Of the Marriage Part of Open Marriage


In advocating for a sexually open model of marriage, sometimes it is possible to lose site of the fact that an open marriage is still a marriage.  To some in the polyamory community this will sound passé and even conservative, but I truly believe for most people the path to lifelong happiness is via the bonds of marriage and family.   Now, I’ll qualify that to say that marriage is not defined by the gender of the participants, nor on limit of two people; however, marriage is about commitment, lifelong commitment.

Why lifelong commitment? Isn’t that sort of old fashioned?

The traditional marriage vows said “for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health to death do us part”. They were written as a commitment that way because in the history of mankind, the good times are the exception; pain and heart ache are the rule.  A relationship built on “what I get out of it at the moment” will not survive when the hard times come that eclipse the excitement and passion that brought lovers together. Yet, we all need someone(s) that will be there when we are in trouble. We all, by fate or by our own poor judgments, will come to a point where we are not as lovely and desirable as we once were. I know it will come to a shock to readers under 35 years old and healthy, but in your life you will spend a significant number of years over 60 years old where health issues impinge greatly on the recreational based lifestyle young people think will go on forever. 

Two years ago I watched as my father-in-law began to slip away after 62 years of marriage. He had someone there for him, several someones. His wife and his two daughters were right beside him to the end.  This is the kind of security marriage and family bring.

A few months ago in a polyamory blog I read one blogger who was right up front that polyamory is about getting his needs met and if a partner does not want to meet his needs, he has no intention to stick with that person.  That may be well and good when you are 29 years old, but that kind of selfishness will, in the end, bring many lonely years.   The whole loose tribal type of polyamory with people coming and going, will not bring the kind of security most people desire.   I am amused at the term “tribal” in these cases because in a real tribe, the bond is for life and the individual will sacrifice all, even life, for the tribe.  I the modern poly usage, tribalism does not convey this sort of deep comment at all.  This is why the commune movement of the late 60’s early 70’s didn’t last for a decade. Tribalism and marriage both require a level of commitment that requires everything you are to make it work and to gain the benefits of group solidarity.  There is no solidarity without commitment.

I am a follower of Emanuel Kant and an older philosopher by the name of Jesus of Nazareth. Both of these men taught that there is a moral imperative, a duty that supersedes our own personal wants; to treat others as having the same value as we hold for ourselves.  This value is sadly missing in much of what is called polyamory.  I find this vexing because the very definition of love is the commitment to treat someone else’s needs on par with your own. Hence, polyamory is just the idea of more than one person with this high level of commitment.

Back to open marriage.  Marriage is about total commitment to the welfare of my spouse. The same kind of total commitment I have for my children. It is within that framework of total commitment that we have the freedom to form other relationships, both sexual and not.  Just as I would never let an outside relationship come between me and my ability to be a good parent, I would never let a relationship come between me and my ability to be a good husband.   It would be morally wrong of me to maintain a relationship that hurt my wife because that would betray my first commitment to her welfare. The same would be true for her.

In an open-marriage, it is always necessary to keep an open line of communication as to your spouse’s current needs.  There are times when we each have different needs and it is imperative that we adjust our external relationships to meet those needs.  In our case, Paula has only recently become comfortable with me dating without her.  On the other hand, I have long been comfortable with her dating without me; however, there have been a few times when I have asked her to back off her dating, or let me join a relationship, or stop seeing a particular person all together.   It is the implicit agreement that we each will respond to the other’s needs that allows our security in marriage to flourish while she (and occasionally I) has a social/sexual life with other men and women.

When she is dating, or even falls in love with others, it is always with the explicit understanding that her family is and always will be, the center of her life. Though she can have a rich and rewarding relationship outside our marriage, she does not mislead her lovers by implying her commitment his (or her) needs will ever of the same magnitude of her commitment to her husband and children.  By this means, we maintain the ethical principles of love while still privileging the family unit.

As I said, there could indeed be room for more than two people in such a committed relationship, but the difficulty of doing so raises exponentially with each additional person.   I could see us at some point having a domestic arrangement with a man or woman someday in the future. But I can’t see a three way marriage-like arrangement happening, at least for us.

So, as I continue to blog about our life in an open marriage, it is predicated on the fact we do have a real and strong marriage. 

Of the Christian Taliban


I live not far from the North Carolina border. Most of the outdoor nudes I’ve shot over the years have been shot in that beautiful state. In the west of NC are some of the largest national forest and highest mountains in the eastern United States, and on the east side of North Carolina is Cape Hatteras National Seashore with its 70 miles of undeveloped white sand beaches.  Both areas offer amazing opportunities for nude photography. Additionally, Asheville is one of the most progressive cities in the US were I have also shot urban nudes.

In the past few years there have been small rallies for top-free freedom for women in Asheville,  where a handful of women have gone topless to protest the fact that men can go topless but not women. This brought to light that there is no law requiring women to wear tops in that city. This has prompted those who believe that the United States once was, and should be again a limited-theocracy with individual freedoms granted within the overarching frame work of their vision of “God’s Law”, to react in furor.   In this case the bill proposed and passed by the House Judiciary Committee of the NC Legislature would make a woman exposing her nipples (well one would do) a felony punishable by 6 months in prison!  Yes, make showing a nipple a felony that would the offender unable to obtain many kinds of responsible jobs for the rest of her life and limit other civil rights for life. All for bearing her nipple.  This is an amendment to an “anti-hippy” law dating to 1972 at a time when North Carolina had just lost the “Christian” right to keep those of African descent out of public life, so they decided to turn their ire on those evil forces against Christianity, the naked hippies.

Why?  The simple fact is there is a large part of the conservative Christian community that have been taught that the US was not founded in the wake of the religious wars of the 14-16th century as an experiment in pluralism to prevent such religious conflict in the future. A large group of Christian conservatives believe nearly the exact opposite. They have been taught that the US was founded as the last outpost of “true” Christianity and that the wealth and power the US enjoys is a supernatural reward for their piety.   Don’t laugh. I know it’s easy to compare that to what the North Korean government tells their citizens about the paradise they live in due to their gracious government.  However, because, it is more similar to what the Taliban taught when they took over Afghanistan it is frightening.  Make no mistake about it there are many who do not believe in liberal secular democracy as envisioned up by people like Jefferson & Franklin. They believe, deep down, in a limited theocracy, with all laws being subject to “God’s Law” as they define it…..exactly what the Taliban or the Ayatollah in Iran believes. Further, anyone who votes for this law is doing exactly like the Islamist do, use force to make people act according to their religious beliefs.

How do I know how these people think? I obtained my bachelor’s and master’s degrees from a college and university that taught this very thing.  I began my career working for these very people.  I spent four years principaling schools that were founded to teach this distorted view of American democracy.  I can truthfully say I never believed or taught such things and it was due to this kind of being out of step with the leadership that cost me my promising career as principal of a large and influential evangelical Christian high school back in the 90’s.

So, we have a generation of adults who were taught in Christian schools and via Christian media who have been taught this view of limited democracy is historically accurate, and worse anyone who violates “God’s Law” is helping to undermine American prosperity and liberty by removing God’s hand of blessing.  Thus, to them, it makes sense to equate those women who bear their nipples in public with drug dealers and armed robbers because, in that system of belief, those women are a danger to everyone.

Yesterday morning, as I drove in to work, I happened to turn the radio to the local talk radio station WORD 106.3 in Greenville SC.  I stopped because the Chairman of a local school board, with whom I have had a good and productive relationship, was debating the host.   It seems the school board had voted to stop ending the school board sessions with a student prayer after another district had been sued by the feds for doing the same thing.  Well, this radio host, a self-proclaimed libertarian was enraged that the school board was kicking God out of the school. He pressed the Chairman as to why he did so, the Chairman said it was based on case law and Supreme Court decisions over the past few decades.  The host yelled that he had, and I quote, “had chosen to obey man rather than God” on this issue.  The host could not see that he was openly calling for a theocracy by saying “God’s law” (well his interpretation of his god’s law) should trump civil law.

Worse yet came the callers who all mirrored the same line of how America has gone downhill since “we kicked God and prayer out of the public schools” until I could not take anymore and found my usual NPR station for the rest of the trip.

Now I’ve written before, these people are in the minority in most places of the US, but they make up a significant minority in much of the South-East and Mid-West, and smaller but significant minories everywhere else.  You ask why can they, not only believe such things, but believe they reflect the vast majority of US citizens?  They do so because we ….yes you and I…..just like them, have retreated to our own silos and no longer interact with people who don’t believe just like we do. If we made more effort to interact outside of our little self-reinforcing bubble, we would be part of the solution of mutual understanding in a pluralistic society. Just sitting back and criticizing their group among people of our group only further polarizes the nation.

So be part of the solution … find a conservative Christian, befriend them and help them see the larger vision of pluralism and personal freedom. You will find you both will benefit.

Here is the link to a news article on the law proposing prison for toplessness:

http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2013/02/14/nc-bill-could-mean-prison-time-for-topless-women/

And here is an interesting, but scary, article by the Executive Director of the Christian Action League of North Carolina, Inc in support of the bill.

http://www.renewamerica.com/columns/creech/130209

Of Real Morality v. Phony Morality


“If I am behaving morally, my partner’s sexual participation is not a means for me to get pleasure, but that partner’s sexual participation is a means by which I enhance the quality of her/his life; my pleasure is a simultaneous byproduct of benefiting her/him.”

We now live in a world where morally right behavior is claimed by just about everyone (which is not new) back by the sophisticated methods to make their claim appear utterly believable to millions upon millions of people. Morality is now just one of the tricks in the business of getting people to do what you want.

Again this in itself is not new, but prior to my life time there was not an entire, financially lucrative, industry devoted to obfuscating the what is morality and replacing it with things that are not. It is easy to see this in the Goebbels’s propaganda machine for the NAZI’s, but even he was only a precursor to the modern industry of phony morality. To make matters worse, most of this industry is not geared at making evil into good (as did the NAZI’s) but rather to making good actions into moral imperatives. This might seem innocuous, until one considers that there are many good behaviors but good behaviors does not make a person moral.

Hitler did not smoke or drink and was not known to eat meat. To a Baptist, no drinking and smoking would count for morality and a vegetarian diet is called basic morality by PETA and many other groups for numerous reasons. Did those things make him a moral person?

Of course not; yet, there are well funded efforts to create a public morality based on a plethora of equally narrow definitions of morality. Equating good behavior with morality makes morality transient and subject to circumstances; morality must be foundational with “good” actions being optional ways of working out the core morality. Thus what one eats, drinks or smokes is not what makes them moral or immoral; they are individual expressions of ones underlying morality. The “morals industry” seeks to reverse that order, making the individual action key, not the underlying reasons or impacts.

The oldest morality industry, of course, is religion. “Do this” and “Don’t do that” is the foundation of most religions and all hierarchical type religions; obedience to the code of behaviors is explicitly spelled out at the definition of morality. My favorite moral philosopher, a certain Rabi from Palestine, viciously attacked the replacement of morality for a code of behavior and was executed for his efforts. He was not the first, nor the last, but likely he was the most influential. Sadly those who came after him, used his name to justify the very same rules based morality that he died opposing.

A 18th century German by the Name of Immanuel Kant let the way to reviving morality based on the universal “categorical imperative” of valuing and respecting every person simply because they are human. Pretty much the same thing as that Rabbi who taught people that true morality was based in your care for others and the “thou shalt not’s” was phony morality.

What was different however, was that Kant said this universal morality does not need to be found via supernatural methods, but can be found via reason and reason alone. That Rabi, spoke to people who could not conceive of morality apart from a supernatural god, hence he spoke of God a lot. By Kant’s day humanity was ready for a higher level of morality that applied throughout the globe, for people with one God or many gods and for people with no god at all. The categorical imperative did (and does) not rely on any particular religious text or prophet, for it was not founded on the historic traditions, beliefs or particulars of any religion (though it is nominally espoused by many). It was applicable to all humans, for all humans could discern that universal human respect of other humans…. all other humans, is what is right for all of humanity.

This is morality. It is immutable and universally applicable. It applies to every situation and to every historical epoch and to every person on the planet.

To act in a way that denies or undermines the equal worth of another person’s humanity is simply wrong. It needs no other explanation. We do not need spin doctors, or doctors of psychology to prove this or support this, or to make up slick ads to convince us this is so. We do not need catechisms or commandments or priests to give this basic morality validity.

It just is.

All other measures of “good” and “bad” come from this basic moral proposition, but none of them are equal to this proposition. Individuals, or groups or religions or nations can write all the lists of rules they want, but their list of rules are just that, a list of rules. Keeping those rules or not keeping those rules does not make one moral or immoral.

In this blog, I will write a great deal about sexual freedom. But that should never be confused with morality. Morality has nothing at all to do with where I put my penis. It has a great deal to do with how I treat people in whom I put my penis. Do I see a person as just a means to my climax? If so, I am acting immorally, even if that person is my wife. Or do I enter into a relationship in which this other person and I meet one another’s emotional and/or psychological needs as a fellow human being? That relationship could be as short as the time it takes to make eye contact in an orgy so as to know this woman or man wishes me to give and/or receive sexual stimulation for a few minutes; or, as long as an entire lifetime. Either way, morality is determined by my commitment that the other person is just as valuable as I am.

If I am behaving morally, my partner’s sexual participation is not a means for me to get pleasure, but their sexual participation is a means by which I enhance the quality of her (and/or his) life; my pleasure is a simultaneous byproduct of benefiting my sexual partner.

So, I ask you to ask yourself. Is your sexual behavior moral?

*Oh, if you didn’t get it, that Rabbi that opposed rules based morality, his name was Jesus.

Dream the Impossible Dream


Back in the days when Dane was a closet barbarian, I had already left the Christian orthodoxy far behind, even while working for a large evangelical organization and preaching in dozens of churches.  In an early post (A New Look at Christian Sexuality) , I posited a new morality based on focusing on the needs of others rather than a set of behavioral rules.  Though presented more directly in my blog, it was originally developed as a sermon I used many times.  Only once did I get called on it being the challenge to the conservative Christianity that it was.

A second sermon I used quite a bit was just as heretical, but again, not openly so.  Anyone who knew much about existentialism would have identified it as an attack on the supernatural determinism of Christianity; however, I was never called on it.

I was tired of Christians being sold on different forms of prosperity gospel theology: you obey God’s rules and your life will prosper.  A life built on this belief will surely only end in bitter disappointment.  Equally disturbing was the belief that there is some cosmic plan and all the events of our lives are part and if we play our role well, then we get some eternal reward someday. A life built on that brand of selfishness will not yield happiness, but the despair of longing.  Both of these beliefs lead to disappointment and misery.

People should not look to outside things to bring personal fulfillment, we find our own meaning and fulfillment by living a life of ethics and meaning. Not meaning based on what we achieve, but in our efforts to help those we find around us.  If I live for fame, or money, or respect or even comfort I give others and circumstances far too much power over me.  The parable of the good Samaritan, was the model, and it was given when Jesus was asked about what was the ultimate rule of God.   The good Samaritan rendered aid to one he found in his way. He did not give thought for repayment or appreciation. He helped because that is who he was. He was living out his image of self and his personal meaning. Thus living, we can find fulfillment in a world of chaos and suffering.

So said Jesus and so says The Barbarian

In my sermons I would end with the story of Don Quixote and used the lyrics from the theme song from the Broadway play based on the book.
To dream … the impossible dream …
To fight … the unbeatable foe …
To bear … with unbearable sorrow …
To run … where the brave dare not go …
To right … the unrightable wrong …
To love … pure and chaste from afar …
To try … when your arms are too weary …
To reach … the unreachable star …

This is my quest, to follow that star …
No matter how hopeless, no matter how far …
To fight for the right, without question or pause …
To be willing to march into Hell, for a Heavenly cause …

And I know if I’ll only be true, to this glorious quest,
That my heart will lie will lie peaceful and calm,
when I’m laid to my rest …
And the world will be better for this:
That one man, scorned and covered with scars,
Still strove, with his last ounce of courage,
To reach … the unreachable star …

 

I have always fancied myself a bit of a Don Quixote.

Christian Sexuality: A Non-Monogamous View


A New Look at Christian Sexuality

I – Introduction
•Few issues divide Bible believing Christians like conduct
“liberty vs. law”
Primary Texts
All things are lawful unto me, but all things are not expedient: all things are lawful for me, but I will not be brought under the power of any. (1 Corinthians 6:12)
All things are lawful for me, but all things are not expedient: all things are lawful for me, but all things edify not. (1 Corinthians 10:23)

These texts comes at a momentous time for Christianity. Previously Christianity was simply an outgrowth of Judaism. As such the accepted code of conduct was traditional Jewish law.
Now the Jewish Christians were confronted by new Christians from the primarily Greek culture of the Greco-Roman world. These converts rightly saw Jesus’ message as an inner spiritual journey emphasizing love toward others over religious tradition. Thus they did not adopt the Jewish laws or traditions that were being practiced at the time.
The converts from Judaism had a very different take on Jesus. They saw his message as a renewal of the original Jewish laws and traditions. And to an extent they were also right, as it applied to the Jews.
What they did not want to accept is that for those converting from the Hellenistic culture had no concept of rigid morality about private matters, particularly sexuality. They did understand religious rites and taboos, but to them all such rights seemed like the polytheism that they had converted from. So the first conflict in the Christian world was the same conflict about with we still struggle: liberty vs. law.

II. The Law of Love

1 Corinthians 10.23 -33
All things are lawful for me, but all things are not expedient: all things are lawful for me, but all things edify not.
Let no man seek his own, but every man another’s. Whatsoever is sold in the shambles, [that] eat, asking no question for conscience sake: For the earth [is] the Lord’s, and the fulness thereof. If any of them that believe not bid you [to a feast], and ye be disposed to go; whatsoever is set before you, eat, asking no question for conscience sake.
But if any man say unto you, This is offered in sacrifice unto idols, eat not for his sake that shewed it, and for conscience sake: for the earth [is] the Lord’s, and the fulness thereof: Conscience, I say, not thine own, but of the other: for why is my liberty judged of another [man’s] conscience?
For if I by grace be a partaker, why am I evil spoken of for that for which I give thanks? Whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God. Give none offence, neither to the Jews, nor to the Gentiles, nor to the church of God:Even as I please all [men] in all [things], not seeking mine own profit, but the [profit] of many, that they may be saved.
1 Corinthians 8:10-13
For if any man see thee which hast knowledge sit at meat in the idol’s temple, shall not the conscience of him which is weak be emboldened to eat those things which are offered to idols; And through thy knowledge shall the weak brother perish, for whom Christ died? But when ye sin so against the brethren, and wound their weak conscience, ye sin against Christ. Wherefore, if meat make my brother to offend, I will eat no flesh while the world standeth, lest I make my brother to offend.

The first century Jewish Christians were a traumatized lot. To them Christianity was Jewish and the Romans were doing there best to crush all things Jewish and replace them with a Roman civil system that tolerates many religions, but respects none. In some ways modern conservative American Christians feel this same dread of a powerful government secularizing all parts of their word.
In this example Paul discusses the Roman trade in food products that come out of the temples of various gods and goddess’s in the city. Having first played a religious role, the meat was then available for all to buy “second hand” for consumption. Unlike today, meat was a precious commodity and for the working classes it was “second hand” meat or no meat. But to the Jewish Christians, this was a back handed way at selling out their Jewish heritage.
Paul’s solution was simple. He makes it clear that the Jewish Christians are wrong in pretending that what is culturally traditional is morally superior to what the Hellenic Christians were doing. At the same time he does not give the Hellenic Christians a carte blanche, becouse he makes the issue not the meat, but rather the feelings of the “weaker” Jewish Christians. Why is this so? Becouse Jesus made it clear many times that the whole point of the law is to show love to those around you.

So in practice the first guiding principle for all Christian morality is “How does this affect those around me?” This concept also drives how one interprets scripture. If the purpose of the law and the prophets is treat those around you in a loving manner(Matthew 7:12 et.al), then when we read of laws of conduct it must be with the question “How did this law given to the Jews demonstrate love?”. It is the answer to that question that gives guidance to us, thousands of years after the law was given.
In a related vein, we see that the scriptures call those bound by tradition and legalism the “weaker” Christians, and those of us bound by love the stronger.
Having lived part of my Christian life under a legalistic system and part under the constraints of love, I find that the former is by far the easier road. That is why most Christians simply ignore the whole concept of the New Testament, in favor of a new Old Testament i.e. a new set of “Thou shalt nots”. Walking the path of love requires not only to examine ones actions, but one’s motives and the potential impact of ones actions. This examination goes on all the time for a truly committed Christian.

Here are some practical aspects of the Law of Love as is related to Christian sexual mortality.
1.As Christians, we must judge all sexual actions not by our preferences but by their impact on our sexual partners and others in our sphere of influence.
2.Since we as Christians must yield our “rights” to our neighbor, even our right to exercise our Christianity the way we prefer, we must not conduct our sexual life in such a way as to not bring attention to our Christian liberty, but to Christ.
3. Though we may have great latitude in our sexual behavior personally, we must be ever concerned about the effect of that behavior on others. Not just participants, but on those who will be offended if we flaunt our liberty.

III. The Law of Appetite
I Corinthians 6:12-18
12 All things are lawful unto me, but all things are not expedient: all things are lawful for me, but I will not be brought under the power of any. Meats for the belly, and the belly for meats: but God shall destroy both it and them. Now the body [is] not for fornication, but for the Lord; and the Lord for the body. And God hath both raised up the Lord, and will also raise up us by his own power. 15 Know ye not that your bodies are the members of Christ? shall I then take the members of Christ, and make [them] the members of an harlot? God forbid. What? know ye not that he which is joined to an harlot is one body? for two, saith he, shall be one flesh. But he that is joined unto the Lord is one spirit. Flee fornication. Every sin that a man doeth is without the body; but he that commits fornication sins against his own body.

This text is significant in a number of ways. First the opening phase is shattering to the legalist as it preludes a discussion on sex “All things are lawful for me” wipes away a thousand years of sexual taboos in one stoke. This bold statement then appears to be contradicted in the next, so how is one to understand what Paul meant.
Paul was well educated in Greek philosophy and customs. He certainly would have known how the Greek Christians viewed sexual morality. To the Greeks there was not specific moral judgment on what body part of person “A” could be put into person “B”; however there was a coherent morality as to how sexually played a part in one’s life.
The Greeks view of sex has three components relevant to this passage. They believed that although the sex act was amoral, to be consumed by sexual desire was self destructive. They saw men with what we would now diagnose as psychiatric illnesses wast their lives away with sexual lusts. The also observed the age old habit of men to “think with their penis” and make poor decisions. Thus they concluded that the lust harms the brain and body.
Second, with medical knowledge in it’s infancy, the Greeks observed that many men who were extremely sexually active became ill (i.e. venereal disease), lacking the concept of germ theory they believed that over indulgence in sex could lead to disease and bodily weakness.
Thirdly they saw sex as a unidirectional act of penetration with honor for he penetratior and humility to the penetrated. Greece was an extremely patriarchal society, thus sexuality was viewed from the standpoint that all people with sexual decision making had a penis. Thus a high ranking man could honorably sexually penetrate any man in a class lower than his own or any woman who was not property of another man (wife, daughter or slave). However it would not be honorable for a man of lower status to penetrate him (orally or rectally). In practice what we see is a world were men expected to “be fucked” by the boss, while they intern used those under them as they pleased. It is not hard to see how this moral position violated the Law of Love, by having no concern for the rights of the receiver of a man’s sexual desire.
With this foundation in mind look at the text again. The word Fornication is from the word Porniea in Greek. This is not the word for sexual pleasure but rather a reference to illicit or dishonorable sexual relations. The normal word for sexual pleasure would be Aphrodisa. But that word would be tainted as it literally meant “the gift of Aphrodite”. One could readily see why the Jewish Christians were suspicious of something who’s very name invoked a pagan goddess.
In specific this text links it a man going to a prostitute, but one must understand this is written in to people living in a Romano-Greek culture. Paul is clearly saying that the use of a prostitute constitutes fornication – or dishonorable sex. In the context of the Law of Love there leaves little doubt that “using” people for sex is dishonorable, but Paul goes on to make a larger point.
He equates this pornia, or dishonorable sex, as destructive to the self. The self that is, as a Christian, the possession of Christ. This is very consistent to the Greek view that unrestrained sexual actives weakens or sickens the body. Greek athletes had long been warned to limit sexual encounters to be strong. This is very consistent with Paul’s admonition to Christians to be “strong” in the Lord and the concept the body is the temple of the holy spirit.
Though this passage has these other connotations, the focus in this passage is point out that Christians have an obligation to keep their lives free of encumbrances so they may serve Christ. Paul is making an early reference to what we not refer to as additive behavior. Long before modern therapist coined the word sexual addition, Paul warned Christians not to be controlled by their sexuality.
Any addictive or controlling behavior wipes out ones ability to “crucify one self daily” and serve Christ. And how does one serve Christ? By showing love to others of course.
One final note is Paul’s reference to the special nature of sex to make two people one. This is a reference to the Biblical concept of marriage where the two people become one flesh for life.
Here are some practical implications.
1.Christian sexual morality is not determined by what body part is put where, but rather what place does sex have in the Christian’s life.
2.As Christians we must be vigilant to ensure we do not become enslaved by things that appeal to our flesh. Things such as ingested chemicals, gamboling, or even opulent life style can if allowed enslave the Christian.
3.As Christians we must be aware that our sexual desires can, if allowed, overwhelm our Christian judgment and become the master of life
The warnings by Paul in the Law of Appetites are presaged by Solomon in this Passage. (Proverbs 7:13-23)

So she caught him, and kissed him, [and] with an impudent face said unto him, I have perfumed my bed with myrrh, aloes, and cinnamon. Come, let us take our fill of love until the morning: let us solace ourselves with loves. With her much fair speech she caused him to yield, with the flattering of her lips she forced him. He goeth after her straightway, as an ox goeth to the slaughter, or as a fool to the correction of the stocks; Till a dart strike through his liver; as a bird hasteth to the snare, and knoweth not that it [is] for his life.
With the Law of Love and the Law of Appetites in mind see how this passage in Acts is a watershed for Christian morality.

Acts 15:1-29
And certain men which came down from Judaea taught the brethren, [and said], Except ye be circumcised after the manner of Moses, ye cannot be saved. When therefore Paul and Barnabas had no small dissension and disputation with them, they determined that Paul and Barnabas, and certain other of them, should go up to Jerusalem unto the apostles and elders about this question. But there rose up certain of the sect of the Pharisees which believed, saying, That it was needful to circumcise them, and to command [them] to keep the law of Moses. And the apostles and elders came together for to consider of this matter.

And when there had been much disputing, Peter rose up, and said unto them, Men [and] brethren, ye know how that a good while ago God made choice among us, that the Gentiles by my mouth should hear the word of the gospel, and believe. Now therefore why tempt ye God, to put a yoke upon the neck of the disciples, which neither our fathers nor we were able to bear? But we believe that through the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ we shall be saved, even as they. And after they had held their peace, James answered, saying, Men [and] brethren, hearken unto me: Simeon hath declared how God at the first did visit the Gentiles, to take out of them a people for his name.

Wherefore my sentence is, that we trouble not them, which from among the Gentiles are turned to God: But that we write unto them, that they abstain from pollutions of idols, and [from] fornication, and [from] things strangled, and [from] blood. For Moses of old time hath in every city them that preach him, being read in the synagogues every sabbath day. Then pleased it the apostles and elders, with the whole church, to send chosen men of their own company to Antioch with Paul and Barnabas; [namely], Judas surnamed Barsabas, and Silas, chief men among the brethren: And they wrote [letters] by them after this manner; The apostles and elders and brethren [send] greeting unto the brethren which are of the Gentiles in Antioch and Syria and Cilicia: Forasmuch as we have heard, that certain which went out from us have troubled you with words, subverting your souls, saying, [Ye must] be circumcised, and keep the law: to whom we gave no [such] commandment:
For it seemed good to the Holy Ghost, and to us, to lay upon you no greater burden than these necessary things; That ye abstain from meats offered to idols, and from blood, and from things strangled, and from fornication: from which if ye keep yourselves, ye shall do well. Fare ye well.

IV- A Christian Sexual Manifesto

Unmarried Christians have enormous sexual freedom. The particulars of what body part touches or enters what body part is not of concern. This freedom is only limited by love:

  • 1. Love shown to partners by a total commitment to one’s sexual partner’s wellbeing by:
  • a) Only engaging on sexual behavior known to be within the pre-established boundaries of ones partner
  • b) Never engaging in sexual behavior that causes spiritual, physical or emotional harm to ones partner or self
  • c) Never using power or deception in any sexual relationship
  • 2. Love shown to an unborn child by not risking conception by parents who are not willing or prepared for the lifelong commitment of parenthood.
  • 3. Love shown to God by not allowing one’s sexual desires or behaviors to drown out the voice of the Holy Spirit and control one’s life.

Married couples are as to be “One Being”.

  • 1. Married couples (as a unit) are the same as a single person in freedoms and restrictions, ie. particular sexual acts have no moral significance in itself.
  • 2. Sexual relationships not founded first on the marriage union undermine that oneness and run counter to the Biblical concept of marriage. So, as long as the couple purposes all their sex is to build the marriage, the particulars of the bodies involved is irrelevant, i.e. it does not matter if sex is physically with someone outside the marriage, if the intent is to support the marriage.
  • 3. Adultery is essentially the betrayal of this one flesh concept becouse one partner reneges on the oath to live as one. i.e. presenting or imagine oneself as unmarried in the course of sexual relations with someone other than your spouse.

Selfish, self-seeking, hurtful, harmful or deceptive sex is sinful, even in marriage.