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Sex sells…and who's buying??

Just had to share this quick blurb about a church that is attracting members with sex.  This is a new approach coming from the leading proponent of abstinence, shame, and sexual matyrdom in the name of God.  New Life Fellowship in Orange Park, Florida, which opened just a few months ago next to a pizza parlor, has launched a series of sexy billboard ads with the title “Pure Sex God’s Way”, featuring its series of sermons about enjoying sex as God intended. 

Sexy billboard

 The church’s pastor, Bob Morro, says, “”We’re giving people the way God created sex for us, and what his intentions for sex are. It seems like the world has lost its value of sex nowadays. STDs are up, divorce is up and we just want to show them God has designed sex. He wants us to have great sex, but he wants us to have it in his parameters.”

 Their approach has evidently been working because membership has increased enough for them to be looking at land for a larger church. 

This isn’t a rant – it might even be good that they’re talking about it (unless they’re advocating abstinence in place of birth control or other such nonsense, which the article didn’t specify).  That said, add this to the never-ending muddle of biblical interpretation.  If nothing else, it made me laugh.

Rebecca Watson

Rebecca leads a team of skeptical female activists at Skepchick.org. She travels around the world delivering entertaining talks on science, atheism, feminism, and skepticism. There is currently an asteroid orbiting the sun with her name on it. You can follow her every fascinating move on Twitter or on Google+.

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32 Comments

  1. "It seems like the world has lost its value of sex nowadays."

    What? I didn't even know the world had a given value of sex. Is it a closed system? If I have sex, does that mean that someone else won't get any? I would really like to know the units of measure.

    Personally, sex seems more valuable to me every day. But, that may just be the middle-age talking.

  2. TomDG – you're not the only one that thought that seeing the billboard but let's just hope they are a bit too literal in encouraging the image of the "little woman".

  3. You know,

    For once, I'm lost for words.

    This makes me sick.

    "god's plan" for good sex?

    Okay, look at Anne Coulter…I rest my case (unless you're into T-girls, then go for it…)

    rod

  4. Their approach has evidently been working because membership has increased enough for them to be looking at land for a larger church.

    Well, that explains it. Their real goal is to increase membership, so they're approaching this whole issue from a missionary position.

    ~Wordplayer

  5. If I remember god's plan for sex correctly it goes something like

    1. Convince nagging wife to turn around and look at something god told you not to so he will turn her to salt.

    2. Get your daughters to liquor you up and have sex with you.

    3. Doctor the records so that the story's all about "poor little old you" and no one notices how creepy you are.

  6. Wait-wait! What about toss your girlfriend outsideto a mob to be gang-raped to death, and then in the morning, cut up her body and post the pieces far and wide.

  7. I'm visiting Jacksonville, Florida (and will be headed to Ft. Meyers for TAM 5.5 while I'm here), and was driving down Blanding Blvd. last week when we – the people in the car and I – caught sight of most of this billboard. We couldn't see the text to the right of the right-most foot, and the conversation in the car went something like this:

    Me: Pure sex? What is that about?
    Other person 1: Foot fetish?
    Other Person 2: Looks like sex with little boys from the picture.
    Other Person 3: Is this an ad for a porn site? Would Clear Channel even allow that?
    Other Person 2: That's just creepy whatever it is.

    Then traffic started moving and we could see the whole billboard and it all became clear. Although one person said "that would be pretty funny if it were a Catholic church."

    Yesterday the local TV news carried a story about how "controversial" the billboard was in the community, with some man-on-the-street interviews, and a brief interview with the pastor of this church. His comments were along the lines of these remarks from their website:

    "Illegitimacy rates are at an all time high. Sexually transmitted diseases are at an all time high. We have high divorce rates, sexual problems in marriages, poor choices among singles and teens, confusion about marriage, sexual addictions, and sexual confusion about adultery, premarital sex, homosexuality, and pornography."

    He didn't present any data backing up his claims that STDs are at an all-time high (or illegitimacy rates, if you recognize the concept of an illegitimate child, which I'm not inclined to do). The pastor's televised remarks concerning STDs were very concerning – this is almost certainly a wingnut who believes in "abstinence only" and is against contraceptives.

  8. Speaking of positions and kink – I can NOT figure out what those two are doing. The "smaller person" appears to be on their side and the other person is face down. Both of them have their legs straight so their feet are hanging over the edge of the bed. That doesn't even seem like it would work…

    Is THAT "God's way"???

  9. The saddest part of this whole thing (okay, maybe not the saddest, but you get my drift) is this this is actually a marketing campaign that churches actually purchase and use. While living in new Orleans, there was a church that ran the same ad campaign. Hold on, I'll google for the website. Oh well. After searching briefly, I came up with nothing; however, I've actually seen this same marketing ad before. Maybe someone else will have more luck.

  10. Don't be too hopeful. I'm listening to one of the sermons from their website–"Satan Sex-ed: What Satan is Telling Your Kids." I'm only 9.5 minutes into it and, let's see–the majority of porn on the Internet is viewed by 12-17 year olds (he didn't mention what orifice he pulled that statistic out of), he's using Paul (yes, mysoginist, sex-hating Paul) as his authority (this can't be good) and has just stated that Paul's main lesson is "your bod belongs to God". After all, as he puts it, "…when you get sick you don't heal your body. God does." Amazing! Here I was thinking it was my immune system assisted as necessary by physicians. Silly me!

    And, oh dear, just got to 11+ minutes and he's defining "sexual immorality" (Paul's words) using the Greek root "pornia" and defining it as "adultery, incest, pre-marital sex and," my favorite, "any **extra-marital sexual arousal**," which he's now using as a catch-all for any thing that isn't married people sex–porn, making out, etc. Yipes! Seems like it's the Religious Right's same ol', same ol' with new packaging.

  11. extra-marital sexual arousal?! Holy crap, that's strict. How are you supposed to know you'll be aroused by your spouse after the marriage if you're not allowed to be be before? What happens if you accidentally glimpse someone walking down the street and inadvertantly get aroused? Maybe you have to run off and marry them immediately so as to preserve your purity. Yuck.

  12. @kellbelle1020

    The preacher is advocating Paul's "Run! Run away! Run, Forrest, run!" (that's a reasonably accurate quote) as the cure-all. I gave up at the half-way mark where he was describing non-marital sex as "sticky" (only if you do it right….ba-dum-bum!) and comparing it to duct tape. That sound you just heard was an analogy stretched past it's breaking point. Later today, after ingesting a couple of Dramamine or maybe a couple of beers, I'll try and listen to the rest of that one and the other couple sermons in the series. I've got a strong stomach, but if I don't make it, I hope the skeptical community appreciates my throwing myself on the hand-grenade to save others of my ilk.

  13. myeh, I had sex with God last night, and She says the New Life whackos are doing it wrong. Who am I to argue with God? God wants handcuffs and midgets? God gets handcuffs and midgets.

    I'm a little leery about the thing with the tow truck and the 25 foot fan, but what the Hell. Ya only live once, and She promises that the clowns won't be permanently injured.

  14. OK, have any of you seen <a href="http://www.xxxchurch.com” target=”_blank”>www.xxxchurch.com? I saw this group on CBS Sunday Morning, of all places, when one of their correspondents (the "wacky story guy") attended the Adult Video awards in Vegas. I thought they were a joke, but no, this is a real ministry that specializes in dealing with sex/porn addiction and "saving" porn stars. I didn't look into it until I saw that they were giving a talk (called "Porn and Pancakes") at one of our local Megachurches. I find the whole thing very interesting… using slick marketing and sexualized images to market God. Kinda weird. And the discussion forum about masturbation (spelled incorrectly as "masterbation" funnily enough) on their website is a hoot. Well, I feel sorry for these poor people torturing themselves over self-pleasure, but then again when I feel the fiery Pit of Hell myself I probably won't be so glib.

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