Why Choose Chastity?
by David MacDonald
If I go into a grocery store and want to choose a good apple I can pick it up and I can look at it. I would be pretty upset if the person in front of me starting taking bites out of apples and putting them back in order to see if they taste good.
Having sex before marriage is taking a bite out of the apple before committing to it (buying it). Often it means leaving it for the next person. When I have sex with someone before marriage, it is quite likely I am having sex with someone else's future wife.
Here are some Catholic definitions: Chastity: No sex outside of marriage, sex is perfectly acceptable in the context of a marriage blessed by the Church. Marriage: An unbreakable lifelong union between one man and one woman to the exclusion of all others. Celibacy: Abstinence from sex, and usually implies remaining single.
The Catholic Church has always asserted that chastity, or alternatively celibacy, are the correct expressions of our sexual natures. The Bible supports this. It applies to everyone, including straights, gays, lesbians, bisexuals and Transgendered (GLBT), two-spirited people etc. I know that would get me laughed out of a university class on human behavior and unfortunately out of many psychiatrist's offices.
Girls in high school graduate having had an average of six sex partners. The National Post reports the 25% of girls 15-25 years old have venereal warts. The virus is permanent and travels right through condoms, and even after treatment it lays dormant in the system for life and is often a pre-cursor to ovarian cancer. The daughter of a friend of mine ended up with ovarian cancer and it is questionable whether she will ever be able to have children. There are also over 60 other STD's many of which are more serious than that. Oh Lord help this generation to see through the Madison Avenue lies about sex that we read about in the glamour magazines.
The radio program "Point of View" on WFCJ radio Dayton Ohio reported Dec 10, 2004 that teenagers who have sex are 2x more likely to commit suicide than girls who practice abstinence and teenage boys who have sex are 7x more likely to commit suicide than boys who are sexually abstinent.
We live in a society where passions are riderless horses, uncontrolled and uncontrollable, in which there is a desolation of decency, in which love has become a jungle emotion, lust exalted to lordship, sin elevated to sovereignty, Satan adored as a saint, and man magnified above his Maker. Americans have come to dwell in an Alice in Wonderland world of fantasy, of self-delusion. Everything has been turned upside down and inside out in our America. Right is wrong, and wrong is right. Good is bad and bad is good. Normal is abnormal, and abnormal is normal, true is false and false is true. We are fast degenerating into a decadent culture obsessed with selfishness and sin, death and destruction.
What is "fornication"?
I have a friend who started having sex with his girlfriend. He was interested in Christianity. He was going to a United Church and started a Bible study. He was over to my place and I asked how he reconciled his interest in Christianity with his sex life. He said there's nowhere in the Bible that it says not to have sex before marriage. He said he searched for it and couldn't find it. Then it struck me that he didn't know the meaning of "fornication." I pulled out a dictionary:
Fornication: Voluntary sexual intercourse other than between a married couple, especially where either person or both persons are unmarried. (Gage Dictionary)
His face dropped as I took him through verse after verse. (Mt: 15:19, Mk 7:21, Acts 15:20, 29, 21:25, 1 Cor 6:13, 18, Gal 5:19, Eph 5:3, Col 3:5, 1 Thes 4:3, Rev 2:14, 20-21, 9:21 etc...) It seems the Bible has a lot to say on this topic. It puts "sex before marriage" (fornication) right up there with the worst of sins of humanity such as murder, theft etc... Ouch!!!!
The body is meant not for fornication but for the Lord, and the Lord for the Body, And God raised the Lord and will also raise us by his power. Do you not know that your bodies are members of Christ? (1 Co 6:13)
"Fornication" sounds like such a stale archaic word that our generation doesn't even know what it means. It sounds outdated. But this is the genius of mass marketing. Sex sells... sex sells cloths, it sells movies, it sells magazines, it sells everything. Our present attitude towards sex is the result of mass marketing. Our generation believes they are thinking for themselves when having sex before marriage. But they are the product of mass media.
Sex is fun and free, Jesus was into fun and freedom, so why are you Catholics so uptight?
Now I can hear someone out there saying "c'mon, sex is fun, God wants us to have fun...sexual freedom is great."
What the great dispute about is over the meaning of "freedom," Is freedom simply to do whatever you want to do? Or is real freedom the freedom to do what you ought to do? Now the herd of independent thinkers in the dominant western culture believes the first. It's simply being shackled to one's own passions and desires and impulses.
Jesus was not hung up on social conventions. He freely ignored stupid social conventions such as being forbidden to hang out with the Samaritans. But when it came to sex he was very serious. Why were Jesus and the apostles so uptight about sex when they were so radical about breaking down other social barriers? I think it is because they knew something that modern culture has forgotten.
Sex is powerful
People are born from sex, people die from sex (STD's). If I get a powerful gift for Christmas, say a car, there are rules that keep me safe. I think it is the same with sexuality.
For freedom Christ has set us free. Stand firm, therefore, and do not submit again to a yoke of slavery. For you were called to freedom, brothers and sisters, only do not use your freedom as an opportunity for self-indulgence ... (Gal 5:1, 13-18)
Here are some Catholic definitions: Chastity: No sex outside of marriage, sex is perfectly acceptable in the context of a marriage blessed by the Church. Marriage: An unbreakable lifelong union between one man and one woman to the exclusion of all others. Celibacy: Abstinence from sex, remaining single.
Today, society considers the Catholic Church's views on sex "regressive, old fashioned and medieval". But "modern society" is more "regressive" than the Church. It is following Caligula in ancient Rome.
Never before in history has mankind been so sex centered. Internet porn (the "crack cocaine" of sex addiction), late night TV, and even sex on prime time TV are just a few ways that society pushes pornography right into our homes. Viagra is a top selling drug. Men can't keep up with the amount of sex they think they should have. My email inbox is full of the same kind of male enhancement spam as everyone else. In 2001, the National Post reported that 25% of girls in the age bracket 15-25 have venereal warts (which freely pass through condoms). Statistics Canada reports 100,000 abortions a year. In the gay community the stats are just as dramatic with their own set of devastating consequences. Recent laws and policies aimed at reducing those statistics by granting more sexual freedom have not diminished those statistics, in fact there has been an increase in suicide, STD's, alcoholism, and partner abuse.
Yet even with these devastating facts, modern culture thinks everybody has to have sex. People who don't have sex are viewed with pity or contempt. We wonder what is wrong with them. Psychiatrists have a field day with people who feel called to celibacy. Teenagers who want to wait until marriage are ridiculed by their peers. I don't believe the answer to our problems is more freedom using contraception and "safer sex" with condoms. I believe the solution is a personal relationship with Jesus and his call to chastity.
Sex creates a bond, and needs to be a lifetime partnership
Sex creates an unbreakable bond for eternity with the sex partner. (1 Cor 6:16) That's why it needs to happen only within the eternal bond of marriage. One reason so few people are capable of intimacy today is because that spiritual center of union with another person has been scattered in bits and pieces all over their previous partner's lives. They have been hurt and with each hurt they close down a little more. Honestly, that is exactly what happened to me until I eventually was incapable of commitment.
Sex before marriage means broken hearts and broken bonds. Broken hearts don't trust others as much. People with broken hearts don't trust themselves as much. People think they should take a partner out for a "test drive" before getting married. But this hasn't made it easier to learn if the person is compatible because couples having sex often overlook important differences cause the sex is good. People who live together before marriage have a higher divorce rate.
I'm having sex with someone's future spouse
If we have sex with someone before marriage and then break up with them, we have had sex with someone's future spouse. The scary thing is that doesn't consciously bother many people today. Unfortunately, the net result is that marriage is much more fragile. Most couples who have had premarital sex with others don't stick together. The bonding and commitment necessary to maintain and sustain a marriage during the hard times just aren't there. Pre marital sex makes for "fair weather" marriages.
Yeah but I'm not promiscuous, I only have one partner. What's wrong with that?
Couples who stick together after pre marital sex and end up marrying are much more likely to divorce. Sad but true. Any short look at our society will back it up. It is stepping across a huge line in the "spiritual" sand. I recently listened to a French children's "call-in" program on CBC radio in Canada that interviewed children whose parents had broken up. The show is normally fun and light but this particular program made me want to cry. The children were devastated.
Why don't condoms reduce Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STD's)?
The "condom sense" strategy that is being taught to high school students ignores a basic precept of human behavior (especially men's). Getting people to think about condoms in the middle of sexual arousal is counter intuitive and quite frankly unsuccessful. Yet condoms provide a false sense of security because the couple will say "hey, we can pursue this because we have protection." The truth is that men just don't like using condoms and when both partners are aroused, the lust takes on a life of its own, and their intentions to use condoms are often thrown by the wayside. Even if they do have "safer-sex," once they feed the lust, there is a much greater chance that they will practice unsafe sex at some point. To be honest, men just don't like using condoms and if they could get away without them they would, and after lust has been aroused they often abandon the condoms.
Chastity is a better strategy, because it does not feed the lust the way that contraception does. The National Post reported that 25% of women 15-25 years old have venereal warts. The virus passes right through condoms. Condoms often break and are often used "improperly".
Although condom packages say they are 95% effective. Their studies are conducted in labs. I don't know very many people who have sex in labs. Real world studies of condom use and their success show us that a couple who have regular sex using condoms stand a 16% chance of pregnancy in any given year. If I got on a plane and they said, "Fasten seatbelts, by the way this plane has an 84% chance of reaching its destination." I would get the heck off the plane!
We live in a culture where condoms can be handed out in schools and bibles can't. That says a lot about how far "progressive" we have become.
Condoms are a "band-aid" solution that compound the current problems and don't address the real problem, our immoral behavior. This "condom sense" strategy is based on the idea that the solution to widespread sex is still more sex (using condoms) rather than taking a long sober look at what our society has become. Fr. Bob Bedard says "I would get laughed out of most high school classrooms if I simply stated that the answer to STDs is chastity, not condoms." Condoms are based on lust, chastity is based on love. Chastity means no sex outside of marriage.
The Pill is Unhealthy
If a 15-year-old boy goes into Doctors office saying "I want to get the girls, I need muscles. Can you prescribe steroids" The doctor would say "that's not good for you, go to the gym instead." But if a 15 year old girl goes to a doctor and says. "I want to get the guys, can you give me the pill (steroids)" The doctor says fine. If you ask me, this is part of society's systematic abuse of women. In the clinical trials for the pill they tried to make a pill for men and women. One man got slightly shrunken testicles and they completely abandoned all further tests with men. In the experiments for the pill, 3 women died and all they did was adjusted the dosage. To me this is abuse of women. Women still die from the pill. Sure it is a tiny percent but with 16 million women on the pill (in the US) even low deaths rates amount to an incredible injustice against women.
In the first year of use, 50% of women stop the pill because of side affects. The pill creates depression, lowers libido, makes women more irritable, and creates weight gain. The reason is that it makes the woman's body think it is in its first few weeks of pregnancy. And women in their first weeks of pregnancy have depression, lower libido, are women more irritable, and gain weight. In a pregnancy these side effects go away. On the side effects pill they go on indefinitely.
The pill is an abortifacient. The inside cover of the pill package says it works in 3 ways, (1) it stops ovulation, (2) if there is a breakthrough ovulation, the pill changes viscosity of mucus to inhibit travel (3) it will prevent the attachment of the fertilized egg (the little 1 day old baby) to the uterus wall. In this capacity it makes the woman commit abortion.
The press says we Catholics are “old fashioned” and “dangerous” to think that the idea chastity and faith is the answer for Africa. I’m still waiting for them to come up with a better idea. Bombing them with condoms has been a complete failure.
Sex and society since the acceptance of birth control
Contraception launched a lifestyle of sex outside of marriage. Today 67% of youth are sexually active before marriage. Teenagers are about as good at contraception as they are at making their beds, doing their homework and doing their chores. In 1966, 6% white babies were born pout of wedlock, now its up to 25%. In 1967, 22% of black babies were born out of wedlock, now 66% of black babies are born out of wedlock. There is much talk about women's rights but what about children's rights? This is not good for children. Most Psychologists are agreed that children with both parents stand a better chance of growing up well adjusted.
Sex before marriage means many more broken hearts and broken bonds. Broken hearts don't trust as much. Don't trust themselves as much. People think they should take a partner out for a "test drive" before getting married. But this hasn't made it easier to learn if the person is compatible because couples having sex often overlook important differences cause the sex is good. People who live together before marriage have a higher divorce rate. Abortion is huge today.
The Catholic Church predicted the future of a contraception Society.
In the 1968 document "Humanae Vitae," everybody felt like a bomb hit society. The Catholic Church was reaffirming its stance on contraception. In Section 6, Pope Paul VI makes several predictions. He said we would see:
1. Lowering of morality, (check out today's afternoon soaps, talk shows, MTV)
2. Disregard for physical and emotional well being of women by men. (internet porn)
3. Government would use family planning for coercive purposes. (UN population control)
4. Women would begin to treat their bodies as if they are machines. (Surrogate mothers, invitro fertilizations.)
Contraception paved the way to the "free sex" movement of the 1960's. In 70 years since contraception was accepted, we in modern society have become increasingly sex centered. Before I became Christian in 1987, I was as bad as anyone else - a Tom Cat. I was a musician on the road. I was involved with two abortions and had a string of broken relationships and infidelity. I'm not here to judge. Thank God for the freedom and forgiveness I've received in Jesus.
Source: David MacDonald