“I have had sex, and Jesus still loves me.”
If you’ve been watching Season 15 of “The Bachelorette” for any period of time, you’ve undoubtedly heard that trademark line aired on repeat in the promos.
This season’s leading woman, Hannah B, shouts the line in a moment of fury ignited by controversial contestant Luke P.
Luke, the uncontested villain of Season 15, has been equally the most infuriating and charming man in the eyes of our Bachelorette, and thus interactions with him have led to a volcanic eruption of emotions.
“Let’s talk about sex and how the marriage bed should be kept pure,” the 24-year-old who is also a professing Christian tells Hannah B. “Let’s say you have had sex with one or multiple of these guys, I would be wanting to go home,” he shared.
Clearly sparking a fire in the bones of an offended ‘Alabama Hannah,’ she replies, “I can not believe you just said that. I’m so mad. I don’t owe you anything.”
Hannah B then infamously adds, “I have had sex, and honestly, Jesus still loves me.”
She also admits that she has had “physical relations” with other contestants, though what that implies is left to the imagination.
The 24-year-old pageant queen’s comment has created a storm of controversy in the media, especially after she defended her comment in a way that many argued water down the [G]ospel.
“Regardless of anything that I’ve done, I can do whatever, I sin daily and Jesus still loves me,” Hannah B Told Entertainment Weekly after the most-talked-about promo of the season aired. “It’s all washed and if the Lord doesn’t judge me and it’s all forgiven, then no other man, woman, animal … anything can judge me.”
“Nobody’s gonna judge me, I won’t stand for it,” she added firmly.
“My faith that is a big, huge part of me and a lot of times people get Christianity and religion messed up,” she told ET. “Your faith should be something personal and a relationship and it’s not to judge others.”
Clearing the air that he’s not Mr. Perfect either, Luke P — an admitted former player — shared the following on his Instagram story after the clip aired:
“1. I’m over the Luke P show/drama….2. I’m not a virgin and never claimed to be, but I have decided to wait until marriage with my future wife.”
The Miss-Alabama-turned-reality-tv-star elaborated on the heated moment dubbed the “most explosive” of the season in an interview with E! News:
“I think there was just a moment where I was in a place where I felt that I was being looked at differently than who I actually am… and I know who I am and I know Whose I am, and I don’t want to be judged for that because nobody should ever be judged for anything that they do because we’re supposed to love each other, not judge.
…Regardless of anything that I’ve done that people might think ‘Oh wow, that deserves a scarlet letter,’ that’s not how it works.”
Viewers hope to get a clearer picture of how the “sex talk” with Luke P went over when “The Bachelorette” episode airs later this season.
Ultimately, Hannah B’s attempt to explain her theology on sex and sin has not gone over so well with many Christians in her audience who feel she has abused the gift of grace.
“Poor woman is deceived,” wrote one critic. “Although it is true that Christians struggle with sin, the cavalier attitude, along with the proclamation [that] Jesus doesn’t care about his followers sinning, tells me she may be a false convert.”
Others suggested she needs to “read the Bible,” with one quoting Romans 6:1-2:
“Well then, should we keep on sinning so that God can show us more and more of his wonderful grace? Of course not! Since we have died to sin, how can we continue to live in it?”
While the Bachelorette certainly has a point that Jesus still loves us in spite of our wrongdoings, premarital sex being one of them — one can’t help but wonder if she’s put a twist on the [G]ospel that advertises grace as an excuse to sin.
As Christians, we must be careful to represent the intersection of God’s mercy with God’s judgment well.
What are your thoughts on Hannah B’s perception of how Jesus’ love, sin, and forgiveness intertwine?