Esther Tyson, Contributor
Wow! Adam proclaimed. She is bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh! Instant attraction, chemistry activated, orchestrated by no other than the Creator, Almighty God. He brought Eve to Adam and they became 'one flesh'. This first act of sexual intercourse was fashioned by God. Sex is His creation, His idea.
In His blueprint for mankind, the Bible, He outlines how His creatures are to use and protect this sacred, potent gift. Because of how powerful sex is, He ordained it to be enjoyed in an exclusive, private relationship between one man and one woman in marriage. (See Genesis 2:21-25)
Think about it. This gift can be compared to the rarest jewel that is kept under conditions conducive to its being well preserved and to ensure that its beauty is maintained. It is kept secure under high-level protection. In God's blueprint, marriage is that place of protection and security. It is the safest context for the gift of sex to be enjoyed between one man and one woman. Paul highlights this in the New Testament by saying that we are to:
"Honour marriage, and guard the sacredness of sexual intimacy between wife and husband. God draws a firm line against casual and illicit sex." (The Message Bible - Hebrews 13:4)
Marriage provides a safe place to develop the intimacy that is important in God's blueprint for sex. Sexual passion is like a fire. It ignites life and energy, it gives warmth, but misused and uncontrolled, it becomes a destructive force.
ENJOY SEXUAL LOVE
There are some persons who would want us to believe that God does not want us to enjoy sex. They could not have read the erotic Songs of Solomon nor the verses describing married love in the book of Proverbs 5:15-20 (NKJV). Verses 18-19 are very clear that we are to enjoy sexual love:
"Let your fountain be blessed, And rejoice with the wife of your youth. As a loving deer and a graceful doe, let her breasts satisfy you at all times; and always be enraptured with her love."
God also created marriage as the foundation for the family and, in turn, the structure of family as the foundation for society. Marriage, then, was intended by God to be the bedrock on which society is built. His intention was to create a safe and wholesome environment for bringing children into the world and for rearing them to be wholesome individuals who would, in turn, contribute to a productive nation.
This plan became distorted when man began to misuse and abuse the gift of sex. All around us we see how the misuse of this gift has caused mankind limitless sorrow. On a personal level, persons suffer the effects through self-esteem issues, promiscuity, sexually transmitted infections, unwanted pregnancy, broken families, rejection, suicide, and personal setbacks. On a societal level, there are unwanted children, fatherless children, public-health crises, gangsterism, crime and poverty.
In Jamaica, the misuse of this powerful gift has brought dire consequences. In spite of the many positives in our country, there are many negatives that originate in the abuse of one of God's most awesome gifts to us. Many of our men have bought into the mindset, instilled in them by our slave masters, that in order to be a 'man', you need to have, not one woman with whom you have children and raise a family, but 'gyal in a bungle'.
So many of our men think they are being free by doing this, yet instead, they are simply following the call of their groins, perpetuating the stud mentality that was nurtured in a plantation system that was more concerned about slaves breeding like animals instead of nurturing a stable family. A stable family would have been a threat to the colonial masters. When are our men going to realise this?
RESPONSIBILITIES NOT CONSIDERED
Our women assist in this practice by allowing themselves to be used as a repository for men's seed. It seems that there is little thought given to the responsibilities that come with having sex. One major responsibility has to do with parenthood. Even in an age when birth-control methods are common, there are still many unwanted children who are born as products of sexual unions that were enjoyed simply for the moment, with little thought of the consequences. Passion without responsibility always produces dangerous results.
So we have 80 per cent of our children born out of wedlock. Many of these children have no relationship with their fathers. It is as if they were produced by simply a sperm donor. The problem is that their mothers, many times, cannot support them financially. Therefore, a cycle of poverty continues and develops in another generation.
Not only do we have perpetuating poverty, but we have children who have a sense of rejection from having no relationship with their fathers, or fathers who are abusive. Furthermore, in Jamaica, we are hearing of more and more children being abandoned or abused by their mothers.
Many of us who work with children know that, oftentimes, those who are brought up in homes with a caring and supportive mother and father usually succeed academically, are socially well adapted and move on to be productive citizens. The converse is also true - that many of the children who grow up to be maladaptive and who exhibit antisocial behaviours come from a background of neglect and abuse.
Therefore, when are we, as a society, going to realise that it is economic sense to promote a healthy family life by beginning to promote the use of sex the way God intended it? We should promote this lifestyle and reap the attendant benefits, instead of enabling a sexual culture that is anathema to good sense!
Esther Tyson is an educator. Email feedback to email@example.com.