Is Pre-Marital Sex Sin?
We have heard somewhere or the other this phrase –Our Body is the temple of the Holy Spirit.
Pre-marital sex is any sexual activity before marriage. Sexual activities among young people have been increasing worldwide. Historically, premarital sex was considered a moral issue which is a taboo in many cultures and it is also considered a sin by a number of religion. In modern Western cultures, the social value of sexual abstinence before marriage has declined or is out of practice. The Catholic Church or any other religious community has declined to give consent to this kind of practice. The human body is constantly communicating and the most common way is through the words spoken. But there are some ways that we communicate or make known our ideas or express our feelings – by writing emails and letters, texting, taking pictures, and posting on social media. We reveal ourselves through the paintings we do, the kind of music we hear, the color that we choose, the way we smile, talk. One way that we use to communicate which is often forgotten is through our physical body. It is through our bodies that we have a powerful ability to mean things. Sexual intimacy is designed by God to be the most beautiful thing. It is designed to communicate the deepest longing of every person’s heart i.e. love. It is more than a communication of love it is a participation in it
What happens in sexual intimacy outside the Sacrament or contract of marriage is a lie. Why is it a lie? It is a lie because in sexual intimacy outside marriage through our bodies we are saying we are totally yours, one with you but with terms and conditions. Our bodies may be telling our partners we are one with them but nothing else about life is one with our partners. So sexual intimacy outside the wedlock is communicating a lie. And this lie hurts. Example- A girl or a boy having sex with his or her partner and doesn’t hear back from their partners or notice the same kind of behavior from their partner then the individuals feel used, neglected, dejected, insulted, abandoned, and lied to. When someone ( a girl or a boy) has sex with their partners outside the contract of marriage they feel ashamed. Why so?? Because they know they have lied through their bodies. He or she got pleasure without commitment and so now he or she fails to face her or him like he or she used to before. Sex is just not sex. God has placed within our body a powerful ability to communicate love. With great power comes great responsibility. PopeJohn Paul II in the Theology of the Body explains that right from the beginning the human body includes the capacity of explaining love – the love in which the human person becomes a gift to his or her partner and by the means of this gift it fulfills the meaning of its existence. Sex in the right context is beautiful and true. Sex in the wrong context i.e. outside the sacrament of matrimony causes hardships and aches and it is a lie. A lie spoken with our bodies.
There is always wrong teaching or a that surfacy that is being imparted to us when it comes to this topic of sexual union. There is desire just for pleasure which comes from a part of our own hearts that is not noble and if we act on them we end up or will end up treating other people whom we claim to love as “objects of pleasure”. Anybody and everybody know if they are being honest or not with themselves. When someone uses us as a means to an end or to satisfy one’s own pleasure it violates one’s dignity. We don’t feel loved, we feel used. St. Pope John Paul 2 on one of his Wednesday Homilies said that “the opposite of love is not so much hatred. The opposite of love is to treat another person as the object of use”.Among us the young generation. There is a myth that works or is always working in us if we feel the urge, we drive into it and we have to work in it but hardly people tell us that if we are not in control of our desires and urges then it’s going make us seek others to gratify our desires inevitably and controlling other people to gratify our desires is not “ loving the person rather it’s using the other person”. If we keep following our instincts as they are, as we experience them we will end up using people instead of loving them. There is a difference between sexual freedom and sexual license. Sexual freedom in its authentic sense is not the liberty to indulge in your compulsions but liberation from the compulsion to indulge – only such a person can be a gift and that’s what we all desire. This is the language of the body in sexual union. We all want to be loved as we are unconditional, seen, known, acknowledged, honored, respected, and cherished. We all want to be someone’s unrepeatable, indispensable, irreplaceable. These are the things that our heart needs, desires, and longs for. When we are in touch with how vulnerable sexual relations are and what they make of us. We all know we can’t be vulnerable unless the other person tells us that they will always be with us and proves it to us day in and day out.
Sexual union is meant to be an expression and renewal of the marriage commitment which we have taken or will be taking. It is a commitment of oneself to another person in good times and bad, in sickness and in health, in poverty and richness, come what may our destiny is henceforth intertwined. The commitment of being freely, totally, faithfully, and fruitfully of the other person’s world and life. But premarital sex or sex before marriage doesn’t allow us to be free, faithful, and fruitful to our partners. The Church not only tells the Christians but rather to the whole World – Don’t settle for less than what your dignity demands. Your dignity demands to be loved forever not to be used and discarded after a period of time. We are not something but someone. Love says I want to earn that dignity but Sexual love says I will never leave nor forsake you. This is Marriage.
Bible Verses on Premarital Sex-
No sex before marriage-When asked what the Bible has to say about sex, most people will answer this. So what is the truth about having sex outside of marriage?
The truth is that we are having the wrong conversation time and time again. In order to justify what is believed to be common knowledge, we are pulling at any verse that has an inkling of resemblance to premarital sex. We are using these verses, without knowing their context and circumstance, to justify a belief that does not have much merit. Among the Ten Commandments that God the Father had given to Moses on Mount Sinai, the 7th Commandment states “You shall not Commit Adultery”. Adultery and pre-marital sex are always being equated whereas adultery and pre-marital sex are two different things. “Adultery really is about violation of relationship or violation of the contract. It’s about not keeping your promise,” Dr. Colleen Windham-Hughes, a professor of religion at California Lutheran University, said.1Corinthians 6:18-20 says “Flee from sexual immorality. Every other sin a person commits is outside the body, but the sexually immoral person sins against his own body. Or do you not know that your body’s a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body.”1 Corinthians 7:1-2 says, “Now for the matters, you wrote about: It is good for a man not to have sexual relations with a woman. But since sexual immorality is occurring, each man should have sexual relations with his own wife and each woman with her own husband.”
Teachings of the Catholic Church on Marriage:-
In the Catholic Church, marriage, also known as holy matrimony, is the “covenant or contract by which a man and a woman establish between themselves a partnership for their whole lives and which is ordered by its nature to the good of the spouses and the procreation and education of offspring”, and which “has been raised by Christ the Lord to the dignity of a sacrament between the baptized.” Catholic matrimonial law, based on Roman law regarding its focus on marriage as a free mutual agreement or contract, became the basis for all Christian Marriages.
The Catholic Church also has requirements before Catholics can be considered validly married in the eyes of the Church. A valid Catholic marriage results from four elements: (1) the spouses are free to marry; (2) they freely exchange their consent; (3) in consenting to marry, they have the intention to marry for life, to be faithful to one another and be open to children; and (4) their consent is given in the canonical form, i.e., in the presence of two witnesses and before a properly authorized Church minister. Exceptions to the last requirement must be approved by the church authority.
Demerits of premarital sex:-
Sex is the most beautiful thing given to Human Beings. But when this beautiful gift is misused or used in the wrong way there comes Consequences. The Bible considers Sex before Marriage is Fornication. We all know or are aware of the consequences of premarital sex. To list a few:-
- Unwanted pregnancy
- Losing friends
- Lack of Family Support
- Substance abuse
- Bad health conditions
Date if you intend to get married
Maybe a small example which I had heard in one of the sessions by a speaker I’ll narrate.
Sex, our partner both are gifts. So imagine it’s our Birthday tomorrow and tonight our best friend sends us a Gift and gives us strict instructions to open it only at midnight or Post midnight. What would we do? Some may out of excitement open it as soon as they receive and some of us will be obedient and open the gift box when the clock strikes 12 or even post-midnight. Now both groups of these people will have a different experience. The Former who had opened the gift as soon as they received will definitely be happy to receive a gift on their birthdays but won’t really have anything to feel really special when it’s 12 am. While the latter who opened the gift box at 12 am will have a different level of happiness and feel really Special. The same goes for sex and our partners. If we have intimacy before marriage then on the wedding night we might be extremely happy that we are married to the man or woman of my dreams but back in the room. I will have nothing to offer to my partner or rather my body wouldn’t be anything wonderful and mysterious to the man or woman whom I’m married. All of us might for the sake of saying say that we have no problem in making any individual who has been sexually active as my partner. But how many of us are actually going to do it and even if someone does it how many of these individuals are actually going to be really accepted? A Few. If we can’t accept someone who has been sexually active in his or her life before getting married to us then how is it that we don’t think twice before crossing boundaries. Those who call themselves “playboys” and other such names are considered to be one but they too have fallen in love some may be heartbroken. But as humans, as we are made in the image and likeness of God, and Hence When God created the first man-Adam God said “It is not good for Him to be Alone. I will give him a companion”. And then He created the First Woman-Eve. So man and woman were created to be a companion to each other. Not a companion for a short time but till Death do them Apart. So if I don’t intend to get married to the lady or man I am dating or sharing a bond of emotions with then I need to either make it known to the person or simply move out. Because maybe we aren’t serious the other person may be serious about it.
Our bodies tell a story. Our bodies in fact tell the most beautiful, the most glorious, and the grandest story. As Jesus tells when he explains one of the Parables to his disciples and listeners. We have eyes but do not see. In the modern world, the meaning of the Body has become invisible or extinct. Why has it become invisible? It’s has become invisible because of contraception, condom, abortion which erase the true meaning of sexual union in the sacrament of matrimony. Fertility is removed from the sexual union. We no longer see that sexual union and parts of our body involved in this act are used to bring a new being and make a gift of oneself to our spouse. “A woman’s body that receives a man’s body is a birth canal.– Christopher West.
Marriage, Sex, and Babies go together and in this Order. We have to and ought to keep this order. The entire Human Race not only the Catholic Church states we as humans are made for love not to be used as a medium for the satisfaction of other’s selfish motives. We need to listen to our hearts, our dignity, our deepest desires.
A lot of us get cynical or try to bring a change in ourselves, in our behavior, in the way we talk when we are hurt or wounded. This wound is bruised and made fresh again and again outside marriage in most cases. We feel used. We then decide to act indifferently, harden our hearts, build walls around our heart and mind. We train or feed our minds and heart to be strong. And sometimes we take this process of being hurt and hurting someone else as a mad game. We actively participate in this exchange of hurting ourselves and causing scars and inevitable wounds and bruises to someone else. This results in unbearable and unforgettable memories and pain whom we have hurt because of our own selfishness maximum of the times.