When people fail to follow God’s rules for sexual behavior, the result is always pain and suffering for themselves and collateral damage for innocent people. The clearest case in the United States is Nevada, which had a 44% jump in congenital syphilis from 2021 to 2022. The largest growth in adult syphilis cases has been in gay men having sex with men. This amounts to a syphilis epidemic.
In 2021, there were 77.9 cases of congenital syphilis per 100,000 live births. The problems documented in these cases included blindness, bone damage, and stillbirths. In many cases, the mother did not know she had syphilis until it showed up in her baby. Mississippi and Arizona had the nation’s highest rates of syphilis infections, with Arizona having the highest rate of birth defects – 232.3 cases per 100,000 live births.
The damage syphilis does to adults is less severe than infants, but we are all financially affected by this problem. The data on the financial cost in various states is astounding. The money came mainly from the federal government to combat sexually transmitted diseases (STDs), with Louisiana receiving 8.6 million dollars, Mississippi 9 million, and Houston slated to receive 10.7 million.
The real beauty and value of sex are lost when the sex industry takes over or when it becomes a recreational activity. The biblical concept of the sexual relationship is to form a unique bond between husband and wife, with each partner being concerned about the well-being of the other. Abandoning God’s plan leads to a syphilis epidemic as well as other STDs. In 1 Corinthians 7:1-5 Paul writes:
“Let every man have his own wife, and let every woman have her own husband. The husband should give to his wife her conjugal rights and likewise the wife to her husband. The wife does not have sole authority over her own person, for she belongs to her husband, and likewise also the husband does not have power of his own body, but the wife. Do not withhold sexual intercourse from one another unless it is only temporary and by mutual consent so that your minds can be free for prayer, but afterward you should resume relations as before lest through your fleshly passions Satan should tempt you to sin.”
The pain of misusing sex is massive in our society today. As people drift further from God and the teaching of His Word, the syphilis epidemic will only get worse, and the cost in dollars and misery will increase.
— John N. Clayton © 2023
Reference: South Bend Tribune/Associated Press by Kenya Hunter, October 10, 2023.