The Boys' Growing Up in the Lord

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Question

This question should be an easy one for you. Nonetheless it's really bothering me.

My relationship with God is everything to me. I was with a girl and we were kissing. Things started to get heated. Before I knew it, hands were involved, and we participated in mutual masturbation. This happened twice. I knew it was going further and decided to flee from the situation entirely. She was frustrated, but I told her it was sexually immoral and that I wasn't happy with how far it had already gone. I was not going to go any further for the sake of my future wife and for the sake of her future husband. I'm already frustrated with myself that it had gone that far.

After it was all said and done, I was feeling pretty good about myself, happy with the fact that it had not gone further. This happened months ago.

Two weeks ago I started to feel bad after reading different views on what constitutes virginity. Since then I have cried over the situation. I have always put virginity and becoming one flesh in the same boat. What I have come to understand is that the act of becoming on flesh is not necessarily the same as losing one's virginity. Virginity means different things to different people in different cultures.  

I understand what happened was immoral. I want no justification in that area. Anyone who believes they can do these things without sexual intercourse before marriage without sin is ignorant. My question is what act makes two people become one flesh? It seems logical to think that my actions were immoral and that I can't get back my innocence from it (similar to one who masturbates to pornography). That said, I do not believe that this constitutes two becoming one flesh. Otherwise same-sex marriages would be able to have a one flesh union. It would not be logical or rational to think otherwise. I want to be one flesh with my wife and that is it. I would be absolutely devastated  to come to the realization that what had happened between me and that other girl could constitute becoming one flesh. 

Thanks.


Answer

People do play word games to avoid classifying what they did as something wrong. Let's look at what people mean when they call someone a virgin:

"A woman who has had no carnal knowledge of man; a maiden of inviolate chastity; a man who has preserved his chastity; ... chaste; untouched; fresh; unsullied" [The New Webster Encyclopedic Dictionary of the English Language]

"A person who has not experienced sexual intercourse" [The American Heritage Dictionary]

"a person who has never had sex" [wordnet.princeton.edu]

"A virgin is most commonly seen as a person who has not engaged in sexual intercourse. In a stricter sense it is somebody who has not yet engaged in sexual activities" [Wikipedia: Virgin]

The last definition gives us a hint as to what is happening in our society. To escape facing the reality of what someone has done, the state of being a virgin is defined as strictly as possible so that what the person did isn't included. Thus, it is not just sex in general, it is only sexual intercourse -- a guy having his penis in another. Then it is not just intercourse, but only intercourse that involves the vagina. You saw through this misdirection when you realized that the definition becomes so narrow that it eliminated homosexual acts as being sex.

What you and the girl did does constitutes fornication. It was a sexual act in which you ejaculated. But that isn't the only sin you two committed. What you were involved also comes under the category of sensuality or lewdness. "This I say, therefore, and testify in the Lord, that you should no longer walk as the rest of the Gentiles walk, in the futility of their mind, having their understanding darkened, being alienated from the life of God, because of the ignorance that is in them, because of the blindness of their heart; who, being past feeling, have given themselves over to lewdness, to work all uncleanness with greediness" (Ephesians 4:17-19). Lewdness is behavior that is involved in pure self-enjoyment or behavior characteristic of an animal. You let instinct take over your body, which is why you said, "before I knew it." You were so caught up in the passion of the moment that you stopped thinking rationally and became like an animal.

It was also sexual touching -- the arousing of sexual passion in each other. "Now concerning the things of which you wrote to me: It is good for a man not to touch a woman" (I Corinthians 7:1).

With that also, your mind wasn't where it should have been. You knew that if this continued you would be putting your penis into her and that is apparently what she was aiming for. Thus, you strongly desired to commit fornication, which is the sin of lust. "Let us walk properly, as in the day, not in revelry and drunkenness, not in lewdness and lust, not in strife and envy. But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh, to fulfill its lusts" (Romans 13:13-14).

It also involved uncleanness. "But fornication and all uncleanness or covetousness, let it not even be named among you, as is fitting for saints" (Ephesians 5:3). In this context, uncleanness refers to morally impure behavior, particularly of a sexual nature. You both exposed your private areas to each other, which wasn't proper for unmarried people.

This isn't to make you feel bad. Ending this was the right thing to do. I'm mentioning all these things so that you can better see where you made your mistake. You were were focused on keeping your penis out of her, but in being narrowly focused, you missed all the other sins you were committing.

"Becoming one flesh" isn't a single act. "Becoming" is a process of transformation that takes place over time. "Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and they shall become one flesh" (Genesis 2:24). There is series of steps taking place. You become independent (leave your parents), you get married (joined to your wife), and start the process of becoming one flesh. It refers to two independent people becoming a single couple -- a single family. That process involves sex, but it isn't exclusively sex.

Staying with this girl would have continued to bind you two together, but since it isn't based on marriage and mutual respect for each other, it was unstable. But the point is that it wouldn't have been long before you were going all the way into sexual intercourse and giving up on living righteously. You would have bound yourself (become one flesh) with someone who would take you further from God.

Therefore, are you a virgin? Not fully. You don't have the experience of sexual intercourse, but you are no longer innocent in regards to sexual acts. Are you one flesh with her? No, but for a short period of time you were heading in that direction. Your sins did not make you married to this girl, nor did it take away your opportunity to become truly one with your future wife.

This was very well written. I regret what happened. I can not re-attain my innocence but am more than happy to understand that I will be one flesh with my wife and my wife only. I understand exactly what you are saying. I thought it was better to walk away from the temptation entitrely. These acts were not OK. I will use this experience in my ministry. This experience has truly made me struggle with God. The youth needs to understand that because you may not be necessairly crossing "the line" that riding it and crossing other lines are unacceptable and are sinful. These acts need to stay within marriage only.