Though I have never watched an episode of American Idol, it is apparently a very popular television show. I have seen the final few minutes while waiting for another program. Thus, I have heard of Simon Cowell and Ryan Seacrest.
In the January 16th auditions for the 2008 season, a 19-year-old by the name of Bruce Dickson admitted that he had never yet kissed a girl and was waiting for his wedding day to give himself to his wife. This young man was rejected and one of the reasons was most likely his stand for purity. At the conclusion of the interview Mr. Seacrest remarked, "Maybe next year he'll come back less a boy and more a man."
Sarah Preston, writer and editor for Playboy.com, agreed with Mr. Seacrest. On the day after the American Idol auditions she was interviewed by Shepard Smith on The Fox Report. She said, "These kids become sex objects, thrust into the spotlight...It's a national popularity contest based on talent and sex appeal" [emphasis added, DBH]. She is certainly right on these two points.
She also remarked, "I'm not belittling Bruce's Christian beliefs, but I do think being in tune with one's own sexuality goes a long way in being confident with yourself." While she may not have ridiculed his convictions, she is wrong about confidence and sexual promiscuity. Sin always brings shame and this destroys confidence because the person knows he or she has done wrong (e.g., II Sam. 13:1-17).
Why did Mr. Seacrest ridicule Dickson's virginity? While I do not know his heart, the Bible does say "men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil. For everyone practicing evil hates the light and does not come to the light, lest his deeds should be exposed" (John 3:19,20). The world mocks purity. It calls good evil and evil good (Isa. 5:20). Could it be that virginity has come to be ridiculed because so many are guilty of sexual immorality?
It is indeed a sad day when virginity is treated with contempt as if it were some dreaded disease one had to rid himself of. Being rejected from American Idol was probably the best thing that could have happened to young Mr. Dickson. As Sarah Preston pointed out, a focus of American Idol is sex appeal. Clearly, virginity is not compatible with the cesspool of sexual immorality the world so loves.
Please note that the word "idol" literally means an image. In the Bible an idol was a visible representation of a supposed deity. It was the object of worship and devotion. Idolatry is the worship of anything or any being other than the God of heaven. For example, the Bible declares that covetousness is idolatry (cf. Col. 3:5). Covetousness makes money a god to be served and worshiped (cf. Matt. 6:24).
The word idol can also mean "any person or thing regarded with blind admiration, adoration, or devotion." This is how the word is usually used today as in American Idol. Such adoration, while not directed at a god, can surely lead one into the modern idolatry of worshiping sex.
Sexual purity is not ridiculous. It ought to be respected. Obviously American Idol is no place for a virgin.