Category Archives: Media

The Sex Lives of Christian Teens

On the radio, popular songs declare the thrills of casual sex. On the Internet, pop-up windows beckon Web surfers to erotic destinations. The fashion world touts midriff-baring designs, while prime-time TV rolls out one sexual innuendo after another.

Today’s adolescents must navigate this cultural morass just at a time when hormonal surges and emerging feelings are making life confusing enough. But what happens when faith gets thrown into the mix? How does being a Christian affect a teenager’s perceptions and responses in this sex-drenched society?

Much has been written lately about abstinence education and how more teens are choosing not to have sex. Newsweek even touted “The New Virginity” on its cover last fall and acknowledged that religion—along with caring parents and an awakening sense of personal responsibility—has played a major role in why teens are deciding to wait. Indeed, programs like True Love Waits (an international campaign launched by the Southern Baptists in 1993) have challenged millions of teens and college students to remain sexually pure until marriage. And the Centers for Disease Control reports that the number of high school students who said they’ve had sex has dropped notably, from 54 percent in 1991 to 46 percent in 2001.

Still, polls and studies only tell part of the story. Despite signs that things are improving, the reality of sexual temptation remains—and Christian young people are not inoculated against these pressures. Hearing their voices, in fact, suggests that their plight might be even more precarious than their non-Christian counterparts:

“I know the Bible says you can’t have sex before marriage. But why can’t you, if you’re in love with the person? It doesn’t feel wrong. —Kendra, 14

“My boyfriend and I don’t want to mess around anymore. But how do we keep this commitment? I never realized how powerful passion can be.” —Shari, 15

“Kids at school are pressuring me and my girlfriend to have sex. I want to wait until marriage, but I worry about how this makes me look.” —Darryl, 17

“I feel cut off from God. I want to do what’s right, but I can’t seem to. Recently I had sex with a guy, thinking that it would bring us closer. I know now that was a mistake, and I feel totally ashamed.” —Aimee, 16

A lot of Christian teens are having sex and suffering painful, sometimes devastating consequences. Meanwhile, those not having sex are thinking a lot about it, many of them wavering between fear and curiosity.

Parents, youth pastors, and other concerned adults might hope that the influence of biblical principles on their young would help them withstand the onslaughts of peer pressure, physical longings, and conflicting signals from secular voices (“Don’t have sex, but when you do, use a condom”), but the several teens who spoke candidly with Christian Reader reveal a far more complicated picture.

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Filed under End Times, Media, Prophecy, Teens, World

The Devils Sneering Influence on our Media

Our entertainment industry and the news media sneer at anyone who defends Jesus Christ in public and have been leading a propaganda war of stereotyping Christians into a subordinate class. Their distortions reflect a genuine misunderstanding of who Christians are and what they believe.

Americas’ TV news broadcasts ignore conservative and Christian news events, except when coverage makes religious leaders look “cold, intolerant and oppressive,” says Washington, D.C.’s Media Research Center.

Though most Americans believe in God and regularly attend religious services, “religion and religious issues are hardly ever mentioned, much less covered, on network television morning, evening and magazine shows,” said the center’s chairman Brent Bozell. He said that the center has surveyed more than 18,000 nightly news shows broadcast by ABC, CBS, NBC, the Cable News Network and the Public Broadcasting Service, but found only 212 stories that focused on religion. That amounts to 1 percent of coverage although 52 percent of Americans say they attend church and more than 90 percent say that they pray regularly.

Network coverage of abortion and homosexuality “are never done from the religious viewpoint,” Bozell said. Instead, “religious figures are regularly portrayed as reactionary roadblocks while their positive influences are rarely covered.” Except at Christmastime, when the networks traditionally broadcast “heartwarming” segments in their broadcasts, the news shows usually portray religious groups and their leaders “as cold, intolerant and oppressive,” Bozell said.

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