart of the problem then it may point to a way ahead. If we can educate ourselves and our children in the workings of love, sex and soul then we may begin to undermine the psychological dynamic that perpetuates the oppression and the toxic myth.

    I suspect that Jesus was trying to point us toward that kind of healing. It’s a tragic irony the church has worked so hard to bend his teaching in the opposite direction.

    • The thing missing from our comment thead is a “like” button. (FB has trained our brains.)


      Thanks Geoff

  2. I’m reading “To Kill a Mockingbird ” and couldn’t resist sharing this quote I just came across: “Bootleggers caused enough trouble in the Quarters, but women were worse. Again, as I had often met it in my own church, I was confronted with the Impurity of Women doctrine that seemed to preoccupy all clergymen. “

  3. Thank you Doug for calling out the women and sex shaming that is done in our churches. It does run deep. As someone who grew up in the church, I ‘followed’ the rules. Saved my virginity till marriage. But I still found deep shame when it came to sex in my marriage. Because I was taught that sex was dirty (inadvertently) … and then had a terrible time turning that thinking off once married. Thanks to therapy and a very understanding husband, I’ve worked much through it. But you’re absolutely dead on when you talk about the subtle shaming in our churches, the use of purity, objectifying women, putting our virginity on pedestals…it truly is like cancer. I’m looking forward to see how we’re suppose to do this without the shame and guilt. I have my own ideas at this point, love to hear yours. Love this series Doug. I’m beyond elated that you’re tackling this subject. Let’s talk about sex!!

    On a different note, how do you deal with Matt. 5:27-28 where Jesus says just looking at women lustfully, we’ve committed adultery? I think that’s one of the verses that christians use to argue that masturbation is a sin. Because we’re being lustful. Just wondering what your take is on that. Thanks!