Daily Devotional for Sunday March 11, 2007
The Epidemic of Teacher/Student Sex Scandals
I can assure you that most adults, men and women, can think back on their school years and remember that one teacher they had a crush on. For me it was my fourth grade teacher Miss Janis. Even though at 10 years old girls still had "cooties," Miss Janis was the most gorgeous woman on the planet. It is a normal part of growing up. What is not normal, however, is when you have a teacher who develops a crush on a student. When that teacher actually gives in and acts on those feelings, in addition to not being normal it is also criminal. Sadly, we are being bombarded almost on a weekly basis with a new teacher/student sex scandal and the legitimate question that needs to be asked is WHY?
Trust me, I am not naive enough to believe teachers having sex with their students is something new. It is a problem as old as school and as old as the teacher/student relationship. There is a special dynamic that exists between a teacher and their student. Teachers become a very important person in shaping the life of a young person. Outside of our parents, our teachers are most likely to have a dramatic impact on who we become as adults. Because of the special bond that exists between a teacher and student, it opens the door for the teacher to be able to exploit a student sexually if they have that desire.
Again, we have to understand that sex between teachers and students is not a new phenomenon. The desire for a student to get involved sexually with their teacher often starts out with that childhood crush most students have at some point for one of their teachers. A teenager is going through puberty and becoming aware of the sexual side of their life, so these are new, raw feelings they are experiencing and not yet fully in control of. A student recognizes the importance their teacher plays in their life which also creates a special intimacy and bond between them. All of these working together can lead a student to fantasizing about having a sexual relationship with their teacher.
On the other side is the teacher. Let me say up front, there is NO JUSTIFICATION for a teacher having sex with a student. NONE! How it happens is not difficult to understand. A teacher is in a position of authority, trust, and power. No doubt for some it is an ego boost to have one of their students "in love" with them. They are dealing with young, impressionable, naive, and inexperienced children and young adults. It opens the door and gives a teacher the opportunity to give into their carnal desires and sexually exploit their student
The fact that these teacher/student sexual relationships exist and always have is a given. The question today is why are we hearing about these relationships so frequently, what is going on in our society that is giving rise to all of these incidents of teacher and students having sex. First of all is the existence of 24/7 news, especially the cable networks like FOX, CNN, and MSNBC. While they are technically classified as "news" stations, they have really turned into little more than electronic versions of the National Enquirer. What drives their ratings is NOT the news of the day. It is the tabloid stories and high profile legal cases that have always captured people's interest. Nothing fits this new form of tabloid journalism passed off as news better than a sex scandal between a teacher and student, especially if the teacher is a young, gorgeous FEMALE!
Let me address this hypocrisy for a moment. In the past, when you heard of a teacher/student sex scandal it was almost 100% of the time a male teacher with a female student. When these scandals came to light, the public was justifiably outraged and called on the criminal justice system to prosecute these men to the fullest extent of the law. With the recent rash of teacher/student sex scandals involving female teachers with male students, there simply doesn't seem to be the same public outrage. As a matter of fact, it is accepted in some circles as a badge of honor for these young men to have sex with their female teachers and it is not condemned but applauded.
My friend, the damage done to a child is no different if it is a girl being sexually exploited by a male teacher or a boy being sexually exploited by a female teacher. The scars and effects of that sexual exploitation are something that child will have to deal with the rest of their life no matter if they are a boy or girl. How a person views sex is shaped by many factors, chief among them are those first sexual experiences they have in their life! It is equally as wrong and CRIMINAL for a female teacher as it is a male teacher and ANY teacher that exploits a child sexually should be fully prosecuted when caught!
What we are seeing in these teacher/student sex scandals is the byproduct of a society deteriorating in moral decay. This is simply one of the results of a culture where people have grown up with no foundation of faith and live their lives in rebellion to God's Word and Christ, the family has broken down, children are not told there is Absolute Truth and left to decide for themselves what is right and wrong, and people of all ages are bombarded literally 24/7 with sexual images through TV, radio, music, movies, the Internet, magazines, and all forms of advertising. The lie has been told long enough, bold enough, and loud enough that sex is a natural part of life and you should never deny yourself the desires of your flesh.
Sex is a gift from God for a man and woman in the bonds of His Holy Institution of Marriage. PERIOD! All sex outside of marriage is a SIN! PERIOD! When people choose to ignore God's plan for sex and sin in this area of their life, there are consequences as there are for any sin. One of the things that sets us apart from the animals is our ability to think, reason, make choices, and not live strictly by instincts alone. This is what Paul spoke of when he talked about controlling the flesh. You don't have to give in to the carnal desires of your flesh, you have the ability to CONTROL YOUR FLESH through the strength God can give you. The problem is too many people refuse to even try. They are no different than a dog in heat that is simply giving in and acting on its base instincts.
I love you and care about you so much. The fact is for every one of these teacher/student sex scandals you hear on the news, there are hundreds, even thousands you will never hear about. The vast majority of these scandals are never known by anyone other than the teacher and student involved. Whether it is a national news story or remains a private affair, the people involved know and most important GOD KNOWS! The price for giving in to a few moments of physical pleasure can be enormous. Like with any sin, lives can be severely damaged and in some cases destroyed.
I will be praying for you young adults reading this today. I pray that you will realize having sex with your teacher is a HORRIBLE idea. The fact is, having sex with ANYBODY outside of marriage is a horrible idea and there will be a price for sinning in this area of your life. God loves you and cares about you so much. Follow His plan for sex and you will not only know His blessings, but the beauty of this gift He has created for a man and woman in marriage.
I will also be praying for you teachers. God has given you an awesome responsibility in helping to shape the lives of those young people He entrusts to you. For you to give into your carnal lusts and take advantage of a student for your sexual gratification is an act God will hold you accountable for. It isn't worth it. You are damaging the life of the young person, not to mention putting your life, career, and freedom in jeopardy. I am very aware that young adults are far more advanced at an earlier age sexually than ever before. But that is no excuse. YOU are the adult and no matter what, YOU are the one that is ultimately responsible for any sexual activity between you and a student.
Lastly, I will be praying for you parents. If you haven't heard me over and over for nearly 8 years, hear me now. GET INVOLVED IN YOUR CHILDREN'S LIVES! As long as they live in your home YOU ARE RESPONSIBLE for them. The greatest ministry God gave you is to your children. Talk to them about sex and about what God's plan is for sex. Talk to them about being aware of teachers and other adults who may try to take advantage of them sexually. Get to know your children's teachers. Other than you, they will most likely have the greatest influence on the lives of your children so it is your business and duty to know who they are.
The bottom line to the increasing number of these teacher/student sex scandals is that they are a direct result of a society living each day without Christ and not being guided by the Truth of God's Word. Adults with no fear of God who happen to be teachers. Children growing up in a world that is telling them there is nothing wrong with having sex of any kind with anyone you want. Once you take God out of the picture, ANYTHING is possible so seeing these teachers and students in sexual relationships should not really be such a shock.
For me personally, it only strengthens my resolve to keep doing what God has called me to do each day since the only real answer is bringing the Truth of God's Word and the hope and love of Christ into people's lives and seeing people get saved. Now more than ever we need to see a move of God's Holy Spirit in this nation. As we watch these teacher/student sex scandals unfold, it is simply a reminder how low we have sunk as a people and how desperately we need Jesus!