T O P I C R E V I E W
Member # 85132
posted 12-23-2011 06:25 AM
I've been atheist for quite some time(and in a VERY committed relationship or nearly 4 years, we're just in college tho, so we live with our parents.)
Anyway, I've been having weird feelings churning up, quite possibly from my time when I went to the church and all, and mentally this is draining. I don't know what to believe religiously, and with that, I will find on my own time. THAT SAID, I don't know where else(but this amazing board) to find reliable information on sexuality, and I was wondering exactly what Jesus' stance on premarital sex was. I mean seriously, the only thing I could find was the woman whom was an adulteress thus meaning she was CHEATING on her husband(she was already in a committed relationship and had sex with a third party is what I take from that). But nothing on premarital sex in general. I mean I've BEEN in a loving committed relationship for a long time, and we enjoy expressing this form of intimacy to each other for another EIGHT years before we graduate(part time college full time work and we've agreed to wait till we graduate before getting married)! That said, I do kinda have to laugh, I've always assumed Mary told the biggest lie in the history of the world and it's gotten really out of hand. xD
Member # 3
posted 12-23-2011 09:56 AM
CAVEAT: I'm saying all of what I am from a secular, academic standpoint.
You know, I'm not sure we can say that we know that, since what we have about the words of Jesus is pretty much only in the New Testament and none of it is direct: it's all said by others and then written by others still. (Mind there are even sound historian arguments that Jesus didn't even exist for real, but let's set those aside for now and assume he did, since that seems just as likely.) But what we do know historically are a few things. For one, we know that, like you voiced, having sex outside of marriage when someone WAS already married was a big deal at the time, and there's a lot about that. We also know that having any kind of sex WITHOUT marriage really wasn't even talked about much in the Bible unless rape, incest or prostitution were being discussed. Out of wedlock birth was, obviously, also discussed. The thing is that historically, most of the concern at the time with sex outside of marriage was about paternity: in other words, about people knowing who the Dad was of a given kid. Additionally, since women had no rights at the time, and marriage was a huge deal when it came to many women's survival, another concern was anything that might limit or remove a woman's marriagability, and virginity -- and not having it -- was a huge piece there. But yep: that's about it. You're looking and looking and not finding it, and that's because for the most part, it's just not there. This is very similar to what happens when someone goes looking for Biblical text that says homosexuality is wrong or sinful, too. P.S. Mary may not have lied. I did a good deal of academic study of the Bible in college, and have hung out with some hardcore theologians in my life, including one who actually knew and could translate Aramaic (talk about intimidating!), and more than one of them voiced that historically, at the time, when rabbis were consensually sexual with, or sexually assaulted women, stating they had sex 'with god," because rabbis were agents of god, was common. Of course, who even knows if Mary really existed, and if so, what she said at all. Again, we're talking about a document which has had multiple authors and multiple editors, which was written in a very different language than it's translated into, and which isn't autobiography for anyone in it.
Member # 43628
posted 12-23-2011 11:42 AM
I have heard Christians say that the Song of Songs/Song of Solomon in the Old Testament celebrates the beauty of sexuality. It is commonly held to describe the love and sexual relationship between the man and woman in the Song. So there is that example of sexuality the Bible. However, as someone who has read the Bible a lot I completely agree with what Heather has said, there is very little recorded about what Jesus thought about sexuality and pre-marital, consensual sex, outside of mentions of prostitution, children out of wedlock, or adultery.
Member # 85132
posted 12-23-2011 03:56 PM
Of course, I am still trying to find my own way and I've been having some issues, but it's nice to know that this isn't something truly horrible at least according to that religion(meaning if I go back to follow it, I can be as gay rights supporting and sexually active as I want ) Also, Heather, thanks for the tidbit about the rabbi business! The more you know.
Member # 3
posted 12-23-2011 04:01 PM
If you're interested, I'd be happy to suggest some books and films -- a couple of which are available on Hulu or Netflix streaming, if you have access to either -- to dig into more.
bump on a log
Member # 60751
posted 12-24-2011 03:36 AM
quote: Originally posted by coralee: I have heard Christians say that the Song of Songs/Song of Solomon in the Old Testament celebrates the beauty of sexuality. It is commonly held to describe the love and sexual relationship between the man and woman in the Song. I am rather shockingly ignorant of other Christian traditions, but in Roman Catholicism and Catholic Anglicanism, the man is Christ, the woman is the Church, his bride. During Mass the two symbolically meet at the altar. Which is about sex, yes.
Member # 43628
posted 12-24-2011 07:28 AM
That's interesting, I've never heard that interpretation from Protestant Christians, I always thought it literally describes a man and woman.
Member # 3
posted 12-24-2011 11:11 AM
Interpretations of that one do tend to be both/either about a person and their relationship with God or people's interpersonal relationships. It's pretty all over the place.
bump on a log
Member # 60751
posted 12-24-2011 11:18 AM
quote: Originally posted by Heather: Interpretations of that one do tend to be both/either about a person and their relationship with God or people's interpersonal relationships. It's pretty all over the place. True enough. What I said above is what they told me in my patchy Catholic religious education and what I've generally found accepted among Catholics who take an intellectual interest in theology. And being part of a Catholic tradition does often mean having a (fairly) symbolic view of Scripture and a (fairly) literal view of the Sacraments, rather than the other way round.
I know someone studying to be a Lutheran pastor. Will have to ask him for his take.
Member # 3
posted 12-24-2011 11:29 AM
I agree, bump on a log, your interpretation tends to be, IME, far more common in Catholicism and in Judaism.
Member # 64098
posted 03-05-2012 11:52 PM
Being Christian myself, I am also having a hard time finding anything Jesus says about pre-marital sex. Honestly...there really isn't anything. It's all up to interpretation.
I'll be married soon and I have had an active sexual relationship with my fiance. Neither of us feel guilty. Commitment is the key...and the highest form of commitment is marriage. This is how it makes sense to me...I don't really wanna have my heart trampled on by some guy who thinks my body is bang-able and just wants to have sex with me...I kinda only want to make love to the only person in the world who respects me and loves me and wants to be with me as long as we both live...and if that's true love...then get married. I think the whole "wait" scenario has to do with heartbreak and the fact that sex represents a "oneness" and it's a very spiritual principle everywhere, not just in the Bible. Deuteronomy talks about people who have pre-maritial sex...basically the rule is that they must marry. Unless there is rape or adultery...that was the whole stoning thing. Hebrews talks about keeping the marriage bed clean and pure...I've understood that to mean no cheating, no porn...the basics to keep a relationship healthy. I do know people who believe that watching porn together as a couple is ok and healthy but to me, personally, I don't find it right. Each to their own, I don't think anyone is horrible or wrong...as long as it works for you and you're happy and healthy together. It's not my place to judge..."who shall cast the first stone" right? lol I think as long as the relationship is monogamous and it is out of respect and love...I see no wrong. This is a huge topic that could sway many ways...but I learned in this topic cool stuff.
moonlight bouncing off water
Member # 44338
posted 03-06-2012 03:06 PM
turtle_lady, I like a lot of what you're saying, and I understand that this thread is about opinion, so I tread lightly here, but I've got just one little thing. Monogamy is great, but there is nothing wrong with a polyamourous relationship, or otherwise non-monogamous relationship, if all parties involved are consenting.
Member # 64098
posted 03-07-2012 06:58 PM
Mmm each to their own. I won't tell you what is right or wrong. I shall just respectfully disagree. No harm done.
Member # 49582
posted 03-08-2012 04:15 AM
I think it's fantastic that we've all got our personal values so well-thought out and have made our best choices with those, without struggling. Please may everyone remember that human sexuality is one of the most diverse things in the world; and varies between all people so hugely, and that includes individual sexual values. Some personal values work brilliantly for some people, whereas a different set of values altogether will work much better for a very different group of people. There are no big Rights or Wrongs with sexuality; that what makes it so personal and beautiful.
As we want Scarleteen to be as accurate in reflecting this diversity as possible; please may we all help to keep Scarleteen the safest space possible for people of all sets of personal values, all likes and dislikes; and in all kinds of relationships models. Thank you all ever so much! [ 03-08-2012, 05:29 AM: Message edited by: Saffron Reimi ]
Member # 95148
posted 07-03-2012 01:12 AM
I haven't read the whole page- But I just wanted to jump into the conversation, because my college recently had a SexPositive talk on this subject!
I go to a Christian-based school, though you do not have to be Christian to attend. We have many extremely brilliant religion professors, and many of them attended the talk. We also had religious leaders (mostly pastors) from the community come in. We had an open discussion about sexuality, and how it is discussed in religion. (Mainly the different forms of Christianity, but also Buddism and other eastern Asia religions). Our conclusion was that the bible really didn't put down any "rules" about sex or sexuality, other than the ones already discussed (sex in marriage helped keep society and family stable, etc.). What seemed to be the biggest deal was that sex was important. Sex was given respect and weight in the bible. There are cases when sex was a good thing, and cases when it tore apart whole civilizations. I think what I have gathered from what I learned, is that sex is something that shouldn't be taken lightly. It should be exercised with thought, and care, and respect. Because it has the power to do great good and great bad to anybody involved, directly or indirectly. I hope that makes sense c: