Sexual Ethics Foundation: The Single Life

What does the Bible say about you sexually if you’re not married? Let’s talk about it on Deeper Waters.

A friend suggested that sometime after a series on sexual ethics, I should do something on the single life. I figure why wait until the end because even if single Christians are not to have sex, that does not mean that they don’t have sexual ethics to follow. As he said, I have spent most of my life single so maybe I have some things to say about my prior state.

So let’s clear up something right at the start.

As long as you’re single, one rule is clear. No sex.

Now there are some people who are single because they just don’t honestly want to get married. Some have never married and they’re just fine with staying that way. If you’re one of those people, God bless you. We need to realize that the life of Jesus really changed the world and one aspect that it did was it made the single life a viable lifestyle.

In the church, we can be too quick to look down on those who are single as if they are incomplete somehow and think that we have to find just the right person for them. Now if someone wants to get married, this can be well and good and highly appreciated. Many a marriage starts by one person introducing two people to each other. In essence, that’s how my marriage started.

We dare not look at single people as if they are lesser people. They could just have a different calling in this life and they think that if they are married, that might slow them down in their service of the kingdom. Maybe they just don’t have a lot of sexual desire and they look at something like sex and think “Yeah. It’d be nice, but it’s no big deal.”

If these people are willing to accept the rule of “No sex”, then let us encourage them.

On the other hand, some people want to get married. These are people who do happen to have strong sexual desire. When I was single living with a roommate, he did know that I was a guy who was very interested in getting married someday. Of course, there will be more on that later, but it was something I thought about often. There’s no doubt for me that lack of a spouse was indeed a lack in my life that needed to be filled.

If you are someone who does want to get married, then by all means go out and search for a spouse but until you find one, no sex. That’s the rule for the Christian life. Of course, how that will work about as you are dating is something that we will discuss later, but in the meantime, what are you to do?

If you are to follow the path of no sex, you are to be consistent and avoid lust. A definite sign that you are engaging in lust is the practice of viewing pornography. That’s a negative for the Christian. To view pornography is to treat the opposite sex as if they are an object meant to satisfy your desires alone. One of the beauties of sex in marriage is to realize both persons are there to satisfy the desires of the other person. If each person seeks to please the other, both will be happy.

It also definitely means respecting the opposite sex. By all means have friends of the opposite sex, but don’t date. Dating is for people who plan to marry. If you don’t plan to marry, then it is just dishonest to someone of the opposite sex to date them.

Until you get married, learn to be happy where you are and make the most of it. I am happy to be married now, but I wish I had done more with my single life. Marriage does require something of you. The person who is single does in some ways tend to have more time and I wish I’d made more of it looking back.

A difficult step to follow, at least for me it was, is to try to not be jealous of your friends who are getting married. This was a difficult one for me as I watched my friends around me get married when I first lived in Knoxville and wondered “When will it be my turn? Why am I being left behind?” Ironically while in Charlotte, in my circle of friends, I was the first to get married, and in fact out of my circle of friends there, I’m the only one still to be married. None of the others have said the “I do” yet, and I’ve made it a point to not really press them on it. If they want it, they’ll go for it when they’re ready. If not, then that’s their choice and I respect that. If any of them want to talk to me about married life, I’m more than happy to do that. In fact, it’s something that I quite love to talk about.

When you see your friends getting then, try to be happy for them. I liked that at our wedding, my best man I am sure was genuinely happy and might I add, gave the best toast that I have ever heard given at a wedding ceremony. I think Allie quickly became part of the inner circle by them and we would often have good discussion times. She did enjoy watching them come over and seeing us do something like Super Smash Brothers Brawl together or watching the final season of Smallville. Celebrate your married friends and realize that they still want to be friends with you, but their first priority is still going to be to their wives.

I used to get together on Sunday nights with some friends in Charlotte and play on the Wii and then do something like bowling together. Allie understood that it was a guy thing then, but if she really needed me, she gave me a call and I came straight home if need be. My other friends understood that.

Of course, you should also realize that there are times when your married friends don’t want to be disturbed. That’s okay also.

So as long as you’re single, with your mind and heart, honor the people of the opposite sex in your life. Avoid pornography and if you plan to get married, good for you. If you plan to stay single, good for you also. Live the proper life in each path and seek to serve God to the fullest with wherever you are right now.

In Christ,
Nick Peters

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7 Responses to “Sexual Ethics Foundation: The Single Life”

  1. Bunto Skiffler Says:

    [NPeters] “So let’s clear up something right at the start.
    As long as you’re single, one rule is clear. No sex”

    What more evidence is required to admit that Religion is entirely man-made? (Grin)

  2. apologianick Says:

    Bunto: What more evidence is required to admit that the men who created the Religion weren’t? (Bigger Grin)

    Reply: Only a total lack of evidence. Of course, based on your reply to Soyeong, it must be nice to have a belief system that evidence doesn’t really matter to it. Religion restricts sex? It’s man-made! Religion doesn’t restrict sex? That exception proves religion is man-made!

    Heads I win. Tails you lose.

    Soyeong. It’s yours for now. Got a scholar to interview.

    • Soyeong Says:

      Actually, I think he was admitting I had a point. Saying the exception proves the rule is like saying the exception that parking prohibited on Sundays proves the existence of the rule that parking is allowed during the rest of the week. It does not mean that an exception to what you are saying proves that you are correct.

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