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It's not science that's secularizing Americans — it's sex." The Christian Post published a multi-part series back in 2014 that explored the Christian dating culture, after a Christian Mingle survey found that the majority, or 61 percent, of self-identified Christian singles were willing to have casual sex without being in love.Daniel Weiss, founder and president of The Brushfires Foundation, whose organization exists to help "people discover and live out God's design for sexuality and relationships," told CP at the time that the Church must wake up to the new realities of people's sexual ethics.There have always been forces that have pulled marriages apart.But it is the forces that push people together that are growing increasingly rare.Regnerus, who lays out his arguments in the book , positioned that young Christians are "suffering the bruising effects of participating in the same wider mating market as the rest of the country," noting that they are increasingly following the narratives of nonreligious Americans. While there are Christians who still decide to date without sex and wait for marriage, they are becoming rarer, he noted.Christian dating sites, he added, often operate much like secular ones, where humans are ranked as commodities.The article, which was backed on Twitter by Russell Moore, president of the Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission of the Southern Baptist Convention, who described it as "truth," pointed to statistics that show marriage rates among Christians are falling, and younger evangelicals have become more permissive on subjects like pornography.
Don’t misunderstand me — American Christianity is still a friend of marriage, and vice versa.
But Christians are hardly exempt from wider mating market dynamics.
Sex has become cheap — that is, not hard to get — because it’s much less risky and consequential in the era of birth control.
"Congregations are coming face to face with questions of just how central sexual ethics are to their religious life and message." Regnerus explored the growing acceptance and ease of sex outside of marriage, and concluded that "cheap sex" has a way of "deadening religious impulses." "Perhaps the increasing lack of religious affiliation among young adults is partly a consequence of widening trends in nonmarital sexual behavior among young Americans, in the wake of the expansion of pornography and other tech-enhanced sexual behaviors," he suggested.
"Cohabitation has prompted plenty of soul searching over the purpose, definition and hallmarks of marriage.