One of the greatest problems with abandoning the Judeo-Christian sexual ethic is the trail of destruction which will inevitably follow. For those who live in the Western world, we are witnessing the aftermath of the sexual revolution, and have seen how it has failed to deliver the lasting satisfaction and pleasure which were initially promised. Rather than bringing satisfaction, it has brought slavery, and instead of granting pleasure, we have drunk the bitter poison. And it is not just the Christian world that recognises we have something seriously wrong with the way we view sex as a society.
Just last week, NSW Police Commissioner Mike Fuller proposed a radical solution to the growing trend of sexual violence and assault across the state. His proposal was to introduce an app which records sexual consent before one engages in sexual behaviour.
In response to the app, one woman argued that it offers a ‘band-aid’ solution to sexual consent, as consent is not merely a momentary action, but an ongoing conversation between two parties.
Putting aside the farcical nature of such a proposal, Mr. Fuller understands that in order to have a functioning society, there must be boundaries when it comes to sex — one of which is consent. Furthermore, he also implicitly acknowledges that not all sexual behaviour is permissible, which means that sexual liberation doesn’t mean doing whatever we like with whoever we like.
The irony in all of this is that God cares about sexual consent more than anyone alive today, including Mr. Fuller, and anyone in the #MeToo movement. The reason God cares about consent is that He is well aware of the horrors which women (and men) are subjected to when sexual consent is violated, and when there are not clear boundaries to sexual intercourse. This is why God outlined His plan for consent in the very first chapters of the Bible.
The truth is, sex is a good gift from God which He designed for marriage. Like all good gifts, God placed safeguards around sex to protect us, and others. In Genesis 2:24, God outlines that when a man leaves his family and is united to his wife in the union of marriage, he publicly proclaims to love and cherish her for the rest of his life.
Of course, this does not undermine the fact that sexual assault can happen in marriage. However, by definition, marriage is the public act of making a covenant with another person for life, to be sexually faithful, and to love one’s spouse till death do them part. These are vows to which men and women are to be held publicly accountable before God, the church, society, and the government.
To go one step deeper, marriage was designed by God to mirror Jesus’ covenantal, faithful, and unchanging love for His church. Therefore, the only legitimate solution to our sexual brokenness as a society — and to the issue of ‘consent’ — is to look to the Saviour who modelled sacrificial love and faithfulness. Without Jesus Christ, our society will continue to search aimlessly and fruitlessly for solutions to the carnage of the sexual revolution.
While we may deride the NSW Police Commissioner’s proposal for a sexual consent app as ridiculous, the truth is, he is right in recognising that there is something seriously distorted with the way we view sex as a society. However, what is fatally wrong is the fact that the solution to the sexual violence lies not in a mobile application, but in the very words of God. This is because sexual violence is not the product of a lack of education regarding consent, but rather the result of rebelling against God and His design for us.
Only when we understand marriage as a dimly lit portrait of God’s gracious love for us will we begin to understand how a Christ-centred marriage is the only solution to the sexual violence epidemic plaguing our nation.