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“Casual Sex”: A Step Towards True Sexual Fulfillment

Written By: Ben Roberts

The number of times I have explained to a surprised friend or family member why I was so excited and thankful to get married at a young age perplexes me. Sure, there are challenges in marriage, and the responsibility of sharing life and its difficulties with another broken human requires some sacrifice and selflessness. But in the context of most of these conversations, especially those with other young men, their bewilderment was focused mainly on the sexual implications of this decision. Essentially their question was; “why would you give up your sexual freedom, are you really willing to have sex with one woman for the rest of your life?” Our culture is convinced that marriage is the end of sexual fulfillment because sex can only be fully enjoyed when there are no boundaries to its practice.

Reading through a secular article of a psychologist and leading sexuality expert caught my attention at one very specific point this week. Zhana Vrangalova, founder of the Casual Sex Project, admits that despite her positive outlook on sexuality, her studies show many negative experiences from “casual sex.” Women often express feelings of guilt and shame, while men express unwanted pressure to pursue casual sex and guilt if they do not. These findings demonstrate that the prevalent “hook-up” culture of schools and universities is not always everything that the media portrays or society promotes. One of the leading fears and causes of anxiety amongst young men comes from the pressure they feel to have “casual” sexual encounters with women they barely know, and to perform at the level expected by our over-sexualized culture. Sin is always alluring because of its fleeting pleasure, but it never lives up to its promise of providing lasting happiness.

From a Christian worldview, it is not that surprising that many people involved in “casual” sex experience shame, fear, and anxiety. God created humans as sexual beings for great reasons, and placed boundaries around sexuality for a purpose. God is not a controlling Father who makes arbitrary rules and enforces them just because He can. God is a loving Father, who places boundaries on His creation similar to the boundaries human fathers place on their children to keep them from wandering out into the street. God designed sex, and only He has the wisdom to know how humans can best flourish and thrive in their sexuality. Christians affirm that sex is a great gift from God to be enjoyed immensely, but they recognize that it is enjoyed the most when practiced according to design.

Sexuality is one of the most pleasurable and exhilarating gifts within all of God’s creation. Being “drunk with love” is God’s way of describing the intoxicating intimacy and pleasure of sexual intercourse (Prov. 5:19). Not only is the physical sensation pleasurable, but the spiritual bond that occurs during sex surpasses even the familial bonds of parents and children (Gen. 2:23-25). Sex was designed as a means to establish a new family by uniting husband and wife, making them one. Sex is a means of achieving what humans truly desire; intimacy, vulnerability, and unconditional acceptance. These are the true longings of our culture, yet they divorce sex from its proper context and fail to see why they find fulfillment to be so illusive. Only in its proper God-given context can sexuality be fully enjoyed, within the bond of covenant marriage. Only there will women not feel the shame or regret of being used, and only there will men escape the fear and anxiety of performance. Sex becomes a lifelong endeavor of serving and pleasing each other, and growing together in the achievement of physical ecstasy. Christian marriage provides the environment for husband and wife to truly be “naked and unashamed,” just as Adam and Eve were in the garden (Gen. 2:25). There is nothing casual about sex, and the very term should awaken such disappointment in Christians about how low our view of sexuality has stooped in our culture. Sex is a sacred gift from a God who created us to enjoy pleasure, intimacy, and unbreakable bonds of love.

SexMatt Castro