Pastors with Sexpertise

“That if gold rust, what shall iron do?

For if a priest be foul, in whom we trust,

No wonder is a lewd man to rust.”

Geoffrey Chaucer

Have you noticed the growing trend of "sexperts" in the pulpit?  How in the world have Christian couples managed to achieve intimacy in their marriages over the years without the "sexpertise" (sorry – couldn't resist!) of two high-profile couples – Mark and Grace Driscoll and Ed and Lisa Young

In case you missed all the hype leading up to the release of these salacious books, they are now available.  Maybe the Driscolls and the Youngs have wagered a bet to see who can sell the most books.  

The countdown is on for Ed and Lisa Young to go "up on the roof" of Fellowship Church and jump in bed for a full 24 hours!  They have concocted a publicity stunt that is sure to draw lots of attention — TV interviews, Facebook updates, Tweets, Skype sessions, and live streaming.  Ed had made it patently clear that this is NOT a publicity stunt, and Lisa confirmed that every penny from the book sales will go to Fellowship Church.  Here they are promoting their Sexperiment book:  Ready to Strengthen Your Marriage?

I'm sure some of the attention they would rather not receive, like the scrutiny of Christianity Today.  An online article entitled The Trouble with Ed Young's Rooftop Sexperiment:  Yes, the church needs to talk more about sex. But pastors may need to talk about it less includes this important remark: 

"Evangelicalism's current fascination with sexuality, then, may be important for a season. But as a movement, we should consider carefully what our stunts and our salacious sermon series say about us."

It is hard to believe that the "bed-in" stunt by the Youngs has upstaged the Driscolls, but that seems to have happened, at least for the moment.  Check out "What's to Come" with the Driscolls, as revealed on The Resurgence website.  There you will find this explanation:

"On January 15, we’ll begin the Real Marriage sermon series at Mars Hill Church, and over 2,000 churches and ministries will join us through the Real Marriage Campaign, which gives away hundreds of pages of research from Docent Research Group, all our marketing and branding materials, worship and counseling guides, my personal preaching notes, DVD downloads of my sermons, and more—all for free.

In February, we’ll kick off the Real Marriage Tour in Corona, California. We’ll then be visiting a number of cities around the country to share the Real Marriage material. We pray that many lives and marriages are changed.

We’re doing all this for one reason. We really want to help marriages by God’s grace, and we believe some of these tools will help that happen."

Based on what those who have reviewed the Driscolls' book have said, it's no telling what will slide off the lips of Mark Driscoll during the Real Marriage sermon series.   Rest assured, there will be much more to discuss when his mouth gets in gear. 

As "sex talk" among pastors becomes more and more prevalent, it only encourages the Driscoll and Young wannabes to emulate their revered leaders.  Here is an example.  During a recent sermon on marriage, one of Driscoll's disciples (who leads an Acts 29 church) made this remark to a mixed congregation:

“If (my wife) and I aren’t getting along, I think, well, let’s just have sex and forget about it. Let’s just start over. Sex is like the reset button. It’s like reboot. It’s like taking a hot shower after a long day. You just kinda you know wash all the stress off of you and the difficulty. That’s how most guys work. Unfortunately, that’s not how she works. For her sex is like the topping on a sundae. There has to be a lot of sweetness under it building up to it. Guys, that is a great analogy, O.K. you gotta write that down and think about it. It’s gotta be a lot of sweetness building up to it all day for it to be the right topping on that sundae.”

As a wife and mother of two grown daughters, I find it startling that a pastor would talk so freely about this topic to his congregation.  My first thought upon hearing it was — were his young children present when their dad said this?  Perhaps the church members were forewarned about the message and made provisions for their kids, but I heard it on a podcast and there was no warning (like James Dobson sometimes gives) about the sermon's graphic nature.  What if a mother had been listening to this message via the internet with young children in her presence? 

For those who are as disgusted as I am with pastors who openly share their "sexpertise", Wade Burleson has written a timely article which addresses the overemphasis on sex from the pulpit.  It is appropriately called Evangelicals and Excessive Sex:  Mark Driscoll and Ed Young from Augustine's Perspective

Burleson begins his post with these wise words:

"There is a proliferation of sex manuals, sex sermons and sex talks within the evangelical Christian community. From Mark Driscoll's sometimes crude and vulgar discussions of sex in his 'exposition' of Solomon's Song, to the extraordinary theatrics of Ed Young in promoting his new book Sexperiment, modern evangelicals seem infatuated with sex. If you intituitively feel something is not quite right with such an overemphasis on the pleasures of sex, but you are not quite sure how to define what you are feeling, then I refer you to St. Augustine."

I want to encourage you to read the entire post and join me in praying that more Christians will speak out against the actions of these so-called "sexperts".

Finally, here is a song dedication to Ed and Lisa Young as they brave the elements during their 24-hour "bed-in".

Up On The Roof – The Drifters

Lydia's Corner:  Isaiah 1:1-2:22   2 Corinthians 10:1-18   Psalm 52:1-9   Proverbs 22:26-27

Comments

Pastors with Sexpertise — 45 Comments

  1. I am a high school teacher. If I said what that Acts 29 fellow said, I would have many grossed out students, horrified parents, and a principal glaring at me with my pink slip. I would also be all over the news after my firing and possibly investigated to see if I was acting on my lustful outbursts in class. I find it INTERESTING that in God’s church, it is ok to be perverse but, in a public institution you would be found repulsive (as you should) for speaking in such a crude manner to teenagers. After all you are their authority.
    All of these pastors are so obsessed with “authority” i.e. women doing anything except breathing in church but, they need to question their own leadership and their own “authority”. What leader says this garbage? One day we will find out that some of these “sexperts” are true deviants.

    I will say it again… gross gross gross gross gross

  2. You did not provide a cite for that Acts 29 pastor’s quote: “For her sex is like the topping on a sundae. There has to be a lot of sweetness under it building up to it. Guys, that is a great analogy, O.K. you gotta write that down and think about it. It’s gotta be a lot of sweetness building up to it all day for it to be the right topping on that sundae.”

    But, in Real Marriage, Driscoll writes how frustrating such an approach is:

    “When I came to the conclusion that the cure for a lot of my moodiness was having more frequent sex with my wife, I simply told her. Yes, it’s that simple…The truth was I needed to have more frequent sex with my wife, and we needed to discuss how that could happen…To make matters worse, seemingly every book I read by Christians on sex and marriage sounded unfair. Nearly every one said the husband had to work very hard to understand his wife, to relate to her and when he did that to her satisfaction then, maybe, she would have sex with him as a sort of reward.” Pg. 186

    So you see, a new book on sex became necessary. And, who better to write one?

  3. Anonymous,

    You are extremely perceptive! Apparently, the Acts 29 pastor had not yet read Driscoll’s treatise on marriage when he made that remark. BTW, I do not plan to reveal his identity.

  4. Looks like the countdown is over: “24Hr Bed-In Begins:
    0 Days, 0 Hrs, 0 Mins, 0 Secs”.

    It’s 20 degrees on the church rooftop!

  5. What a JOKE, sitting on a bed with interviewers, in coats, hats and a big quilt, talking for 24 hours??? It will probably get crazy as they tire unless they take a nap!

  6. Arce,

    Ed is already getting tired. What in the world will he be saying as he gets more and more sleep deprived?

  7. Anonymous

    There is a reason for the lack of a cite. There has been some back and forth between us and a well-known pastor, which has gotten a bit dicey. For the moment, he chides us from the pulpit – unnamed. So, we do the same since there are family members involved. Let me assure you that he has been quoted correctly. For now, he shall be called “He whose name must not be spoken.”

  8. Robin

    This pastor has obviously been influenced by his leader – Mark Driscoll of Acts 29. I have heard him complain about the “Skanko-Roman” (a Driscollesque term) culture of a local university. Yet, he is bringing that atmosphere into the church albeit “for the Lord’s sake” to make it seem “spiritual.” If you can’t beat ‘em…

    Wait til you hear Driscoll’s remarks from this past week. He has managed to insult the entire church in Great Britain. I wonder…will all of the Acts 29 churches follow suit? Missional? Missional? Indeed!

  9. I keep thinking I will wake up from this bad dream that is being directed by John Waters. Ick ick ick.

  10. Please, this should have been titled “without” rather than “with”. If they had any expertise in this area they would have adopted “No one knows what goes on behind closed doors” as a theme and said NADA about what is or is not appropriate in the marital bed. An expert on the issue that I happen to have known years ago said that what is appropriate is what both partners want to do without being coerced in any degree and that both partners should engage in a little wooing, as in “foreplay can include washing the dishes together”.

  11. Here is the interesting part. Seems Driscolls focus on sex all those years including the acts wives are to perform was really preaching to Grace! Now, we find out from the book’s timeline he was not practicing what he preached.

    Oh, and it is Grace’s fault.

  12. Wake up, it’s marketing, simple as that. Are we bringing people to Christ or selling books. Cult of personality!!!! To those Christians who are killed today, tomorrow and beyond….what shame this must be. There are no words of sorrow that can overcome this stunt. is sex the issue of today? I think not, jobs, war, and many other issues should be grappled with, but sex is the least. To those who still attend this farce… I ask why?

  13. Deb -

    He’ll be asking our Lord to see him through this difficult and exhausting call on his life today and probably thank the Lord at the end of this little stunt as well.

    I think God must just look at his children sometimes and do a big belly laugh, like I might do seeing some funny stunt that my three year old just pulled off (that I really shouldn’t be laughing at!) I would advise the other kids in the room to not try this at home though!

    Maybe he’ll have a disclaimer at the end of the day – after he gets all the attention and publicity he requires!

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  15. I checked in and I don’t even see the Youngs. There’s some guy with a guitar and a couple I don’t recognize.

  16. Thanks for checking, Mara. Have you learned anything worthwhile? I didn’t when I checked a few times during the day.

  17. Deb/Mara
    11PM EST-They are not on the roof- some other people are. Lisa must have a weak bladder.

  18. Joe
    No, people aren’t coming to Christ. they are coming to the Ed show. Those who still attend are the deceived people who have never understood what church is supposed to look like. Ed is dishonoring the faith by presenting a farce.

  19. anon1
    I think Grace may be in a difficult marriage. Can you imagine putting up with a self centered man like that? She is stuck, a bunch of kids and a patriarch who controls even her email.There will be consequences one day and there will be egg on the faces of all those seminary presidents who have allowed Driscoll to get away with this nonsense so they could endorse his book and maybe get a small payback in money or notoriety. i cannot believe these guys really think Driscoll is “the bomb.”

  20. mykingdom
    I think we are entering into some nightmarish days for the church. When will the real grownups stand up?

  21. The Youngs haven’t been on the roof since early this evening. Seems sitting in one place facing directly into the sun and the bright camera lighting for several hours resulted in severe “ocular sunburn” for both of them. They were out receiving medical attention when I first tuned in tonight, and they came back just long enough to be interviewed live by Dr. Drew on CNN. Their eyes were red and watering heavily, and as soon as the interview ended they were outta there. Is this what happens when you look for love in all the wrong places?

    The “bed people” sat around and sang (I use that term loosely) and chatted for the next 3 hours or so (during which time I dozed off several times), and they’ve been playing videos of Ed’s old sermons since. They’re currently running the one from his “Leaving Lust Vegas” series a few years ago where he had the toilet on stage which doubled as a pulpit. It boggles my mind that people could listen to this clown every week. I haven’t heard him read a single scripture in three sermons.

    It’s obvious he’s had facial enhancements since he looked older (and much more natural) then than he does today.

  22. Stupid stunt with serious consequences. Is God taking retribution for making light of the gift of grace?

  23. NSS,

    Proof positive that nothing good ever happens on a roof!

    It must have something to do with physically elevating oneself to the level of Jesus Christ.

    The Tower of Babel comes to mind…

  24. Deb
    There was “smiting” involved. :) God just couldn’t take their nonsense anymore. A fitting end- burned out eyeballs.

  25. I know there are people that will downplay what Ed & Lisa Young are doing as simple theatrics. What’s the big deal?

    Yet, there’s a verse that keeps coming to mind, James 3:15. I’ll include a few different versions for the full effect:

    That kind of wisdom doesn’t come from above. It belongs to this world. It is self-centered and demonic.

    This wisdom descends not from above, but is earthly, sensual, demonic.

    That is not the wisdom which comes down from above: it belongs to earth, to the unspiritual nature, and to evil spirits.

    This is from Barnes Notes on the Bible:

    But is earthly – Has its origin in this world, and partakes of its spirit. It is such as men exhibit who are governed only by worldly maxims and principles.

    Sensual – Margin, “natural.” The meaning is, that it has its origin in our sensual rather than in our intellectual and moral nature. It is that which takes counsel of our natural appetites and propensities, and not of high and spiritual influences.

    devilish – Demoniacal (δαιμονιώδης daimoniōdēs). Such as the demons exhibit. See the notes at James 2:19. There may be indeed talent in it, but there is the intermingling of malignant passions, and it leads to contentions, strifes, divisions, and “every evil work.”

    I am of the opinion that the Christian community has every right to call trouble makers like the Youngs out for creating controversy such as this. They probably assume people who are critical of what they are doing are just stuffed shirts, when that’s hardly the issue. Christians aren’t stupid when it comes to sex and the Young’s have no business involving themselves mentally in anyone else sex lives. I get the impression they, themselves, would be happy for their parishioners to be thinking of Lisa or Ed being in their beds instead of God. They’re certainly not shy about providing the visual aids.

  26. Evie
    I have found that people who have had poor experiences in churches are amongst the most spiritually perceptive as time goes on. So, some guy who calls me arrogant, thinks so because Driscoll is considered a god amongst the wannabes. One day, when they are affected by serious weirdness, and it happens to most people, the tune will change and suddenly they will get TWW’s Prime Directive. Love the lost and hurt before propping up the entities that cause this to occur.

  27. And while Grinning Ed & his Mrs do their bed-in and Deep Throat Driscoll explores the other end of the alimentary canal in the name of God, this My Little Pony fanfic demonstrates more sexual maturity than both of them combined.

    I am normally skeptical of Private Revelations (i.e. “God Hath Revealed Unto Me…”), but a couple years ago, I came across one on the Web that intrigued me. After such Christian movies as Left Behind, Facing the Giants, and Fireproof, the commenter claimed that God had withdrawn his mantle from Christian (TM) media — mene, mene, tekel, uparshin — and placed it on the mainstream secular media. Henceforth, many mainstream secular moviemakers, artists, and writers would begin to say what God wanted said.

    Like I said, I’m normally skeptical of Private Revelation claims, but after reading My Little Pony fanfics with more Gospel in them than most Megachurch Pastors/Apostles, I’m starting to get less skeptical.

  28. HUG — let the rest of us in on this:

    mene, mene, tekel, uparshin

    …so we’re less in the dark.

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