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Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Master Mentor #16

Chapter 15 (Book 3, Chapter 5)
CS and I were having a great conversation about sex until the end of the chapter. Often, in reading this book, I find myself curious about the direction of CS’s conversation until the last couple of paragraphs and then it suddenly becomes clear what he is driving at.
This chapter was different. The whole course of the chapter, I found myself getting what he was saying and agreeing as we went along. He discussed sex in this chapter. And more importantly, he discussed the Christian virtue of chastity (of waiting for sex until marriage and then faithfulness to that person throughout life).
Part of what I liked about this chapter is that he was discussing one of the topics that bothers most people in the church. Most Christians have the idea that sex is “dirty” and “not something to be taught in church.” And on both accounts, in my opinion and from what I’ve seen in the Bible, they would be wrong. The Bible talks about sex, how it should be handled and what is the right way to view sex and sexuality. And I love to teach on this subject to students. Mostly because students also share that opinion that sex isn’t something to be talked about in church.
Then CS said something that I really disagree with. In the very last paragraph of this chapter, CS seems to make the case that although sex and sexual sins are bad, they aren’t the worst of sins. On one side, I agree with what he is saying. Most people have the idea that if they mess up sexually, they have messed up completely and beyond all repair. That simply isn’t true. Sexual sin like all other sin is capable of forgiveness. God can and will forgive you, even if you mess up sexually. That shouldn’t give you license to do so, but it should give you hope that if you have tried and failed, it’s not over for you.
But in my experience with people… both students in the church, those I have had conversations with and my own experience… sexual sin can be some of the most damaging and long-lasting of any sin. The ghosts and memories that linger can be extremely difficult to eliminate. CS even goes so far as to say that sins of pride, patronizing and hatred are worse sins than sexual mistakes and I simply don’t agree with that.
Sexual sins, like other sins, can be forgiven. But they also leave deep and lasting scars that don’t heal as easily and in many cases, remain with you for your entire life.

One thing that I did find interesting about this chapter, was in CS’s discussion of his culture and it’s obsession with sex and sexuality on its posters, movies and advertisements. If he thought his culture was saturated with sex, he should see our culture in 2008!!!

Jim

1 comment:

  1. Not one to take Lewis's side usually, I still know that in my own experience, pride and hatred haunt me just as often as those high school parties do. I might be overstepping, but I think that hatred that doesn't haunt years later might not have really been hatred.

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