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On Virginity: What I Did and Did Not Mean

Earlier this week, I wrote in a post for A Deeper Story that the probability of marrying a virgin is low, but that this should not lead anyone to despair. I talked about three myths perpetuated by the Virginity or Purity culture about the supposed benefits of abstinence and the supposed consequences of premarital sex. This is a very difficult topic to address without piling shame on either those who remain virgins or on those who are not (for whatever reason).

shadow of a couple kissing

While I tried my best to respond in the comments, and even modified my post to try to make things more clear, some people still felt shamed by the post. I regret that deeply and want to try to clarify a few things. As I said at the end of the post, I am planning to write about sexuality several more times this month, but I think it important to respond here right now.

In no particular order, I offer these thoughts on virginity:

Choosing to abstain from sexual intercourse before marriage is fine not shameful.

I know that this is a difficult road to walk. We are sexual beings, and especially in our culture, indulging our sexuality is touted as the norm. If you know that for your own emotional, mental, physical, and/or spiritual health that you need to save sexual intimacy for marriage, I fully support you. If you choose to abstain from certain things but not others, I fully support you. If you need to masturbate to, in the case of a man, avoid wet dreams, or in the case of a woman, to manage your sex drive and learn how your body works, I fully support you. No shame here. None.

Choosing not to abstain from sexual intercourse before marriage is fine not shameful.

As I wrote above, we are sexual beings. We desire the pleasure and connection of sexual relationships. When we love someone, we want to demonstrate it in real and tangible ways, and physical acts of kissing, touching, and intercourse is very much a part of that. I encourage you to be wise in who you choose to interact with in this way. Many people use sex to manipulate and abuse their partner – watch out for this. Take the necessary steps to prevent pregnancy if you are not prepared to make the commitment to raise a child (yes, I realize that we are never fully prepared, but I think you know what I mean).

Your decision to abstain or not to abstain does not necessarily have any connection to the health of your future marriage.

~AND~

Your decision to abstain or not to abstain does not necessarily have any connection to the health of your future sex life.

Marriage takes hard work. Learning to make love to your partner in a way that is mutually pleasurable and fulfilling takes hard work. Each person is unique, and each couple is unique, and those dynamics are far more important than the sexual histories of the individuals. Sure, one’s sexual experience (whether it’s minimal, abusive, or extensive) can play a role. But it doesn’t have to play a negative role, and it doesn’t necessarily play a positive role either.

I have much more to say (obviously, since this is a monthlong series). This topic is nuanced and deep and broad, and people much smarter and more immersed in it than I have barely scratched the surface. These are my opinions, and while I think they are valid, I appreciate thoughtful pushback. I also reserve the right to change my opinions at any time.

P.S. A Deeper Story provided a fantastic list of posts on sex today. If you want to read more perspectives, I highly recommend checking it out.

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Comments

  1. I love you bold, no excuses, just the facts style. That’s all I am saying. Smile.
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  2. As silly as it may sound the phrase I like most is “I also reserve the right to change my opinions at any time.” Because this is life, this is learning and growing. We all need to be able to express ourselves and hear back, and thus, each of us can learn and become more caring people. Go for it Joy!

  3. I get that you’re trying not to shame those who, for whatever reason, have had sex before marriage (assuming it was their CHOICE). But saying it’s FINE isn’t a Biblical approach to it. What I have understood from the posts that started this whole sexual explosion in the blogosphere (Sarah Bessey’s, Elizabeth Esther’s, etc.–fantastic posts by the way!!!) is that there is forgiveness, redemption, and new beginnings even for those who’ve messed up in the past. Jesus is all about love and starting over. “You are not damaged goods,” as Sarah Bessey said, because the Lord is mighty to save and makes all things new. Losing your virginity is not he unpardonable sin, as many treat it as. But it’s not fine; it is wrong and God desire better things for our lives. What I see happening now is a shift to the extreme–everything is fine and permissible and good. That’s treading on dangerous waters. Choosing to abstain from sexual intercourse before marriage is more than just “fine.” It is God’s plan and desire for our sex lives. Do healthy conversations about sexuality need to happen? Absolutely, but to say that either way is fine, is to diminish what Christ came to save. Jesus died to save us from the consequences of sin, “for the wages of sin is death,” said Paul. There is so much power and beauty and grace in the fact that Jesus came to redeem us from our past and empower us to live for His glory. I’m looking forward to reading more in this series. God bless…

    • Your opinions about appropriate sex before marriage are good. You should not have to feel like you need to apologize to anyone for them. It is better to hold strong to what is right rather than to try and please everyone.

    • Sorry, my previous comments above were for Joy the author. Clicked the wrong button…
      I do have comments for you, Rubi, though. The traditional Christian values of chastity are not what God wants or teaches. You have to understand that translation of God’s Word has misconstrued and skewed what He originally meant. Some sexual immorality is easy to understand because they are more clearly defined in the Bible, like homosexuality, but other things like “chambering,” “promiscuity, “”fornication” and “sensuality” are not clearly defined and often misunderstood. We need to know God’s exact definitions for sin because sin is the transgression of His law, not man’s law or what man thinks is God’s law (1 John 3:4). Sin is not a vague line. With that in mind, consider that some people think “promiscuity” is a sin but also think it would include simply being close to many people, like dancing in a tight embrace with many dance partners. That is not “promiscuity” or sin. Neither is “sensuality” or appearing attractive. What God actually means in His Word is what sin is, but unfortunately, there isn’t enough information in the Bible to specifically state what some sins consist of. The only way around that is to know how to let God teach you and interpret for you with His Holy Spirit. That requires learning important principles so that you do not reach the wrong conclusions about Scripture or His live spiritual guidance. Unfortunately, the majority of the church does not know these principles and is teaching a lot of doctrine incorrectly. The truth about everything, including appropriate sexual intimacy before marriage, can be understood if you let your old ways of thinking and false beliefs fall away. With that in mind, teaching that masturbation and other intimate touching between partners before marriage being wrong or sinful is NOT correct. Masturbation is not mentioned ever in the Bible and the other lines for sexual immorality that are vague are not specific enough to draw your own conclusions. Sexual intimacy before marriage IS FINE BEFORE marriage.

      • Ty, thanks for your comments. I think you read things into my comment that simply weren’t there. I don’t recall writing anything about masturbation and intimate touching between partners being sinful. Nor am I talking about what you call “traditional Christian values” that think promiscuity is “dancing in a tight embrace with many dance partners.” That’s pretty insane. I never said that and I definitely don’t believe that. If you look for a “Thou Shalt Not have sex before marriage” in the Bible, you will not find it. I understand that. For that reason, you have to look at the WHOLE of Scripture to understand God’s view and intent for marriage. For one, he created it in Eden. Jesus Himself said in Matthew 19:4-6, “Haven’t you read, that at the beginning the Creator made them male and female, and said, ‘For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh? So they are no longer two, but one. Therefore what God has joined together, let man not separate.” Sex isn’t recreation and it’s not just a pleasurable way to express mutual love, it’s about a covenant relationship where TWO become ONE. Intimacy will exist in every couple before and after marriage because we are sexual beings. But intimacy of an overt sexual nature–sexual intercourse–is designed to be experienced and enjoyed in the oneness of a marriage. It’s not fine to have sex with someone who is not your husband or wife. However, that doesn’t negate the fact that God is the epitome of LOVE and grace and will wash us clean of our iniquity if we do have sex with someone who is not our husband or wife. That’s all I’m saying.

        • I wasn’t reading too much into your comments, Rubi. I was trying to point out a bigger picture. There is a lot more about this topic that God wants everyone to know. Much of it is not in the Bible, but has been given to anointed servants who have learned how to let God interpret His guidance correctly. Most of the church got some bits of guidance and completely skew them wrong and promote those incorrect interpretations, like one person was guided to not even kiss her fiance until after they were married. She made the impression to people that kissing your boyfriend is a sin, when it is not. That person didn’t get God’s entire message as He wanted her to understand it because she jumped to conclusions and then ran with them when she should not have. I can understand what God was trying to tell her by telling her not to kiss or be physically intimate with her fiance. God was trying to show her what true love feels like by building the yearning for someone you truly love with that physical separation. You are right that we have to use the whole of God’s Word (both Written and Spoken) to understand things. With that in mind, I could understand what God was trying to tell that person and also understand that being sexually intimate with your partner BEFORE marriage is NOT a sin. Christians have a big problem believing that because they don’t understand the why’s or what is going on as a whole. You have to understand that God does change His laws from time to time and we do not know the exact time when they were changed. What matters more is knowing what laws are in effect right now. The Jews have erred seriously in that by rejecting the saving grace of Jesus. The church does it still today too by rejecting what God says is true right now to anointed servants who have learned how to let God interpret guidance so there are NO errors of interpretation. Marriage is a covenant relationship designed to unite man and woman forever, but sex is not just for a married man and woman anymore. Remember, Jesus told people that the laws for divorce had changed since they were given to Moses. Now today, divorcing for any reason other than marital unfaithfulness is not valid and doing so and remarrying makes both parties adulterers (Matthew 5:32, 19:9). The issue about legal sex has also changed since the Law of Moses. It is now NOT SINFUL for a couple consisting of an unmarried man and woman to have sexual intimacy IF BOTH of them have eternal salvation. It remains a sin for an unmarried couple who are both not saved or only one party being saved. The reason for that is when you are truly saved into eternity through belief AND confession of that belief in Jesus, we are reborn with God’s Spirit and become His temples. That makes it legal for a saved couple (unmarried or not) to be sexually intimate but if one partner is not saved, sexual relations defile God’s temple of the saved party’s body. It requires marriage to sanctify the unsaved partner(s) for sexual intimacy to be legal. That is why it became a tradition for sex to come after marriage.

          • With all due respect Ty, you did not use one verse from the Bible to explain your position. My position is grounded in Scripture Where do you get yours from? I’m not sure what “anointed servants” you’re talking about but if they do not align with the Bible, they are false. I am open to considering your point of view, but please bring me back to the Bible. We need to be grounded in Scripture. And while personal stories are wonderful, there has been a lack of Bible-based talk in this online discussion about sexuality. I would love to have a conversation about what the Bible teaches about premarital sex, which is why I’m happy Joy is covering this topic this month, but we must not get so caught up in our own ideas and philosophies that we miss what God himself reveals in His Word.
            You mentioned that God’s law changes at any time. (Where did you find that?) Matthew 5:17-18 says this, “Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to FULFILL them. For truly I tell you, until heaven and earth disappear, not the smallest letter, not the least stroke of a pen, will by any means disappear from the Law until everything is accomplished.” God’s law does not change, Ty. It is eternal.
            Where did you find evidence in the Bible that the laws about “legal sex” have changed? Do you believe that once you’re saved, you can’t lose your salvation? Even if you choose to reject God AFTER you’ve accepted him? Is salvation not something we consistently work on (sanctification)? Does being “saved” mean we can sin without calling it sin? If we can have uncommitted sex before marriage can we also steal and murder after being “saved” because ya know, you have “eternal salvation” and not call THAT sin either?
            You mention that our bodies are temples of God. I completely agree with you on that! It’s in the Bible! 1 Corinthians 6:18-19 says, “Flee from sexual immorality. All other sins a person commits are outside the body, but whoever sins sexually, sins against their own body. Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your bodies.” Funny how God mixes sexuality and our bodies being temples where He dwells. Where in the Bible do you get the idea that it is not a sin for “saved” people to have sex before marriage but it is a sin for people who are “unsaved” to have sex. I’ve never come across that passage.
            I respect your freedom to conjure your own interpretations of Scripture, but they are not supported by the Bible which “is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.” 2 Timothy 3:16-17
            God bless!

            • Rubi, I don’t think you fully understood the things I talked about. Everything is NOT in the Bible and you cannot expect to get all your answers from it. The majority of your questions about anointed servants, salvation and the full truth are answered clearly in an easy to understand way in my documentary video. Please watch it. It will help you understand a lot more and where I’m coming from. Walking In Righteousness, http://3rdcompass.com/core/network?c=jrnl&obj=5046731480754762728

              • The answers to everything and anything are not in the Bible alone, but when it comes to issues of faith and morality, the Bible is my guide, period. I think this is where we fundamentally disagree. We won’t find a consensus if we disagree on this point.
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                • Rubi, the Bible IS your guide, but it isn’t the only thing you need to follow God correctly. I’ve mentioned that you cannot fully understand God’s Word without His interpretation because translation and misinterpretation of His Word (Scripture and live Spoken Word) has been and still is misleading the church. Interpretation belongs to God (2 Peter 1:20, Genesis 40:8), so it is very important to get what God meant. Another factor you must consider is that God’s Word continues now and forever and Scripture is full of things that were spoken incompletely because their full meanings were intended to be revealed later. How can the church understand God’s Word in full if they ignore and misinterpret what He gives to anointed servants? You asked where in Scripture does it say God changes His laws? I gave an example concerning divorce. You can see this theme throughout the Bible when it refers to God’s laws already in effect BEFORE any Scripture was given. Leviticus 20:23 is an example of this. We also see that God changes laws without giving “prior written notice” because about 800 years past between the last text of the Old Testament and the coming of Jesus when He enacted the Covenant of Eternal Salvation In Christ. That is one of the few laws we can pinpoint in time when it was put into effect. We can’t do that for most of God’s changes in His laws. More examples are the changes about how to treat people who break His laws – we are not to judge and are called to work with everyone in a friendly way, no matter who they are or what they’ve done, instead of the “eye for an eye” and other severe penalties required in the Old Testament, like death by stoning for prostitution. God did not tell anyone about these law changes until the right time came for them to be known. With that in mind, today is the right time for many of God’s directions and changes in law to be known by the church. We’ve been told we are in the last half of the “Last Days” and His people need to pay close attention to what He wants so we are prepared for the age and the next when He returns again. No one can afford to ignore what He gives to anointed servants who are leading the way right now.

  4. I must say that I lovingly disagree. God had/has a special purpose for a man and women sexually within marriage. Not to shame anyone…I was a teen mom. but God restores and makes new. Praying for your changed opinion :)

  5. I feel like Bible is pretty clear, but what I’m reading here from you is that in neither case, should anyone judge or bring shame to another for their own personal choice. And I wholeheartedly agree with you on that!
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  6. I would respectfully disagree as well. Sex outside of marriage is harmful to our souls, because sex has a mysterious power to unite us. It’s that whole one-ship thing God talked about in Genesis. I feel like saying it’s OK as long as you love someone reduces sex to nothing but an animal act, and that is one of the greatest lies in our society, in my opinion. There is more to sex than that.

    • I appreciate your devotion to committed marital intimacy, but I respectfully disagree. My husband and I didn’t wait until marriage to have sex. Neither one of us were raised in a purity culture nor in a church and our pre-marital love making was most certainly not “reduced to an animal act” that’s a huge insult. We’ve been married for 21 years (this next weekend).
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    • There is a lot more to sex, Kelly, but you’re on the wrong track about it. Read my comments to Rubi for a lot more detail.

      • Wow. This is the third time I’ve seen you pipe in on someone else’s comment with a “you’re wrong” message and I haven’t even had the pleasure of getting down to your response to Rubi yet. There’s a lot of grey area on much of life and for you or anyone else to exude an attitude of “I’ve cornered the market on this and you haven’t” is nothing short of arrogant.

        I happen to agree with Kelly. Sex does tie us, on a soul level, to the people that we sleep with. It is a decision to make with extreme caution, not one to just leave up to feelings and passion. Not one to just say, hey, do it, don’t do, it doesn’t matter. It does. I think what I’ve appreciated so far from all of the blogs that have broached this subject, regardless of what stance they take is that sexual integrity is important. We don’t need to change the over all message. We need to change the way we present it. Shaming and guilting people because of the choices they’ve made is not helping anybody.

        On a different note, there is new information from years of research that show that science actually agrees with the Bible (funny how that usually ends up happening). Casual sex, sex with multiple partners, etc is not normal behavior (even if it becomes the cultural norm). Nor is it healthy. The brain (and I’d add, the body) is designed to function at its best in monogomous, committed relationships. We should be encouraging that in non shaming, educational ways.
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        • Alecia, I keep telling people to read the comments because the things I share are very important and I do not want to just keep saying everything, which is a lot of information, over and over again. People often ignore information because they just don’t want to take the time to read it.

          • I may be way off, and certainly online conversations don’t do justice to real life interaction, so I may be misinterpreting you here, but…you are coming off like all you care about is what you want to talk about. We can’t have an intelligent, ground breaking, get every body thinking conversation when everyone just speaks just to be heard. I said alot up above, as did Rubi, in her original comment as well as in response to you, and you have done nothing but say “read what I wrote.” I’ll gladly read what you wrote (and I did go down to your comment for Rubi and read it: it seems you’ve come to alot of conclusions but don’t have actual biblical grounds for those conclusions) but then if I respond, it would be awesome if you’d respond by answering thoughts and questions in my post as well. That way there’s a give and take.

            At any rate, I find your thoughts very disturbing. God “clearly” calls homosexuality a sin but we can’t make a case for fornication, etc. Really? Secondly, masterbation is never mentioned in the bible? You’re right, it isn’t. But neither is smoking (sorry I’m throwing that one in even though its non-sex related), neither is anal sex, neither is three-somes (these are just random, not trying to start a debate on any of these things here)…but we can easily deduce from scripture whether or not something is healthy for us or God-honoring for our minds and bodies. Like Rubi said, you have to look at the WHOLE of scripture to understand God’s intent and its application to our lives.

            • I have and do look at the whole picture, but I also include God’s live guidance as well. I completely read all the comments that I responded to and understand all the arguments. You say you want Scripture, but I’ve already replied to that point. You won’t find everything you need in the Bible and you cannot fully understand what is in your Bible without knowing how to let God interpret things for you. Translation does seriously affect the understanding of the truth. I gave Rubi a link to a video that would help clarify many things. I believe you should watch it as well. I am firm in the things I say because I have very good reason to believe the truth of what I’ve been taught. They have been authenticated by God’s fingerprint. You can see some of that in the video, but to see much more details about that and how to let God interpret, teach you, and filter out errors and bad guidance from the enemy, see my website noted in my profile and the video. I hope you come to see that there is much more the church needs to learn and change.

  7. Boy, I wish I could find the Bible you’re using…

  8. mark letowski says:

    I love the fact that you see both sides of the argument here – saying it’s fine to abstain before marriage but acknowledging the fact that we are sexual beings with different morals and ideals. http://community.bibleseries.tv has been discussing issues pertaining to virginity and celibacy as they relate to The Bible. I would love to see you on there making some posts of your own :)

  9. Sometimes, being Christlike in a marriage means that you have to be okay with not having sex with the person that you are married to and spend a lot of time with, and doing so is in the image of Christ.

    But trying to tell people in the church that is impossible. They’ll throw all sorts of verses at you from Corinthians about duty and not avoiding the relationship, and holiness, and all sorts of junk…

    When, in reality, we’ve just used Christianity and the bible and marriage to put a seal of approval on acting the way we want to act anyway, and having done so, we can thus look down on people who haven’t.

    There’s no grace or love in any of it. Certainly no Gospel. Lots of Gnosticism though.

  10. You kinda lost me here on this one. You believe your thoughts and opinions are valid. Validated by whom or what?

    Also, I’m certainly not left less shameful of what I have or haven’t done by reading about your opinions, which you yourself admit could shift any moment.

    I appreciate your attempt to remove shame or false hope in what we do or do not do, but I’m left wanting for what the hopeful message is.

    If anyone else reading this feels the same, I encourage you to watch this video:
    “Is there a commandment against premarital sex?” by Tim Keller

    And this article: “The Gospel and Sex” by Tim Keller
    http://timothykeller.com/images/uploads/pdf/The_Gospel_and_Sex.pdf

  11. It’s disgusting when Christians twist the bible into a battering ram to insult people and condemn them for not “having sex in a biblical way’. It’s bondage!
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  12. I’m so glad that you are willing to tackle this subject! Its such an important one. My personal story is full of examples of the ways in which the purity culture completely messed with my view of sex and sexuality. That being said, I cannot agree with what you’ve written here. I went back and read what you wrote in A Deeper Story to get the full picture. I’ve been trying to keep up in general with this virtual phenom of a topic as my husband and I are marriage bloggers so I’ve read many of the blogs on this in the last week or so.

    I mean no disrespect, and please correct me if I’m wrong, but when I read the original post (which it appears is also a rewrite so that you could make yourself more “clear”) and then read this post it feels to me like you are back tracking. There was someone in particular over at A Deeper Story who kept coming after you for your word choices and I honestly didn’t find anything wrong with them or offensive in them. I’m paraphrasing, but “If you made a mistake, God is a God of second chances” or “restoration is possible.” You are speaking my language when you say things like this! Why did you feel the need to change that? (Aside from the fact that you made a disclaimer that you could potentially change your mind at any time – love that btw). There is not shame in saying that something is wrong. There is shame in wallowing in that and not allowing God to use to make us better. My husband cheated on me and we restored our marriage by the grace of God and we know all too well how much our God is in the business of piecing back together broken things.

    Then I come over to this writing piece right here and it feels like two steps back. Choosing not to abstain is not shameful? It won’t impact your future marriage or sex life? Yes, there’s no shame in admitting if you didn’t abstain. Yes, your future marriage and sex life doesn’t have to be marred by your past choices if you’re willing to communicate and work through them. But those are generalized statements with huge consequences. There’s a key word that’s missing, and I hesitate to write it here because I haven’t even finished or posted my blog on this yet, but its too important to skirt over. The key is repentance. Our ability to come to God and/or our spouses and speak honestly about the choices we’ve made is the first step in the process of healing. But when we act as if whether we do have sex or not before marriage, eh, either way , it doesn’t matter, than we’re missing an important piece of the puzzle. No, it doesn’t have to matter in the grand scheme of things (I like what Sarah Bessey said, “don’t make it more than it is and don’t make it less than it is”) but that requires repentance on our part.
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    • Alecia, I appreciate your gentle pushback here. Sounds like, as a marriage blogger, you probably know first-hand how difficult it is to talk about this without saying something that is misunderstood.

      I think you hit on something in those last few sentences that I missed in both previous posts: attitude. If someone has a “devil may care” attitude about their sexuality, first of all, that is arrogance and it is a huge red flag, and second, their not caring will also include other people and will negatively influence future relationships.

      But if a person is willing to say, “these are the things I’ve screwed up, these are the things I don’t understand yet, these are the things I need God’s grace to work through,” I absolutely believe God honors that. That is a person who is willing to learn and put things behind that need to be left behind.

      I am unhappy with how these articles came out, to be honest. The first one, on not marrying a virgin, is closer to what I wanted to say, but this one here needed a lot more work. It is difficult because the topic is so large, but even so… Part of the problem is that there are many aspects of sexuality as a Christian that I’m still wrestling with. I think if we’re honest, most of us still are. After all, marriage is one of the mysteries of the faith — Paul even says so in Ephesians 5. Also, I hesitate to use the word “sin” because it has so much baggage. I know that the Bible uses it, etc., but particularly with this topic I am super cautious because so many people have been made to feel guilty of sexual sin when someone else forced themselves upon them, so many women are made to feel responsible for the thoughts of men (much of the conversation about modesty says men can’t help themselves so women are at fault if a man lusts after her). I never ever want to say something that would cause a person to think I am blaming them for the choices of another. Anyway, what you’ve identified as back-tracking is certainly that, but it is also me trying to work out all of these tensions in real time, and not doing a great job of it.

      Thank you for stopping by. Your comment here definitely helped me continue to think all these things through.

      • I appreciate your honesty and your willingness to work out your thoughts on this in “real time.” That says a lot about your ability to be a real, transparent person. This is an incredibly hard topic to tackle so I’m certain, regardless of what opinion you settle on, you won’t please everybody. And that’s okay. You never will. And…I think that’s actually a good thing because then it creates discussion and a learning opportunity for everyone involved. None of us has all the answers.

        I can also appreciate your desire to be super cautious with your words because, you’re right, we never know the entire story or the circumstances by which someone lost their virginity.
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      • Joy, you’re right to try and be tactful in discussing this topic and sin in general. No one should be condemned for anything. However, we should not be afraid to teach about sin and specifically use that word because it is important to learn and understand what sin actually is. It is not simply “moral wrong” which is vague and not how God defines it. Sin is the breaking (transgression) of God’s law, not man’s law or what man may think is God’s law (1 John 3:4 KJV). I refer to the King James Version to note how its translation for that verse is more accurate than most other translations of the Bible. That is often the case because the KJV has a closeness to the original times when Scripture was originally written, so its translations are often more accurate than modern ones. Errors of understanding from bad translation and misinterpretation of God’s Word is another serious topic everyone needs to understand more fully, but that is another topic. Sin is very important to understand correctly because even though receiving grace from the eternal salvation of Christ saves us from the “death” of sin, there are still consequences of sin (breaking God’s laws). You also mention the “profound mystery” in Ephesians 5:32. That mystery, though, is not referring to marriage between a man and woman. It refers to God’s Marriage to the church. That mystery has been more fully revealed to anointed servants in recent years and ties in with the topic of sin and how to correctly follow God’s Spirit, which every believer needs to learn. You can understand that since you know that “back-tracking” is unproductive and often an unpleasant learning experience. Everyone needs to learn the proper principles of following God correctly so we can “work out all these tensions in real time” with minimal “tension” and ZERO errors. The video documentary I shared here covers all of those topics. I hope you would watch it completely and follow through with the more detailed information on the website, so you can live and learn with God in real time without running around in circles. Walking In Righteousness, http://3rdcompass.com/core/network?c=jrnl&obj=5046731480754762728

        • Actually, more modern translations of the Bible actually work with older manuscripts than were available at the time the KJV was translated. See this site (http://greek-language.com/bible/palmer/03literaryhistory.html) for a good rundown of canonization, transmission, and translation. Most pertinently:

          “Second, we need more recent translations because we can do a far more accurate job today of reconstructing the exact wording of the original text than was possible in 1611. In 1611 the translators of the KJV had at their disposal only a handful of manuscripts for some portions of the Bible. Today we have hundreds of manuscripts for some of those same texts.”

          • Cheri, having more manuscripts corrects some problems that the KJV translation has, but it still does not fix the problem with correct translation in general. I have seen modern Bibles error in more very important verses than the KJV does. It is best to use three or four Bibles, including the KJV, to help understand Scripture. Some Bibles should be avoided altogether. See my article, Choosing A Bible for more, http://3rdcompass.com/core/network?c=jrnl&obj=4471205528350176744 . As I stated before, the only way around these problems is to learn how to let God interpret EVERYTHING. It is not an automatic thing that just comes to every believer. The correct principles of following God’s Spirit must be learned. You can see the video and my website that I shared on this thread for more about those things.

  13. Gunnar Tveiten says:

    I admit it. I’m impressed. This article is *much* better than the one you first posted, here you do take that second step that I asked you about in the first. There’s a big difference between saying: “what you did was wrong, but you should be forgiven, not shamed” which was the vibe I got from your first article (even though it wasn’t your precise words), and what you say here, which comes close to saying both choices are equally good.

    You do still come out and warn against the dangers of sex, claiming that “many people” use sex to “manipulate and abuse their partners”, meanwhile you don’t mention any potential negative consequences from abstaining, allthough as demonstrated clearly in the comments on your previous post, there’s several potential dangers in abstaining. Atleast half a dozen of these risks where mentioned in the comments on your other posts.

    Nevertheless, you still feel one should warn about the dangers of saying yes, but see no reason to warn about the dangers of saying no.

    But that’s a extremely minor nitpick. It’s really awesome how you listen to the discussion in the comment-field, and are prepared to examine your own opinions anew.

  14. Disobeying God and throwing away your virtue is not shameful? Really?

    Well, let’s all just start fornicating then, why not?

    Doctrines of devils, as the word says.

    • Gunnar Tveiten says:

      And you are, offcourse, the personal messenger of God. Here to tell us the only correct reading of his words. Nevermind that 96% of actual people disagree with you, and a overwhelming majority even among church-members. That all doesn’t matter at all, because you know you’re right.

      When someone on the previous post asked for a concrete reference all we got was crickets. I’m sure you’ve got some better references ?

    • Jack, you should read all my comments to Rubi and Joy here. God’s exact definition for “fornication” must be known for anyone to “lose their virtue.”

  15. Women are the gatekeepers of sex, and men are the gatekeepers of commitment.

    I refuse to give commitment to a woman who did not guard her virtue. She gave it away to other men, and I find it unattractive. No judgment implied. Just not attracted to women with a past.

    Therefore, I’ll just stay single and date. It is not my problem that lots of women have blown their chance to get married and are now stomping their foot demanding that men suddenly be attracted to something we are not.

    • … wuck?

      Or, more frankly, please show me chapter and verse where that makes any sense, whatsoever, in Scripture or in the Tradition.

      Also, you sound like a stud. Call me maybe?

    • And this is why you’re single.

      Geez, brother. Flip the scenario in your head–how would that feel to be on the receiving end of this attitude?
      Hännah recently posted..IR: Masturbation, shame, & Christian sexual ethicsMy Profile

      • A very good question, and one that deserves a serious answer.

        How would it feel. Well, a large number of Christian men are ALREADY on the receiving end of that attitude, or a version of it. When Christian women engage in licentious behavior with non-Christian men, they are implicitly saying the same thing:

        “Despite your commitment to Christ, you are not good enough. I would rather sleep with this non-Christian guy than even consider dating you. However, if I ever change my mind, you will be required to pretend this offense never occurred. This way, I get to have sexyfuntime with the college boyfriend, while maintaining nicechristian guy as a marriage ‘n’ babies backup plan.”

        Oh, the women didn’t mean it that way? Well, we are all free to interpret the signals others send us, just as you have decided to have follow your interpretation of my words.

    • Welp, you win this time, internet. I didn’t think I could read something this stupid ever, but you just had to go and write this, didn’t you? Come on, mannnnnn.

    • So a woman’s value is only as good as her virtue? And if she loved another and expressed that love physically with that person before you, she’s too unattractive and not worthy of your attention, attraction, commitment?

      I don’t understand how premarital sex has “blown their chance to get married…” considering the majority of people wind up getting married at some point, and most of them have all had sex. Maybe you should consider rephrasing to “lots of women have blown their chances to get married to me because they had sex and I can’t be attracted to someone unclean, impure, and possibly a dirty whore. But NO JUDGMENTS!”

      As for sex and commitment and who the gatekeepers are, I’m sure you’ll realize one day, when you get to be in a real life grown up relationship, that both genders are equally responsible for those gates.

      Sincerely,
      The Woman Who Had Premarital Sex, Lived in SIN, and has been married for the better part of 12 years.

    • Ding. Ding. Ding. We now know the real reason Jack is still single.

    • Something tells me a lot of women aren’t too fussed about whether or not you find them attractive.
      Dianna recently posted..Rejecting the Premise: Questions of Sex and SinMy Profile

    • Hi Jack,

      I’m not sure if you are the same Jack who posted that you are waiting until you are married to have sex. If you are, you had me understanding your situation and heart up until this comment. You imply that you aren’t judging, when you actually have. But I’m not here to condemn your judgment. I’m just here to share some thoughts as a woman who “gave away her virtue” before marrying my “pure” husband that what you are saying is that women like me don’t deserve marriage because we didn’t wait. We are tainted, stained, borrowed, used, filthy, dirty, unworthy of love from a man like you, who is, in your eyes, virtuous.

      Yet, in saying that they are unattractive, you make them less than who God already has them to be? How do you know that the experience they had wasn’t a road that led them to a stronger faith? How do you know that their being “tainted” was what taught them grace? How can you define a woman’s virtue only be her sexual activity or lack thereof? How does it make or not make her a woman? How can you say that a sin God forgives is unforgivable?

      What I have always loved about the Bible is the compassion that God has always had on the “unforgivable sins.” Jesus was most compassionate towards were those who have struggled with sexual sin. So many of the stories and interactions he has with women are women who have struggled sexually. Not because God considers them the gatekeepers of sex, but because throughout time and space, men have always blamed women for sexual sin when it always takes TWO to have sex. And even more moving is that he chose a sin that not only transcends time, but is the ONE SIN in all of humanity that is an attempt to connect to another human. An attempt to find value from someone else. An attempt to reach out because we find ourselves lonely or unloved or unworthy already. In a time when society barely considered women human, and in a time when a man could be condemned for even communicating with a woman of such sin, he spoke to those women who were condemned by men who felt the same way as you. He protected them. He loved them with His compassion. God didn’t waste words on the stories about the woman at the well, the adulterer who was almost stoned, the woman who used her tears to wash Jesus’ feet. See, these are all women who, in their culture, shouldn’t have even stood in the presence of any man because they believed the same thing that you did, and yet, Jesus met her and asked her for a drink of water – he drank from her cup; He defended the woman who was ripped away from her lover’s arms and and thrown naked into the street for all to see her dis-shoveled hair and sweaty body as they were ready to stone her to death; He sat quietly as He let this woman too broken to even look at his face wash his feet with her “filthy” tears and used that moment to teach his disciples about true love for Him. God told Hosea to chase after his whoring wife over and over and over again and to be with her as a husband should, and why? Because He’s a God of redemption. He’s the one who decides who is worthy and who isn’t.

      What does it matter if she saved her vagina while losing her soul to pride, envy, gossip, slander, judgement, hatred, bigotry, etc? The redemptive God I know doesn’t put weight on what KIND of sin you have committed. Sin is sin. And by your standard, shouldn’t a woman who is a virgin also be perfect in every other way? After all, the wages of ALL sin is death. ALL SIN. So, how do you…a man…get to decide that a woman’s sexual past is more unforgivable than the woman and not marriage worthy than the woman who envied her beautiful, thin neighbor, when truly God is the only one worthy of making any judgement at all?

      There was a song that my husband shared with me when he first met me – long before we ever knew we would even date, let alone get married. The words said:

      From glass alabaster she poured out the depths of her soul,
      Oh Lord full of Christ would you wait if her harlotry’s known?
      Pours her tears to darken the dirt, of humblest offerings to forget the hurt,
      She is strong enough to stand in My love, and I can hear her say,

      I’m weak, I’m poor, I’m broken, Lord, but I’m yours. Hold me now.

      Let he without sin, cast the first stone, if you will.
      TO SAY THAT MY BRIDE ISN’T WORTH HALF THE BLOOD THAT I’VE SPILLED!
      Point your fingers, laugh if you choose.
      TO SAY THAT MY BRIDE IS BORROWED AND USED.
      SHE is strong enough to stand in my love…

      By telling women that they are unattractive or unworthy of marriage because they have been intimate with another man is challenging God to not dare bring you a woman who is tainted because she is only worth HALF THE BLOOD that he spilled.

      God does not define us by our sex lives. He defines us by our faith. God blesses women who have chosen to remain virtuous and women who have entered the gates of sexual passion. Because God does not compare our lives to one another, He compares it to himself. And in doing so, we all fall short, and we all are worthy of redemption and love in His eyes. I hope you can get to a place where you can do so as well.

      • As I stated, God forgives and restores. But I’m not going to marry a woman unless she is willing to face the harm she has caused to me by her unfaithfulness. Too many of these women are “questioning” the purity ideal are full of defiance and bravado, with scarcely a note about true repentance. It reads like a giant self-affirmation, which is nothing but balm for the ego.

        The truly repentant care about those whom they have harmed. And they care about that first, not last. A person who has done wrong and is repentant is so eager to right the wrong that they do not consider the cost to themselves. I offer Zacheus as an example of repentance.

        Maybe a lot of women just can’t bear to deal with the truth of the harm they’ve done, which is too bad, because in confronting it, it can be then truly repented of and put behind them.

        Otherwise, it falls to the man to “just get over it”, which is preferable to many women, who apparently prefer to transfer the cost of their sin to their husband.

        • Jack, as I replied to you before, you are not being “harmed” in any way of righteousness or sinfulness by a woman who has had sex with someone else before being with you. IF any harm was done (sexual intimacy BEFORE marriage is often NOT a sin), she did it to herself or the one she had sex with. Any harm to you is purely in your head and it is wrong and a sin to blame that person for any wrong doing when they have not done wrong. Do not judge others (Matthew 7:1), Do not judge or condemn others (Luke 6:37). Do not slander one another (James 4:11). You will need to forgive, Jack, in order to have complete righteousness with God.

    • So the sin of sexual promiscuity is a greater sin than pride.

      Okay, I think I understand the playing field.

      (Note: I am not condoning either sin, but they are both sins, and sins for which Jesus died.)
      Rich recently posted..Genesis 40-41 HCSBMy Profile

    • Woooowwwwww.

    • Do you mean “blown the chance to be married” to you? These harsh words of shaming are probably what are actually keeping you from a depth of love that ALL people deserve. Is this odd hierarchy you’ve built set up to somehow keep your heart safe? If you’re not looking for someone with a past then I am assuming you are writing these comments from a well hidden cabin in some woods somewhere where no one on the entire earth can invade your pure bubble of untainted loins.

      It is unfortunate, everything you have said. Mostly because you seem to wholeheartedly find it to be true. And my dear brother, it is not true. Women with a sexual past of any kind for any reason at all (enjoyment, love, abuse, etc.) are ALL women who are whole, clean, worthy, and loved. Loved by others and most importantly loved by a Father who would fight through hell to rescue her heart and dignity, who would never consider her unworthy. So, who else then can be left to stand against her choices? I would say that these women are spared a life of marriage with someone who harshly belittles and shames them. What happened in your life to make you see God’s children this way?

      • How many times can I repeat to the textually deaf that I have never demanded a virgin. I require a very low-number woman, and one that has not gone through a phase of promiscuity.

        Srsly, I think people read what they want to see in my comments.

  16. I think there’s a lot of confusion about how to respond to the way that sexual purity has functioned as an idol in the American suburban church, which there’s no denying it has. I think the way Paul puts it is actually very cogent: “All things are lawful for me, but not all things are beneficial. All things are lawful for me, but I will not be dominated by anything.” Sex is such a potent force that it can so easily become an idol that wreaks havoc on our communities without any boundaries. What is needed is a sexual ethic that operates from the premise of the benevolent God really proclaimed by the Bible who is invested in the health and safety of our communities rather than a sexual ethic which is derived in a fire and brimstone God for whom holiness is an entirely abstract question of His honor. When we worship creation instead of creator in any kind of way, then bad things happen in our interpersonal relationships. That’s not just Romans 1 talking; it’s my life experience.

    I don’t think I’ll ever have any way of knowing whether the dysfunction that I sometimes experience in that most intimate part of my life is a product of the shame that I was indoctrinated to have about my past experiences or the fact that I had the past experiences. I hate to be too crude, but I think part of the difference between the way males and females think through this is that when you’re the male and you’re not fully present in the moment because of shame, thinking of another woman, or anything else, you fail to perform in a very concrete and obvious way that raises questions. The other thing is that when men have a “solo experience,” it always involves a visualization or fantasy of some kind even if it’s in your head which isn’t necessarily about your current partner if you’ve experienced other partners. That’s not a whole lot different than adultery, which is why Christian men who have been promiscuous and have a whole lot of memories in their heads that haunt and tempt them are going to tend to say they wish they had waited.
    Morgan Guyton recently posted..Ugliness Into Beauty: Six Blessings of the CrossMy Profile

    • Morgan, you have very good comments. The only thing I need to say is your idea of adultery is incorrect. When Jesus said it is spiritual adultery to lust after another woman who isn’t your wife (Matthew 5:28), He did not mean just any lustful thoughts. He meant the intention to commit adultery with that woman. God created us pre-programmed with automatic biological tendencies that we CANNOT control. People are programmed to react to stimuli that is attractive and often that leads to immediate thoughts of being intimate. That is an automatic response and is NOT a sin. No one can avoid those automatic responses. Just because the thought of sex may come to your mind when you see an attractive person, doesn’t mean you want to be with that person in that way or that you consider committing adultery.

  17. I have been more than clear in stating that I am not talking about a transgression or two.

    I am talking about the large number of Christian women who decide to follow this path for a time, reveling in the excitement and power. I know plenty of women like this.

    The discussion always ends up being an indictment against men like me for being unforgiving. What I never see is any repentance toward the future husband for what she defrauded him of. Ever. It is always “well, that is between be and God, Mr. Judgy Guy”.

    The truly repentant care more about righting the wrong they have done, and making it right to the harmed person, rather than endless wailing about how judged they feel.

    But the women don’t really care about how men feel. They don’t care about the good Christian men who had to spend their 20s and 30s building a life and career, abstaining from sex while their future wife was out “having a little fun” and trying to get jerks and bad boys to commit.

    They then want to jump ship from that life and come over and participate in the life that I built, ALL BY MYSELF, and have me pretend it is like nothing ever happened.

    She gave away her time, comfort, help, attention, and yes, sex to other men. Sometimes just because they were soooo exciting. Meanwhile, I am a self-made man in every sense of the word. What about the giant deficit in my life? what about the days I came home to an empty house, while she was out “making mistakes” (weasel term there) which were more deliberate than accidental.

    Regardless, I expect no better. And maybe it will always be this way. I’m not sure that the average woman is really strong enough to confront the damage they have done through their wanton misuse of their sexuality.

    Where was the wife of my youth, as the Bible refers to her? Probably fornicating with some sexy jerk somewhere.

    Well, I will almost certainly exit this life some years from now alone and childless, after living out my years in grim fulfillment of my duties.

    Many women will as well. But let us never forget who failed to guard their heart in this matter.

    And let us never forget who is STILL UNWILLING to confront the full devastation of her actions, preferring instead to lecture men to “just get over it”.

    Unless and until formerly promiscuous women are truly ready to acknowledge and repent, we may all die in the desert of singleness, never entering the promised land.

    Because some of us prefer to believe a lie.

    • ‘scuse me. Can you elaborate on why a woman would owe you her virginity?
      Hännah recently posted..IR: Masturbation, shame, & Christian sexual ethicsMy Profile

    • “Well, I will almost certainly exit this life some years from now alone and childless, after living out my years in grim fulfillment of my duties.”

      Keep posting graceless comments like these, Jack, and I dare say that’ll be true. Grim indeed.

      • White knight.

        • Does anyone really get upset being called a “white knight” anymore? I thought we already figured out that this is what bullies say to decent men who still care about women and in a very natural way feel the desire to stick up to the abusive asses who try to take advantage of them. Jack – get therapy, dear. You’re driving yourself crazy and what you’re experiencing is not religious fervor, but something closer to paranoid delusions and a very overly developed sense of unearned entitlement. No one owes you anything. If you think God has forsaken you, blaming women for that is a silly misguided thing to do with your time.

    • HOLY CRAP JACK says:

      I think there’s a reason you might “die in the desert of singleness, never entering the promised land.” Also, women aren’t owned by their future husbands, God cares about more than just making sure you get laid, and you should probably adjust your fedora, it might be on a little tight.

      • Straw man argument. Not about ownership, not about getting laid, which is not a problem at all, if I choose.

    • So she should get a time machine and travel back to when she first had sex to undo all the sex she had before she met you? Because the way I see it, her sexual history is between her and God, her choices were hers. Please shame more women who have had sex or relationships or fun before they were graced with the presence of your righteousness. How do you expect a woman to “right her wrongs” as you say? Should she beg YOU for forgiveness? If she repents to God, is that enough? Because it doesn’t sound like it is for you.

      Women can have sex, relationships, and successful lives. Including but not limited to careers, education, and multiple community and social activities.

      Honestly, it sounds like you have a case of “nice guy” syndrome. Have any of these three scenarios happened to you?

      1. You believe that you are are a victim of women’s irrationality or cruelty, in that women say that they want “nice guys” but in fact preferring to have relationships with “jerks” or “bad boys” or “alpha males”

      2. You believe that “doing things for someone you are attracted to, so that she will have a relationship with you, because women do, should, or seem reward men with sex/relationships”

      3. You regard women as being moral guardians: that they should choose the nicest men for sex/relationships in order to reward them for doing the right thing.

      4. The women that don’t want to carry on a relationship with you, but have carried on relationships with other men who you see as socially “lesser” than you, are sluts, whores, impure, immoral, and therefore undeserving of your affection.

      Do any of these scenarios sound familiar?

      Also, you should probably just get over it. Most people are going to have sex before marriage. Sometimes a lot, sometimes a little. How much sex a person has is really not an accurate indicator of their level of respect for themselves or a measure of their morality. Though I’m sure you’d think that a sexually promiscuous woman who spends all of her free time (ya know, when she’s not on her back), doing charitable works, is far more abhorrent than the virgin who would scoff at the homeless or kick puppies.
      Cam recently posted..Remix (I Can’t Stand It) – How the New Kids On The Block Broke My Heart After 25 YearsMy Profile

      • I think that many of the women pushing the panic button over marriage and children are reaping what they have sown.

        Once again, true repentance is shown by being concerned with how you have harmed the other person. If the judgment fits, wear it.

        Anyway, nice guy syndrome? No, more like righteous-man syndrome. Sometimes I think it was a mistake not to take advantage of all the easy sex that was offered to me when I was younger. Foolishly, I followed the Bible – ha, what a rube I was, huh?

        I notice that a certain woman upthread is playing the “you must be a loser” card, which is a standard girl tactic to try and deflect the validity of a man’s argument.

        Well, whatever. But no one can make you feel impure without your permission, and judging from the fact that my words get under a lot of girls’ skin, I can only assume that they agree with me.

        For the final time, it amazes me that the women never, ever, ever, ever, seem to care about how many men feel on this issue.

        Nope. Men don’t count, all that matters is that the girl gets the outcome she wants, and that no one is allowed to say anything that hurts her feelings.

        I’ll keep dating, but there will be no wedding rings given by me. I see no reason to commit. None at all.

        • So, I’m curious, why continue dating if you never plan on marrying?

          Do you judge women for having the same perspective? Because men are notoriously more promiscuous than women, and there is ABSOLUTELY a double standard when it comes to male promiscuity vs. female promiscuity (please don’t make me explain the slut/stud double standard).

          Sure women care about men’s thoughts; we care if a man has had far more sexual partners than we have or far fewer. It is a cog in the mechanism of insecurity.

          BUT, to shame a woman who has enjoyed her life, sexually and otherwise, because you perhaps haven’t had the same number of experiences – is deplorable and reeks of self-righteous superiority complexes.

          And, no judgments, but as a woman who had a very active sex life before her husband (who also had a very, VERY active) sex life before me, I can’t help but wonder if some cruel woman drove you to your incredibly bitter sounding views.

          I’m not sure of your age, for some reason I assume you are in your early 30′s, but there is a very high likelihood that you may not find a woman that has only had relations with 3 or less people. Though I suppose that doesn’t matter much to you, as you aren’t looking for a commitment – just someone to date and then dump once you realize she doesn’t meet your ideal version of purity.

          I mean this with no condescension, though I fear it may come off that way…I truly hope that you can one day see past your “ideal” version of purity and find someone to love and share your life with. As someone who has experienced non-committal sexual relationships, long term sexual relationships, and the absolute soul-baring intimacy of a marriage – there is nothing more fulfilling on the face of the planet than being able experience and share unconditional love and companionship with someone who would give you the sun, moon and stars, if you couldn’t give it to them first. Finding that person you can share every moment of elation and sorrow with and know that they are with you every step of the way is probably the closest thing to heaven I could imagine. Knowing that person accepts you no matter your history, no matter your sins – past, present, or future, is truly knowing how God works in our lives through our relationships.

          Jack, I hope one day you find happiness without judgement. I hope someone loves you and your sins with all of their heart and soul. So that maybe you can understand that love and marriage is more than sexual purity, it’s about forgiveness, redemption, humility, and unconditional understanding and love.

          • The slut / stud double standard exists for a reason, and that reason is that it is very easy for women to rack up a high count, because all they need to do is telegraph willingness to any nearby man she finds attractive. No woman needs to look very far to find a willing sexual partner that she finds attractive.

            A man needs to work very hard to find an attractive sexual partner, unless he is among the higher status men, such as school athletes, or other socially high-status men.

            As one person said, when a key opens many locks, we call it a master key. When a lock can be opened by many keys, we call it a bad lock.

            Nearly any woman could choose to have a high partner count. However, only a small number of men have the “pull” to do the same. Therefore, the double standard is not a social construct, but it is based on the reality that male and female sex drives are different.

            Also, the high-fiving in the locker room idea is really just a false idea that women use to incorrectly portray male opinions on sex. It is only the crassest of frat boy types that have such discussions.

            Most men are secretly turned off by such talk, because we understand that what this means is that the “popular” guys are all getting to take a turn or two with someone’s future wife, and we don’t want to be that guy, at either end of the deal.

            The real crime against men occurs when a woman wastes her entire 20s and early 30s chasing bad boys, therefore depriving her husband of her younger, hotter, and more innocent self. Often her thinnest years too.

            Shallow? Maybe, but who is she to decide that some jerk gets her best, and her husband gets her after that plan fails?

            Besides, lots of premarital sex tends to make a woman jaded, and often bitter about men. She should not be wasting her innocence on men who are not committing, nor should she be making sexual downpayments on the hope of commitment.

            It seems to me that many Christian women seem almost proud to be denying their husband the privilege of being their first – it’s like they are haughtily rubbing the mens’ faces in the fact that they have had sex with other men, and their husband just has to man up and shut up.

            And if a man is hurt by this, there is nothing but scolding and insults.

            I will not be anyone’s backup plan.

          • With regards to the “double standard”…no. No. The double standard (in our time, at least) actually is the complete opposite of what you think. When a man has sex with a lot of women, he is condemned as “irresponsible” or a “dead-beat dad” (if any children arise from his relationships) or someone who “does not value love”. When a woman has sex with a lot of men, however, everyone says “Double standard!” Now THAT’S the double standard. Yes, there is one…but you’re missing the elephant in the room.

        • Ok – so this part “I notice that a certain woman upthread is playing the “you must be a loser” card, which is a standard girl tactic to try and deflect the validity of a man’s argument.” made it abundantly clear that you’re just a garden variety troll. So sad.

          There are so many more interesting things to be doing in the world, Jack. Getting a rise out of people in the most predictable ways is so uninspired. I mean, what do you actually gain from that? You could be doing some interesting street art or building something fun or useful or entertaining. But the tired old hack of trolling. “I’m a man and you’re a girl” to get the rise out of the last few women who actually still have a trigger for this sort of thing. Man, to have such low self-esteem that the only way you get a kick is to get under someone else’s skin. It’s hard to imagine what that must be like.

          Put down the junk food, step away from the computer, go outside and actually listen to people. Care. Try it. Just as an experiment. Build something. With other people. Cry – tell someone you feel afraid and let them console you.

          Cause Jack, that’s what real courage is. And when you find that courage in yourself, you know what happens? You start seeing it in other people too.

          You aint triggering me honey. I know precisely what’s going on in that brain of yours. And I want to reach out with love and understanding and tell you that I’ve met men who were like you and then changed. And even if that part of you thinks that you’d hate yourself if you did – there’s another part that knows that you really need to – that doing this over and over obsessively is a sickness.

          Anyway – hope you make that step soon so you don’t die alone. No one deserves that and I’m sure you did actually suffer some very bad hurt that made you need to troll in places like that and I feel deeply sorry for that happening to you. So love yourself and then you’ll be better at loving the rest of us.

          I make a prediction that you’ll soon meet someone in real life who will say this sort of thing to you and listen to what you really are saying and shock the heck out of you. I pray this is so. (And I happen to have a lot of good luck with prayers coming true. Especially when offered this way).

          Cheers.

          • Ha, you re-played the exact same card, just mildly rephrased. It appears to be an uncontrollable reflex to opposing thought.

            You also make a long series of judgments and assumptions about my social life that are wholly inaccurate. But whatever – I really don’t need your helpful advice.

            As far as trollery goes, I would respectfully submit that when all of these girls start running off on their blogs about how men just need to man up and marry these women irrespective of anything, well, it seems to me that these women are trollishly rubbing in the men’s faces their mistaken belief that they can use the Gospel to strong-arm a marriage out of men.

            I’m not asking for much, really. I think maybe a girl could just say

            “I really regret that I ignored good Christian men these last dozen years, and I regret that I deprived my future husband of my attention, companionship, and intimacy at a point when it would have mattered to him. Even worse, I sexually and romantically validated men who I knew were not Christians, because I bought the lie that ‘attraction’ was everything.”

            See? That’s all!

            I notice that women are very, very, very concerned when women are deprived of the emotional connection and intimacy that they crave.

            However, when men want it, all it means is that they want to do dirty things to them in a darkened room. See, the male sex drive is nasty and bad.

            Some arrogant woman upthread said that God had bigger issues that getting me laid. Okay, well then God has bigger issues than getting you marriage, children, and financial support. Isn’t that cute? When a man cares about something, it is automatically assumed to be from a bad, bad, place, but women are such holy creatures that everything they want is pure – by definition.

            I’m amazed how many women want men to be brought to a low, humbled state when they transgress, for things such as being inattentive, or a bit lazy, or for not being what women want.

            But women want to escape the same humbling that they so gleefully try to force on men. The double standard is breathtaking.

            • Jack, it sounds like you feel defrauded by certain women in your past. I can’t deny that some women are flippant and uncaring about the people they hurt. Neither can I deny that some men are the same way. People are sinful and selfish and thank God that Jesus came to make a way to redeem us from that. I hope you find someone who lives up to your expectations, and I hope you can live up to hers.

              Meanwhile, please don’t paint every woman a villain and every man a hero. Each person is unique, and it is neither fair nor Christlike to assume the worst of someone before they have a chance to show who they are and who God is making them to be. 1 Corinthians 13 tells us that love believes all things and hopes all things. I don’t see much of love, hope, or believing the best in your comments here.

              • I thought I was only painting certain women that way. Not sure where you get the “every woman” from.

                • I’m so glad to hear that. I misunderstood some of your statements because of comments like this one: “I notice that women are very, very, very concerned when women are deprived of the emotional connection and intimacy that they crave.” Since the word “women” appears without any modifiers (like some or certain women I’ve dated or whatever), it reads like you are describing every woman. I think that’s partly why my readers have responded so vigorously to your comments.

                  • I suppose, however I think it is a little silly to have to go around placing modifiers everywhere.

                    It is somewhat Pharasaical to demand that someone present their argument on just the right platter, and with the napkins correctly folded before people feel a need to respond to the substance of the argument.

                    “Tee-hee, you forgot to say “some people” so rather than answer the substance or concept of your comment, Imma just gonna accuse you of being a bitter basement-dwelling loser. Lol.”

                    With all respect, I know I could have placed enough qualifiers on my statements to qualify myself for a degree in diversity studies, but the cries would still come “Not All Women Are Like That” (NAWALT).

                    It is, on their part, a willful and deliberate misrepresentation of what men like me say.

                    For instance, I have categorically stated that I do not insist on a virgin, yet take a look and you will see that it is implied that I am demanding one. How Christian is it to misrepresent another person’s words, just because you don’t like what they are saying?

                    Those who have ears to hear will hear the message, and it will not need to be carefully crafted with just the correct amount of qualifiers and modifiers so that it meets the precise specifications of the listener, who sits on their throne of judgment.

                    Know who else acts that way? Non-believers. Go witness to a bunch of non-believers and you will find yourself in a rats nest of game-playing over the meaning of words. Such tactics are the refuge of those who do not wish to hear the truth, so they deliberately encumber the speaker with “law”.

                    • Jack, comparing the use of accurate terminology and teaching to fixing up the perfect platter is not how you should think about things. It is every believers duty to use and teach God’s Word correctly – in context and accurately (2 Timothy 2:15). It is important to do this in your everyday conversations as well. You cannot expect people to guess what you are thinking when the words you use are too vague. The meaning of words is important and so is to use them correctly and with respect. You got the backlash you did from your comments because your choice of words and attitude lacked respect for other people’s viewpoints and feelings.

    • You are the most self-righteous, bitter, lonely person I’ve ever encountered.

      Best of luck with the whole dying alone thing.

    • Who hurt you so badly?

    • Jack, no wrongs have been committed to a future husband by his future wife when she had sex with men in the past. There is no sin covering that. However, it is idolatry to worship virginity. Your sacrifices for a “lonely life” where completely your own choice. No one else is to blame for it because God does not teach people to be abstinent, as I’ve told many people here already. It is the church teaching the wrong doctrine that could be blamed for your attitudes. Don’t try to blame anyone else. I do hope you find your soulmate soon and that your relationship and marriage will be blessed in every way. God Bless You.

  18. I’m single by choice.

    For those who need a little gentle correction here, I am pointing out why I will not marry.

    Never said I would not date, because I do. I will not make an lifelong commitment to a formerly promiscuous woman.

    Define promiscuous? Well, each has their own definition. But I start to get a little skeptical after three former sexual partners.

    Your mileage may vary.

  19. I want a thread where we get to be all outraged over all of the men who refuse grow to be a sacrificially loving husband in the image of Christ.

    Because being sacrificially loving doesn’t mean that you know all of the verses to hold other people accountable with, but that it overflows with love and compassion and forgiveness.

    Looking over a lot of the comments from men on this thread…

    If you hold the attitudes in your heart toward women that you show in this thread, then you also hold this attitudes toward God, for how he’s failed you, for how he owes you, for how he hasn’t lived up to the promises you’re holding him to.

    We cannot say that we hold people to one standard, and people to a different one. We cannot say that we love our God, but hate our sister.

  20. I have never read your blog. I’m not even sure how I happened on this page. I didn’t read the article this is referring to and I didn’t read through the comments. I just want to say that this blog entry is fantastic.

    Not shameful. That’s it.

  21. A final thought – perhaps I should consider going through my own phase of promiscuity?

    Not a bad idea. The best part is that no one here should ever dare judge me for doing so deliberately, since I will use the same arguments they used against me. Who would they be to judge me for deliberately doing what they once deliberately did?

    Good bye, and good luck. And thanks for confirming for me why I no longer trust the organized Christian Church to be consistent on, well, anything.

    • Are you by chance the same Jack that used to comment (or perhaps still comments, I’m not over there very much) on Boundless.org? I’m seeing very similar (actually, pretty much identical) language and thought patterns.

      If so, I’d be really interested in your story. What spurs you to go onto Christian websites and comment so strongly on anything related to dating/marriage, especially as it regards women’s behaviors?
      Shaney Irene recently posted..On Meditation, or, I Don’t Particularly Like Organ MusicMy Profile

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  1. [...] Bennett added a clarification to her post, and then I think amended that, in it she pointed out that neither abstaining from sex [...]

  2. [...] articles in the past few weeks have critiqued the damaging messages about sex and marriage passed on by conservative churches. They emphasize virginity alone so [...]

  3. [...] On Virginity: What I Did and Did Not Mean (clarifying her previous post about the chances most people will marry a virgin) [...]