Why I Find Perverse Pleasure in the Sexual Peccadilloes of Evangelical Leaders

Why I Find Perverse Pleasure in the Sexual Peccadilloes of Evangelical Leaders October 20, 2012

fat preacher by Bruce Gerencser

I am quite indifferent to the sexual peccadillos of others. What consenting adults do sexually is none of my business. I think so-called sexual “sins” like adultery and fornication find their foundation in the Bible and I reject the Bible as a moral or ethical standard.

We are sexual creatures. Desiring to have sex is as much a part of who we are as eating and drinking. Sexual activity, regardless of orientation, is normal and it not surprising when sexual activity overflows the banks of the Christian moral river.

It doesn’t surprise me that Dinesh D’Souza had sex with a woman other than his wife. Recent reports say that not only was D’Souza committing what his Christian faith calls adultery, but he was doing the deed with a married woman. (see Crooks and Liars report)

Again, no surprise. I am never shocked when I hear of a man or woman getting themselves into trouble over sexual matters. It is, after all, what humans do. Just think of all the people in the world who are, as you are reading this post, having sex. And I bet a lot of the sex is happening outside the narrow confines of the Puritanical Christian view of sexuality.

The reason I find perverse pleasure in the sexual peccadillos of Evangelical leaders has to do with their pontificating on moral values. Take Dinesh D’Souza. Right Wing Watch reports:

Last week, conservative pseudo-intellectual Dinesh D’Souza was featured on a conference call for Rick Scarborough’s 40 Days to Save America. D’Souza said Obama is “attacking the traditional values agenda” by supporting marriage equality and abortion rights, arguing that “Obama doesn’t like traditional Christianity because he identifies it with colonialism.” However, D’Souza’s rhetoric about “traditional morality” may be undermined by the fact that at a recent conference he reportedly shared a hotel room with a woman other than his wife, whom he introduced as his fiancée. D’Souza later admitted to getting engaged to his girlfriend even though he is still married, but denies sharing a hotel room with her at the conference.

“Why is Obama on the social issues — and I’m thinking here of abortion, I’m thinking here of gay marriage — why is Obama so aggressive in attacking the traditional values agenda? I think the reason for it is because when Obama thinks about colonialism, about the British and the French who went abroad to conquer other countries, or earlier the Spanish and the Portuguese, I come from a part of India that was a Portuguese colony at one time, I think for Obama colonialism is identified not just with the soldiers but also with the missionaries. Remember it’s the missionaries that went alongside the conquerors, the conquistadors, came to the Americas and worked on converting the Indians and later missionaries went to China, India and Japan. So I think this is the problem, Obama doesn’t like traditional Christianity because he identifies it with colonialism. Obama’s own Christianity is more of a Third World liberation theology, a very different kind of Jeremiah Wright type philosophy, summarized in the idea that America is the rogue nation in the world.”

Later, D’Souza said that politics are driven by a moral and spiritual divide that only God can change, grateful that we don’t have “an absentee God like Obama’s dad.”

“Ultimately there’s a political divide in this country but underneath that is a moral divide, and underneath that is a spiritual divide. I think that the deepest problems facing America and the West in the end are not political, they are spiritual. This is why it makes sense even as we debate policy issues, even as we debate moral issues, to turn to the maker of the universe, this maker of the universe that isn’t just an absentee God like Obama’s dad, a kind of absentee father who got things going and then took off but a God who cares about each one of us and certainly about our country.”

What a hypocrite. If Evangelical church leaders want to be treated like normal, frail, human beings then they need to shut the hell up when it comes to matters of sexuality. As long as they continue to present their religion as the moral arbiter in the world and as long as they publicly state that they speak for God on sexual matters, I will continue to find perverse pleasure when reading a report about the local Baptist pastor getting a blow job by a prostitute in back of the adult bookstore.

But Bruce, you admitted to going to a strip club when you were a pastor. What does that make you? A hypocrite. I have no problem owning my behavior and if I had been “caught” I would deserved every bit of the scorn and ridicule I received from the “world.”

Here is what I know about Christian men. According to the Bible, every Christian man is an adulterer. The Bible says in Matthew 5:28:

But I say unto you, That whosoever looketh on a woman to lust after her hath committed adultery with her already in his heart.

Show me a man, let alone of Christian man, who has never looked at a woman and not lusted (desired) after her. I know some self-righteous preacher will surely say….NOT ME! And I say to that…liar.

If Evangelical preachers would ever be honest about their own sexuality, the shrill rhetoric over the sexuality of other people would end overnight.

Yeah, right.

Imagine Baptist Preacher Jim Bob admitting to the congregation that he saw a hot looking woman at  Finger-Licking Good Buffet. Imagine if he dared to admit that he wondered if she was on the buffet menu. Well we know what would happen. All those self-righteous hypocrites that Baptist Preacher Jim Bob trained so well would kick him out of the church for being immoral.

Evangelicals need to get the memo that reminds them that humans do what humans do and having sex is an essential part of what it means to be a human.

Ok, that’s it for today. Time to watch me some NFL football.

Comments open below

Read everything by Bruce Gerencser!

Bruce Gerencser spent 25 years pastoring Independent Fundamental Baptist, Southern Baptist, and Christian Union churches in Ohio, Michigan, and Texas. Bruce attended Midwestern Baptist College in Pontiac, Michigan. He is a writer and operates The Way Forward blog. Bruce lives in NW Ohio with his wife of 32 years. They have 6 children, and five grandchildren.

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  • William Burns

    Show me a man who has never looked upon a woman and lusted after her? That’s easy, how about Ted Haggard?

  • Flora

    I suppose if the pastor was sexually attracted to men only, but was so deeply in denial about it that he just assumed he had more willpower than most men when it comes to women, he wouldn’t be lying when he talks about human sexuality like it doesn’t happen to him. Whether he’s being intellectually honest with himself would be another story, of course.

  • Brea Plum

    Even Jimmy Carter admitted to that “lust of the heart”, and he’s as close to saint as many of us will ever know.

  • Attackfish

    I suppose if the pastor were asexual and didn’t believe other people weren’t like him that way, deep down, he could not have committed adultery in his heart…

    For me, adultery is wrong, not because it’s a sin, or sex outside marriage is bad, or whatever, but because you’re lying to somebody. In other words, open marriages? Fine. Polyamory? Fine. Telling someone you’ll only sleep with them, and then sleeping with other people without their knowledge and potentially exposing them to STDs? Wrong.

  • Saraquill

    First, I want to say @#$% you to D’Souza for the completely uncalled for insult of another person’s parent.

    Second, missionary work in China, the colonial US and elsewhere tended to be brutal. Instead of kindness and setting a good example for others to follow, it tended to be “convert or die,” “convert or be tortured,” “convert and maybe we’ll free you from slavery,” or “we’ll kidnap your children, make them convert under duress, and make sure you never see them again.”

  • alfaretta

    There is something intensely perverse about a so-called American patriot calling another American out for anti-colonialism.

    Tell us all about George Washington’s absentee father and radical preacher, Dinesh.

  • Rick

    I believe God is allowing these blatant hypocrisies to proliferate, so that the Pharisaical Right will lose a little more credibility every day.

  • suzannecalulu

    Could well be. Seeing this time as a sort of shaking and sifting, revealing the Pharisaical as the hypocrites they are.

  • A Theist

    One problem with the church always been phony preachers, some of them not even believers.

    Think of guys like John Loftus, Dan Barker, and Jerry DeWitt and the woman Theresa McBain.

    By their own admission they continued to preach when they no longer believeed, and the atheists excuse that.

    But think of the greater damage they could have done had they remained in the church to rot it from within. I think God is leading them to expose themselves.

  • Marie

    I, too, get some feeling of pleasure upon hearing about powerful preachers’ indecencies, particularly when they are made by men who preach strongly against sexual immoralities. When you read this list of scandals involving evangelical Christians (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_scandals_involving_evangelical_Christians), notice how many of them are sexual in nature. It really makes you think about the nature of sex, humanity, and possibly also the corruption of power. I wonder if powerful preachers lose belief in what they preach after seeing so much, or if they begin to believe they live outside the rules.