Mike Novotny - Why Wait Until Marriage to Have Sex?
Why does God want us to wait until marriage to have sex? That actually is a great question. You know, it's a great question because some people would say if, if sex is such a vital part of a relationship and if the Christian church says that you should wait until marriage to have sex, aren't you kind of setting yourself up for failure? What if you're not compatible? Wouldn't it be better, just as like you test your communication skills, your compatibility skills, that you would see if you're sexually compatible, as well? What would God's answer to that question be?
Well, we know that God does want us to wait so in the book of Hebrews, chapter 13, a passage I had to memorize when I was growing up as a kid, the passage says, So God wants us to keep the marriage bed pure and perhaps some of God's reasons is the power that God's ascribed to sex. There's a movie I saw about a decade ago. I have no clue what it was about. It was called "Vanilla Sky". I think Tom Cruise and who else was in that movie? Cameron Diaz. And they hook up afterwards and Tom Cruise just wants it to be sex with no strings attached and Cameron Diaz says this classic line to him. She says, "Don't you know that when you make love to someone, your body makes a promise that you can't take back". It's almost like if you think sex is just something you do, no, God designed it to glue two people together.
I've learned this in my work trying to help people escape addictions to pornography that the chemicals that are released in your brain during a sexual encounter are not just for pleasure, as if sex could really be with no strings attached, but it actually works to bond two people together. There's a chemical called oxytocin, ever heard of that before? It's produced in a woman's body in mass amounts when she breastfeeds her baby so there's this incredible bond between her and her child. The same chemical is released when two people enjoy sex together; they just have this incredible bond. This wasn't just something that we do for fun. This is something meant to cement the relationship.
So when done right, God has meant sex to be something that doesn't just feel good for a husband and wife. It bonds them together in a good relationship until death do them part. But now think what happens if we take sex outside of marriage? We end up bonding ourselves to someone who might not actually be good for us. This happens all the time, right? Maybe a teenage girl, a girl in college, it could be anyone of us. You hook up with someone and, you know, you're not sure of their character yet, if they're good for your soul, for your faith, for your future, and you end up just having this kind of cloudy thinking in your mind because you can't think straight anymore, the chemicals have clouded what God intended to be this really simple decision of analyzing a relationship. We could add a thousand factors on top of that, as well, huh?
We think of unwanted pregnancies, how difficult it is to be a single parent and sometimes that happens when you least expect it. We think of people who feel pushed towards an abortion because they're pregnant and they're not ready and he's not ready. We think of sexually transmitted diseases and things get really, really complicated. And so when I teach couples about sex in my pre-marriage counseling, I almost always say this: that sex is like a fire. It's a really good thing that God invented, it's his idea, your body was God's invention, his body, her body, was God's invention, but if that fire gets outside of the fireplace, the thing that can bring warmth into the family's home can also do a lot of destruction. And so God is a loving Father. He says he does want us to wait to reserve that great gift of sex as his present given to husband and wife on their wedding night.