Thursday, October 4, 2012

Scriptural View of Creation - Sex - Marriage Taught at Camp Trinity

Dr. Pamela Moehl – Cedar Hill, Missouri, Lutheran Church


Christian News, October 8, 2012; Vol. 50, No 39      
What the Bible teaches about creation, sex, and marriage was emphasized at a retreat held at Camp Trinity, New Haven, Missouri, September 28-30. Educational Consultant Dr. Pamela Moehl was the primary speaker at the gathering.(pamelamoehl@centurytel.net)

Some 50 youth and their leaders from Cedar Hill, Missouri Lutheran Church attended the gathering. Dr. David A. Bilgreen is the pastor of the Missouri Synod Lutheran Church congregation. LCMS’s 2012 Lutheran Annual reports that the congregation has 278 baptized members, 213 confirmed members and an average attendance of 205.


Dr. Moehl’s lectures are summarized in a 26 page booklet she distributed at Camp Trinity. It is titled “Sanctification 2012” and shows a youth with these words on his shirt: Psalm 119:9: “How shall a young man keep his way pure. By living according to your Word.

The cover has this prayer: “Give me one pure and holy passion, And give me one magnificent obsession. Give me one glorious ambition for my life, To know and follow hard after you. To grow as your disciple in the truth. This world is empty, pale, and poor compared to knowing you my Lord. Lead me on and I will run after you.”

Dr. Moehl begins with the “7 C’s of History” promoted at the Answers In Genesis Museum in St. Petersburg, Kentucky. They are:
Creation, Corruption, Catastrophe, Confusion, Christ, Cross, Consummation.

In a section on “God’s Design” Moehl says:
“The Bible portrays healthy sexuality as more than just purity. There is a beauty, a joy and a God-centeredness to sex in marriage according to Scripture. Whether single or married, healthy sexuality grows out of an understanding of God’s perspective on sex as described in His Word.

“The first two chapters of Genesis describe God’s perfect purposes for humankind and positive view of human sexuality” (7).

Moehl comments on healthy and unhealthy relationships. Moehl made it clear that for Christians there is to be no sex outside of marriage. She noted:

“Myth: If you’re still a virgin, there must be something wrong with you!

“Truth: Studies show that virgins have better life outcomes in the areas of high school graduation, college attendance, marriage, finances, and general health” (11).

She quoted Tom Lickona: “Not long after the sexual revolution was underway, clinicians observed that the new sexual freedom was creating a psychological disaster. We began to study Harvard students who complained of emptiness and despondency. There was a gap between their social conscience and the morality they were practicing in their personal lives. The new sexual permissiveness was leading to empathy relationships and feelings of self-contempt. When some of them moved away from moral relativism to a system of clear values – typically embracing a drug-free lifestyle and a strict sexual code – their relationships with the opposite sex improved, as did relations with peers in general, relationships with parents, and their academic performance.” – Tom Lickona (12).

Moehl said: “Satan’s plot was to divorce sex from the intimacy of marriage. What was created to be both a physical and relational expression of oneness became an act of mere physical pleasure – devoid of God and focused on self. To be sure, the physical pleasure of sex is alluring and even addiction. But sex outside of God’s boundaries has destructive spiritual, relational and physical repercussions” (13).

Moehl continues: “This passage describes the progressive sexual perversion of humanity. Paul’s reflection on sexual immorality underscores one crucial forgotten factor in most discussions on the subject. Sexual immorality starts with a wrong view of God. Idolatry is the root of sexual immorality.

“This sexually perverse environment has confronted the people of God throughout history. From the homosexuality of Sodom and Gomorrah, to the sexually degrading fertility rites of the Canaanites in the Old Testament, to the temple prostitutes of Corinth in the New Testament, God’s people have always been bombarded with sexual temptation. What we face in today’s world is nothing new” (13).

In a section on “Sex and the Brain” Moehl said:

Pornography
Medical educator and physician Dr. Gary Rose has a lot to say about the neurochemistry of sex, and how it enables the permanent “warping” of young minds by exposure to a hyper-sexualized culture. In a recent interview, Dr. Rose explains the mechanism by which the damage is done.

Dr. Rose: “This is so important because in young people their brains are still being molded. If they are getting the wrong flood of chemicals— if their neural pathways are being developed in an abnormal way, those parts of the brain will be superhighways that can’t be changed when they come into adult life. People who have multiple sexual partners at a young age are likely going to continue to have multiple partners all their lives. Certain synapses of the brain will be pruned off— and risk avoidance and delayed gratification may be affected” (14).

Mark Kastleman, in his landmark book, The Drug of the New Millennium-The Brain Science Behind Internet Pornography Use, sheds light on the addictive power of porn. His research, with the help of leading neurologists, uncovered the truth about pornography: it alters the brain and is addicting. Pornography addiction is real.

“Here’s what happens - During the sexual process the brain releases neurochemicals that, in a healthy marriage, significantly enhance the couple’s relationship. The same chemicals are released in the brain when viewing pornography, but the effect is anything but positive!

“What is created is an actual chemical dependency on those natural chemicals to provide a ‘high’ or an ‘escape.’ In a healthy marriage, sexual intimacy has the powerful effect of strengthening the bonds of marriage. It makes the couple more equipped to lead happy, healthy, productive lives. Viewing pornography releases the same natural chemicals but in an environment that is completely sterile of anything uplifting or good. Very different from a healthy marriage. A married couple comes together in a warm, mutually beneficial experience. The relationship is bound together in love, sacrifice, and commitment.

Viewing porn is a powerfully negative experience that leaves the viewer less able to cope with life’s stresses, less equipped to lead a happy, healthy, productive life. There is nothing that comes from viewing it that has positive, long lasting value, like peace or strength.

“Until an addiction to porn is stopped, the user only faces a future of more negatives: despair, self-loathing, and a tendency for more deviant material and behavior to satisfy the unbridled urge for more, more, more” (14).

The Reality of Porn
“Exposure to Pornography - The Justice Department estimates that nine of 10 children between the ages of 8 and 16 have been exposed to pornography online. Software company Symantec found that 47 percent of school-age children receive pornographic spam on a daily basis, and representatives from the pornography industry told Congress’ COPA Commission that as much as 20 to 30 percent of the traffic to some pornographic Web sites are children.

“Ralph DiClemente, a behavioral scientist at Emory University, described the danger of this exposure. He said, ‘[Children] can’t just put [porn] into their worldview, because they don’t have one.’ He went on to explain that pornography becomes a building block in a child’s mental and emotional development. When pornography becomes a filter through which the rest of life is understood, serious damage occurs. A 2001 report found that more than half of all sex offenders in Utah were adolescents- and children as young as 8 years old were committing felony sexual assault.

“The porn industry fights laws such as the Child Online Protection Act, which requires pornographers to use age verification systems, because they know this flood of pornographic imagery is creating a new generation of consumers. This increased culture-wide sexualization is generating incredible public health risks. One in five adults in the United States has an STD, and 19 million new STD infections occur annually, almost half of them among youth ages 15 to 24" (15).

Happy Marriage vs. Addiction to Porn
“So, in healthy marriage, sexual intimacy is a gift. You come away from the experience a better person, more committed to your spouse. You are more compassionate and understanding. You are better able to tackle the challenges of life. You’re empowered to be successful in your important roles as an individual, in your family, at work, in the community–everywhere!

“In contrast, with an addiction to porn, viewing it and acting out, leaves you with a mental and emotional hangover that depletes your feelings of self-worth. After the rush that produces the temporary high, there is no one to turn to for love and acceptance. You ultimately feel trapped and depressed.

“Porn narrows the viewer’s perspective of some of the best things in life and greatly limits his ability to appreciate them. This narrowness greatly distorts his view of reality. Truly, the ‘benefits’ of feeling the release of these natural drugs as a result of viewing pornography is a very, very shallow victory.

Healthy Sex in Marriage
Healthy sex in marriage is possible for those who have struggled with pornography addiction. The good news is that you can reverse this problem and find peace as well as appropriate intimacy with your spouse. People are turning from porn every day and working to get their life back. You can too. Believe it can happen for you, and it most assuredly will as you pursue the path that leads to it.

“Pursue the path that leads to new patterns of thought.

“Thoughts of porn and the mental images that are stored in your brain don’t just suddenly disappear. Over many years you have wired your brain to connect to porn as your ‘thought of choice.’ At many different moments throughout the day, particularly when you’re tired, stressed, etc. –moments when you’re not at your best-your brain goes there.

So, the key is to develop new patterns of thought that will replace the old standby thoughts of porn. This way your brain begins to pursue new pathways. Over time, as you continue to pursue them, they become stronger and stronger. New interests begin to take over as old porn habits are replaced with new and positive ones.

“Porn doesn’t just go away. You push it out of your life by replacing it” (16).

What is Secondary Virginity?
“Secondary virginity makes a person emotionally and spiritually whole again. God wants to restore our purity. Even though the physical consequences of premarital sex can be devastating and life threatening, some people underestimate the emotional and spiritual effects of sex outside of marriage. Furthermore, the emotional and spiritual effects of sex can be longer lasting and even more severe than the physical repercussions.

“After having premarital sex, a person may feel lonely, hurt, broken, afraid, guilty, used, unlovable (by God and others), confused, and many other emotions. Although it might seem like these feelings will never go away, eventually they can diminish and sometimes even disappear. Through prayer, counseling, confession, and penance, God has the power heal us. This process doesn’t work like magic. One must be truly sorry, understanding the hurt that has been caused. He or she should sincerely desire forgiveness so they can be made whole again. And, most importantly, one must seriously commit him/herself to a life of chastity (refrain from sexual activity outside of marriage).

“Secondary virginity is a gift from God. It should not be received lightly and it is not something that happens immediately. It takes time for an injured person to heal and it can be a very slow process, but with God’s grace things will get easier. Don’t give up. If you seek out and pray for the gift of secondary virginity, it could be one of the most life-changing experiences of your whole life!” (17).

Choosing a Partner for Life
“Make sure your life partner loves God more than he or she loves you. Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it:

‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ (Matthew 22:37-39, NIV) It is so important to observe your partner’s love for God. Why? Because in time, the way he or she loves and serves Him will be reflected in the way he or she loves and serves you.

“Make sure your life partner is a person of character.’ Blessed are they whose ways are blameless, who walk according to the law of the Lord.’ (Psalm 119:1, NIV) Men and women of character are trustworthy in all they do and have an appetite for righteousness. They will keep their word no matter what the cost.

“Make sure your life partner is kind to others: (And be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, just as God in Christ also forgave you.’ (Ephesians 4:32, NKJV) If you don’t see your partner treat others with kindness and grace, in time he or she will be treating you the same” (21).

“Make sure to note the way your life partner dresses.
“Make sure your life partner is respected by others.
“Make sure your life partner is not flirtatious.
“Make sure you understand the true priorities of your life partner’s life.
“Make sure you know whom your life partner’s close friends are.
“Make sure your life partner is not contentious or violent.
“Make sure you ask the Lord for discernment. (21).

Many of the books and DVD listed in Dr. Moehler’s “Resource on Creation” or from Ken Ham and Answer’s in Genesis. CN sells some of them. Some of the DVD may be watched in the Resource Center at Camp Trinity.

Creationism at Camp Trinity
Dr. David Menton who taught at Washington University for more than thirty years received many awards, including “Teacher of the Year” has lectured at Camp Trinity. Dr. Walter Lammerts, founder of the Creation Research Society; Dr. Walter Lang, founder of the Bible-science Association; Dr. John Mackey, who debated evolutionist John Polkinghorne, in Liverpool Cathedral. Dr. Kurt Marquart, Dr. William Beck, Dr. Menton and other Christian creationist have spoken at Trinity Lutheran Church in New Haven. Change in LCMS Today the books at such evolutionist as John Polkinghorne are recommended at Concordia Seminary, St. Louis while books or DVD’s from Answers in Genesis which Dr. Moelh recommended at Camp Trinity are given the silent treatment. A pastor who files charges of false doctrine against any evolutionist on the LCMS clergy roster is considered an impenitent sinner on the road to hell. Under the LCMS Koinonia project there is plenty of room for evolutionists.

The LCMS’s CPH no longer sells any books by Lutheran Hour Speaker Walter Maier but sells and heavily promotes books by Dietrich Bonhoeffer, who promoted evolution and regarded Adam and Eve and the Resurrection of Christ as myths.

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