Friday, September 19, 2008

Relationships

At work I have grown some very awesome friendships with Christians. What's awesome is that we are not alone in the fight for the faith. My newest Christian comrade is a lovely young lady who has some of the strangest encounters with 'Christians.' She told me a story today which got me quite wound up:

"Some christians advocate 'fooling' around before getting married. Their argument states that firstly we are fallen creatures suffering from the fall, that it needs to be 'gotten out of their system' before maturity and that, at maturity, they will change to be more Christ-like." [Not a direct quote]

Wow! That got so many verses flying through my head I had to sit down. I couldn't even think of everything I wanted to say. That is why I blog.

Let's take a look at this biblically, I'll look at biblical principles, argue point by point and then give closing remarks. The first is the argument on the theological level: is it right to fool around before marriage? When consulting the scripture, it is not.

On the Old Testament front it is severely a non-issue. If a man slept with a girl to whom he was not married, he either had to pay the full bride price [Exodus 22:16] or was stoned because he was in adultery.

In the new testament there is very little change. Firstly, this rule is not omitted from practice, although I would not advocate forced marriage either. It is not explicitly enforced.

"For you may be sure of this, that everyone who is sexually immoral or impure, or who is covetous (that is, an idolater), has no inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and God."Ephesians 5:5

You are not a Christian who would defile another sexually! Oh woe to us! I wish every day I could take my own sin away. But God, in His infinite mercy and grace - has forgiven me.

But does this only refer to a sexual impurity - no! We have to treat women as mothers and sisters - with ALL purity [1 Timothy 5:2]. That means not making emotional attachments in such a manner that we cannot maintain them. For example if you are not willing to marry them, why stay in the relationship. Men love the darkness more than the light, for their deeds are wicked! You don't tell her the truth because you know that telling her that you aren't seeking marriage will chase her away. It gets even worse when both parties are just in it for kicks, because that is not God glorifying! That is sin.

So it's not cool in a bible sense. Now I will look at the defence provided:
1) We are all fallen creatures:

"What shall we say then? Are we to continue in sin that grace may abound? By no means! How can we who died to sin still live in it?" [Romans 6:1-2]

How can you bear sinning more? Every sin is an insult to God! If you do not lament over your sin, you are not saved. God requires a humble heart dedicated solely to Him - I've said it before - everything else is just dirty sprinkles.

2)It needs to be 'gotten out of our system'
Is this an excuse to sin? So I should get murder out of my system? Should I get abortion 'out of my system?' Is this showing love for our neighbour in a Christ-like manner?

3)"I'll change later"
You may never get married. Consider this: God punished David because of his sin by taking the life of His child and dividing his household forever. Now God REALLY REALLY loved David. David was FAR more worthy of God's love than us! Are you saying that we deserve something from God?

Secondly, will you change? Sin has an awfully horrid affect on the mind. To think anything else is to lie to oneself. Some things - especially sexual things - are infectiously addictive and therefore habit forming. There is a chemical explanation for this - we get addicted to pleasure. This is how meth works. You really like the extra endorphins and other pleasure centres being activated - thus an addiction forms. The more you do it the more you want it. You become addicted. Fooling around is not some exercise that will cure you of wanting - it is feeding a stomach. The more you feed it - it will expand to make way for more.

Thirdly, do you fear God or Hell? If Hell, you are not a Christian. Fear Him who can cast you into Hell [Matthew 10:38]. If you fear God you should fear Him now.

Fourthly - the way you act now is a reflection for a potential marriage partner to look at you. There is a saying that women expect men to change after marriage, and men expect woman not to. It brings to light the terrible fallacy in the innocence of marriage. How dare we say we will change without actually making a change? God doesn't do that for sinners! That means it doesn't apply to you!

I have said all I want to say - I would recommend reading the following passages of scripture in context:

"I adjure you, O daughters of Jerusalem, by the gazelles or the does of the field, that you not stir up or awaken love until it pleases." [Song of Songs 2:7, 3:5, 8:4]
"Though they know God's decree that those who practice such things deserve to die, they not only do them but give approval to those who practice them." [Romans 1:32]
"Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never ends." [1 Corinthians 13:4-8]
"But as for the cowardly, the faithless, the detestable, as for murderers, the sexually immoral, sorcerers, idolaters, and all liars, their portion will be in the lake that burns with fire and sulfur, which is the second death." [Revelation 21:8]

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