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Source: (consider it) Thread: sex before marriage
RuthW

liberal "peace first" hankie squeezer
# 13

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quote:
Originally posted by Eliab:
My main reason for thinking that you should not, is that I get the impression that fundamentally you already think of sex as the expression of a permanent committment. I don't need to persuade you of that, you already feel it. The trouble is, you have a desire for committment to this man, and it is, at best, returned by him on a conditional basis. He isn't sure about you. He doesn't sound as if he's desperate to get laid, but he does strike me as being unwilling to tie himself to a relationship he hasn't tried out first. That means that if you sleep with him, or live with him, he'll still be deciding if this is for good or not. You will think that you are expressing and deepening a committment to him, when he may just be testing the water. Which I think is, for you, both an invitation to be hurt (which may not always be a bad thing) and also a devaluing of what you want to offer this man (which is). If he loves you enough to be worth it, he will wait.

I have a different stance on sex before marriage than Eliab, but I completely agree with what she (he?) has said here. If both parties don't have pretty much the same idea about what the sex means, it will be emotionally disastrous for the person for whom it means more, and if the other person is a decent human being they'll at the very least feel pretty bad about that sooner or later. Having sex with someone who is not on the same page with you emotionally is a Very Bad Idea.

I also agree entirely with The Coot about the idolatry depicted in that article and with Laura about the hypocrisy. He was "heartbroken"? Poor baby. I kinda doubt that his "baby Christian" girlfriend tied him down before she blew him.

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Viola99
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quote:
If this guy is the person for you, then you get to sleep with him all your life....
If he isn't, I get the impression you wouldn't want to have sex. But it seems to me that he either does want, or will want, to sleep with you before he is prepared to say that he definitely wants to be yours forever.

quote:
My main reason for thinking that you should not, is that I get the impression that fundamentally you already think of sex as the expression of a permanent committment. I don't need to persuade you of that, you already feel it. The trouble is, you have a desire for committment to this man, and it is, at best, returned by him on a conditional basis. He isn't sure about you. He doesn't sound as if he's desperate to get laid, but he does strike me as being unwilling to tie himself to a relationship he hasn't tried out first. That means that if you sleep with him, or live with him, he'll still be deciding if this is for good or not. You will think that you are expressing and deepening a committment to him, when he may just be testing the water. Which I think is, for you, both an invitation to be hurt (which may not always be a bad thing) and also a devaluing of what you want to offer this man (which is). If he loves you enough to be worth it, he will wait.

You do have me in a nut-shell there, Elaib. Which is at least one of the reasons I'm still trying to work through this and not just going out there and getting him! I know that regardless of whether I change my opinions on the sex before marriage issue I couldn't sleep with him unless I knew that he was in this for the long run. And I'm still trying to work out if I could get that from him.

But I now still have to try and work out why I believe what I believe on this...even if I'm beginning to work out what it is I believe (make any sense?!)

quote:

The moral issue comes in when it is alleged that God says "thou shalt not". The questions then are "Has he actually said this?" and "Is that for all Chistians for all time?". I think, it's a ‘yes' to both. If so, there's not much room for moral debate.

The thing is, if it's that simple (which for the last 25 years, without having had to explore the issue, I would always have thought it was) then I have my answer. Because as a Christian if God says No then that has to be good enough for me....no matter how much it hurts...

quote:
If the question is, can Christians honestly differ on this issue, then yes, of course. If it is a question of whether you personally will be alright whichever choice you make, then no. If you do not honestly in faith believe that sex ouside marriage is lawful, it's a sin for you, even if Jesus and all his saints think that you are being unnecessarily prudish.

You see, I guess I'd never realised that sin had a relative element to it. I'd kind of always thought of it as a black and white, legalistic, it's either a sin or it isn't. And so what I've been trying to work out is if sex before marriage is a sin in the abstract, not is it a sin for me. Hadn't really thought of things this way before.

quote:
I have a different stance on sex before marriage than Eliab, but I completely agree with what she (he?) has said here. If both parties don't have pretty much the same idea about what the sex means, it will be emotionally disastrous for the person for whom it means more, and if the other person is a decent human being they'll at the very least feel pretty bad about that sooner or later. Having sex with someone who is not on the same page with you emotionally is a Very Bad Idea.

Without wanting to get on the defensive, I do realise this! Am a bit concerned some of my more jumbled postings on this topic have left me sounding like a confused 15 year old! I don't think my ex and I are that far apart in the need for not rushing these things and the need for commitment, but I'm probably looking for that little bit more than he can give me.
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RuthW

liberal "peace first" hankie squeezer
# 13

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Sorry, I didn't mean to offend or make you defend (or any other sort of "fend"). And of course only you will be able to judge whether you and the ex are close enough.

Whether sex before marriage is a sin in the abstract is an interesting and important question, but for all practical purposes, sin is a concrete matter. We carry its effects upon us in very real ways. I know it makes me sound like a relativist, but I think asking "is it a sin for me?" about anything is really just an acknowledgement of how sin works.

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Viola99
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No worries, no offence taken. I'm just concious I'm not expressing what I think very well and therefore I come across a bit niave. I'm actually quite grown up with rather a responsible job! [Smile]

Not sure I get your second bit though. Surely if it's a sin in the 'abstract' then that is a concrete matter..it's only relative if your thinking 'is it a sin for me'?

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RuthW

liberal "peace first" hankie squeezer
# 13

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I ask "is it a sin for me?" because that's more real to me than "is this a sin in the abstract?" Asking "if I do this right now, what are the consequences going to be in my life and in the lives of others?" is a lot more likely to pull me up short with the conviction that something is sinful than asking abstractly, "Is this a sin?"

The reason I don't think this is relativism is that I don't shift my principles around to suit what I want to do. I think sex outside marriage is sometimes a sin and sometimes not, depending a lot on the people involved and their relationship and situations, but I stick with the fixed principle that I should always love my neighbor. I ask myself, in this particular situation with this person, is having sex the loving thing for him and me? Although I think I'm rather unlikely to find myself in a situation where a one-night stand is the loving thing to do, it's not outside the realm of possibility. But in the same situation, it might not be the loving thing for someone else to do because for whatever reason they just can't do things like that and have it be loving. So the principle of love holds up, but how love is lived out varies tremendously from one person to the next. That's why I don't think asking "is this a sin for me" is relativism.

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Viola99
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Thanks Ruth, I understand now! [Smile]
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Gill H

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# 68

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Oh, and re those cheesy authors: do not buy any book re sex by anyone called Wheat or LaHaye. Several of us on the ship have had our lives messed with my these books. Avoid!

The best book by a Christian author about sex I ever read was 'The Touch of Love' by Janet and John Houghton (yes, really, Janet and John! [Big Grin] ) Sadly out of print, but I believe they are considering an updated edition.

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Viola99
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Thanks for the advice Gill!

Well, I guess after a couple of months of continued fretting and angst I pretty much feel like I've got it a bit more sorted in my head and worked things out, and what I believe is right for me and why I believe what I do. Which means that I'm going to have a bit more 'closure' regardless of what happens with me and the ex. Haven't decided if we're gonna talk about stuff again...but is so hard as the feelings we have for each other are so obviously still there (made more obvious by the fact we work in the same building!).

Thanks to all you guys for your thoughts...have to say the debates on these issues on the Ship have been more helpful and honest than anywhere else I've read and definitely made me think more. I kinda decided to stop reading any more on the subject as it was just getting me more and more confused and unhelpful. Have to say Ruth, your comments on making decisions from principles was very helpful. And Eliab...well...it was like having someone looking out for me the way my Dad would if we could talk about such matters! [Big Grin]

Am gonna hang around the Ship though as have been provided with much entertainment and food for thought from you all.

Thank you!

[Smile]

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Callan
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# 525

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Transferred from Purgatory:

Originally posted by Hey Zeus:

quote:
Hello,
I'm just starting to read the Bible seriously for the first time, and I'm a bit of novice when it comes to knowing which bits say what. Are there any passages that actually explicitly forbid pre-marital sex? If not, what are the passages that have led to this rule? Does anybody here agree that pre-marital sex is wrong? Seeing I'm a young unmarried chap you can probably see why this topic intrests me.

Originally posted by Ferijen:

quote:
Hey Hey Zeus! Welcome to the ship [Big Grin]

I think you might find this thread on sex before marriage in the Dead Horses area of the ship useful

Originally posted by Jolly Jape:

quote:
Hi Hey Zeus. Welcome to the Ship. I'm sure a Host will be along soon to welcome you more formally, but in the meantime, you might like to peruse this link.
Originally posted by Hey Zeus:

quote:
Thanks for the welcome.
The link was very helpful, thanks. I should have guessed that it would be a well discussed subject.

Originally posted by Tom of Tarsus:

quote:
A welcome to you real quick before a host comes along to close this. Hope you enjoy the cruise!

One quick point: While I believe sex before marriage is wrong, I want to emphasize that Christianity is NOT about obeying some set of rules to please a difficult and demanding God. Christianity is a love story where God reaches out to us in Christ, reveals Himself to us through the Spirit, and through various processes (often unbidden by us) gives us opportunities to become like Jesus. Thus if it's wrong it's wrong because it will hurt us (perhaps not in the short term [Big Grin] ) and the people who love us.

We live out His love in the world, or at least we're supposed to. Often, Christains over-demonize something (such as sexual sin), while ignoring the fact that they are gluttons, or not helping the poor, or are being exclusivist, etc.

Ideally, a Christian is good news on feet.

Blessings,

Tom



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Zappa
Ship's Wake
# 8433

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quote:
Originally posted by Gill H:
<snip> Oh, and re those cheesy authors: do not buy any book re sex by anyone called Wheat or LaHaye. Several of us on the ship have had our lives messed with my these books. Avoid!

Oh gee thanks Gill H [Roll Eyes] - I'd spent twenty years forgetting I'd ever heard of the La Hayes and suddenly the memories come flooding back. [Paranoid]

Ah - therapy therapy where art thou therapy [Eek!]

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Gill H

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# 68

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I had a book purge recently, and two trolley-loads of books went to the charity shop. But the two LaHaye/Wheat books went right in the bin. I feel so much better now!

Maybe I should be recommending The Joy of No Sex instead?

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- Lyda Rose

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Luke

Soli Deo Gloria
# 306

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Sex before marriage is a sin, because it says so in the Bible!

(Down here in the stables the boundaries between trolls and dead horses becomes a bit blurred. [Snigger] )

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Emily's Voice

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Karl: Liberal Backslider
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# 76

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quote:
Originally posted by Luke:
Sex before marriage is a sin, because it says so in the Bible!

No it doesn't.

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Catrine
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# 9811

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quote:
Originally posted by Karl: Liberal Backslider:
quote:
Originally posted by Luke:
Sex before marriage is a sin, because it says so in the Bible!

No it doesn't.
I'm with Karl here:

Luke, where is this quote of which you speak?

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Petaflop
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Since it's one-liner day, google "fornication definition greek" and feel lucky about it?

Note however the definition of 'pornea' from Strong's, which, unlike the English definitions, is relevent.

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Luke

Soli Deo Gloria
# 306

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Petaflop's list will do.

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Emily's Voice

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Petaflop
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# 9804

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Well, all that list shows is that the NT is pretty down on porneia. I was really hoping that someone knowlegable would say something interesting about how we interpret ancient words, both in general, and in context.
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Karl: Liberal Backslider
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What? When just translating it "fornication" makes everything so nice and cut and dried?

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Petaflop
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Even the NIV doesn't make things that simple. In the Sermon on the Mount, the NIV translates porneia as 'marital unfaithfulness'.
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Karl: Liberal Backslider
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# 76

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Presumably because it's such a vanilla word, meaning "sexual naughtiness" - without defining in itself what's naughty. The NIV translators flavoured it for context in the divorce teaching, one assumes.

Which still leaves us looking for those passages which explicitly condemn pre-marital sex, which Luke says are there.

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Might as well ask the bloody cat.

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Petaflop
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I'm interested in seeing how far we can derive a meaning from scratch using the NT alone, as an illustration of how it is done for other words. The 'virgin/young woman' argument springs to mind.

Strong's number is 4202. Passages here
http://www.blueletterbible.org/tmp_dir/words/4/1127748629-5626.html

The straight condemnations are no help.

Mat 5:32: The only acceptable excuse for divorce. (And therefore in this context only applicable to married people).

Jhn 8:41: "being born of porneia": Anyone whose father is not God or Abraham? Clearly figurative.

Acts: nothing directly helpful here, but porneia is often listed with idolatry and unclean foods. There's a cleanliness theme here.

1Cr 5:1: Incest is a particularly serious example of porneia.

1Cr 6:18: It's a sin against your own body - figuratively a desecration. Uncleanness again.

1Cr 7:2: Chastity is good, but to avoid porneia, everyone should marry. In this context that suggests that it is something that only the unmarried do.

2Cr 12:21: implies possibly that it is something different from laciviousness, also Gal 5:19.

Rev: associated with Jezebel and Babylon.

So we have something connected with uncleaness, for which we then need to look up the cleanliness law in the OT. It includes things that the married and unmarried can do, and incest. It can be used figuratively, and in some cases where only some of its meanings make sense. Anyone got anything else?

Well that was interesting but a little disappointing. I guess more text would help - we should really look at the Setuagint and any other docs from the same period.

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Ferijen
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# 4719

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Totally uninformed biblically on this issue, just trying to answer a question which was asked to me...

We (well, not me personally, but some people do) get all get het up about the biblical definition of 'sex'... but what about the 'marriage' bit. Is it a public affirmation of partnership in a biblical sense, or something more? And does it even matter how marriage is defined biblically, but how it is defined in your era? So as long as you are 'married' by the standards of your society, sex is OK (even if isn't the legal/social ceremony it is in modern British society?).

Just some random thoughts which may not make much sense to anyone but me..

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Luke

Soli Deo Gloria
# 306

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Hi Karl,
all right your've got me I'll say my proof text....
Dueteronomy 5:18
(To save you the time asking, I’m taking sex before marriage as adultery.)
Taken in context, assusming the Bible is infalliable etc etc

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Emily's Voice

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Gracious rebel

Rainbow warrior
# 3523

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quote:
Originally posted by Luke:
Hi Karl,
all right your've got me I'll say my proof text....
Dueteronomy 5:18
(To save you the time asking, I’m taking sex before marriage as adultery.)
Taken in context, assusming the Bible is infalliable etc etc

But that's ridiculous isn't it? Surely for adultery to occur, at least one of the people involved must be married to somebody else. I thought that was the definition of adultery.

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ananke
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# 10059

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If the bible is infalliable, what traditions of marriage are you taking?

Because according to half-a-dozen traditions I'm already married to my partner, and in my home state I'm considered a common-law wife.

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A Perfect Circle - Magdalena

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Karl: Liberal Backslider
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# 76

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quote:
Originally posted by Luke:
Hi Karl,
all right your've got me I'll say my proof text....
Dueteronomy 5:18
(To save you the time asking, I’m taking sex before marriage as adultery.)
Taken in context, assusming the Bible is infalliable etc etc

And since adultery is quite clearly defined as a married person having sex with someone who is not their spouse, and this is the best you've got, I think we can safely assume that your earlier "It's in the Bible" was wrong.
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Catrine
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# 9811

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quote:
Originally posted by Luke:
Hi Karl,
all right your've got me I'll say my proof text....
Dueteronomy 5:18
(To save you the time asking, I’m taking sex before marriage as adultery.)
Taken in context, assusming the Bible is infalliable etc etc

Sex before marriage is not adultery in my mind Luke. Can you elaborate on your reasoning? Was this the basis of some Church teaching?

But yep Adultery isn't a good thing, I'll agree with that.

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Petaflop
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# 9804

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No-one wants to play my game? [Frown]

Oh well, I'll carry on.

Jhn 8:41: "being born of porneia": This may be figurative, but suggests that porneia must include activities which lead to children. Thus this usage specifically excludes homosexuality and masturbation. However that does not prove that the word also included those ideas in other contexts.

Trying to pull together the ideas from my previous post, it appears to me that we could interpret 'porneia' to mean something as narrow as 'incest+visiting a prostitute' (for example), to as broad as 'any sexual experience, including solitary, except for procreation in marriage'.

I wouldn't call this a rigorous result - I would like to be able to exclude any one text and still get the same result - but that needs more text. There doesn't seem to be a handy web-based LXX keyed to Strong's numbers.

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leo
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# 1458

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There are lots of views about what porneia means. A Jewish commentary suggests that it is a reasonable translation of the word erva which we find in Deuteronomy. It is important to consider in more detail the meaning of this term porneia, since this is obviously crucial to a discussion of Christian divorce. The dictionary meanings are prostitution, unchastity, fornication, referring to every kind of unlawful sexual intercourse — a clear equivalent to the Hebrew term erva. The Mishna Gittin 9.10 refers to it as ‘indecency’. Some commentators, however, avoid the issue by stating that it is impossible to know exactly what it means, whereas others try to reconcile it with the text about divorce in Mark, by stating it refers only to incest: in a case of incest, the marriage would be totally invalid, and the ending of such a relationship would not count as divorce. But the basic meaning of the Greek word can cover any form of unlawful sexual intercourse, like the Hebrew term. It is the closest Greek equivalent for the Hebrew term, even though the root of erva comes from nakedness, porneia from prostitution. For this reason some commentators have linked it with the Hebrew word for prostitution, zenut.

Bauer’s dictionary gives some examples, including to be born from porneia to be illegitimate. He refers to Genesis 38.24, ‘harlotry’, where in the Septuagint, the word does seem to translate zenut.(similar to the Arabic zinar, used in Pakistani law to justify stoning women to death) However, this refers to the story of Judah and Tamar. Tamar had in fact pretended to be a prostitute, but the word has additional force here, because Tamar should have gone through a levirate marriage (see Deuteronomy 25.5-10

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Faithful Sheepdog
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quote:
Originally posted by leo:
There are lots of views about what porneia means.

I think the key question is what did the Greek term porneia mean to the first century Jews who wrote the NT? When one takes this Jewish background into account, there is a lot of literature outside the NT that provides an insight into this term and its range of meanings.

It certainly was a broad term covering various sexual behaviours considered sins by devout Jews. The meaning can remain very broad, or it can be more specific, depending on the context. It can include extra-marital sex, adultery, the use of prostitutes, incest (child or adult), marriage within the forbidden degrees, and homosexual behaviour.

(For evidence on the last case, one needs to refer to the work of Robert Gagnon, but for now I'm talking generally)

I would agree with those who say that porneia was understood by devout Jews in reference to the OT (especially the Pentateuch) and to the Greek translation of the OT, the Septuagint, where much Hebrew-flavoured Greek is found.

In Dt 24:1 the ground for divorce in Hebrew is erwat dabar, 'the nakedness of the matter', in my very crude and literal translation. I think that the Septuagint uses porneia as the translation of this Hebrew term. In turn this throws some light onto its use in St. Matthew's gospel as the grounds for a permissible divorce and remarriage.

The general English translation of porneia as 'sexual immorality' sounds initially rather vague , but this is where the rest of the Bible comes in useful, especially the book of Leviticus. That is how first century Jews understood the term, and it provides a route in for our understanding as Christians too.

Neil

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leo
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# 1458

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quote:
Originally posted by Faithful Sheepdog:
quote:
Originally posted by leo:
There are lots of views about what porneia means.

........For evidence on the last case, one needs to refer to the work of Robert Gagnon, but for now I'm talking generally)


I'd be very careful about Gagnon - he grinds very large axes.

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Posts: 23198 | From: Bristol | Registered: Oct 2001  |  IP: Logged
Faithful Sheepdog
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# 2305

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quote:
Originally posted by leo:
I'd be very careful about Gagnon - he grinds very large axes.

And he grinds them very competently too, IMO.

If you have some strong views regarding his academic work on homosexuality in the Bible, I would be interested to hear a serious critique on the relevant Dead Horses thread.

Neil

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"Random mutation/natural selection works great in folks’ imaginations, but it’s a bust in the real world." ~ Michael J. Behe

Posts: 1097 | From: Scotland | Registered: Feb 2002  |  IP: Logged
Luke

Soli Deo Gloria
# 306

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quote:
Originally posted by Karl: Liberal Backslider:
quote:
Originally posted by Luke:
Hi Karl,
all right your've got me I'll say my proof text....
Dueteronomy 5:18
(To save you the time asking, I’m taking sex before marriage as adultery.)
Taken in context, assusming the Bible is infalliable etc etc

And since adultery is quite clearly defined as a married person having sex with someone who is not their spouse, and this is the best you've got, I think we can safely assume that your earlier "It's in the Bible" was wrong.
No, any sex outside marriage is wrong. Someone might sleep with someone who isn't their wife before they get married. I don't see any parameters saying both or one have to be married at the time of sex. It seems to me anything outside the circle of marriage.

[ 28. September 2005, 07:34: Message edited by: Luke ]

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Emily's Voice

Posts: 822 | From: Australia | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
Karl: Liberal Backslider
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# 76

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quote:
Originally posted by Luke:
quote:
Originally posted by Karl: Liberal Backslider:
quote:
Originally posted by Luke:
Hi Karl,
all right your've got me I'll say my proof text....
Dueteronomy 5:18
(To save you the time asking, I’m taking sex before marriage as adultery.)
Taken in context, assusming the Bible is infalliable etc etc

And since adultery is quite clearly defined as a married person having sex with someone who is not their spouse, and this is the best you've got, I think we can safely assume that your earlier "It's in the Bible" was wrong.
No, any sex outside marriage is wrong.
Although you've spectacularly failed to find any Scripture, despite stating it is there, that supports this view

quote:
Someone might sleep with someone who isn't their wife before they get married. I don't see any parameters saying both or one have to be married at the time of sex.
Except that's exactly what adultery means. Why use such a specific term if it's not what's meant?

quote:
It seems to me anything outside the circle of marriage.
Forgive me, but your reasoning appears to be:

1. Sex outside marriage is wrong
2. Therefore adultery includes any sex outside marriage
3. The Bible condemns adultery
4. Therefore sex outside marriage is wrong.

Which does look a tad circular to me.

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Might as well ask the bloody cat.

Posts: 17938 | From: Chesterfield | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
leo
Shipmate
# 1458

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quote:
Originally posted by Faithful Sheepdog:
quote:
Originally posted by leo:
I'd be very careful about Gagnon - he grinds very large axes.

And he grinds them very competently too, IMO.

If you have some strong views regarding his academic work on homosexuality in the Bible, I would be interested to hear a serious critique on the relevant Dead Horses thread.

Neil

I haven't got the stomache to write a serious critique of Gagnon because:

a) the thread is already over 50 pages long and most of it has already been covered

b) I am bored to death with the subject and wish the Church could get on with other aspect of the gospel e.g. world debt.

Re- 'adultery' - it does NOT cover fornication.

Posts: 23198 | From: Bristol | Registered: Oct 2001  |  IP: Logged
Faithful Sheepdog
Shipmate
# 2305

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quote:
Originally posted by leo:
Re- 'adultery' - it does NOT cover fornication.

Sorry, I don't understand your point here. In my understanding, adultery is a subset of fornication (the KJV translation of porneia), but not vice versa. We seem to be agreed, or are we?

Neil

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"Random mutation/natural selection works great in folks’ imaginations, but it’s a bust in the real world." ~ Michael J. Behe

Posts: 1097 | From: Scotland | Registered: Feb 2002  |  IP: Logged
Karl: Liberal Backslider
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# 76

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quote:
Originally posted by Faithful Sheepdog:
quote:
Originally posted by leo:
Re- 'adultery' - it does NOT cover fornication.

Sorry, I don't understand your point here. In my understanding, adultery is a subset of fornication (the KJV translation of porneia), but not vice versa. We seem to be agreed, or are we?

Neil

Adultery is indeed a subset of fornication. However, by using injunctions against adultery to forbid all fornication, Luke is trying to make fornication a subset of adultery.
Posts: 17938 | From: Chesterfield | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
leo
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# 1458

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quote:
Originally posted by leo:
quote:
Originally posted by Faithful Sheepdog:
quote:
Originally posted by leo:
I'd be very careful about Gagnon - he grinds very large axes.

And he grinds them very competently too, IMO.

If you have some strong views regarding his academic work on homosexuality in the Bible, I would be interested to hear a serious critique on the relevant Dead Horses thread.

Neil

I haven't got the stomache to write a serious critique of Gagnon because:

a) the thread is already over 50 pages long and most of it has already been covered

b) I am bored to death with the subject and wish the Church could get on with other aspect of the gospel e.g. world debt.

Re- 'adultery' - it does NOT cover fornication.

I just HAVE written something about Gagnon after a request from a shipmate - it is on the Homosexuality thread.

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My Jewish-positive lectionary blog is at http://recognisingjewishrootsinthelectionary.wordpress.com/
My reviews at http://layreadersbookreviews.wordpress.com

Posts: 23198 | From: Bristol | Registered: Oct 2001  |  IP: Logged
Faithful Sheepdog
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# 2305

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quote:
Originally posted by Karl: Liberal Backslider:
Adultery is indeed a subset of fornication. However, by using injunctions against adultery to forbid all fornication, Luke is trying to make fornication a subset of adultery.

It's possible that Luke is referring to how the word moicheia was used in Jewish ethical discourse in the first century AD. The normal translation of this word into English is 'adultery', and that is indeed a subset of fornication, as you say.

However, I believe there is good lingustic evidence that in Jewish ethical discourse moicheia had developed an extended meaning not dissimilar to porneia, especially when moicheia is used in the plural, as it is in Mark 7:21-23. The Jewish interpretation of the 6th commandment and its consequences may also be applicable here.

In this event Luke is not so far off the mark with his comment about the wider meaning of moicheia (adultery). One could well argue that in some contexts it has become a synonym for porneia (fornication).

Neil

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"Random mutation/natural selection works great in folks’ imaginations, but it’s a bust in the real world." ~ Michael J. Behe

Posts: 1097 | From: Scotland | Registered: Feb 2002  |  IP: Logged
philpcpt5
Apprentice
# 10492

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This is how I see it

If you have sex - intercourse you are married, the 2 shall become 1 and all that

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da_musicman
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# 1018

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So if you have sex with someone who has already had sex but didn't marry the person are you committing Adultery? Or are they? Or are neither of you?
Posts: 3202 | From: The Dreaming | Registered: Jul 2001  |  IP: Logged
Emma Louise

Storm in a teapot
# 3571

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marriage is a bout far more than sex. If you reduce it to "just" sex it becomes meaningless
Posts: 12719 | From: Enid Blyton territory. | Registered: Nov 2002  |  IP: Logged
da_musicman
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# 1018

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It better be Emma. Otherwise I'm screwed. [Biased]
Posts: 3202 | From: The Dreaming | Registered: Jul 2001  |  IP: Logged
mousethief

Ship's Thieving Rodent
# 953

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quote:
Originally posted by da_musicman:
It better be Emma. Otherwise I'm screwed. [Biased]

Lucky dog.

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Posts: 63536 | From: Washington | Registered: Jul 2001  |  IP: Logged
Divine Outlaw
Gin-soaked boy
# 2252

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quote:
Originally posted by philpcpt5:
This is how I see it

If you have sex - intercourse you are married, the 2 shall become 1 and all that

On which basis, presumably, sex before marriage can't be wrong. It's just a peared-down marriage ceremony, without confetti and drunken uncles.

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Laura
General nuisance
# 10

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quote:
Originally posted by Divine Outlaw Dwarf:
quote:
Originally posted by philpcpt5:
This is how I see it

If you have sex - intercourse you are married, the 2 shall become 1 and all that

On which basis, presumably, sex before marriage can't be wrong. It's just a peared-down marriage ceremony, without confetti and drunken uncles.
That having sex makes you married is clearly nonsense in terms of scripture, tradition and reason -- or there would be no such thing as fornication, or even (arguably) adultery, since you'd have "married" everyone you had sex with.

I think it's pretty clear that the "two become one" is aspirationally about what marriage ideally accomplishes. It isn't some mechanical engineering rule about the operational effect of sex.

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Love is the only sane and satisfactory answer to the problem of human existence. - Erich Fromm

Posts: 16883 | From: East Coast, USA | Registered: Apr 2001  |  IP: Logged
ToujoursDan

Ship's prole
# 10578

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In traditional Judaism "jumping the gun" before you got married wasn't considered fornication nor was it a sin. In fact, it was one of the 3 accepted ways to acquire a wife.

In Mishnah Kiddushin 1:1 (The Mishnah is the first written form of Hebrew oral tradition that forms the basis of the Talmud) there were three ways to contract a betrothal, which then led to marriage:

1. With money (as when a man hands a woman an object of value, such as a ring or a coin, for the purpose of contracted marriage, and in the presence of two witnesses, and she actively accepts);

2. Through a shtar, a contract containing the betrothal declaration phrased as "through this contract"; or

3. By sexual intercourse with the intention of creating a bond of marriage.

http://www.jewfaq.org/marriage.htm (See "Acquiring a Spouse")

Fornication was never defined in traditional Judaism as "jumping the gun" and isn't defined that way anywhere in the NT.

Scripturally, "fornication" when it refers to sexual intercourse was sex between two people who never intend to get married, therefore has some aspect of infidelity/non commitment to it.

Of course, "fornication" most often in scripture, refers to people foresaking God for others gods, which also was infidelitous and non commital.

Strong's Concordance defines "porneia" (which the Greek word translated as "fornication") as: Harlotry including adultery, incest, or idolatry. Not "jumping the gun with your betrothed before marriage".

http://eaglescc.org/htmlbible/STRGRK42.htm

I would agree that the definition seems to have continually changed and expanded over the centuries but question whether that is really "tradition" or reasonable.

In traditional Judaism, having sex essentially did make you married.

[ 12. January 2006, 04:55: Message edited by: ToujoursDan ]

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"Many people say I embarrass them with my humility" - Archbishop Peter Akinola
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Posts: 3734 | From: NYC | Registered: Oct 2005  |  IP: Logged
mousethief

Ship's Thieving Rodent
# 953

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I remember reading somewhere that some famous medieval medical guidebook said that first babies had a variable gestation period, but subsequent babies all took 40 weeks. Indicating (to me, anyway) that people were quite aware that people jumped the gun, and bent over backward to not make a big deal about it.

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Posts: 63536 | From: Washington | Registered: Jul 2001  |  IP: Logged
mdijon
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# 8520

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quote:
Originally posted by ToujoursDan:
In traditional Judaism, having sex essentially did make you married.

I'd imagine that in early times (Exodus, Judges) that was the working definition of man and wife; people who lived together and had sex. And that first intercourse was what marked the beginning of the 'marriage'.

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mdijon nojidm uoɿıqɯ ɯqıɿou
ɯqıɿou uoɿıqɯ nojidm mdijon

Posts: 12277 | From: UK | Registered: Sep 2004  |  IP: Logged
Birdseye

I can see my house from here!
# 5280

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Goodness- that makes sense -as my spouse and I lost our virginity together about three months into our relationship -long before we were married, but definitely after we'd decided that we were meant to be together for life.

Despite my old mother's disdain I KNEW it didn't feel wrong! When we got married officially three years later -it just seemed like a formality (albeit one with a nice party) [Smile] as we'd made a complete committment to each other three years earlier.

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Life is what happens whilst you're busy making other plans.
a birdseye view

Posts: 1615 | From: West Yorkshire | Registered: Dec 2003  |  IP: Logged



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