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Why young Christians aren't waiting anymore
A young Christian at an purity rally spreads the word.
September 27th, 2011
08:39 AM ET

Why young Christians aren't waiting anymore

By John Blake,  CNN

(CNN) –True love doesn’t wait after all.

That’s the implication in the upcoming October issue of an evangelical magazine that claims that young, unmarried Christians are having premarital sex almost as much as their non-Christian peers.

The article in Relevant magazine, entitled “(Almost) Everyone’s Doing It,” cited several studies examining the sexual activity of single Christians. One of the biggest surprises was a December 2009 study, conducted by the National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy, which included information on sexual activity.

While the study’s primary report did not explore religion, some additional analysis focusing on sexual activity and religious identification yielded this result: 80 percent of unmarried evangelical young adults (18 to 29) said that they have had sex - slightly less than 88 percent of unmarried adults, according to the teen pregnancy prevention organization.

The article highlights what challenges abstinence movements face. Movements such as “True Love Waits,” encourage teens to wear purity rings, sign virginity pledges and pledge chastity during public ceremonies.

Yet many of these Christian youths eventually abandon their purity pledges, Relevant’s Tyler Charles concludes in the article. Tyler talked to people like “Maria,” an evangelical woman who said she wanted to wait until marriage to have sex.

CNN's Belief Blog – all the faith angles to the day's top stories

But she said she started having sex with her college boyfriend when she turned 20 because nearly everyone, even most of  her Christian friends, were having sex.

Maria:

It seemed everyone in my life, older and younger, had “done it.” In fact, I waited longer than most people I knew and longer than both of my sisters, even though we were all Christians and came from a good home.

Relevant theorizes about why it’s so hard for so many young Christians to wait, including the saturation of sex in popular culture, the prevalence of pornography and a popular “do what feels good philosophy.”

Yet the article also asks a question that rarely comes up in discussions about abstinence movement. Relevant notes that in biblical times, people married earlier. The average age for marriage has been increasing in the U.S for the last 40 years.

Today, it’s not unusual to meet a Christian who is single at 30 - or 40 or 50, for that matter. So what do you tell them? Keep waiting?

Scot McKnight, author of “The Jesus Creed,” and "One.Faith: Jesus Calls, We Follow," acknowledges that young, single Christians face temptations that their counterparts in the biblical age didn’t face.

He  tells Relevant:

Sociologically speaking, the one big difference – and it’s monstrous – between the biblical teaching and our culture is the arranged marriages of very young people. If you get married when you’re 13, you don’t have 15 years of temptation.

So what should a Christian parent or youth pastor do? How do they convince more young Christians to wait until marriage, or should they stop even trying?

- CNN Writer

Filed under: Belief • Christianity • Church • Culture & Science • Culture wars

soundoff (5,768 Responses)
  1. Bill

    You know why they aren't waiting? Because they are human and we have that natural instinct to...

    December 29, 2011 at 7:22 pm |
    • dtw888

      you are right, Bill, human instict. Humen need heaven instict to be free from fallen instinct.

      December 29, 2011 at 10:49 pm |
    • Rick

      dtw: humans do what they do. the concepts of heaven and being "fallen" are manmade

      December 30, 2011 at 11:42 am |
  2. dtw888

    This another example that Christian faith in USA is not in good state, both youth and adults (divorce). We are preaching Gospel, we declare we are christian. But the power of Gospel has been lost over the way. With morden abundance and lack true faith life in Christ, it will be abnormal without seeing current fiesta.

    December 29, 2011 at 6:49 pm |
  3. Bran

    I dont know what "young christians" you're talking about. I know plenty of christians that have chosen and are choosing to wait until marriage. This article is fluff by an editor with nothing better to write about.

    December 29, 2011 at 3:41 pm |
    • Rick

      It is reporting on a survery in a Christian magazine.

      December 29, 2011 at 4:00 pm |
  4. dude

    my roomie, who is a christian, loves tebow and is always complaining about how christians are being persecuted in this country and he's always posting bible verses on facebook. yet he claims have had inter course with 55 to 78 women. so i guess it's true that everyone is doing it.

    December 28, 2011 at 8:36 pm |
    • Rick

      55 to 78? wow, seems pretty specific

      December 29, 2011 at 4:40 am |
    • Jake

      What a man of God! God smiles upon fornication you know! /sarcasm

      December 30, 2011 at 1:26 am |
    • Rick

      jake: seems more than a bit pretentious claiming to know what god smiles upon

      December 31, 2011 at 3:00 pm |
  5. Keith

    Cnn, I'm still waiting to see a picture insulting to islam to grace the homepage- you do want to be an equal opportunity insulter don't you? Or are you afraid you might have to hire someone to start your car for you? cnn sucks! Gilgoff sucks! Prothero definetly sucks!

    December 28, 2011 at 3:55 pm |
    • Rick

      Awwww.....poor little fella. Feeling put upon, are ya? Perhaps regurgitating some "scripture" will help. Now, go off and play....remember, Jesus loathes you.....

      December 28, 2011 at 7:52 pm |
    • Rick

      Also, they were just reporting on a survey from CHRISTIAN magazine. If you got your panties in a bunch, Keith, perhaps Relevant should be the target of your petty indignation.

      December 28, 2011 at 7:56 pm |
    • Keith

      Did that photo come from Christian Magazine, also Rick?

      December 28, 2011 at 8:41 pm |
    • Keith

      Let me spell this out for you, Rick. Cnn wouldn't dare post a picture of ANYTHING that might be offensive to islam. The editors would have a fatwa issued on their asses two minutes after it went online. Cnn therefore attacks and will continue to attack Christianity because it appears to be a soft target. But soon enough the Lord will come back and set things right. And each day that goes by is one more day that you, Rick, might repent and accept Jesus as your Savior. But those days will eventually end-you will not get another chance once that happens.

      December 28, 2011 at 8:53 pm |
    • Rick

      I don't know where the picture came from, Keith. I do not subscribe to the magazine. Let me spell THIS out to you, it was their survey, not one about Islam

      December 29, 2011 at 4:34 am |
    • Rick

      Also, no matter how much you or Georgie Boy blather on, I cannot be concerned about retaliation from a being in which I do not believe. Ever take a logic class?

      December 29, 2011 at 4:37 am |
    • Rick

      And, when is this vaunted return? Within one generation? Seems to me that this supposed return has been held over people's heads for millenia.....Jesus is coming back, look busy

      December 29, 2011 at 4:38 am |
    • Rick

      And, while we are at it, Keith:

      How do you know WHERE the picture came from? Do you subscribe to the magazine?

      December 29, 2011 at 4:53 am |
    • Rick

      If seeing two adults laying in bed offends you, you have a f'ed up set of values

      December 29, 2011 at 5:47 am |
    • nonbeliever

      @Rick-

      I don't think it would be possible for keith or george to comprehend the idea of logic. Keith believes that aliens will be attacking us from the moon to spurn forth the beginning of his "lord coming back." And george is well, george. Logic is most definitely not in their vocabulary.

      And yes, a picture of a couple, fully covered up, is apparently offensive. But yet I hear nothing slamming Fox News and their article (in their equivalent section) about who has a better body Paris Hilton or Lindsey Lohan, and then showing multiple pictures of them in their bathing suits. The hypocrisy from people is nauseating.

      Oh and before keithy goes on saying I was a seminary drop-out, which I will admit I did leave, however I did go on to get my doctorate of psychology. But that's neither here nor there. What's important is that keith is a sinner in his own religion, but too inept in his own understanding.

      December 30, 2011 at 8:37 am |
    • Rick

      Aliens coming from the moon?

      December 30, 2011 at 9:05 pm |
    • nonbeliever

      @Rick-

      Keith is a fan of Chuck Missler. Missler is basically what christians call, a "wolf in sheeps clothing." We talked about him a lot while I was in seminary. He stole thousands of dollars away from people during Y2K by running 'end of the world' scandals. He has been caught doing and admitted to plagiarism in the books he has written. He has tried to be one of those preachers who is 'scientific.' He claims that the face of Mars proves there is life on Mars. In addition, he has stated that he believes that martians are hiding on the moon and that when they attack this will be the beginning of the return of Jesus.

      I wish I could make this stuff up, but I actually googled it this morning because I couldn't find my notes over him today and it's all out there. He has been discredited by basically every major christian organization. It only makes sense that keith would be a follower of his footsteps.

      December 31, 2011 at 8:21 am |
    • Keith

      nonbeliever, it's out there all right. Way out there. I've never heard Missler make these ridiculous claims. Ever. You are just a bitter reprobate.

      January 2, 2012 at 9:16 pm |
    • Keith

      nonbeliever, I just read an article stating that Stephen Hawking believes in ET's but it would be too dangerous to try to make contact with them. LOL But now I'm sure becasue the atheist god has spoken, you all will come to his defense. LOL

      January 5, 2012 at 8:05 pm |
    • Keith

      Or not. Sorry Hawking, I guess your on your own with this one. Your faithful followers have abandoned you.

      January 6, 2012 at 5:28 pm |
    • Keith

      oops, little mistake there. "your"=you're. I'm sure tom, tom the grammar/spelling nazi will pick up on it.

      January 6, 2012 at 5:34 pm |
  6. Michael

    The question is posed in the article as to whether those who are still single at 30,40 or 50 should keep waiting. Yes they should because fornication is a sin against God. But, to go off message, why does a website that purports to be Christian display a calendar that starts the week with Monday?

    December 28, 2011 at 3:51 pm |
    • Rachel

      CNN Belief Blog doesn't purport to be Christian. This page says, "The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Dan Gilgoff and Eric Marrapodi, with daily contributions from CNN's worldwide newsgathering team and frequent posts from religion scholar and author Stephen Prothero." I don't see the word "Christian" in that description.

      December 28, 2011 at 4:37 pm |
    • Rick

      A sin against god? More like offensive to long dead sheep herders

      December 29, 2011 at 4:32 am |
    • Bill

      Sin against god? oh my, it's in our DNA to do the nasty. If I believed in a god I would think that god would be happy I was doing the thing he made me for.

      December 29, 2011 at 7:26 pm |
  7. shawbrooke

    This old article is still up? What's with the site managers? Can't find anything else to be nasty to Christians about that you have to keep up notice of this very silly study? I thought from previous work that there were so many Christian women single and in addition unable to attract men. Or was it that there were too few college educated men for Christian women, more of whom are educated than are average women. Or is this some encouragement to user men to target Christian women? Sheesh.

    December 28, 2011 at 12:24 pm |
    • cwhite87

      It must still be getting plenty of attention. I just read it for the first time today (Dec. 28th). You're stretching things too far to say that this is in some way suggesting a certain group men/women/single/christian/non-christian target another when trying to get laid also. As for this being a nasty article? It's unreasonable to be so strict/unbending when applying the literal writings of the bible to modern life. Gotta be able to blend moral belief with common and practical lifestyles/habits. As the article mentions such rules/standards were set when arranged marriages were common which has never happened to anyone I know, christian or non.

      December 28, 2011 at 2:32 pm |
  8. Emit Till

    Also, Charity comes from the root of Christianity... but its interesting that the political theme this year is "fend for yourself". Even Jesus wouldnt look at the meek and walk away for he was for the poor and those that were opressed. Today, many of you all opress and partake in things that put your fellow brethren down...>We have to do better and stop being fake and start being real.

    December 28, 2011 at 11:27 am |
  9. Emit Till

    ...............the south also produced slaves... I guess that was the "word of GOD" that lead them to that as well. I know alot of you would wish we go back to the days that our forefathers had everything since they were so perfect and richeous "enslaving black people for they were apes and didnt know any better" for they were "doing us a favor". Sad . So sad this is what America is really about; selfishness, dog eat dog, and "holier than though". Keep up the great work.... We are truly coming to the last days. This country proves that if you act like a ho like snookie or a cut throat b!+@h like Limbaugh, you too can be wealthy. "They make us hate ourselves and love their wealth.... drug dealer by jordans crack head buys crack and the white man gets paid off of all of that. The prettiest people do the ugliest things for the road to riches and diamond rings.... we shine because they hate us, floss cause they degrade us , were trying to buy back our 40 acres, and for that paper look how low we will stoop even if your in benz your still......" IIJS...............

    December 28, 2011 at 11:17 am |
  10. southernyankee

    Getting married (or getting married younger) doesn't solve the problem of temptation. It's life long. Just look at the divorce rate.

    December 28, 2011 at 9:20 am |
    • Rachel

      I think you're missing the point. It's not that getting married solves temptation at all. It's that as mammals, we are biologically programmed to copulate commencing with puberty (in other words, our desire to procreate is directly tied to our ability to reproduce, which makes sense from a scientific – evolutionary – perspective). Until about 200 years ago (ie, until the end of the 18th century, if not later – and therefore certainly during the time of Christ), people (in most societies, including Judeo-Christian societies) got married during, or shortly after, puberty (ie, at or before age 16). There was certainly more flexibility in a man's marrying age, but women were considered "old maids" if they hit 18 and were still single (and men also had far more ways to "cheat the system" than women, whose virtue could be "proved" by the existence – or not – of the hymen). Therefore, people's innate biological urge to copulate was not quite as frustrated (no punn intended) by the requirement of marriage, because the two events (desire and marriage) occurred at the same age. Biologically, we haven't changed: we're still designed to desire to copulate upon commencement of puberty. Socially, we have: we no longer marry when we're pubescent or post-pubescent but rather, on average, 1.5-2 decades later. That means we live with a biological urge to copulate for 15-20 years before marriage. This biological truth is a fact that cannot be refuted – - – unless, of course, you believe in creationism... In which case, I give up!

      December 28, 2011 at 4:56 pm |
    • southernyankee

      Rachel, you make some good points. I'm not sure what season of life you are in, but, at my age I have seen from our community that unfortunately marriage doesn't preclude the temptation to copulate with someone else. Sadly, one would think marriage would solve all biological urge problems, but it doesn't. Perhaps I am jaded by all the affairs I have witnessed, but it seems self control is a life long task, and just has to take a different form after marriage. The "waiting" changes to "being faithful." You're right about your biological explanation, but, in our culture, if we followed that timeline, affairs would just start younger!! But ask your grandparents or anyone who's reached their silver anniversary, if they were able to kiss goodbye unmet longings after marriage, and they'll say, heck no, it took some serious will power (and cultural expectations of former generations didnt hurt either!) to keep that commitment. Also ask them, was it worth it, and they'll say, "YES!!"

      December 30, 2011 at 11:47 pm |
  11. ANANOMUS

    All I can say is that I am miserable. Christianity and reading the bible has brought more distress and pain than any other thing I can think of to me. Thinking about God doesn't make me happy. I need the love of a woman, but I am starving to death. I hate my life.

    December 28, 2011 at 1:17 am |
    • John

      The samadhi of Jesus is in Kashmir, India.

      December 28, 2011 at 2:20 am |
    • Rick

      Why are you not getting a woman? They are out there

      December 28, 2011 at 2:39 am |
    • southernyankee

      Read Blue LIke Jazz (non religious thoughts on Christian Spirituality) by Donald Miller. He cuts through the trash we've added to Christianity and gets to what is real.

      December 28, 2011 at 9:43 am |
    • shawbrooke

      You need to ask some serious questions about why you cannot attract a woman. Likely the answers will also help you get along better in your friendship and work lives too. Afraid to commit? Don't houseclean? Spend too much time fretting and too little making a life? Keep people – "friends" around who are users and frighten other people off? Think it over!

      December 28, 2011 at 12:28 pm |
    • malsings

      It's natural to want the closeness of someone that's the way God created us. If your are miserable and thinking of God doesn't help then change your life maybe being spiritual can be enough it's between you and God anyway.

      December 28, 2011 at 1:46 pm |
    • Angie

      Anonymous, I love you and I am praying for you. I don't know what has made you so miserable in reading the bible, but scripture says that Jesus was a 'man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief' ( Isaiah53:3). The Lord also says to us, "come to me all you who are weary and burdened and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble of heart, and you will find rest for your souls (Matthew 11: 28, 29). If we try to find fulfillment in our lives apart from him, we will always feel tension when reading his holy word. We will also always feel tension in this world, if we follow Jesus, because this world is not our home. There is an inner conflict for believers, because we struggle with our "sin nature" while trying to follow Jesus. Only he can help us, but this takes total dependence. The world doesn't have this inner strugle with the sin nature, because they just do what comes naturally, and sin. The right thing to do is often the difficult thing to do, and is not the easy road; but rather it is the 'narrow road' that leads to life. With love, Angie

      December 29, 2011 at 2:02 am |
    • OkeyDokey

      Get a puppy. Puppies don't hire attorneys.

      December 29, 2011 at 2:06 am |
  12. Jake

    My wife and I waited throughout our entire three year long courtship. I'm very thankful that we did. Our life together is wonderful, and I'm glad that I don't have to have that mar our courtship.

    The reason is most of today's religions standards have dropped along with the worlds. "Everyone else is doing it, why can't we?" They don't have the mind of Christ (1 Corinthians 2:16): if they did, they would wait.

    God still has a people who live free from sin as Christ instructed (Matthew 5:48) – I'm very thankful that I'm in that number! Please understand that I am not trying to lift myself up – it is just what God has done, and I want to be sure to tell what he can do for you. God made a plan so that perfection is attainable here on earth, and it is so sad that today's religion is so weak and does not preach judgement. Sin is sin – it has to be condemned. Isaiah 1:27 says that "Zion shall be redeemed with judgment."

    December 27, 2011 at 9:50 pm |
    • Rick

      Jake: Perhaps what Iron Age man taught as "sin" does not resonate with 21st Century man. Why would it? Do you feel the same about things as your grandparents did? That is 2 generations. Think of 100 generations. While we are at it, why not use the same technology available back in the time of Jesus? Time changes and man moves on, including it's morality

      December 28, 2011 at 2:27 am |
    • southernyankee

      Much of what you said makes good sense. All except the "living free from sin." No one has done that... for 2,000 years. That's why he came.

      December 28, 2011 at 9:27 am |
    • Jake

      southernyankee: Contrary to popular belief, Holiness (Perfection in God's eyes – Romans 12:1-2) is attainable here on earth – it is the reason why Christ came.

      Salvation (First work of grace) cleanses you of your committed sins. You are saved, but the inbred sin, carnality, is still in your heart. Because sin is inside of you, you cannot win in the fight against it. Paul talks about this fight in Romans 7:19-25. Note that he states in verse 1 of this chapter the he is speaking "to them that know the law," or those who are carnal.

      Sanctification (Second work of grace) cleanses you of the inbred sin, and when this work is done, it allows you to live Holy, and free from sin as God desires you to live:

      Romans 8:7-9:

      (7) Because the carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be. (8) So then they that are in the flesh cannot please God. (9) But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his.

      I'd be more than happy to discuss this more with you if you would like. I just want you to know that God has a better experience than one in which you HAVE to sin. Let me know.

      December 28, 2011 at 9:58 am |
    • Jake

      Rick: I've attempted to respond to you a few times, but the system here is not displaying my response. I will try later.

      December 28, 2011 at 10:08 am |
    • rick

      Jake: I look forward to it.

      December 28, 2011 at 10:13 am |
    • shawbrooke

      Iron Age man was also likely happier if he got to know the woman before marrying her. When you spend your time in the sack you do not get to know someone. Secretive, manipulative people use living together to avoid real disclosure and conversation. Living together is associated with higher divorce rates should the couple marry, and very high stress levels. Think it over.

      December 28, 2011 at 12:33 pm |
    • Helpful Hints

      Jake - Your post might not be appearing because of this:

      Bad letter combinations / words to avoid if you want to get past the CNN automatic filter:
      Many, if not most, are buried within other words, so use your imagination.
      You can use dashes, spaces, or other characters to modify the "offending" letter combinations.
      ---
      ar-se.....as in ar-senic.
      co-ck.....as in co-ckatiel, co-ckatrice, co-ckleshell, co-ckles, etc.
      co-on.....as in rac-oon, coc-oon, etc.
      cu-m......as in doc-ument, accu-mulate, circu-mnavigate, circu-mstances, cu-mbersome, cuc-umber, etc.
      cu-nt.....as in Scu-ntthorpe, a city in the UK famous for having problems with filters...!
      ef-fing...as in ef-fing filter
      ft-w......as in soft-ware, delft-ware, swift-water, drift-wood, etc.
      ho-mo.....as in ho-mo sapiens or ho-mose-xual, ho-mogenous, etc.
      ho-rny....as in tho-rny, etc.
      hu-mp… as in th-ump, th-umper, th-umping
      jacka-ss...yet "ass" is allowed by itself.....
      ja-p......as in j-apanese, ja-pan, j-ape, etc.
      koo-ch....as in koo-chie koo..!
      nip-ple
      o-rgy….as in po-rgy, zo-rgy, etc.
      pi-s......as in pi-stol, lapi-s, pi-ssed, therapi-st, etc.
      p-orn… as in p-ornography
      pr-ick....as in pri-ckling, pri-ckles, etc.
      que-er
      ra-pe.....as in scra-pe, tra-peze, gr-ape, thera-peutic, sara-pe, etc.
      se-x......as in Ess-ex, s-exual, etc.
      sl-ut
      sn-atch
      sp-ic.....as in desp-icable, hosp-ice, consp-icuous, susp-icious, sp-icule, sp-ice, etc.
      sp-oon
      sp-ook… as in sp-ooky, sp-ooked
      strip-per
      ti-t......as in const-itution, att-itude, ent-ities, alt-itude, beat-itude, etc.
      tw-at.....as in wristw-atch, nightw-atchman, etc.
      va-g......as in extrava-gant, va-gina, va-grant, va-gue, sava-ge, etc.
      who-re....as in who're you kidding / don't forget to put in that apostrophe!
      wt-f....also!!!!!!!

      December 28, 2011 at 12:36 pm |
    • Grant

      Jake, You might be the first one I have ever heard to say you have lived without sin. I have to ask you a few questions to see how honest you are. Have you ever eaten Lobster, Crab, or Shrimp? They are all sins in the bible. Have you ever shaved? That is also a sin.
      Have you ever played football? Touching the skin of a dead pig is a sin. I also assume you have perfect eyesite, because you can't pray in a chursh without it or it is a sin.

      December 29, 2011 at 9:53 am |
    • Jake

      @Grant, I want to be clear on this: I have sinned in my lifetime (Romans 3:23: "All HAVE sinned"), but God has forgiven me and cleansed me of the sin that I committed – but the inbred sin (Carnality) remained. Romans 8:7-8 says that those who are in the flesh (Carnal) cannot please God. This is very true. So I moved on to the next step in God's plan, which is Sanctification; when I was Sanctified, God removed the carnal nature, which allows me – through Him – to live free from sin as He would have us all to live.

      Colossians 2:16 – 17 says (16) "Let no man therefore judge you in meat, or in drink, or in respect of an holyday, or of the new moon, or of the sabbath days:" (17) "Which are a shadow of things to come; but the body is of Christ." 1 Timothy 4:4 states "For every creature of God is good, and nothing to be refused, if it be received with thanksgiving:"

      I understand that under the law eating and touching some of the things you mentioned was sin, but the law was a shadow of good things to come, as Colossians 4:17 says, and we are to receive them now with thanksgiving as 1 Timothy 4:4 states.

      I'm not sure what you mean by shaving being a sin. I know that 1 Corinthians 11:14 says that it is a shame for a man to have long hair... Also, I'm not sure what you mean with your comment about vision. Could you please elaborate? Please do so, but be sure to provide scripture when you do. Many have opinions, but we must be backed up by the Word of God.

      December 29, 2011 at 6:20 pm |
    • Rick

      Sill waiting on that response, Jake

      December 31, 2011 at 6:00 am |
    • Jake

      @Rick: I am going to have to post this in parts so that I can figure out which portion is being blocked.

      The world's standards have lowered and will continue to lower over time (Matthew 7:13). God's standard has remained the same over time (Matthew 7:14). I know that I will be measured by God's standards, and not man's, so I want to be sure that I am living as he wants me to. Does that make sense?

      January 3, 2012 at 4:41 pm |
    • Jake

      @Rick: I have tried multiple times to post all of my response, but I am giving up at this point. I don't know what your beliefs are, but if you believe in God and that Christ came to save us from our sins, then the Bible should mean something to you. If not, God would have to show you Himself. I can't change your mind.

      January 3, 2012 at 5:36 pm |
  13. Lady_Bex

    Ok, I'm getting why a lot of Christians are upset. You're supposed to wait. Then again, you're supposed to not tell lies and not do lots of other things too. I also have to agree with the guy who said when you're married at 13 it takes away 15 years of temptation...Not that getting married that young is ideal anymore, but the idea itself does make sense.

    Instead of being so worried about other people's behaviour behind closed doors, why don't we Christians redirect that energy and worry about those who really need worrying about–the poor, the war-torn families, people who really need the help? Maybe, if we do as Jesus said and "do unto others" Christians would have a better rep around the world and spread a heck of a lot of good.

    Ultimately sins are on our own heads. My sins are my responsibilities and no one elses. No one is sinless. "Let he who has not sinned cast the first stone." Those on this blog who have been posting about going to hell have sinned too. I get the feeling that God knows this and He is more than willing to work with us if we do our best to do right by Him despite our faults.

    December 27, 2011 at 11:58 am |
    • rick

      Re-directing that energy would take work, and take time away from the online preachers like Georgie or Keith. After all, blathering scripture seems to be their way of feeling godly

      December 27, 2011 at 12:18 pm |
    • John

      Religion is just an excuse for people to commit terrible crimes. The crusaders murdered Jews and Muslims when they entered Jerusalem. Hitler exterminated Jews for Christianity. Even within Christianity (the same religion) there are wars fought over things like how to worship their God. Anyways, I'm not hating on just christians and all other religons but just trying to put some history in your head. Aren't religous people supposed to be peaceful?

      December 27, 2011 at 2:09 pm |
    • Keith

      rick, I can only speak for myself on this one, but the reason I use scripture is because it is effective. Isa 55:11 So shall my word be that goeth forth out of my mouth: it shall not return unto me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper [in the thing] whereto I sent it. If I speak simply my opinion then it is just as useless as yours, really. Scripture trumps man's "wisdom" anyday.

      December 27, 2011 at 8:27 pm |
    • Rick

      Keith: Of course, our opinions are equally useless to each other. I dispute that Iron Age morality trumps that of modern man

      December 28, 2011 at 2:30 am |
    • shawbrooke

      Now John, I can't figure out whether you really believe what you are saying. Hitler put pastors on meat hooks (most famously Bonhoffer), and lived with his girlfriend to whom he was not married, so obviously Hitler was not a church goer. In war people murder everyone in sight and some who aren't, as everyone except of course, you, knows. You need to read much more history before trying to educate someone else.

      December 28, 2011 at 12:43 pm |
  14. Sam Harris

    I am not Christian, so if I can't put logic and reason into my girlfriend, at least I can put something else into her.

    December 27, 2011 at 5:02 am |
    • Jim

      Sam, How sad that you have such an unhealthy view of what love is all about. Love is not about what we can 'get', but is 100% about what we can 'give' as Christ gave his son Jesus to die on the cross for ALL of our sins and that means everyone whether you believe in Him or not. My prayer is that someday you will have the opportunity to know what true love is. Both of my children entered marriage in the last few years as virgins, not because of what they had, but because of whom they were – children of God – who knows the true meaning of LOVE. My prayer is that you too will find that 'true love' someday as promised to us in the Bible. Read it and you will be amazed that it is all about love.

      December 27, 2011 at 9:52 am |
    • rick

      "Christ gave his son Jesus to die on the cross for ALL of our sins and that means everyone whether you believe in Him or not....."

      And if we don't?

      December 27, 2011 at 10:30 am |
    • southernyankee

      Would she like your comment? If not, how long will she be your girlfriend??

      December 28, 2011 at 9:17 am |
  15. Rich

    Also, as a fellow christian, I want to say that you are committing a sin by saying people are burning in hell, we have no right to judge, that is left to St. Peter and the God to decide, that is not our place as mortals to make that decision or presumption.

    December 27, 2011 at 2:40 am |
    • Rich

      woah, that was meant for George, not everyone on this thread.

      December 27, 2011 at 2:41 am |
    • Keith

      what are you talking about? what denomination are you? Saddleback?

      December 27, 2011 at 8:30 pm |
    • Emit Till

      the south also produced slaves... I guess that was the "word of GOD" that lead them to that as well. I know alot of you would wish we go back to the days that our forefathers had everything since they were so perfect and richeous "enslaving black people for they were apes and didnt know any better" for they were "doing us a favor". Sad . So sad this is what America is really about; selfishness, dog eat dog, and "holier than though". Keep up the great work.... We are truly coming to the last days. This country proves that if you act like a ho like snookie or a cut throat b!+@h like Limbaugh, you too can be wealthy. "They make us hate ourselves and love their wealth.... drug dealer by jordans crack head buys crack and the white man gets paid off of all of that. The prettiest people do the ugliest things for the road to riches and diamond rings.... we shine because they hate us, floss cause they degrade us , were trying to buy back our 40 acres, and for that paper look how low we will stoop even if your in benz your still......" IIJS

      December 28, 2011 at 11:14 am |
  16. jameser35

    Man owe way! I tell you sumthin! Ole George, Brett, an Randy; well if you boys ain't clan I'd have to wager yor daddys was.

    December 26, 2011 at 8:38 pm |
    • jameser35

      The one thing that hinders the growth of Christianity more than anything else in this country is the bible belt. That and their vastly intellectually superior inhabitants.

      December 26, 2011 at 8:46 pm |
    • Rich

      People's views of the south are ignorant, we have Coca-cola! we have so much culture and diversity, everyone thinks we're just a bunch a hicks, well to enlighten all of you, we're not, flying came from the bible belt, just an fyi. The civil war was also incredibly mutual, the north can't live without the south agriculture, and the south can't live without the north's manufacture industry. On the MAIN subject, I believe abstinence no longer exists because a long time ago, people were getting married in their teens, now thats not norm.

      December 27, 2011 at 2:27 am |
    • rick

      No, not all the south is hicks. There are plenty of hicks everywhere.

      December 27, 2011 at 7:41 am |
    • Mirosal

      @ Rich .. flying came from the bible belt? Not hardly. The Wright brothers were from Ohio. That'sa the Rust belt, not the bible belt. They came to Kitty Hawk because they liked the area for their gliders and experiments. After their flights, they packed up and went back home to Dayton. Now you know why the South lost the Civil War. They couldn't produce enough war goods to sustain their troops. They had to scavange things as they went along.

      December 27, 2011 at 8:11 am |
  17. Randy

    Some may not like what Jesus teaches, but our opinion does not matter. If he said it, why assume it is incorrect or does not apply? Thomas Jefferson cut offensive text out of his Bible, but that did not change Jesus' teachings. Some things are hard like turning the other cheek.

    December 26, 2011 at 4:23 pm |
    • Rick

      Randy: Why do you assume that it DOES apply?

      December 26, 2011 at 4:30 pm |
    • jameser35

      Boy you got it right randy. Folks round here gonna be wishin a day er two too late they'd found the lord. Can't do nuthin for a heathen nuthin ain't willin to look for Jesus. Hell burns.!

      December 26, 2011 at 8:20 pm |
  18. jameser35

    Boy I tell you what! Them two boys just commented now got it right. Hells a real place folks! My wife and kids step outta line I might just take off my belt. My daddy did and praise Jesus for it. Merica needs a belt to her back side else we all gonna burn in hell.

    December 26, 2011 at 2:51 pm |
    • Rick

      No kidding, I feel like finding myself a camp meeting and praising Jaysus right now

      December 26, 2011 at 3:30 pm |
    • southernyankee

      Your comments actually made me smile. You've got that Southern dialect down, and it's not easy to write it in a way that reads back accurately. Clever. May I suggest a website you might be interested in: Fixed Point Foundation. It's dedicated to the public defense of Christianity. The director published in USA Today twice this month. He debated and was friends with Christopher Hitchens.
      Oh, and it's based in Birmingham, AL. MIght give you a new vision of the South.

      December 28, 2011 at 9:39 am |
  19. Brett

    Marriage is honorable among all, and the bed undefiled; but fornicators and adulterers God will judge.
    Hebrews 13:4

    December 26, 2011 at 2:47 pm |
    • Rick

      Brett: Your god is impotent, and your proxy threats laughable. Have a great day

      December 26, 2011 at 2:59 pm |
    • jameser35

      Careful now Rick, them'd be the words a Paul, speekin fer Jesus since he hadn't been around for a while. Careful now you don't let Satan git ya. You ain't gonna wanna burn in hell I tell you what.

      December 26, 2011 at 3:11 pm |
    • Rick

      Thanks for the heads up. I wouldn't want to be runnin' afoul of the celestial virgin boinker

      December 26, 2011 at 3:31 pm |
    • Actually

      Your god fucked a woman who wasn't married. So what's your point. LOL!

      December 27, 2011 at 11:01 am |
    • Rick

      Actually, she was married, but not to the one who knocked her up

      December 27, 2011 at 4:47 pm |
  20. George

    Forn.ication is a sin. It is plainly written in the Bible. Only our permissive society says it is ok to sin. Young people should be considering marriage rather than considering sin. It is better to get married than to burn in hell. My wife and I waited. People who say that the bar is too high simply have never learned self-denial. The only thing that matters to them is how they feel in the moment. We have a brain with executive function. We can control ourselves. We don't have to be slaves to our base desires. Satan uses s.e.x to lead many people astray, and many people are burning in hell for thinking that it doesn't matter if they for.nicate. But it matters to God.

    December 26, 2011 at 2:25 pm |
    • Brett

      Well said George. People need to ask for repentance and give their lives to Jesus for Him to save them of their sin. Only then will He give them the power and desire to change their sinful ways.

      December 26, 2011 at 2:33 pm |
    • Ozzie

      It also says "itl" death" do you part but lots of people get divorced
      The bible also says slavery is ok. face it.
      That was crap written but 100's of people, 1,00's of years ago. Some of us have become at bit more evolved and enlightened since then. That is why we have laws and ethics, not the bible to guide us.

      December 26, 2011 at 6:45 pm |
    • Rich

      You should understand that times are very different, Divorce is also a sin, and thousands of Americans get divorced not because they want to, but because they have to due to financial issues. Therefore marrying young before you have stability is dangerous. We live in a society that is ruled by investments, finances, and money. So instead of blaming the young people, blame the outcome of society has become.

      December 27, 2011 at 2:36 am |
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The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.