by Rev Lai Kai Ming
Readings: 2 Samuel 13:1-39; Proverbs 17:14-15
READ (verse/s chosen for meditation)
2 Samuel 13:13 (ESV)
As for me, where could I carry my shame? And as for you, you would be as one of the outrageous fools in Israel. Now therefore, please speak to the king, for he will not withhold me from you.”
This is perhaps the clearest guidance from the Bible on whether premarital sex is permitted, or not. The logic seems clear. Although Amnon and Tamar were siblings, they were from different mothers and so incest was not the issue. The “shame” that the virgin Tamar referred to was not that of rape, but of sex before marriage. For she was not objecting to sex with Amnon, but to the need for marital consent from the king. If premarital sex was okay, she could simply have conceded and the issue would have been settled. But no, to lose her virginity before marriage, was a disgrace.
As a pastor, I am concerned as to how young (and not so young) Christians today readily practise premarital sex. Many consider the teachings of the Bible as outdated and therefore do not apply to them. Yet they would not consider laws against stealing and killing as outdated. So the real reason, I believe, is that we have become accustomed to getting what we want. If both parties want it, then let’s do it. To deny ourselves would be uncool, and too uncomfortable. The idea that 99% of our friends do it, makes it legitimate for us to do it too. God is no longer the reference, but humans, and self. No wonder people are never really happy, even with all the sex they get.
Lord, renew our minds, and strengthen our hearts. Help us not to fall prey to foolish actions that rob us of the joy of a holy life.