September 3rd, 2010
02:18 PM ET

How Christians spoil sex

Christian marriage.

Hot sex.

Let’s try that again:

Christian marriage; hot sex.

It doesn’t quite go together does it?

Passionate, toe-curling sex isn’t normally associated with Christianity or even spirituality in general.

At least that’s what Jonathan Acuff, a Belief Blog contributor and author of "Stuff Christians Like," argues in a recent blog. He says Christians need to do a better job of connecting God with a vibrant sex life.

That’s what we’ve been told. That God and sex don’t go together. And if you say something enough times, people start to believe it’s true…. You can’t have both in the same bottle. They’re oil and water. Cats and dogs. Spencer and Heidi. They just don’t go together.

Acuff, who is married, says Christians shouldn’t just teach abstinence. They should also teach that while sex before marriage is bad, “sex when you’re married is awesome.”

He says Christians damage sex in four ways:

They teach guilt, not abstinence.

They have very few ways to discuss it.

They write 10 books about lust for every one book about the gift of sex.

They've "made the crayon box pretty small" (they're afraid of being creative during sex).

Acuff says it's time Christian couples realize passionate sex is God's idea.

We’ve bought the lie that the world gets to have wild, crazy sex and Christians, holy folks like us, have to have black-and-white, two-dimensional sex. But what if that’s wrong? What if the God who overflows us with love and hope and mercy wants that part of our lives to be as big and as colorful as two married people could possibly imagine?

- CNN Writer

Filed under: Christianity • Culture & Science • United States

soundoff (2,079 Responses)
  1. A.

    I'm getting tired of CNN's constant religion bashing.

    September 3, 2010 at 6:47 pm |
    • JustPlainJoe

      Bashing? Quite the opposite, media cowing to the irrational is more like it. Open the conversation. If religion can't make it in the marketplace of ideas, let it be supplanted.

      September 3, 2010 at 7:33 pm |
  2. cadrolls1

    Christians ruined sex when they allowed MILLIONS of children be molested and did NOTHING for almost 2,000 years. I am a non-believer because of it. People should keep in mind that nowhere in the Bible does it read that child molestation is wrong. In fact, when Jesus was alive, child molestation was considered acceptable. At the VERY least, Jesus condoned child molestation. At the VERY most, he participated.

    Parents who allow their children to pray to this man should be on the sex offender list, in my view.

    I am SO glad NOT to ba a Christian any longer.

    No guilt here.

    September 3, 2010 at 6:46 pm |
  3. Wake-Up

    I love the ones that brought up Sex according to the Pope.... What in the world would the POPE know about sex........with a women.

    September 3, 2010 at 6:46 pm |
  4. PDXSerric

    How did we get on the issue of STDs? I thought this was about bedroom behavior between married couples. If you're STILL worried about STDs then you have more problems whatn whether or not Jesus cares if you bonk or not.

    September 3, 2010 at 6:45 pm |
  5. Lucifer

    YAWN !!!

    Wake me when the world's over.

    September 3, 2010 at 6:45 pm |
    • Lynn

      you're fun lucifer, we should hang out ^.^ oh wait.. you'd hate me because I'm a christian :\ kind of like how whites and blacks didn't get along.. or nazis and jews.... hmm. I still wanna be ur friend though 😀

      September 4, 2010 at 12:18 am |
    • jerry

      oh you mean when the judgement has come and your burning in hell fire cause you didnt repeant and you haavethe person that youn have named yourself after tormenting you for eternty you can laugh and joke all you want but know that one day there is a day of judgement my friend

      September 5, 2010 at 8:23 am |
  6. Loki

    Re-Edited for standards: This article is very stereotyped. My wife and I are practicing Catholics. She had a strict upbringing. Even though my mother was a practicing Catholic, she was a lot more even toned about s3-x stuff. You know what, my wife and I have been together for almost 30 years (20 of it married). We had s3-x a LOT before marriage. And we still have s3-x around every other night. Plenty of s3-x toys. And have experimented in almost ANYTHING you can imagine s3-xually. We have a few kids and still stay very intimate. Nud1ty is common in our house and not a big deal. And we still go to church every Sunday WITHOUT guilt and enjoy our lives. A LOT. Not the picture painted in the article is it.

    September 3, 2010 at 6:45 pm |
  7. Emmy

    What church has this guy been going to? All the churches I've ever gone to (Evangelical protestant) don't hide that an active, healthy sex life is a major part of marriage. I've seen entire book sections in Christian stores dedicated to hot sex. In all my youth groups, they say the same thing: Get married first, then have the wildest, nastiest, monkey-est sex imaginable.

    The author does a great disservice to millions of Christians by lumping the frigids and the prudes together as the voice of Christianity. Myself and all the Christians I know are very frank about sexuality and our sexual needs. If they're married, they go nuts. If they're unmarried, they look forward to sex with frank anticipation. There's no guilt.

    September 3, 2010 at 6:43 pm |
  8. PDXSerric

    Well, Christ never had a problem with s*x. Adultery, lust, promiscuity, sure. But s*x between two married adults? Thumbs up!

    What we need to do is separate Christ from the Church. Most of the “Christians” of today are so in name only, not even bothering to read, let alone understand and follow, the actual teachings of Christ. Accept Him as your savior but don’t follow this teachings? Yea – that’s what the churches are preaching.

    Men: you want to keep your woman happy? Experiment. Be expressive. Be generous. A happy woman IS a happy man, if you catch my drift.

    Women, want to keep your man from straying, do the same.

    September 3, 2010 at 6:42 pm |
  9. this is funny

    u cnn people need to get out more mabey write some better articals this is the biggest wait of time in the world dont u all have better things to do then this here heres a little pome for you guys
    c. constanly negative news and garbage with news anchors that dont know how to report
    n. negitive, negative in everything they say and do
    n. news your news is garbage you guys just make stupid garbage up and waiste money.
    i sure do love freedom of speech

    September 3, 2010 at 6:41 pm |
  10. StateOfMaine

    Back in the day it wasn't uncommon for "good Christian" families to be quite large, especially in farm communities where 7 or 8 children wasn't unheard of. whether or not sex is passionate, I suppose a good Christian, or any decent person for that matter is going to tell you about their private sex life. I can't imagine it lacked in passion, they are human after all just like the....rest of us...?

    September 3, 2010 at 6:40 pm |
  11. PDXSerric

    Well, Christ never had a problem with sex. Adultery, lust, promiscuity, sure. But sex between two married adults? Thumbs up!

    What we need to do is separate Christ from the Church. Most of the “Christians” of today are so in name only, not even bothering to read, let alone understand and follow, the actual teachings of Christ. Accept Him as your savior but don’t follow this teachings? Yea – that’s what the churches are preaching.

    Men: you want to keep your woman happy? Experiment. Be expressive. Be generous. A happy woman IS a happy man, if you catch my drift.

    Women, want to keep your man from straying, do the same.

    September 3, 2010 at 6:39 pm |
  12. Glenn

    Change the name of the article!!!!!! Christians don't ruin sex they just wait to enjoy it!!!!!

    September 3, 2010 at 6:37 pm |
  13. WR2

    "It s3x is bad, there'd be no bunnies in Heaven"

    September 3, 2010 at 6:37 pm |
  14. WR2

    "If s+x was bad, there'd be no bunnies in heaven"

    September 3, 2010 at 6:33 pm |
  15. frak

    As opposed to the Muslims who will blow up innocent men, women and children for the chance to do it with 72 underage virgins?

    September 3, 2010 at 6:32 pm |
    • Kate

      And how does that differ from Christians like Timothy McVeigh, David Koresh, Jim Jones, etc. etc.?

      September 3, 2010 at 9:10 pm |
    • PHIL

      KATE.....TM ,DK OR JJ were not christions . Hitler was an atheist , want be compared to him .

      September 4, 2010 at 8:40 pm |
  16. Mike Robinson

    Lol @ "Spencer and Heidi"....I can relate to this article.

    September 3, 2010 at 6:32 pm |
  17. Merri

    Growing up in the Southern Bible Belt (MS) I can completely relate to this. Growing up in the south, sex was almost taboo. Yeah, everyone did it whether they were married or not but it was just something you didn't talk about and the pastor better not preach about it. That is just the way people are there and many Christains are closed minded in that way. They teach their children that sex is something that happens but you shouldn't be proud of it. It is surrounded by guilt and women feel it worse than men because it becomes a duty to your husband instead of something pleasurable between husband and wife. Most Christians need to understand that it is okay to enjoy sex with you spouse and to go wild with it.

    September 3, 2010 at 6:32 pm |
  18. dman

    I hope this guy isn't a Catholic, because according to the Catholic Church, the only reason to have sex is to have a baby, which means, unless you want to have thousands of kids, you aren't going to have very much sex even when you are married.

    September 3, 2010 at 6:31 pm |
  19. CeCe

    I have a problem with some of the posts that I'm reading. It seems as if some of you are confused about the difference between religion and Christianity. Religion, not Christianity, has ruined s-ex for many people. Many religious leaders have taught that s-ex is a dirty and evil act, which is not true at all! God created s-ex so that we can be more connected with our spouse, becoming "one flesh" spiritually and physically. I think it is a big mistake to lump all Christians into the extreme, judgmental, bigoted, and s-exually repressed stereotype you see on TV, because we are not all like that! We are imperfect people, trying to live our lives in a Christ-like way. Yes, that means that some of us (including myself) abstain from s-ex until marriage. Maybe some of you don't understand this choice, but don't judge me for it, as I'm sure you wouldn't want me to judge you for yours.

    September 3, 2010 at 6:31 pm |
    • Iowan

      You are somewhat right – there are a lot of misconceptions about what Christianity really does say. But here's the problem. There are many studied theologians who can't agree on just what the Bible has to say about sx, and all sorts of interpretations regarding what is and is not sodomy, fornication, masturbation, etc. It ends up being a wide variety of opinions. Plenty of churches preach strongly in a negative way about sx and what it is for and the pleasure that could and should be associated with it. I'd have a lot more respect of christian beliefs if they were uniform and people would stick to them. CeCe, maybe your beliefs and interpretations are correct and completely in line with what the authors of the Bible intended.... or maybe they are not. I'm really glad that they work for you, but I can't embrace a philosophy/belief/religion whose members have been getting it so colossally wrong so much of the time for 2000+ years, not just about sx, but many other things!

      September 3, 2010 at 7:14 pm |
  20. CatholicSeminarianDude

    What kid of Christian church did you go to? In my 23yrs of life growing up Catholic all I've hear is how sex is good! Sex should be the result of love. Love has various dimensions, eros (erotic), philos (brotherly), and agape (sacrificial). Sex in its proper content and non-sickened way as our world now defines it actually reveals the love of God and the Trinity! Which is why the Catholic church urges people reserve it only for marriage, but can be totally enjoyed 100% once there (no people, not just to have babies, though that’s important)! Understanding my sexuality is one of the reasons why I'm willing to take a vow of chastity for the rest of my life.
    Just wanted to share this with you all, God bless.

    September 3, 2010 at 6:31 pm |
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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.