Letter to the Editor: A Reponse to “Sex and Snacks: New CLT group aims to break taboo”
By Jacob Herrington
I am excited about this group, and its potential impact among the women of Corban. I’ll admit when I first heard about it it struck me as odd, weird, and awkward – but I think it could be helpful for those women who are uncomfortable discussing this subject with their friends, roommates, RA’s, RD’s, or female professors and staff.
I think that discussing the reality of premarital sex and etc. will be helpful; but I would be ecstatic about it if the group didn’t ditch the exhortation to purity that has existed in past similar groups, or even if the passion of the group’s discussion was to draw nearer to Christ, and a Biblical view of what He has designed sex to be.
I’m sure Jordyna won’t omit this, but the phrase “this group will focus more on reality” (rather than purity) caused that thought to pop up for me. Talking about the ‘reality’ of premarital sex on Christian college campuses won’t do any good if the discussion is not ‘married’ to the glory of Christ, the beauty of what sex should be, and what godly women should be.
Dwelling on the seriousness of sin is good, but empty without then turning to Christ, Scripture, and the practical applications of walking as a ‘living sacrifice’. (Romans 12:1, 1 Corinthians 6:12-20, 1 Thessalonians 4:1-8)
It might also be greatly beneficial to the group to go through a book concerning sex and relationships in light of pursing God – such as “Boy Meets Girl” by Joshua Harris, which I would highly recommend.
I also wished to address how the Corban men were mentioned and provide thoughts concerning them as well.
It is true that we do not have a CLT endeavor, or any one specific group on campus that is exclusively devoted to discussing sex with men at Corban. However, I would argue that the fact that we don’t have such a group is not an indicator of our lack of willingness to discuss it.
Now, I do not deny that sex on campus is a problem, nor would I deny the importance of reaching Corban men with this discussion. However, I didn’t want to stand by and see Corban men be ‘thrown under the bus’ due solely to the fact that we do not have such a group. We do have the same existing network that the women do, that – to my knowledge – is currently sufficient in dealing with this issue, given that men are being reached where they are on campus through men like the RA’s, and are building relationships in their halls.
Corban men do, in fact, discuss this on a regular basis in their dorms, hall meetings, small groups, friends, and with their professors and staff. We discuss the sinfulness of premarital sex, the temptation of lustful thinking that precedes it, and other sexual sins. We discuss the ultimate problem of rooting lust and pride out of our hearts since the root of the problem is our usurpation of God’s throne in our pursuit of and consent to find joy in pleasures that God has forbidden.
We do not “boast” about sex.
In order to make such statements condemning Corban men, one would have to go into a deeper investigation of our dorm life and get the discernment of many older men such as our RD’s, professors, and staff. I don’t think accusing the men was the intention, however; if individuals are legitimately concerned for the men on campus – their brother s- in regards to sex, then I believe they should take serious, respectful, and purposeful steps to making such concerns known for the sanctification of their brothers. If I thought it was that urgent, I would beg such an investigation from Student Life myself. However, I don’t, and to save time I can offer what little discernment I do have about Corban men, being one of them, because we do have problems that we are addressing in our dorms, and some that yet need our attention.
I believe one of the biggest problems regarding the issue of sex for Corban men is the way in which we talk, jest, and laugh about the profane. We may not boast about sexual exploits, but we do boast in sex when we promote it, laugh about it, and jest about it in our speech. It can be all too easy for us to slip into whatever the ‘cool talk’ happens to be at the moment – such as ‘your mom’ or ‘that’s what she said’ jokes, or other such crude joking. This was a major issue that we confronted in my hall last year; once we identified the problem, we began to hold each other accountable to pure speech, and we were able to see some significant growth over the course of the year and summer. Even now I can see our growth and, while we still struggle with it, I am heartily encouraged by the fact that the former members of the hall still keep each other accountable today.
Therefore, when dealing with the issue of sex among Corban men this year, I would submit to students, leaders, professors, and staff the need to reawaken exhortation along the lines of Ephesians 4-5. I pray that as the men of campus, we would be resolved to “let no corrupting talk come out of [our] mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear”; and that there would be “no filthiness nor foolish talk nor crude joking, which are out of place.” Instead, may we be “imitators of God, as beloved children, and walk in love, as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us, a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.” (Eph 4:29, 5:1,4)
I must add, having said all of this, that I hold myself ‘as the chief of sinners’ regarding what I laugh about and my influence to encourage Corban men; my tongue and laughter are things I still have need to watch, as well as my commitment to be an eager, available presence among the men to discuss these potentially ‘awkward’ issues. This year, I am striving to do so primarily through the ‘one-on-one’ ministry commitment of the Saints leadership; I would encourage any man on campus in need of a brother to talk to, to seek out the Saints, the RA’s, RD’s or any of the male professors and staff here at Corban who I know, from experience, are eager and willing to discuss these things for the sake of the students’ encouragement, edification, and propulsion towards Christ.
We are brothers and sisters in Christ. We should approach the topic of sex with worshipful reverence and cautious consideration, being careful to gracefully call our sin to attention while we kneel at the foot of the cross and lift each other’s eyes towards Christ.
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