I grew up being taught that sex was for marriage and I made a decision before I started dating that I would be a virgin on my wedding night. I saw that as a very precious gift that I could give my husband and started praying that he too would be a virgin when we got married. I dated through high school and college, choosing guys who respected that decision. One boyfriend, in fact, I dated for nearly two years and his hands never roamed to places that were sexual. My rule to myself for having guys touch me or me touch them was “If it gets covered by a bathing suit, it doesn’t get touched.” It was a simple way to have my boundaries clear in my mind and I knew how far was too far.
So why does it matter? What is really wrong with sex outside of marriage? Does the Bible really say that sex outside of marriage is wrong?
Let’s start by looking at the Bible to understand what God’s intention was for marriage and sex. God created Adam and Eve to work together in the garden and from the beginning He said they would be one flesh. This is a reference to sexual oneness. God arranged it so that when a man and woman have sex it is a union of their spirit, soul and body. In the right context this is a very good thing, but in the context of having multiple partners before marriage it is a very dangerous thing. Why? Because ties you have to other people which are only intended to be had with your spouse become a block to intimacy.
There is no verse that says “Thou shalt not have sex before marriage.” It isn’t that clear, just as the concept of the Trinity isn’t overtly stated anywhere in scripture. We need to look at scripture as a whole to understand God’s view of something and included in the category of sexual immorality is this concept of “fornication” which is simply premarital sex.
Flee from sexual immorality. All other sins a man commits are outside his body, but he who sins sexually sins against his own body. 1 Corinthians 6:18
Live a life of love, just as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us as a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God. But among you there must not be even a hint of sexual immorality, or of any kind of impurity, or of greed, because these are improper for God’s holy people. Ephesians 5:2-3
It is God’s will that you should be sanctified: that you should avoid sexual immorality; that each of you should learn to control his own body in a way that is holy and honorable, not in passionate lust like the heathen, who do not know God. 1 Thessalonians 4:3-5
God doesn’t establish what is right and what is wrong to punish us or make our life hard. The truth is that the way He calls us to live is perfect in every way and will result in blessing and joy if we follow it. So by giving us parameters by which we are free to release ourselves sexually, He is giving us a safe place to be who He made us to be. It is damaging to us if we participate in acts He has instructed us to avoid.
The only problem with sex is that it’s wonderful and the secret is out. We have explored the spiritual reasons for committing yourself to abstinence before marriage, but on a practical level, apart from God having established that sex is to be enjoyed in the safety of a committed marriage relationship, why would anyone choose to remain a virgin until marriage in a world that doesn’t value purity.
Sexually Transmitted Infections (STI) and unexpected pregnancy without the security of a marriage in place are among the higher, most practical reasons to commit oneself to sexual purity. Most of the people being infected by STIs are between the ages of 15 and 24 and teenage pregnancy is overwhelmingly rampant. Once a teenage girl becomes pregnant her life is changed forever. Whatever she does at that point will affect her for the rest of her life. And with STIs that can affect your ability to have children later in life, cause a plethora of very uncomfortable infections, and possibly even become fatal I am saddened and surprised that the message is so strongly on safer sex when the real solution is to remain abstinent. I do not sit on the side of “they are going to do it anyway, so let’s minimize the damage.” I believe that our young adults possess a tremendous ability to stand with sexual integrity and I find it insulting that so many “professionals” don’t believe that unmarried and sexually aware young people can control their sexual behavior. They certainly can, but they need to be empowered with the knowledge to do so.
Apart from these reasons, it is intensely gratifying to know that you have shared every sexual experience with one person only. My wedding night was amazing, and my husband was a virgin too. We have enjoyed years of exploring each other and finding out what we find erotic and pleasurable without thoughts of prior partners. Whether we are referring to body parts, sex acts or technique, I know that I am the best he has ever had because I am the only one he has ever had. We wouldn’t have it any other way.
Having said all this, if you have made mistakes in your sexual past and given away more than you wanted to, it isn’t to late. God can bring forgiveness and offer you a second chance at renewed virginity. If you want to recommit yourself to purity and abstinence it is a simple as coming to God the Father, acknowledging your sin and asking His forgiveness in the name of Jesus, and then inviting Him to cleanse your heart and mind and empower you by His Spirit to remain pure. He can take your broken heart and make it whole again.
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