I want you to assume that you-yes you, the beautiful single woman reading this article-have already figured out that sex outside of marriage is definitely against the rules. But maybe that's not the case. Maybe you've never read 1 Thessalonians 4:1-8, in which the apostle Paul, right before launching into how Jesus is going to come back for us, calls us to avoid fornication (verse 3) and expounds on how to "control" our bodies in sanctification and honor. Well, whether or not you've educated yourself in these things, it's true, girlfriend. Sex outside of marriage is completely not OK.
Now, if you've been one of those who are trying not to be so sure-you know, to leave a little leeway for your extracurricular activities-well, this article is for you. It's high time you face the facts. There is way, way, way too much at stake here. If God, when whittling down all of His greatest "don't go there" commands into a concise 10 statements, slid having sex with someone who is not your husband into slot seven (Exodus 20:14), well then, yes, it must be a really big deal. A hugely colossal big deal.
And do you know why? Can you tell me why whom you sleep with (and when) is utterly front and center in God's mind? Come on, what exactly is at stake? In my short life so far, I have found that if I know the why behind the great teachings of Jesus, it helps me trust Him more. So, why? Why is sex outside of marriage such a big no-no?
The answer is that it's devastating. Completely devastating.
Maybe the biggest reason, right off the top, is that sleeping with your boy friendis breaking down you and your everything. The great teachings of Genesis on this subject (Genesis 1:27,28 and Genesis 2:24) say that we were created two to become one, and this is our highest destiny. Plain and simple, you are on this earth to be known and loved by one man, period.
And you can see the train coming now, can't you? If I'm to be known by one, and sex (let's face it) is the deepest, most profound heart-mind-body emotions-knowing act I'll ever engage in-wow, doing it with more than one guy is going to be nothing short of a big, huge rip-off. Jesus quoted that Genesis 2:24 passage, and so did Paul (see Mark 10:6-9 and Ephesians 5:31).Read it for yourself. Jesus even added that now-famous wedding phrase after He quoted it. You know, "what therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder" (Mark 10:9, KJV).
This is what you have been made for: one man for your one self and your one lifetime. Frankly, then, if you go bringing into yourself more than one guy, even for one night, you compromise everything you were made for. There is only regret and wreckage to follow. I have yet to meet a married woman who doesn't regret how close she got to "the other men" in her life.
God, Elohim in Genesis 1:1, is a plural word-they. And in Genesis 1:27 you can read how a man and a woman were created by Them to mirror Themselves. This means that the practice of marriage is the practice of God Themselves! Chew on it for a minute. Father, Son, and Spirit make the trinity. They've always been together-never alone, never isolated.
This is heaven, then, quite literally-to be known, one with, loved, and forever together. They are who you are patterned after, beings who have always been in relationship. It's quite something if you think about it. Every time a husband and wife have a child there is a trinity-three in one, all unique, all united together. A most tangible manifestation of who God is . . . and who we are, in the image of Them.
In case you're still not getting it, the bonding glue of the core relationship that will define your life is sex. When you allow yourself to glue-up and be utterly known by some guy while not having the proof that he is the best one for you to build a life with, you are squandering the great relationship practices that are at the center of who you are as a human. There is only one word for this in my mind: stupid.
So one huge reason not to try sex with whomever you like is because of what it does to your future. It wrecks the dream and blessing of marriage allover the floor. It robs you of what you were made for.
The second reason sex for sport is devastating is that sex can dumb down your brain about the most important decision you'll ever make-whom you marry. But wait a minute; you just may have reacted to my last statement. You may be thinking right now, Oh, no, no ,no, I don't do sex for sport-I only have sex with guys I'm dating! Well, it's time you get honest with yourself, honey. What is dating anyway? Do you really need to act all married to know if they're the one? No. And have you dated knowing full well that you'd never want this guy to be the father of your kids? OK then, it's you getting all involved for the feel-good-yes, for the fun of it-and what do we call physical activities we participate in for the fun of it? Sports.
Worse yet, you may be the really foolish one, not in it for sport, but acting out sexually in hopes it will earn that guy's desire to marry you some day. This, no doubt, is the even less intelligent choice. You're not even the athlete now; this way of thinking has just diminished you to the role of sports equipment. You are being used for sport. You, that one incredible person, totally taken over for a late afternoon feel-good by someone who'll sooner or later find a better game somewhere else? Yikes. It boils my blood just thinking about it.
So what about sex dumbing down your brain? Your sexuality is probably the least discriminate of all your drives. Your values, your dreams, your gifts-all of these are hugely unique to you. These dimensions of yourself will not jive fast with just anyone. Use anyof them as the deciding factor in your hunt for that soul mate, and you'll naturallymake decisions that can standup over time. But let sex enter into your journey to the altar, and your chances of being mismatched multiply all over the place. If love is blind, thenthink of sexuality as blind, deaf, and mute. It is a purely emotional bond that can happen between any two humanoids-no matter how incompatible they are.
And here is where you will gamble with your very life and the lives of your future children. I have lost count of the couples I know that have slept their way into marriage only to wake up as complete strangers. Proverbs 4:23states that we must guard our hearts, for out of them flows all our life. Wow. How on earth are you guarding your life by letting your body make all your long-term decisions? Are you kidding me? That's crazy!
Don't be stupid with your future and your posterity. You have only one life to live, after all. And who you marry will make or break you. Divorce, though an option, is a devastating option, an excruciating experience I wouldn't wish on anyone. So don't let sex muddy up this huge decision. The only way to know for sure that this is a guy you can live with, and take all the crazy stresses of life with, is to have a clear, unbiased view of things. Sleep with him, and your clarity goes right down the drain.
Now, these reasons are probably enough of the why to keep you committed to purity until you're hitched good and proper. But in case you're still wavering, let's talk about how sex can devastate the two most sacred and special events you as a woman will ever experience-marriage and motherhood.
To put it bluntly, only people who have sex get pregnant. In other words, if you have sex (and I don't care if you think you've made it "safe" or not-who actually thought up using that word"safe") you can get pregnant. It happens. And if you find yourself pregnant outside of marriage, well, in one short move you have pitted these two most joyful events against each other and have created a most stressful and negative situation.
You deserve your sweet road to the altar to be slow, deliberate, and marked with joy. Not only that, but you also deserve to be thrilled, married, and cared for when you see those two pink lines on that little pregnancy test you picked up at Walgreens. What getting pregnant outside of marriage does is mix these events up and make them play out against each other. You're robbed not only of the pure freedom of choosing to marry in your own sweet time, but also of the thrill of planning and waiting and hoping and then having that child when you're good and ready.
I think this was one of the greatest deterrents for me. I knew I would hate to sabotage my life in this way. I had read and known that the only way to assure myself that I wouldn't get pregnant was not to go there at all. I wasn't willing to take a chance with such a grand and beautiful thing as my life and my posterity. Sure, I'd like to say that I read God's teachings about sex and marriage and just clung to that. But really, with all the temptations, I needed to know why. It bolstered my resolve to realize that God had a dream for me that I would know love like Them, and there was no way I was going to fumble it.
Sure, I was very much deterred by the idea of opening myself up with no strings or promises attached. How could I explain to myself that any good could come out of allowing a man into the center of who I was with the clear reality that he'd most likely move on after a while? So I was halfway there, but taking on the idea that I could get pregnant for nothing but some short term fun . . . well, that sealed the deal.
In Matthew 7:6, Jesus speaks words that are for all of us girls who are contemplating giving ourselves to men who have not earned our trust and signed on the dotted line. Read the passage through at least twice. Let the words sink in. Jesus said: ?Do not give dogs what is sacred; do not throw your pearls to pigs. If you do, they may trample them under their feet, and then turn and tear you to pieces.? Wow. Harsh and right on the money.
I believe that instinct would lead us women to protect ourselves in this area, except for the barrage of media that numbs our instincts and indoctrinates us with the silly notion that sex is a fun thing to enjoy here, there, and everywhere. There is a lot that happens to a woman when she opens herself up so fully to a man. It's huge, and without the marriage protection it's hugely devastating.
I think it's a lot like giving the one gift you have (yourself) to the whim ofa person who cannot comprehendy our great worth. If he's willing to take all of you without having made the public commitment to protect and care for you the rest of your life, then yes, he is playing the part of a pig. Someone who comprehends your great worth wouldn't touch you anyway.
This takes us to the final reason that sex for sex's sake is sick and wrong (yes, outside of marriage that is what it is). With all that we've talked about so far being you-centered, let's now flip the coin. What about the worth of the person you get intimate with? How about his future wife, kids, and dreams? Is it fair to glue-up with him when you're still uncertain whether or not you'll be together a year from now? What about you irreversibly damaging another human?
Whether or not he's begging for it, you are still responsible for him, justas he is for you. No matter how much he may seek to initiate intimacy, the choice is yours to make. Going back to the initial passage I mentioned in this article, in 1 Thessalonians 4:1-8 you will find that God has strong thoughts on this. God basically says that when you sexually mess with someone, you're actually messing with Him. Disrespect a man this way, and you are disrespecting God, sinning against Him, and liable to Him. God takes the treatment of all His children very seriously and very personally. Read Psalm51; David understood this very clear reality in his repentance for sleeping with Bathsheba.
Be the wise girl in Proverbs 14:1. She spends her life making choices that will build up her house. Don't be the foolish chick. She's the one who is tearing down her life with her own hands.
Clar Worley Sproul welcomes your thoughts and dialogue.She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.She writes from her home in Oregon and on the roadhere and there, where she teaches Jesus' basic principleson life and marriage.