Human Sexuality and Sexual Behavior A Social Statement of the American Lutheran Church, a predecessor church body of the ELCA (1980): Defiling God’s Gift

1. Human beings are capable not only of good but also of evil uses of their sexuality. People are ready to exploit this fact to their own power or profit. Major industries are built up around satisfying “the lust of the flesh and the lust of the eyes and the pride of life” (1 John 2:16).

2. Among forms of exploitive sexual behavior against which Christians should be ready to work are those which:

(a) exploit children and youth, men and women, as in pornography and prostitution;

(b) take advantage of persons who are ill, helpless, dependent, handicapped, or of little power;

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Commercial Sexual Exploitation

“Sexual exploitation in any situation, either personally or commercially, inside or outside legally contracted marriage, is sinful because it is destructive of God’s good gift [of sexuality] and human integrity.” [1]

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Pornography and Sexual Violence

Our position on pornography is clear: We oppose all forms of pornography. We support laws that protect women and children and incarcerate those who are purveyors in the “industry” that instigates and expands child and adult pornography activities.  


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On the Plague of Internet Pornography

WHEREAS, Pornography is a major contributor to deviant sexual behavior and acts of sexual violence; and

WHEREAS, Viewing pornography creates sexual addiction in some people; and

WHEREAS, Pornography reduces people to objects for selfish pleasure; and

WHEREAS, Pornography devastates the relationship between husbands and wives and between adults and children; and

WHEREAS, Pornography violates God’s design of sexual union between a man and a woman in a committed marital relationship (Genesis 2:18-25; Proverbs 5:15-23); and

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A Statement on Pornography

Diverse courts and cultures may debate the definitions and consequences of pornography (the literature of sexual deviance), but on the basis of eternal principles, Seventh-day Adventists of whatever culture deem pornography to be destructive, demeaning, desensitizing, and exploitative.

It is destructive to marital relationships, thus subverting God’s design that husband and wife cleave so closely to each other that they become, symbolically, “one flesh” (Genesis 2:24).

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Summaries of Reports to and Actions by General Synod on Pornography

In 1972, the Commission on Christian Action responded to the Report of the Commission on Obscenity and Pornography, published in 1970. The Commission on Obscenity and Pornography was set up by President Lyndon Johnson to study pornography. The report of the presidential commission controversially concluded that there was no measurable correlation between the use of pornography and anti-social behavior. The Christian Action report says that the presidential commission’s report fails to take into consideration the large number of variables that work together to affect human behavior.

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Gather Resources on Combating Pornography

Resolved, That the 72nd General Convention direct the Standing Commission on Human Affairs, or the appropriate re-structured Commission, to coordinate the gathering of resources from other denominations and organizations that can be used by congregations, groups and individuals who desire to minister in the area of combating pornography, with emphasis on child pornography, to enable effective responses to exploitative forces which corrupt us, our children and our culture; and be it further

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