Adultery, when a married person has sex with someone other than their spouse and fornication is when you engage in premarital sex. I want you to know that it takes more than self-control or will power not to engage in premarital sex. Notice that this verse of scripture does not use self-control or will power as a means of combating adultery or fornication. It acknowledges that it takes an understanding of the implications and consequences of your action not to commit adultery or fornication.
Whoever commits adultery with a woman lacks understanding; He who does so destroys his own soul (Proverbs 6:32).
My focus in this letter is not to the married committing adultery (though I pray they understand the pain and effect of adultery on their marriage) but to the fornicating singles. When it comes to premarital sex, most people in your generation can’t fathom how you can be in a relationship without engaging in premarital sex. Others ask a sincere question about how they can be sure that their future spouse can sexually satisfy them. They conclude that only premarital sex can answer their question. In today’s society, many singles believe in premarital sex, while Christian singles either struggle with it or don’t understand it. Premarital sex is basically eating your marital future before you get there. It creates false affection and clouds your judgment as it does not let you mature from the infatuation stage to the commitment stage in your marital relationship. It places your relationship in a place you are not.
Premarital sex limits you from focusing on what you need to focus on during courtship. You can’t make-out (passionate kissing) and communicate at the same time. The moment you start making-out in courtship, you stop communicating. In other words, your focus shifts from building the relationship to building emotions. Any married couple will tell you that communication is vital in marriage. It’s no wonder the Bible uses the phrase, “he lay with her” (2 Samuel 11:4) to describe premarital sex and uses the phrase, “and he knew her” (Genesis 4:1) for sex within the confines of marriage. While both phrases refer to sexual intercourse between man and woman, the latter signifies intimacy. Emphasizing that true sexual intimacy can only be experienced in marriage.
Furthermore, Paul in his writing provides an effective way to guide against premarital sex. In his first letter to the church in Corinth, he wrote:
Flee sexual immorality. Every sin that a man does is outside the body, but he who commits sexual immorality sins against his own body. Or do you not know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and you are not your own? For you were bought at a price; therefore glorify God in your body and in your spirit, which are God’s (1 Corinthian 6:18-20).
Paul acknowledges that you should flee from sexual immorality. Sometimes, the best form of defense is to avoid the situation. Don’t put yourself in a compromising position and rely on yourself control to carry you through. This begs the question, “If the Bible frowns upon premarital sex, then how can I be sure that my potential spouse can satisfy me sexually?” I will make the assumption that I am addressing a situation where the people involved have no medical issue to be concerned about sexually. If there are any medical problems or concerns, the people should seek medical help to ascertain their ability to engage in sexual intercourse in the event of marriage. Now to address the question, this sounds like a logical and sincere question. That is to say, just like most people would test drive a car before they purchase it, try on clothes and shoes to see if they fit before they make a purchase; people feel a need to justify premarital sex as a way to test how sexually satisfied they will be in marriage. A problem with this approach is that satisfaction is based on comparing each experience with the previous and making the standard their most memorable experience. Time and energy is spent looking for who can exceed or replicate that experience.
Another struggle with this approach to sexual satisfaction is that it focuses on ‘me.’ It focuses on pleasing me, which is rooted in self-gratification (selfishness). This is one of the core deceptions with this approach as it sets a false expectation about marriage. It places the responsibility on my spouse’s ability to meet my need as opposed to meeting my spouses need. Simply put, the expectation is that in order for me to marry this individual, they must be able to meet or exceed my last memorable sexual experience and if not, they must not be ‘the one’ as we are not sexually compatible. Let’s take a porn star (not that I believe in such a lifestyle) as an example. At some point in their life they were inexperienced (could not satisfy their partner), but over time they have been able to again enough negative experience to draw thousands to them.
My point is that sexual satisfaction was designed to be built in marriage. Sex was not designed to be experienced before marriage or as a tool to get married. What if you engage in premarital sex to satisfy your curiosity about sexual compatibility and the experience influences your decision to get married; and after two years you are not being satisfied anymore, what do you do? Do you get up and leave or do you stay and work things out? As long as there are no medical problems sexually, sexual satisfaction is something that can be built in marriage over time.
Now having said the above, ‘what does scripture say about this question?’ ‘Did the first man, Adam ask Eve to first sleep with him before he married her or was he worried about Eve’s ability to sexually satisfy him?’ The answer to this is ‘no.’ Since Adam and Eve did not have to go through this validation before they got married, you don’t have to go through it as well. The question of sleeping with someone to determine sexual satisfaction in other to validate marriage does not have its origin in the kingdom of God.
From my above letters, we have been able to establish from God’s Word that fornication is a sin against God that leads to destruction. As a result, premarital sex is not a way to decide whether you should or should not marry an individual. Using premarital sex as a type of marriage validation shows that you don’t really understand the marriage covenant and that you don’t trust God enough in that area.
As always, marriage is a journey and not a destination. The bible is the blue print while the Holy Spirit is your guide