Statistics from the Public Health Report show that by 20, 75% of all Americans have had premarital sex, and 95% have engaged in unmarried sex by age 44. |
The above statistics demonstrate that the efforts by parents and priests to emphasize that premarital sex is a sin, to discourage teenagers and young adults from engaging in premarital sex have not worked.
Still, it is not right to say that parents and priests have failed, in fact, they have succeeded so well that in most western countries, sex has become a taboo subject, discussed only behind closed doors. Sexual acts whose purpose is other than procreation is viewed as undermining the values and morals of society, catering to the base and carnal appetite of men.
Where parents and priests have encountered the most resistance pertains to the philosophy of sex where questions like, ‘What is sex?’ and ‘Is sex a sin?’ have been raised.
Additionally, the influence of popular entertainment, particularly rock and romantic music, does mesmerized teenagers with phrases like, ‘I can’t breathe without you’, ‘I am happiest when you are beside me’ and ‘You are my love, my life and my everything’, to the extent that their resolve to ‘Just say no’ collapses.
At 16 almost all teenagers are aware that they were born as the result of their parents engagement in sexual intercourse. Therefore, it is a source of cognitive dissonance to them when they are told that having sexual intercourse is wrong.
Some parents are forced to answer the question because their teenage sons and daughters bring it up. And the answer usually goes this way, “It is wrong to have sexual intercourse before marriage, but it is alright to do so within a marriage relation.”
In the mind of a 16 years old, what is wrong is a sin. If premarital sex is wrong, then it is a sin. Many teenagers accept their parents’ explanation and go on with their lives until they reach 18 or enter college, when they begin to ask the question, “What is a sin?”
Is an act a sin at all times, or can the same act be a sin at one time, but not a sin at another? This raises the question of partial sin, which does not exist: an act is either a sin or it is not a sin. Therefore, it is generally accepted that the sexual act in itself is not a sin; only the effect that it produces may be a sin.
For instance, if two teenagers engaged in premarital sex that resulted in a pregnancy, the teenage mother may not have fully developed physically to provide her prenatal child all it needs to grow into a healthy baby, and consequently it may develop a congenital problem. Even more serious is the possibility that they will abort or attempt to abort the child.
In short, the effect caused by premarital sex between teenagers is a sin; in so far as they would not be able to properly care of the child they are about to give birth to, and in the end, do harm to it. They would have also sinned, in so far as they will do to their child what they would not want to be done to them.
Someone may ask, “What about a rape. Isn’t it a sexual act that is wrong in itself?” Well, a rape is not only a sexual act; it is a sexual act without the consent of one of the parties involved. Hence, a rape is a moral evil, punishable by society with a long prison sentence, and rightly so.
Meanwhile, the period between 15 and 18 is crucial to teenagers because it is the transition period from childhood to adulthood.
It is when teenagers sexual drive is at its highest. It is when boys instinctively seek to father children before they died in wars, as in ancient time boys were drafted into the army by age 17, and females instinctively seek to be united with male partners for protection and support, as in ancient times a female at 16 without a male protector was vulnerable to sexual attacks.
Consequently, the innate desire of teenagers (of the opposite sex) to gravitate toward each other cannot be effectively suppressed, but it can be redirected.
For instance, a teenage boy who is encouraged, in addition to his normal class work, to use the period between 15 and 18 to actively engage in sporting activities, camping, reading, learning about cars, computers and gadgets will discover by 18 that he is physically strong, health, resourceful and knowledgeable about many things that will impress most girls he meets, and increase his chances of finding a mate.
Equally, a teenage girl who is encouraged, in addition to her normal class work, to use the period between 15 and 18 to engage in sporting activities and camping, reading classical novels, and learning how to cook (though she may never have to cook as an adult), will discover at 18 that she is physically healthy to bear a child, her negotiating and social skills enhanced, and her ability to cook and manage the home effective tools to hold onto her mate.
Still, it will be naïve to think that a girl between 16 and 18 will not be under constant pressure by her boyfriend for sexual intercourse. Coupled with her natural instinct for a partner to love and protect her, it is not surprising that teenage girls often give in to the demands of their boyfriends and engage in premarital sex. The fear is that if they did not, their boyfriends will break up with them.
As a teenager, it is difficult to agree that the smartest teenagers are those who do not engage in sexual intercourse between the ages 15 and 18, but rather redirect their mental and physical energies to develop their bodies by physical activities and their minds by academic studies.
Such teenagers discover between ages 18 and 19 that they have acquired most of the negotiating and social skills necessary to attract and hold onto their mates, and developed healthy bodies to enjoy 30 years of fruitful and passionate sex lives going forward.
In Spirit and In Truth
Whenever two consenting heterosexual adults engage in premarital sex, in the eyes of God the two are married. In almost all countries, however, the couple needs a marriage license to make the marriage legal and recognized as such.
In ancient times, people got married when they became sexually active, which was between 16 and 18 years old. Hence, the incident of premarital sex or fornication, as it is called in Scriptures were few. Premarital sex was then the exception rather than the norm.
Today, people put off marriage until late in life, not surprisingly; the incident of premarital sex has now become the norm rather than the exception. We cannot turn back the clock. The new reality is that there are two stages in modern marriage. The first occurs when the couple engages in premarital sex, and the second when a judge or priest conducts the public marriage ceremony.
Therefore, a man who engages in premarital sex with one woman, then leaves her to engage in premarital sex with another woman has committed adultery in the eyes of God.
However, if he remains faithful to one woman (love, cherish and protect her), he is engaging in the lesser of two evils, and has a better chance of reconciling himself with God when he eventually decides to go before a judge or a priest to make the marriage lawful.
Author Bio :
Ben Aidoo has written four ebooks and hundreds of articles on religious matters exploring the bible for relevant information you can use to solve the problems in your life. For more detail go to www.selfhealingbyfaith.com
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