Hello, I have been reading around your site for a bit and I wanted to ask a question.
My question is about pre-marital sex. I know and I understand that it is wrong and shouldn't be done. But the thing is, I had oral sex just once. I know oral sex is wrong and in some cases is considered a loss of virginity, but how do I move on with my life and continue my Christian walk?
So often when preaching goes on regarding this topic it is always about not doing it and saving your virginity. But what about people who have lost their virginity already and have indulged in the act of sex. Where do they fit in?
Why is it that it's made to seem that because of a loss of virginity one won't have a happy successful marriage or that their marriage will be second class? When asked, many of my peers say they wouldn't marry someone who lost their virginity before marriage because if they saved themselves their spouse, their future spouse should have done the same. How can one move on after committing fornication, if they have to deal with such closed-mindedness? How can one move on when they are made to feel like because of fornication, they have committed this unforgivable sin? How does one move on when they are made to feel like they won't ever reach certain heights ever in their Christian walk because they have committed fornication? Can you shed some light and offer some help?
Have I ruined my future marriage? I prayed to God after committing the act and I went as far as to apologizing to the person I indulged in the act with. I also have decided to stop dating or going beyond friends with the opposite sex for a few years. I want to make things right from here on, but from some of the things I hear my fellow Christians say, I feel like I'm just never going to be "as good." I won't reach heights spiritually, my marriage won't be as good. I just don't know what to do. How can I move on? What's the biblical teaching for someone who has indulged in pre-marital sex? Am I any different from the virgin? Does God favor them over me? The virgin Mary's significance was that she was a virgin and such find favor with the Lord. Isn't that so?
"Do not remember the sins of my youth, nor my transgressions; according to Your mercy remember me, for Your goodness' sake, O LORD" (Psalms 25:7).
I understand that you'll find people who take things to the extreme, but that doesn't change matters.
The difference between you and someone with no experience at sex is that you are starting a bit behind. Imagine a race where some people are at the starting line, but others are starting ten, fifty, or a hundred feet back. Those people in the back could compete well in a race, but they have some distance to make up. You've put yourself back a bit from the ideal starting position, but with a little extra effort you can overcome the handicap.
Someone with no experience in sex has no expectations regarding what it will like. Two virgins begin to learn together how to have sex and how to enjoy each other's body's. Because everything is new, all the binding of sex is focused on just the one person whom they love.
Your experience at sex wasn't full, but it was enough to alter your view a bit in regards to what you might expect from a sexual relationship. The difficulty will be your memory. When you have sex with your spouse, there will be a natural tendency to compare it to what you experienced before -- and it won't be a fair comparison. There will be a temptation on your spouse's part, if she finds out about your past, is to wonder how she compares. The work that you have to put in is to leave this experience completely behind you. The work that your spouse has before her is not to fall into jealousy over someone long gone. It isn't that it can't be done -- it can be -- but there is that added difficulty that a virgin couple doesn't have to experience.
However, the idea that you've lost something that can't be obtained is just foolishness. I know a lot of Christian couples who have overcame their early sins to have wonderful marriages, beautiful families, and a solid life in following Christ.
"And above all things have fervent love for one another, for "love will cover a multitude of sins"" (I Peter 4:8). The idea of covering sin is to remove the reminders of past sins. It isn't talking about hiding a sinner in his sins, but being understanding of the embarrassment of past sins that have been forgiven. What I suggest is that you start showing that kind of love for yourself as well. There is no need to talk about your sexual status with other people. If someone wants to know that before you even date, and that is an issue for them, then she probably wasn't the type of person you would want for a wife. That type of person would likely have a hard time ever letting her husband forgot any mistake he has ever made.
Eventually you are going to find someone you are really serious about and it may be a topic that comes up. When it does, make it as plain as simple as possible. "I messed up once and had oral sex with a girl. I realized how wrong it was and both broke up with her and repented of my sin." That's it. No details. No names. If asked, just say it is long behind you and you don't want to rehash old sins. I know that the woman who will make you a wonderful wife will accept that. It may take her a few days to adjust her thinking and feelings, but your future wife will accept that this is a part of who you are. Just as you might fall in love with a young woman who already has a child.
When God forgives, the past is no longer considered (Isaiah 43:25). When Christians are baptized into Christ, their sins are washed away (Acts 22:16). When a Christian falls and repents, his sins are forgiven (I John 1:8-2:1). In God's sight, when you obey His will, you are pure and that is all that matters.
Mary's virginal status is taken to an extreme by the Roman Catholic Church, to the point that I wonder if they remember the real reason. In Isaiah 7:14, God promised a special sign that would mark the Messiah: "Therefore the Lord Himself will give you a sign: Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a Son, and shall call His name Immanuel." It is the fact that the young woman would be a virgin that makes this a sign that stands out. Young women have children all the time. A woman who has fooled around sexually with a man is likely to get pregnant. But for a woman who has never experienced sexual acts with a man, pregnancy just doesn't happen.
"Then the angel said to her, "Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God. And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bring forth a Son, and shall call His name Jesus. He will be great, and will be called the Son of the Highest; and the Lord God will give Him the throne of His father David"" (Luke 1:30-32). Though we know Mary was picked in part because God had a promise to fulfill and Mary was a virgin, yet please note that her virginal status isn't mentioned as the reason she had found favor with God. I'm positive there were numerous other virgin women in Israel at this time. The reason Mary had found favor is the fact that God picked her out of all the woman available to bear the Messiah. Though we know Mary was a godly woman, again there is nothing here that says she was more godly than other women. Her favor was that she was picked for a special task by God and we can admire her faithfulness in her response that she was willing to do as God asked. Still it is a mistake to think that it was her virginity that made her special. What made her special was the fact that she was the mother of the Messiah and a woman through whom God did a special miracle.