Christian Teens Are Viewing More Porn Than Ever Before, Says Evangelist Who’s Oddly Shocked By This

To the surprise of absolutely nobody who’s reading this right now, it has been confirmed that Christian teens love Internet porn as much as the rest of us.

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A study by the Barna Group, commissioned by evangelist Josh McDowell, found that Christian teens are watching online pornography at a younger age than the previous generation, and they’re hardly ashamed about it. They even rank “not recycling” as more immoral than watching porn — providing stunning evidence that the kids are going to be alright no matter how much sexual shame their parents push upon them.

According to the survey:

  • More than one quarter (27%) of young adults ages 25-30 first viewed pornography before puberty
  • Nearly half of young people actively seek out porn weekly or more often
  • Teens & Young Adults consider “not recycling” more immoral than viewing pornography
  • Teenage girls and young women are significantly more likely to actively seek out porn than women over age 25
  • 66% of Teens and Young Adults have received a sexually explicit image and 41% have sent one
  • More than half of Christian youth pastors have had at least one teen come to them for help in dealing with porn in the past 12 months
  • 21% of youth pastors and 14% of pastors admit they currently struggle with using porn. About 12% of Youth Pastors and 5% of Pastors say they are addicted to porn.

McDowell is a little uptight about the findings and is kicking off the “Set Free Summit,” a conference taking place this April in Greensboro, North Carolina, with the purpose of getting churchgoers away from their pornographic tendencies.

The Internet is shaping the morality of today’s culture. Two decades ago, parents could largely control the information our children consumed during their early years. No more. Incredibly, recent studies show that 67% of young men and 49% percent of young women consider viewing pornography to be acceptable behavior.

In 52 years of working with young people, I have watched this trend grow, and have become convinced that it’s time to take action. Please join me, as well as some of the nation’s top specialists, as we address the pervasive problem of Internet pornography head on, and present proven solutions to set people free.

I’d be curious to get the conference hotel’s stats on how many rooms had an extra charge for adult channels that week… (or at least high-speed wireless access). A couple hundred sexually repressed Christians sitting around for hours each day talking about taboos and perversions — they’re bound to go rogue.

Just so we’re perfectly clear on how serious an issue it is to watch other human animals engage in normal human animal behaviors for enjoyment and relief, McDowell warns:

It is vital to raise awareness about the threat of Internet pornography. Pornography violates all relational values between the individual and self, the individual and society, the unity of our families, and our moral fabric and fiber as a nation. When we objectify and demean life by removing the sanctity of the human person, our future is at risk.

In McDowell’s panic over young people becoming increasingly more unabashed about watching porn, he ignores the fact that young people are also leaving religion in droves. It was a 2011 Barna poll, ironically, that pointed out that one of the reasons young people were leaving church was that their “church experiences related to sexuality” were often “simplistic” and “judgmental.” Either McDowell doesn’t see that connection or he’s trying very hard to pretend it’s not there.

You know, there was a time when Christians could use the fear of Hell to scare people into sitting in the pews. But once the Internet became part of our lives, and fact-checking pastors became sport for future atheists, those threats faded away. Since they’ve already got that browser window open, might as well…

(Image via Shutterstock)

About Tracey Moody

An atheist dropped in the heart of the Christian publishing world - Nashville, Tennessee. I'm trying my best to keep a good attitude and friendly disposition while being surrounded by people with imaginary friends.