Back in 1999, comedian Chris Rock did a song entitled ‘No Sex in the Champagne Room’, informing listeners that, despite any claims made by a stripper, that there is no possibility that said act will actually happen. He did, incidentally, give the most accurate horoscope ever given in that song, indicating that each sign was ‘gonna die’.
Now, I’m not saying that I think couples should copulate in a church’s prayer room as a general practice. My thought goes a bit deeper. Those of you who are reading this who grew up in church, think about what most churches say about sex: “Don’t do it independent of marriage”. Now obviously, yes, that is a biblical principle that certainly should be made clear, for plenty of reasons. I don’t dispute that. Here’s the part that I find curiously – and consistently – absent in the church: the other part where married couples are unilaterally encouraged to engage in sex. The youth group is all told ‘don’t have sex’. Married couples are told…not much, because the stipulation no longer applies to them, and…they’ll figure it out, I guess?
Perhaps this is just a limitation of perspective as I’m not married myself, but why isn’t there some form of sex ed in churches with marriage ministries? It’s a cultural catch-22 because it’s both shameful for people to imagine someone having sex with their spouse, and it’s also shameful for people to know that they don’t have sex with their spouse. I’ve yet to step foot in a church that has any sort of specifically assigned ‘time and place’ to discuss sex within marriages, nor have I ever had a discussion with a married couple with regards to their sex life.
Now, the most likely thought being had here is, “but that’s private and personal, just between them!” Well, to be fair to this point, it’s certainly up to a given couple as to whether they would be okay discussing sex with someone who isn’t a part of that marriage, and due to cultural norms, it’s certainly not the kind of topic that is likely to ‘just come up’. However, I’ve somehow managed to speak with married couples about their jobs, their children’s health, their food allergies, their pre-marital dating story, their finances (including a near-foreclosure), their medical problems, their military service, their political inclinations, and in one case, their spouse’s infidelity. Somehow all of those things can ‘just come up’ over the course of a social visit or computer repair, but whether they preferred vaginal penetration or anal penetration has never once come up? Or does the fact that you probably had a response that was something to the effect of “uhm…can you tone it down a bit?” a symptom of the very matter at hand?
Find me one other blessing from God that is as socially repressed as marital sex. Find me one other topic that is as explicitly discussed in the Bible as a God-given gift, that is as ignored by most churches as sex among their married members (and no, interdenominational doctrinal differences about whether the gifts of the Holy Spirit are still a thing doesn’t count). As the Body of Christ, we can do better. God’s wonderful gift of sex deserves better. The Body of Christ itself deserves better.