Biblical Foundations: Fallen Sexuality

While many conservative Christians need to be reminded of a Creation foundation for our view of sexuality, we do not typically need to be reminded about the effects of the Fall. Adam and Eve rebelled against God, and their shame over their nakedness was the first and most immediate effect of the Fall from grace. Even though there was nothing wrong with their physical nakedness, they could not bear the vulnerability of nakedness before God or each other. Shame remains part of our fallen human heritage. Beyond shame over what we have done, we feel shame at what we are.

Immediately after Adam and Eve sinned, God told them that power struggles between the two of them—and between women and men forever—would be one of the legacies of their choices (Genesis 3). The Fall brought the distortions of selfishness and pride into our sexual lives. Disease, pain in childbirth, and death also all entered the world and our sexual relationships. We became people who could worship sex like an idol. We became capable of treating people like objects to be used for our selfish gratification. The motives of rebellion against God—greed, insecurity, anger, possessiveness, and more—became part of our experience, including our sexual experience. And we became capable of becoming enslaved to our lusts.

We are more than just physical, sexual, relational beings; we are also sinful beings. Truly our depravity is total. Our whole nature, including our sexual nature, is polluted by sin. Because we are broken, it was necessary that God reach down to save us or we would be lost forever.