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QotD: Pre-Marital

Question: Sex before marriage?

My Answer: You bet. I think the idea of being a virgin at your wedding had to do with the "quality" of the goods (including the dowry). Weddings used to be a business transaction. While I rank several things higher than the physical on the intimacy scale (psychological, emotional, spiritual, etc.), physical intimacy is important for a successful relationship. I fail to understand how two intelligent people who have genuine feelings for one another are somehow saying "fuck you" to their deity of choice by providing each other (and themselves) a little pleasure, accenting the connection between them, and dirtying up the sheets a bit. Oh, I can wait a long time before being physically intimate - as I said there are several kinds of intimate that rank higher - but "until the wedding night?" Too long.

You are encouraged to answer the Question of the Day for yourself in the comments or on your blog.

14 Responses to "QotD: Pre-Marital"

  1. In re your comment about "two intelligent people who have genuine feelings for one another," there are some religions that believe that sexual acts in such circumstances are sacred.

    Xtianity is not known as a sex-positive religion. 🙂

  2. Well, young people...

    I now think the most important thing is the preservation of SEX *after* the marriage 😉

  3. Not to be crass (too late) but you don't buy a car without driving it first. That said do you think that gay christian couples can be gay if they wait until their married? How would they know? (based on Christian definitions of homosexuality?)

  4. Call me old-fashioned, it'd probably be true. I'm standing firm on the no-sex-before marriage ground.

    It's not to say that I'm not physically attracted, but that I have enough respect for her to not cheapen something that should be so sacred during the marriage.

  5. Jo-Pete, what makes it sacred? What makes it "so" sacred that you have to wait? Possible conception of a child is the "sacred" or "magical" part of it, according to "old fashions," and science has pretty much conquered that one. I think respect has nothing to do with it. You don't degrade a woman who shares your feelings by being physically intimate with her. I'd argue the opposite.

  6. My rule is "No marriage before sex." The last thing I want to find out about on my wedding night is sexual incompatibility.

  7. Brent, Christianity is a very "sex-positive" religion. Take a look at The Song of Solomon for one of the most erotic and beautiful love poems ever written. Unfortunately, the public generally has the view that Christians view sex as evil, when in reality Christians view sex and a wonderful gift from God that, like most gifts God has given humans, is often misused.

    Erik, to Christians, sex is "sacred" becuase it involves all three parts of our being: phyisical, mental and spiritual. The Christian believes that when two people make love, they are not only joined physically and mentally, but spiritually as well, that during sex, they are "one flesh". Christians also believe that humans were made by God to become one flesh only with a single member of the opposite sex in their life, and that forgoing this results in the "tearing asunder" that you often hear during weddings ("what God has joined let no one (not even those getting married) tear asunder").

    I'm not advocating that anyone, other than Christians, follow this rule of having a single, lifetime sexual partner in a monogomous marriage covenant. Just wanted to respond to those two posts.


  8. You began your blog/argument by defining the no-sex-before-marriage ideal as merely fulfilling a practical need. Your logic after that is fine. If abstaining from sex before marriage meant nothing more than to meet practical needs of a peoplegroup then obviously anyone will be able to look around from time to time, see if those needs are being met in some other way, and then decide for themselves that sex can happen before marriage.

    You admitted to a failure to understand, so I will give an explanation a shot. God wants our devotion probably much like we would want a pet to love and obey us. Imagine how you would feel if your pet or perhaps your computer or whatever just chose not to follow your commands or wishes. ie... suddenly your pointer does what it wants even when you move you mouse to command it elsewhere OR your dog decides that going for a walk with you is about the connection with you, and he doesn't want to wait 'til walkage to take care of his physical need, so he dirties up the sheets a bit.

    I doubt that explanation is very satisfying for you though, because you've made it clear that you don't know God. So, I am tempted to extoll the practical benefits a pair receives from waiting until marriage, but that would once again play into the initial 'error.' We are a clever people. It is natural to want to have sex as soon as we want. So, we have a strong incentive to cleverly take up the practical needs, meet them with other means, and then free ourselves to do what we please, because our need was met with an alternative. In other words, you don't know God so your current line of thinking will cause you to start with the need and argue it away to get what you want.

    The practical things that abstaining from sex until marriage brings --

    Trust: You are demonstrating self control to yourself and your potential spouse. This is clearly a difficult thing to do so it shows great character and resolve. Also, you can trust that your spouse believes in something greater than herself, and you will know with certainty that this person can conquer much out of love for God, and secondly, out of love for you.

    Compatibility: As the only person you've ever slept with this person will be compatible. Presumably, you won't know any different. Also, the sex will be great because great things are accomplished in the bed room (just as elsewhere) when you are working with someone who trusts you completely in a verily demonstrated way. Finally, compatibility is a lesser issue for people with faith because 1) they have it and 2) they aren't so caught up in self-pleasure.

    Intagibles: There are many other things that are developed between two people who are dating/courting without having sex. The focus of the relationship is entirely different. Instead of considering the last (or the next) sexual episode the two people who are waiting will, by necessity, be considering other things and struggling together with their urges, fears, etc. Basically, sex is natural, good communication, trust, compatibility, etc is not and it is given a time to be at the fore of the couple's attention.

    There are, obviously, other practical benefits for the faithful who follow this command, but this is already so long.

    Also, I want to reiterate what Chuck wrote...

    This abstanance thing really doesn't work out so well for people who don't believe in Jesus (or one of the other religions that advocate this life) so, if you aren't a believer it is pointless and offensive for these things to be pushed on you. IF you are a believer then these are things you can do out of reverence and respect for God, but doing these things without knowing God is truly purposeless. So, have your fun. It makes sense for you to do so.

    If you change your mind about God, then you'll hold yourself to a different standard.

  9. Just realized that I never really answered the QotD.

    I have had pre-marital, but I've since changed my mind about it. For me... it is not something I want. I'd prefer to wait until marriage with a woman, and then have the sex. (even though we both may very well have had sex before.)

  10. David:

    1) I never said "need" - you did. I don't lump sex in as a "need" at all.

    2) I don't think not having sex illustrates that you have self control, trust, or great character and resolve. Whoopty doo? All it illustrates is that you're not a pathetically weak individual. And heck, even then, only 1 of the 2 people needs to not be weak.

    3) "As the only person you've ever slept with this person will be compatible" is a bunch of hogwash. Pure hogwash. Sorry, man, but that makes no sense. It's illogical. It's like saying "if you only ever had one flavor of ice cream, you will like it." Wrong.

    You've not helped your point, and in fact, I don't know that you made one. You've utterly failed to address the issue of being a "virgin" to satisfy the "clean goods" point I brought up and you've utterly failed to address the fact that Christianity is centuries old, and as such, some of its practices are simply outdated.

    Short summary: it doesn't matter what religion you are, waiting in no way proves that you're any less or more trustworthy, compassionate, horny, strong-willed, etc. All it means is that you waited.

  11. Just because science has discovered the "reasons" for child-birth doesn't make the process any less sacred to me. Somewhere in the process of a sperm finding an egg (or the potential of it, I suppose), a soul is created. No matter how much science I know, and how much religion I get annoyed with, this is still something that can't fully be explained by science.

    Shall we agree to disagree? I don't care about other people, but the way I stand now, I'm for abstinence before marriage, and complete fidelity after.

  12. You're right. Waiting in itself does not prove anything. That is why I wouldn't bother advocating it to anyone until they are interested in being a Christian.

    1. I wasn't quoting you. So, I feel free to introduce new, summary-type words. Although I probably would have made a better choice with words such as "reason" or "cause" I chose "need," because needs are causes and reasons.

    You did say, "I think the idea of being a virgin at your wedding had to do with the "quality" of the goods." I interpreted that as being a social prerogative passed down to families that created a practical need for virginity. As a woman, you needed to be a virgin if you wanted to be married (well.) This is no longer true. So, your arguement goes that, because this one social requisite is no longer in place... the (social) need for virginity is gone too. So, even though you are right that you did not use "need" you should note that you really didn't use any readily reusable words in that first sentence. You used the phrase, "had to do with" to imply a causal relationship.

    2. This is a reasonably valid set of points that you make. I interpret what you are saying as -- 'abstainance does not necessarily illustrate that you have self control, trust, or great character and resolve.' I agree with that, and I still say that it can illustrate those things. It depends on the reason behind the action.

    3. I see your point here. Although, I do not think I was being illogical I do have to own to the fact that I was leaving out an assumption that may not be always true. I assumed that people would like and enjoy sex. If you assumed liking ice cream as a given your analogy still shows another problem with my logic though. Namely -- What if you dislike vanilla as a scent or flavor? Then you'd likely dislike vanilla ice cream even if it was a given that you will like ice cream.

    So, with those two faults of logic exposed and owned. I am going to take another shot at this.

    I think that during courtship you will get a feel (and smell, and taste, etc sensory knowledge) of the person. You will have a general knowledge of what that person is like, so I take as a given that you enjoy the person and his/her looks, smells, general behaviors, attitudes, willingness for new things, etc. I take as a given that you will have a very high amount of respect for the person. I also take as a given that both people will enjoy sex. Both of those being true the two are likely to enjoy a mutually fulfilling relationship. Although, I will admit that it is not necessarily the case (there are almost always exceptions) I do think that it is a reasonable rule. I rarely ever hear of two people disliking sex -- even though they may dislike some of the things surrounding the sex.

    Your short summary: In your first point you got on me about using the word "need." In your summary you use the word "prove." I said demonstrate. There is a big difference. Obviously, no behavior proves a characteristic. People change. A person's character can only be judged in the present or past tenses, because a person can ALWAYS change his behavior.

    Secondly, I both agree and disagree with your point -- "All it means is that you waited." This can be true, but it can also be false. Certainly, someone could just wait because they are waiting in fear of disease. Then that doesn't say much at all about the person save that the person is fearful. However, if the person is waiting because of strong beliefs than it does say that the person holds to his/her beliefs. (This is a good thing to know if you feel stongly about those beliefs in a positve or negative way.)

    Another item that we seem to disagree on is that denying your desires is difficult. You present your arguments with an air that it is an easy enough thing to do. I present mine with the notion that it is not always easy. I mention this, because I realize that I am talking about how things seem, so I need to double check with you and I am now doing that.

  13. Yeah, I'm cool with agreeing to disagree too. I just think Eric has an honest desire to know

    "how two intelligent people who have genuine feelings for one another are somehow saying "fuck you" to their deity of choice by providing each other (and themselves) a little pleasure, accenting the connection between them, and dirtying up the sheets a bit."

    I think he has this honest desire, but wants good, solid reasons behind whatever answers he gets too. I also think that if he gets this solid reasoning he will still disagree with it. He will just have a better understanding of other people.

    So, yeah, I think we can agree to disagree, but I may be wrong.

  14. Pre-marital Sex my "travels" across the net I have seen many, many things (some of which I wish I could forget). Anyway, I came across a blog that talked about Pre-marital sex. Okay...I'm I read...first, here's the blog post...