Is God a Sex Killjoy?

I was recently vacationing in Italy for my 20th wedding anniversary and decided to visit the Lamborghini factory. I’ve always loved the power and sleek look of the Aventador, the Diablo, the Veneno, and several other models. So, when I heard you can tour the assembly line, I persuaded my wife to drive a few hours for the rare opportunity to see firsthand how these beauties are built.

During the drive to and from Modena, where the factory is located, it was no surprise to see several Lamborghinis being road-tested. Immediately I began daydreaming about taking one out for a test spin, feeling the g-force during acceleration, and effortlessly cornering winding mountain roads.

What would it be like to take one of these low-profile supercars off road, though? Instead of humming along on the smooth asphalt streets of Modena, imagine turning sharply onto a dirt road and attempting to climb a mountain on steep and rocky terrain. It’s obvious what would happen: tears…lots of tears. The front spoiler would crack, the rims and doors would dent, and the car would high center on a bulging boulder, rendering the car inoperable in a matter of seconds. The Lamborghini would incur tens of thousands of dollars of damage in an instant.

No (sane) owner would ever do that. They know how a Lamborghini is designed to function and what conditions it’s made to handle. They know its limitations. No driving on sand. No driving on rocks. No driving through rivers. No driving off jumps. That’s a lot of “no.” Lamborghini owners don’t regard the car’s lack of off-road capability a weakness. They certainly wouldn’t name-call the Lamborghini designers or think they’re killjoys. In fact, Lamborghini owners would consider the engineers heroes to be lauded for their innovation and automotive brilliance. When you drive a Lamborghini on the open highway or along a winding mountain road, you enjoy the engineering excellence of a high performance sports car, the way it was meant to be driven.

That’s why I’m mystified by Christians who think God is a killjoy. They wonder why God restricts sexual activity to a married man and woman. That seems to leave out a lot of opportunities, many people reason. No sex before marriage (fornication). No sex outside of marriage (adultery). No sex with people of the same sex (homosexuality). No sex with animals (bestiality). No sex with close relatives (incest). That’s a lot of “no.”

But God isn’t against sex. He’s for sex, but according to the way He intended it. The Bible paints a beautiful picture of what sex is supposed to be. Remember, it’s God who made sex (Gen. 1:27–28; 2:24). Our culture didn’t give us sex. God gave us sex. In fact, it was His idea to make it procreative and His idea to make it pleasurable. The sexual act is a remarkable encounter that knits together a man and woman physically, emotionally, and spiritually. It allows them to express their love within the safe and intimate confines of a marriage commitment. Both husband and wife can be vulnerable, expressive, and intimate, while remaining safe and protected.

Any deviation from that God-ordained design causes damage. It’s not that God doesn’t want us to have sex. It’s that He doesn’t want us to get hurt or to hurt others, which is what happens when we attempt to have sex in ways it was not designed to be enjoyed. He cares about us, and that’s why He gives us guidelines.

Too often, though, people say they want to have sex “on their own terms, not on God’s.” They want to throw off the imagined shackles of religious rules they think hold them back from fun and pleasure. The problem, though, is they’re using sex in a way it was not designed to function.

So, for example, they get intimate with their partner. They become vulnerable with another person. They give themselves and knit their soul to another. But because they’re not married, there’s no commitment. There’s nothing keeping them together. They break up and experience pain and heartache because their partner has betrayed their trust.

It’s like driving a Lamborghini off road. That’s not the way it was meant to be driven. The engineers made Lamborghinis to be driven and enjoyed on the road. When you drive one “on your own terms,” you’re not breaking free of the designer’s restrictions, you’re just breaking things.

God is like a Lamborghini engineer. He created something beautiful, amazing, and special to be enjoyed in a specific way. Any deviation from His design is like wrecking a Lamborghini by driving it off road. Just about everything that’s made is made to be enjoyed within certain limits. Lamborghini engineers aren’t killjoys, and neither is God.

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Alan Shlemon

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