by Brackin Kirkland.
“It (wisdom) will save you also from the adulteress, from the wayward wife with her seductive words,” Proverb 2:16
From a Father of Five Boys
As a father of 5 boys, I am painfully aware of my need to teach each one of them about purity and chastity. Personally, I struggled with these issues as a young man – and if you’re a red-blooded male with breath in your lungs, you know that the struggle against sexual sin is all too real. But I’m going to go out on a limb here and suggest that teaching our sons about purity and chastity is not the most effective way to deal with these issues of the eyes, hearts and hands. Let me explain…
My Dad’s Approach
When I was about 14 years old, I remember an awkward day when my dad took me to the local county fair. It was supposed to be a father-son outing, but honestly I just wanted to be with my girlfriend instead. As we pulled into the parking lot, my dad stopped, retrieved a small box from his pocket, and began to share with me the importance of not “fooling around with” my girlfriend – and that we should wait until marriage to become intimate with each other. [Whoops…too late for that.]
Toward the end of his admonishment (which I had heard countless times before from the pulpit and elsewhere), he opened the small box to reveal a very manly looking “chastity ring” for me to wear as a reminder to remain pure. I remember feeling a bit embarrassed by the whole ordeal, but in hindsight I greatly appreciate my dad’s love toward me and his desire for me to remain pure until marriage.
The problem with this approach, however, is two-fold. First, it was too little, too late. And secondly, this approach only targets the symptoms of sexual sin, and not the root itself.
Too Little, Too Late
Honestly, I don’t ever remember having “the conversation” (you know…the birds and bees) with my dad. He may have said something at some point, but obviously it didn’t make an impact on me. I do, however, vividly remember a sex-ed video we watched in the 5th grade and the many colorful conversations that ensued with my school-yard peers.
I personally feel very strongly about teaching my boys about physical intimacy from both a biologically reproductive perspective (we have livestock, so this shouldn’t be too difficult) and from a biblical covenant perspective – I believe that teaching one without the other will only leave room for the enemy to distort God’s intended design for a man and a woman.
These may be uncomfortable conversations to have, BUT they are going to learn it from somewhere, and the alternative is…well, sketchy at best.
Getting to the ROOT of the Problem
So if the first step is to talk about the natural role of sexuality in a married man’s life, then the second GIANT hurdle it to get them through adolescence without falling into TEMPTATION prior to marriage. This is the area where my dad (bless his heart) did not prepare me. We had the “purity” talk, but I was completely unprepared for what to do with and how to handle my pubescent urges.
I won’t criticize my dad for what he could have or should have done. But I can learn from his shortcomings and hopefully guide my boys through that critical and snare-laden stage of life.
The Wayward Woman
The snares they will encounter are detailed vividly in Proverbs 7:
“There a woman met him, with the attire of a harlot, and a crafty heart. She was loud and rebellious; her feet would not stay at home. At times she was outside, at times in the open square, lurking at every corner. So she caught him and kissed him…”
And it goes on and on, as a dire warning.
Obviously the writer is using this harlot as a metaphor for being lured away from God’s law and His heart, but there is also a literal warning to be wary of women who will drown our souls – or the souls of our boys – in perdition.
This passage perfectly illustrates the devil’s finest art form – temptation. He doesn’t have to tell us lies or convince us that chastity isn’t worth “worth the wait”. All he has to do is have “her” (that figurative harlot) bat her eyelashes at us, and we melt.
To reiterate: The “purity” conversation is not enough, because the enemy’s weapons are STONGER than our desire to remain PURE.
Attacking Temptation at the HEART
The Bible tells us that Jesus was tempted in EVERY way that is common to man. When Jesus was tempted by the devil in the wilderness, He did not concede – instead He fought temptation with the Word of God and got the VICTORY over Satan’s only strategy.
If Jesus can do it – and if we are born-again and thus empowered by His Holy Spirit – then we TOO can overcome temptation with God’s help, and TEACH our boys how to do the same.
THIS is the secret weapon in our arsenal against sexual sin – the POWER of God. We need to teach our boys how to practically and spiritually harness the Word of God against the devil’s fiery darts and snares. We need to EMPOWER them to remain pure from the INSIDE out, not only addressing the outward symptoms of temptation, but also preparing them to do battle with the enemy on the front-line of their hearts!
Brackin Kirkland is a true renaissance man. He makes bio-fuel from used cooking oil, flips RVs, is a woodworker, technician, songwriter and musician. Almost 40, 000 people subscribe to his weekly YouTube music videos and vlog “Tiny Notes from Home,” Brackin is passionate, and real, about family and faith. He has four sons.