Sex dating and relationships a fresh approach
139), what tensions will Christians experience who asking: How far is too far before marriage?
In many respects, the entire book is a theological and exegetical attempt to answer this question.
Foreplay is meant to propel us toward consummation.
It shouldn’t surprise us that evangelical teens and singles are struggling to maintain sexual purity; we’ve basically said it’s OK to begin having sex, just as long as they don’t finish. In addition to exacerbating sexual impropriety, you also argue that dating relationships tend to create unhealthy emotional expectations. A primary concern of the book is to help pre-engaged couples keep their wits about them.
In either case, the legitimization of dating relationships as a distinct category of male-female relationship has introduced an enormous amount of subjectivity into Christian pre-marital relationships.
A main problem with contemporary dating relationships is that they tend to grant license to sexual activity that we would otherwise intuitively deem inappropriate. In our book, we argue that a dating relationship is really just a subset of the neighbor relationship, and thus must be governed by its sexual guidelines.
By this definition, passionate kissing is clearly a sexual activity, and thus to be reserved for the marriage relationship.
I’ve heard a number of creative attempts to work around this logic, but none are very convincing.
And all throughout Scriptures (Proverbs, Song of Songs, 1 Corinthians 7) we see that sexual relations within marriage are not only permissible, but commanded.We tell women, “Don’t give your heart away to a man who isn’t sure what he’s going to do with it.” And we tell men, “Don’t try to win the heart of a woman if you don’t know what you’re going to do with it.” We’re not against a man pursuing a woman. In bygone days, a man would woo a woman toward marriage. Women are giving themselves away—emotionally, romantically, sexually—to men who have made no promises. Yes, the trick is to happily anticipate sexual intimacy in a way that it doesn’t lead to immorality.Ultimately, the “commitment” of a dating relationship is the commitment to be committed until one or the other doesn’t feel like being committed. The time to bring on the romance is when you’re ready to bring on the ring! However, you also argue that the standard of sexual purity for the neighbor relationship, even after engagement, remains the same. Certainly once a man and woman have agreed upon marriage, it is appropriate that they have a happy sense of longing and desire to experience the relational joy of sexual intimacy with one another.In the context of these admonitions, sexual love does not desire to be awakened when it has no opportunity for consummation.Since sexual activity must still be reserved for marriage, it is incumbent that an engaged couple exercise wisdom regarding the extent to which they “fan into flame” sexual desire through physical touch, spending time alone, discussing sexual intimacy, etc.
But it is wrong to anticipate the gift in such a way that it breeds impatience or disobedience.