November 14, 2019

This Was Her Promise

Jesus said, “Have you not read that at the beginning the Creator made them male and female and declared, ‘For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and cling to his wife, and the two shall become as one?’ Thus they are no longer two but one flesh.” (Mt 19:4-6)

St. Paul said in his first letter to the Corinthians, “The body is not for immorality. Can you not see that the man who is joined to a prostitute becomes one body with her?” (1 Cor 6:13, 16)

The Scriptures speak at length about the sacredness of marriage and the sacredness of the marriage act itself. But sadly, in our culture, the concept of premarital sex, or of casual sex with multiple partners, is not uncommon. And this attitude is apparently not limited strictly to today’s adults, because statistics say that our culture has had this attitude for quite some time. USA Today reported in an article published in 2006 that, “Of those interviewed, 95% reported they had had premarital sex; 93% said they did so by age 30. Among women born in the 1940s, nearly 9 in 10 did.” (USA Today, 12/19/2006)

There are those who believe that such biblical teachings are not relevant to our time in history, but rather that they were addressed only to the people of the time in which they were written. There is a term that defines this philosophy, it is meta-ethical moral relativism. “Meta-ethical moral relativists believe, not only that people disagree about moral issues, but that terms such as “good”, “bad”, “right” and “wrong” do not stand subject to universal truth conditions at all; rather, they are relative to the traditions, convictions, or practices of an individual or a group of people.” (Chris Gowans, “On Moral Relativism,” Stanford Encyclopedia) In other words, nobody is objectively right or wrong. Different cultures have different moral standards and we ought to tolerate the behavior of others, even when we disagree with the morality of their actions.

Absolute truth, on the other hand, is defined as inflexible, fixed, invariable, unalterable facts or reality. For example, it is a fixed, invariable, unalterable fact that there are absolutely no square circles and there are absolutely no round squares. Christianity holds that the Sacred Scriptures contain the inspired word of God. Scripture tells us that as Jesus was being questioned by the Sanhedrin prior to His execution, the members of the Sanhedrin “all said to Him, ‘Are You the Son of God, then?’” And Jesus replied by saying, “Yes, I am.” (Lk 22:70) Jesus also said, “I am the Way and the Truth and the Life”.  (Jn 14:6)  It is a fundamental principal of Christianity that God’s spoken word, as recorded for us in Sacred Scripture, is absolutely true. Truth, therefore, is considered to be an attribute of God, and, therefore, God’s spoken word is absolute truth.

There are obvious physical consequences to the moral behavior of our society. “Today, there are approximately 25 sexually transmitted diseases, (STDs). It is estimated that 1 in 5 Americans between the ages of 15 and 55 are currently infected with one or more STDs, and 12 million Americans are newly infected each year. That’s nearly 5% of the entire population of the U.S. Prior to 1960, there were only two significant sexually transmitted diseases: syphilis and gonorrhea. Both were easily treatable with antibiotics. In the sixties and seventies this relatively stable situation began to change. For example, in 1976, Chlamydia first appeared in increasing numbers in the United States. Then in 1981, human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), the virus which causes AIDS, was identified. By early 1993, between 1 and 2 million Americans were infected with AIDS. Today over 10% of the total U.S. population, 30 million people, are infected with herpes. In 1985 the human papillomavirus, (HPV), began to increase.” (Dr. Ray Bohlin, The Epidemic of Sexually Transmitted Diseases) And according to a 1997 American Journal of Medicine article, nearly three in four Americans between the ages of 15 and 49 have been infected with genital HPV at some point in their life.

There are also serious emotional consequences. Dr. Armand Nicholi, Jr., a clinical professor of psychiatry at Harvard Medical School, discussed the emotional consequences of premarital sex in a study he helped to carry out in the 1960s. Dr. Nicholi wrote, “Not long after the sexual revolution was underway, clinicians observed that the new sexual freedom was creating a psychological disaster. We began to study Harvard students who complained of emptiness and despondency.

There was a gap between their social conscience and the morality they were practicing in their personal lives. The new sexual permissiveness was leading to empty relationships and feelings of self-contempt. Many of these students were preoccupied with the passing of time and with death. They yearned for meaning, for a moral framework.

When some of them moved away from moral relativism to a system of clear values, typically embracing a drug-free lifestyle and a strict sexual code, they reported that their relationships with the opposite sex improved, as did relations with peers in general, relationships with their parents, and their academic performance.” (A. Nicholi, “A New Dimension of the Youth Culture,” The American Journal of Psychiatry, 131, 396-401)

This casual attitude toward this intimate union, that the bible says is sacred and is reserved for married couples, has become so common place within our society, that anyone who wishes to remain pure and who clings to the biblical concept of morality, and who honors the sacredness of the marriage act, is frequently ridiculed and rejected.

A lovely, young woman named Rebecca once described to me the difficulties she has faced regarding her dating experiences in today’s society:

I know I am definitely a minority in today’s society in the fact that I will not have sex with someone before marriage. Call me whatever you want to; make fun even. I’ve heard it. I’ve been made fun of. I’ve been hit and punched for it. I’ve had my head slammed into a car door because of it. And worse! And you know what? I’m proud to say that if I ever do have a wedding night, what a special gift I will have to give my husband. That is something special and reserved for only one person in my life.

I pray God has a special man for me. To see how carelessly and casual and commonplace it has become in today’s society is sad. It makes it very hard for someone like me to find someone. I’m not wanted by guys simply for having morals. But those types of guys are NOT worth me. True love waits. And true love accepts you for who you are. They do not try to change and control you. Or make you someone else or a puppet. I will wait for who God has for me. Amen.

This was her promise:

I know that we have not yet met, but I’ve made you a promise that I won’t forget. This promise I’ve made, is made for you. This promise I’ve made is tried and true. God helped me along and showed me the way. Told me to wait for you, and not fall astray.

So I refuse to conform to a world built on sex. That simply isn’t for me, my values won’t flex.
 The symbol of my promise,
 is a silver ring on my hand.
 This promise will hold true, 
till I wear your wedding band. 
I love you already, and will for all of my life.
 That’s why I am staying pure,
 till I’m your soul mate, your wife.

And while I’m waiting I pray for the man God has planned for me. I pray that he is doing well. I pray that he is happy. I pray that he is standing for what is right. And I pray that he doesn’t give up looking for me. I won’t give up waiting for him. Amen.

Beautifully stated! Nothing more need be said. We all need to pray for her and for all God fearing women and men like her.

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Written by
Deacon Donald Cox

REVEREND MR. DONALD COX is a permanent deacon of the Archdiocese of Detroit. On June 9, 1979, Deacon Don was ordained to the diaconate by His Eminence John Cardinal Dearden, an important American Father of the Second Vatican Council. He is currently assigned to St. Cornelius parish in Dryden, Michigan. Married and the father of three children and grandfather to four children, Deacon Don was born and raised in Detroit, and educated at St. Brigid Elementary School, Mackenzie High School, and Lawrence Technological University. His theological training was taken at Detroit's Sacred Heart Major Seminary.

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Written by Deacon Donald Cox
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