Proverbs – Sexuality

Eugene Peterson, in his brilliant book on pastoral ministry ‘Five Smooth Stones for Pastoral Work’ , had this to say:

“Redbook magazine… reports on a computer analysis of 18,349 responses to a professionally prepared questionnaire on sexual attitudes and practices published in the magazine last fall…the survey does show that ‘strongly religious’ women report more sexual satisfaction,… and better communication with their husbands than ‘fairly religious women’. At the bottom of the happiness scale are nonreligious women; they are the least satisfied with the frequency and quality of intercourse, and the least likely to take an active role in lovemaking. Redbook editors admit to being ‘astounded’ by the correlation between religion and successful lovemaking. The magazine’s theory is that more ‘enlightened’ clergymen have been teaching that sexual pleasure is ‘a necessary element in a good marriage.’ [from TIME, Sept 1, 1975 p62—note how dated this is now!! ]

The editor’s astonishment is puerile [juvenile; not befitting an adult], and their explanation feeble. The correlation “between religion and successful lovemaking” is neither recent nor noteworthy—it is what pastors have known for centuries and for which they can take little credit. The “teaching” that sexual pleasure is a necessary element in a good marriage is not the discovery of the twentieth century, nor counselling it a specialty of “enlightened clergymen”. The teaching is embedded in the biblical revelation (notably Proverbs & The Song of Songs) and has been appreciated and acted upon by Christians and Jews for millennia.” Pastor Paul


Posted in Sermons-old.