“Stop your ears against those unclean members of yours, so that they may be mortified. They tell you of delights, but not of such delights as the law of the Lord Your God tells.” – Augustine
- In the 1960s, the average young woman lost her virginity at age 18; by the late 1990s, the average was 15. In other words, Boomers started having sex in college, while GenMe started having sex in high school. [and middle school…see below] (162)
- In the late 1950s, only 30% of young people approved of sex before marriage; now 75% approve. The change in attitude was even more striking among young women: only 12% approved of premarital sex in the 1950s compared with 80% now…In a recent poll, 84% of single women with a college education agreed that “it is common these days for people my age to have sex just for fun and not expect any commitment beyond the encounter itself.” (163)
- 88% of teens who take abstinence pledges have sexual intercourse before marriage. These teens do tend to wait about a year and a half longer to have sex, and have fewer partners. (164)
- An NBC/People poll found that 27% of teens ages 13-16 have engaged in some type of intimate sexual activity [‘oral sex’ is now considered the new ‘third base’] – 41% of 15 and 16 year olds, and 14% of 13- and 14– year olds.
- “The most striking shift in teenage and twenty something sexual behavior in the last decade is the disconnect between sex and emotional involvement.” (167)
- “The rate of living together outside of marriage increased 500% from 1970-1990, and another 72% between 1990 and 2000.” (177)
Welcome to Corinth boys and girls.
There is more to be said than can be covered here. Pastor Tommy Nelson put it well when he said, “sexual behavior outside of marriage will do one of two things: it will destroy a good relationship or prolong a bad one.” (His excellent series on the Song of Solomon can be heard here) . Is sexual sin wrong? Absolutely. But it is also tragic and we need to show both facets as we point others to the surpassing pleasure of God’s glory that Augustine (himself a sexual sinner) spoke.