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Love, Marriage and Sex

The most important thing anyone needs to know about love, marriage and sex is that God made them, they are very good and He told us what is best for us.

Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and they shall become one flesh. And they were both naked, the man and his wife, and were not ashamed (Genesis 2:24-25).

God clearly commands young people to leave their parents, to be joined together (married) as couples and to be one flesh (full sexual intercourse). He encourages them to be naked in one another's presence and enjoy it. This and many other Bible verses hold up marriage as the best way to provide sexual satisfaction, love, security, economic efficiency and the best environment to raise children. Most people would probably agree that a great marriage is ideal, but they would have all different views as to how possible it is to achieve, and the best road to take to get there.

Did you know that the second dispute in the Bible is about sexuality—this very subject? Read on!

The first dispute is closely related. It is about whether or not Adam and Eve should eat from the "tree of the knowledge of good and evil"—whether they should decide for themselves what is good and what is evil (Genesis 3:1-9). Their decision was to go their own way, and to this day we have a great variety of ideas about what is good and what is evil. Most religions and philosphies incorporate the Golder Rule:

Treat others as you want to be treated.

This basic principle, when fairly carried out, has resulted in many good laws and practices compatible with the Scripture. For example, "I do not want anyone to injure or kill me, so I will not injure or kill others, and I will support laws punishing those who do." Most people would accept a similar approach to stealing. But then, there are philosophical communists who would say everything should belong to everybody, so there is no stealing. What is the truth? The Bible teaches property is private and theieves should be punished, but it also protects us from generational poverty by forgiving all debts every seven years (Deuteronomy 15) and redistributing land every 49 years (Leviticus 25).

The second dispute in the Bible was about sexuality—when it is or is not all right to be naked. Somehow, Adam and Eve decided it was wrong for a married couple, with the world as their bedroom, to be naked together:

So he [Adam] said, "I heard Your voice in the garden, and I was afraid because I was naked; and I hid myself." And He [God] said, "Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten from the tree of which I commanded you that you should not eat?" (Genesis 3:10-11).

And from that time on, a great many cultures have decided that sex is sinful, and should always be covered up and not mentioned. Other cultures have take the opposite extreme, accepting nakedness and sexual activity between almost any people at any time. The Bible clearly teaches the middle ground that sex and nudity is acceptable, good and beautiful among a married man and woman, but nowhere else. Biblical marriages are public events to be witnessed by the community—thus protecting vulnerable individuals from sex being forced upon them from secret or sham marraiges.

In our modern western societies, the laws regarding nakedness and sexual practices are complex and confusing beyond belief. Most of our entertainment is full of explicit references to sex among unmarried individuals—many portrayed as teens, even though the actors might be older. Children are taught "safe sex" practices in school beginning in junior high—sometimes provided with free condoms. The clear implication is that nearly eveyone is going to do this—even though sexual acts are technically illegal below the age of consent, which varies from 16 to 18 among states in the USA.

Further adding to the confusion, sex acts among teens below the age of consent are rarely prosecuted. Most teens do not even know it is technically illegal—the movies they watch and the schools they attend do not teach them this. Yet there are now tens of thousands of people with criminal records and who must register as sex offenders for decades because they did things such as:

  • Had a consensual sexual interaction (maybe just touching) with the son or daughter of someone well-connected with the legal system who had them prosecuted to the extent of the law
  • Sent a naked picture of themselves to their partner with whom they have had sex for years
  • Had sex with their long-time partner after they turned 18, but their partner was under the age of consent.
  • Went "skinny dipping" or joined some other naked event that was portrayed as "normal" in entertainment—not intending to offend anyone—but which was seen by someone who called law enforcement
  • Leave their computer or phone unattended allowing someone else to download child pornography onto it

Yes, our western societies are a combination of anything-goes "free sex" and stiff, life-crippling punishments with ill-conceived dividing lines between the two. An angry man can spend all day playing graphic video games where he sexually brutalizes and kills helpless adults and children. The law will not track or punish him until he carries out this action on a real person. But if parents are caught with a picture given to them by their minor child of his/her friends fully sunbathing, they could spend years in prison and be required to publicly register as a sex offender for life.

The solution to this big mess is three-fold and fairly simple:

  1. Accept the biblical teaching that nakedness and sex acts belong only in life-long marriages. If one has already made mistakes, it is not too late to repent and recover—end failed relationships and find a lasting one. It takes time to develop such a relationship, but the time is well spent, both for the couple involved and for any children that may be born to them. This is explained in detail in our article Love that Lasts.
  2. If we want a loving and lasting marriage for ourselves, the Golden Rule teaches us we should hope that everyone else has one as well. That means we do not use any sexual entertainment, pornography or prostitutes. Nobody should share their body for fame, fortune or foolishness, but should save it for their spouse, when they are ready to be married. If nobody buys, nobody will sell.
  3. Work toward laws that support the biblical concept of marriage. This does not mean we need the government in every bedroom, but just laws can largely eliminate the multi-billion dollar sex and violences industries. Schools need to teach abstinence, not contraception. New laws are not implemented quickly, but we can work in this direction.

For you own happiness, and the good of others around you, we encourage you to adopt a biblical view of Love, Marriage and Sex. The buttons at the upper right link to articles that will explain the scriptures in detail.

— Norman Edwards

Other Articles on This Subject
Help for the Pretty Woman:
Why Lasting, Loving Relationships Can Be a Special Challenge
Who Is My Daddy?

Important questions for men that never, never go away!
Creating & Loving Life:
The Most Profound Thing You WIll Ever Do
A Message to Young People
How Can You Meet Other Singles? Love That Lasts:
Why Sexual Desire Is Best Fulfilled in Marriage
(38 pages)
Biblical Marriage Management: Once I'm married, how do I make it work? The Physiology of Marriage
New studies showing how human physiology is designed for marriage, not multiple partners.

Helpful Links to Other Sites:
Ten Things I Want To Tell Teenage Girls
by Kate Elizabeth Conner
Ten Things Dan Wants To Tell Teenage Boys
by Dan Conner

About the Author

Picture of Norman Edwards, about 2009

Norman Edwards is the author of all these pages and articles--unless otherwise noted. He has been a life-long Bible student, teacher and author and is now in his 60s. His career, in round numbers is:

The purpose of this site is to encourage everyone everywhere to study and better understand the Bible. Norman has not been a member of any religious denomination or sect since 1995. He does not study to confirm what he or a church group already believes. He reads the Bible, does research and writes what he understands through prayer and the Holy Spirit. Research usually consists of looking for other related scriptures, but also includes the meaning of Hebrew and Greek words and the historical context in which the Scriptures were written.

Yet he also believes that "iron sharpens iron" (Proverbs 27:17) and welcomes corrections and comments about his writing. The peer review of fellow believers has caused him to change his teaching on some subjects.

While Norman has written many hundreds of articles and it will be some years before they are all added to this site. He realizes he will not be able to study every subject of interest before he dies. He realizes this website needs improved organization and new software for a more modern look.

But the purpose of life has never been about doctrinal or technical perfection. It is about learning to love God with all are hearts and to love our neighbor as ourself (Matthew 22:36-40). God gives knowledge and many other spiritual gifts which we should use to His glory (1 Corinthians 12 - 14). But the greatest of these is love! (1 Corinthians 13:13).

This writer encourages Christians everywhere to:

God is very interested in answering prayers about these subjects. He will show you what to do. Be peaceful and gentle with others who are not as gifted or able as you—even with Christians who are clearly in error. God gave us time to bring us to where we are now, and we all still have more to learn!

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