John Piper Says Hollywood Makes Sex Sinful, but It Isn't

John Piper
Theologian, John Piper. |

The portrayal of sex by Hollywood might lead many to the believe that sex is sinful and that it undermines the beauty of Christ's holiness, but Christians should not think this way, says theologian John Piper in his latest blog post, which states that sex in marriage belongs to Believers.

It was false teachers, as pointed out by Paul in 1 Timothy 4:1–5, who believed that "sex in marriage and eating foods freely were at best for second-class Christianity," writes Piper, chancellor of Bethlehem College & Seminary, in his blog, desiringGod.

For believers, "the sex of marriage and the pleasures of food are made holy — that is, they are set apart from the sinful use of the world and made pure and precious and beautiful by participation in the goodness of God," he explains.

Christians should not be embarrassed by the "forthright sensuality of sexual love in marriage as the Bible portrays it — sometimes graphically," adds Piper, who served as pastor of Bethlehem Baptist Church, Minneapolis, Minnesota, for 33 years.

He quotes Proverbs 5:18–21, which reads, "Let your fountain be blessed, and rejoice in the wife of your youth, a lovely deer, a graceful doe. Let her breasts fill you at all times with delight; be intoxicated always in her love. Why should you be intoxicated, my son, with a forbidden woman and embrace the bosom of an adulteress? For a man's ways are before the eyes of the LORD, and he ponders all his paths."

It is no shame, Piper says, "that 'a man's ways are before the Lord' as her breasts fill him at all times with delight. This is why God made her that way and him that way."

He adds: "The heavens are telling the glory of God. We are to see it. And worship Him. So it is with the breasts of our wives. The breasts are telling the glory of God, the goodness of God, the beauty of God, and more. We are to see it. And worship Him."

One of the objectives of the Song of Solomon in the Bible is to "make sure that we take seriously the exquisite physical pleasures between a bride and a groom as a picture of Christ and his Church," Piper writes.

"We might lose sight of this, since Hollywood has ripped the curtains off the sacred marriage bed and turned a luxuriant, holy pleasure into a cheap spectator sport," Piper adds. "We might be tempted to think that, since sex is so sinfully misused and is so universally undermining to the all-satisfying beauty of Christ's holiness, maybe we Christians should have nothing to do with it."

Paul says the opposite, Piper explains. "It is the world that has stolen what belongs to believers. Sex belongs to Christians. Because sex belongs to God."

The theologian concludes by reminding the readers that everything God made is good.

"Everything is for the sake of worship and love," he writes. "And this is true both in the feasting and the fasting. In the sexual union and in abstinence. Sex is made for the glory of Christ — for the Christ-exalting glory of covenant-keeping faithfulness in marriage, and for the glory of Christ-exalting chastity in singleness. It is always good. Sex is always an occasion to show that the Giver of sex is better than sex."

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