Many interns have complained about Ron Luce’s sex teaching which includes the ideas that oral sex is wrong, lingerie is wrong and missionary position is the only correct way to have sex. (Yes, he is actually serious.) In the past, Dave Hasz has responded by saying that Ron is just giving his personal convictions, not saying that his views are Scriptural. However, according to this recording from 2001, Ron starts this talk by saying:
@ 1:00 – We are going to talk about God’s idea of intimacy in marriage.
Throughout the class, he continues to preach as if all of these ideas are God’s truth and not just his personal conviction. Sadly, nearly all of Ron’s teaching is based on using guilt and fear to motivate his audience. On top of that, there are so many nonsensical ideas that one post can’t do it justice. Instead of critiquing every line, here are a few things that jumped out at me.
Ron starts out with his famous passion button teaching. He says there is a passion button inside of us and we shouldn’t let anyone push it except our spouse. He goes on for a while about this.
I actually do think he makes some helpful points about protecting yourself here, but they are mixed with some unhelpful ideas as well. Personally, I think that instead of creating a mythical passion button, it might be more helpful to explain to the interns how hormones and sex drive actually works. There is no reason to be afraid of that information and it would actually arm them with the ability to understand what is going on in their bodies.
The other problem I see with this teaching is that Ron acts like we always have a choice about when our “passion button” is pushed. Let’s just get in reality here – if you live in America, you are going to see things that will turn you on. Heck, even if you don’t live in America. It’s just a fact of life for anyone who has experienced puberty. Instead of making people feel guilty about ever feeling sexually turned on, it would be better to help them recognize their sexuality as a gift from God and not something to be ashamed of.
@ 30:42 – And so what I’m saying is this – this is both for ladies and for guys: You need to be the one that keeps turning your spouses head. Not because you are trying to compete with the world but because why? Because you respect yourself. You take care of yourself, you know, whether that is your weight, whether that is your hair, whether that’s your clothes. Don’t be a slob and say, “Well you gotta stay married to me! What’s wrong? How come you are looking at all those porn magazines? How come?”
Well…And that doesn’t justify somebody looking at porn, but I’m just saying that you ought to respect yourself enough and your spouse and say, you know what? I’m gonna take care of myself because I want to look good for them.
Ok, wow. Really, Ron? Let’s start with the nonsensical (or ill-explained) question and answer.
Q – Why should you want to be the one to turn your spouses head?
A – Because you respect yourself.
That doesn’t even make sense to me but maybe I’m dense.
Second, even though he tried to take it back, he acted like a woman can’t be mad at her husband for using porn if she is not keeping herself beautiful.
For all of his talk about not being like the world and doing marriage and sex God’s way – this sure does seem like a very “worldly” idea!
Not surprisingly, he talks about sex from a man’s perspective (Be pretty, woman!) but fails to give a woman’s perspective.
@ 36:30 – Sexual intimacy outside of marriage always breaks trust. If you have sex before marriage, you’ll never have full trust in your partner. You’ll be suspicious that they are cheating on you for the rest of your lives. It doesn’t matter what you do or how much you forgive.
That sex before marriage breaks trust might be true in some cases, but it’s not fair to apply it as a blanket statement. First of all, it’s not in Scripture, so why is he teaching it? Second, its not even sound advice. There are PLENTY of Christian couples that had sex with each other before marriage and it has not affected their trust in each other. Third, building our lives on guilt and fear based motivation instead of a love for Jesus and others is very dangerous. Its the difference between shifting sand and a rock.
And what about when trust is broken? What about forgiveness, grace and reconciliation? Those don’t apply if you do a really “bad” sin? Give me a break.
@ 39:43 – So what I always tell people if they ever say, “Well, we’ve blown it, we’ve had sex but we still want to get married.” I say, “Break up.” ….What you’ve told me by your sexual involvement is that you are not mature enough for a romance….you have not learned how to exercise self control…you shouldn’t be thinking about a romance. You should be thinking about your own character and your walk with God….After you break up for a while and spend time with God, then see if God will draw you back together.
@ 41:30 – Some people say, “Well, that’s too radical.” Well, if you don’t want a wholesome marriage, then you don’t have to do it this way.
Apparently, Ron thinks his advice is better than the Apostle Paul’s. Paul said the exact opposite – he told the unmarried that if they can’t control themselves that they should marry.
I Corinthians 7:8-9
Now to the unmarried and the widows I say: It is good for them to stay unmarried, as I am. But if they cannot control themselves, they should marry, for it is better to marry than to burn with passion.
@ 57:00 – You need to get whole in your heart (from sexual abuse) before you’re married. Its imperative…You definitely can’t get married with that.
Really? I haven’t been sexually abused but I imagine that a husband or wife could be an integral part of healing from sexual abuse. How can Ron say this with a straight face, especially since he has 2 psychology degrees?
I would imagine that people who have been sexually abused already struggle with not feeling good enough, with feeling like damaged goods – and now telling them that they can’t get married until they are “fixed” just reinforces that! Yes, seek healing – but healing comes through relationships. Not just fasting in the back forty, Ron.
@ 58:00 – Let’s talk about oral sex. Christians justify this because of Hebrews 13:4.(Marriage should be honored by all, and the marriage bed kept pure.) People say that means as long as you are married you can do whatever you want. People use this Scripture to justify treating their wives like animals.
Is it too much to ask for some simple logic from a person responsible for teaching tens of thousands of people? In a few words he equates oral sex to treating your spouse like an animal. Huh? That is quite a jump. And if he contends that Hebrews 13:4 doesn’t mean that you can do whatever is mutually agreeable in the bedroom, then why doesn’t he offer up and alternate interpretation?
It’s very irresponsible to make these kinds of sweeping statements to impressionable young people. In fact, as this article points out – oral sex is not explicitly mentioned anywhere in the Bible.
No where does the Bible forbid it or discuss it. There is no biblical evidence that it is a sin against God for a husband and wife to express love for each other in this way. Even the book of Leviticus, which mentions many Old Testament sex-related prohibitions and rules for the Israelites, never mentions it
@ 58:30 – Think about this for a second. Humans are the only species that God made that can face each other while having intercourse. How about that? There is a reason for that: because its not an animal act, its intimacy with a person. God made us so that we are forced to look at each other in the eye when we experience intimacy with each other. Not just an animal drive, it’s a relationship with another person.
He could have used a Scriptural argument here to back up his idea that missionary position is the only “godly” way. Oh wait, no, he actually couldn’t – because it’s not in Scripture. In addition, it’s easy to debunk his logic. Several animals have sex face to face:
– Pygmy Chimpanzees
The reality is that Ron does have a few nuggets of truth throughout this talk, but they are surrounded by so much nonsensical “logic” and unscriptural ideas that it can be hard to distinguish the truth from the lies.
It’s sad that so many Christian leaders choose to use guilt and fear tactics when talking to Christians about sex. They might as well be saying, “I don’t trust God’s love or the Holy Spirit’s conviction to guide your heart’s decisions.”