Instructing Youth About Sex and Dating Part 3

V. Here are some thoughts on physical affection and dating. A. Physical affection (as distinct from dispassionate physical contact like a fist bump or karate kick to the head) is to be an expression of love. SON 1:2. B. It is questionable, at least, for physical affection to be expressed in simple social dating because no real love is involved at the outset. 1. Undiscerning physical affection can easily become an excuse for carnal pleasure without regard to lasting commitment. Remember ROM 13:14. 2. Paul’s advice in 1CO 7:1 is in context dealing with intimacy (c/w PRO 6:29) but the power of affectionate touch should not be underestimated. C. Physical affection is better reserved for serious dating where love and commitment have become chief factors. 1. The case of Boaz and Ruth is interesting. RUTH 3. 2. Marriage was the motivation behind Naomi’s advice. RUTH 2:19-23. 3. Ruth initiated close “social non-distancing” with Boaz. RUTH 3:6-9. 4. Their interaction was wholesome and commitment-oriented but even so, there was a concern about the propriety of her being there. RUTH 3:14. 5. Do not overlook RUTH 4:13. D. The ultimate form of physical affection is sexual intercourse which is only for marriage. 1. Kissing, embracing, spooning are arousing preludes to intercourse and are better reserved for the more serious relationship that leads to engagement and marriage. 2. Ask yourself whether it would be appropriate in social dating to meet someone for the first time and say, “Hi, it’s nice to meet you. Let me give you a big wet kiss and embrace you as if we were married, then we can lie together and spoon. How do you like me so far?” 3. There IS “...a time to refrain from embracing” (ECC 3:5). That action is not boundary-free, especially in the context of passion as in PRO 5:20; SON 2:6. 4. If you doubt the association of physical affection with commitment, then you should have no problem with your “steady” showing the same kind of physical affection to someone else. Reality Check! Jealousy is a valid emotion. 2CO 11:2. 5. Disconnecting the intimacy designed for marriage from the commitment of marriage is the source of temptation, emotional frustration, moral failures and guilt. E. Let physical affection on serious dates be characterized by: 1. proper duration. It should not define the entire date. To ignore this is to set oneself up for moral failure. 2. proper place. Avoid places that would enhance “going all the way.” 3. proper understanding. Remember that physical affection expresses love which does not injure and which fulfills the law (ROM 13:10). Hence, proper physical affection would not run into fornication which violates God’s law. 4. proper decorum. Avoid intoxication, immodest apparel and unbecoming speech. If you expect to bridle the body, you must first bridle the tongue (JAM 3:2) which requires purifying the heart. MAT 12:34. 5. proper restraint. Avoid lengths of time and bodily contacts that would lead to becoming ravished. F. The natural desire between the sexes may be wholesomely governed or carnally governed. 1. We are to possess our vessels (bodies) “...in sanctification and honour; Not in the lust of concupiscence...” (1TH 4:3-5). 2. concupiscence: Eager or vehement desire. 3. vehemence: Great or excessive ardour, eagerness, or fervour of personal feeling or action; passionate force, violence, or excitement. 4. In context, Paul is obviously addressing the unbridled passions of the unconverted “...which know not God” (v. 5). Their lusts own them and blindly drive them. EPH 4:17-19. 5. Flee fornication (1CO 6:18-20). Some battles are won by flight, not by fight. Joseph showed us the way. GEN 39:12. G. Love that leads to marriage must involve an understanding of, and willingness to assume, the God-ordained responsibilities of the relationship. 1. The distinction is between self-satisfying lust and true concern for the other’s wealth. c/w 1CO 10:24. 2. When two people become interested in each other’s welfare as opposed to merely personal pleasure, and yearn to be together and assume the responsibilities of mutual possession, then it may be said that serious love that could lead to marriage is developing. 3. The love that leads to and is involved in marriage is characterized by: a. delight in its object. SON 7:6. b. desire for its object. SON 7:10. c. possession by its object. SON 6:3. d. willingness to sacrifice for its object. EPH 5:25. e. a bond. SON 8:6-7; JER 31:3. VI. Marriage is a covenant. JOB 31:1; MAL 2:14. A. It is a special contract between people where God Himself regulates its formation, the conduct of the bound parties, and the only terms under which the contract may terminate (death, fornication, abandonment by an unbeliever). B. It is a SOCIAL institution within the framework of God’s law governing social relationships. EPH 5:31. 1. It is more than two people deciding to have sexual intercourse. 2. While the sex act of marriage is a private matter, the fact of it is public knowledge that society recognizes and is bound by the divine law to respect it. C. There are obvious differences between a married and an unmarried state among young people. In the unmarried state: 1. Both are dependent of two different economic systems. 2. Both are legally identified with their respective parents who have lawful authority over them and are legally responsible for them. 3. They are not one in the eyes of the community. 4. If a pregnancy occurs, it is accompanied with shame (or should be) and the pressure of mammoth decisions that must be made: Mothering or adoption? Who is going to pay the bills? Who has legal rights to the child? Should a marriage be forced? 5. Unmarried persons have not yet actively assumed the God-appointed responsibilities of marriage. 6. There is a vast difference regarding sexual relations for married people and for unmarried people. No couple who intends marriage should conclude that premarital sex is acceptable merely because they plan to later marry.

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