(Discussion with Dave from Phoenix (of LibChrist) on the subject of WHY don't Christians Study).
                                                                   His writings in
RED, mine in black)

 
It is not clear that Paul condemns all other forms of sexual intercourse outside of marriage.  Where our English translations read
'fornication' , Paul's original Greek word was 'porneia' (comes from the verb pernumi meaning "to sell") which means to sell and
refers to slaves bought and sold for prostitution. In Rome, the Latin cultic prostitutes used tor worshiping the fertility gods  
would hang out in small alley's and behind small L shaped walls. In Latin the shape is called FORNIX, hence the place association
with acts of prostitution gave "fornicatio"  Where Paul was condemning sex goddess, cultic, prostitution or trafficking in slaves
for that purpose, the Latin fathers substituted 'fornicatio' , which led readers to believe that Paul was condemning all forms of
premarital sexual intercourse. "  Common non cultic prostitution is mentioned in the bible with no negative connotation.    Singles
sexuality was not discussed since most women were married or betrothed. A man negotiated with the father and if a financial deal
was struck, he took the girl as his wife.  Mutual love had nothing to do with it.  If the man also liked the girls pretty sister, he
may negotiate to take her as another wife. For men, there was little reason for sex with a single girl, since he could have all the
wives as sexual partners as he desired - as long as he didn't steal another mans property (adultery).

 The legal age to marry was 12.5 yr for girls and 13.5 for boys. Younger children often were "betrothed" - families had contracted
with each other for their marriage, but they were not old enough for the marriage to be consummated. There was no teen age sex
problem since all were married and men could have all the sexual variety they wanted dependent only on how many wives they
could afford.

The family was highly regarded as a social unit for retaining the family heritage (mans side).  Sex almost certainly produced
children with no birth control. The traditional practices of multiple wives and breeders distracted from the work of building the
early Church.

 This is similar to the Catholic priests who could have many wives and mistresses until 1022 due to its distractions from the
work of the Church.  I think it is interesting that Jesus said nothing about male monogamous relationships, only Paul in his
building of the early Church for elders since time was so short before the Lord returned.

 In today's culture where we don't marry at 13 and die at 30.  We have plenty of time to do Gods work.  Marriage is certainly not
needed today since birth control is available and many feel they can be more effective without the legal burden of marriage.
Marriage had to do with ownership not love.  I can't imagine anyone getting married who hasn't first lived together many years!  
Today people are together because they love each other and want to be together, not because they have some document that tells
them they have to be together.

 Further, Paul in the area of sexuality such as in I Cor: 7:6, he clearly states he is stating his own opinion and that it is not a
"commandment" given by God.  So there is no support for anyone claiming God says there is anything wrong with sex outside of
marriage since other than Paul's own opinion, it is never stated by anyone else. "But I say this as a concession, not as a
commandment . For I wish that all men were even as I myself [ie celibate]." (1 Cor 7:6-7). "Now concerning virgins : I have no
commandment from the Lord; yet I give judgment as one in whom the Lord in his mercy has made trustworthy. " (1 Cor 7:25).

 Paul is openly admitting that he is stating his own opinion. And while his opinion carries considerable weight in the church (as
the words of "...one in whom the Lord in His mercy has made trustworthy. .."), it needs to be clearly distinguished from "..the
commandment of the everlasting God..." While the personal wisdom and advise of the apostles may be quite appropriate for their
immediate audience, and to the specific circumstances in which they were first applied, they should not be regarded as
authoritative commands for today.

Best wishes
Dave in Phoenix  

I responded with ......

 I say, a simple compilation of all Paul's words along the lines of sexuality definitely does show his consistent bias against
women and against sexuality. Paul wanted to turn everyone into asexual enuch's as was his particular choice. And hence
considered marriage the only way, to avoid burning and being carnal and in the flesh and sinning the great sin.

 But well stated background history of New Testament times, then again it is a much larger and expanding truth, because Jesus
did teach a more open sexuality, than casting out fifty nine year old widows like Paul proposed .... and many of the early church
did follow his lead in a more open sexuality. The early church was not a homogeneous controlled group as the apostles and
disciples finnally obeyed the Lord and went into all the world and preached the good news of liberation from the old law to the
new law of LOVE through JESUS. And with this, many of the early areas had more sexual activities and even sexual services,
than did Paul's churches. Some were called gnostics and others different names of 'knowing' each other, but when the worldly
powers like the Ceasar of Rome got converted, he made the church system manidtory and choice and freedom were the first
casualities as it became solidified. The councils ratified the conservative Paulian doctrine and banned all other writings on sexual
freedom of all the other Christian writers, even though many of them were surely of the Lord. Many books and directives were
burned as the world always wants complete control, and the church system was formed anew and started again on controlling its
congregations for money and power.

 The so called cults and members were harassed and villified and killed, leading the way for future inguisitions and persecutions
by the greatest cult the worldly church. This allowed by the Lord as at least the basics of the GOSPEL were getting out, and his
flock had choice in that they at least could read some of HIS WORDS and hence understand how to connect up with HIS ongoing
SPIRIT and decide for themselves their lifestyles and decisions. He has always expected His people to seek and search and
venture forth with courage and heart.

 But Yes, Dave from Phoenix, Paul's opinions were stated by him and admitted by him, but even though this is blatantly written,
the church people because of their heavy indocrination in the one verse, that EVERY WORD OF GOD IS TRUE dogma, means
they in their self righteousness in thinking they obey every word, must therefore think that Paul's every WORD IS straight from
GOD.

 And hence, when they try to do in depth Bible studies along sexual lines, they keep stumbling and tripping, and choking and
gasping when they read Paul's contradictory sexual opinions, They then give up Bible studies and searching and even give up
reading your beautifully written and researched and explained cultural context of New Testmanet times. Hence they're curiousity
IMO, wanes in sexual liberation, and they leave it altogether out of fear.... or they simply go for secretive pleasureable sex or they
merely go by feelings rather than true conviction and a deep scriptural basis.

 Understanding Paul and that his views were not the ETERNAL TRUTH I.M.O. is the only way they can ever be liberated
fully, so that they can put all JESUS's words together in total freedom. But church dogma runs deep and strong and is extremely
difficult to be shed. Its easier in most cases, just to reach honest normal outsiders who have experienced love and caring than to
reprogram church people that have been in their large cults for so long. But all things are possible !!

 Just my opinion, but I say is true, and explains why Christians do not study and progress
  
Got to fly

David from B.C.
David Jay Jordan
Paulian Sexual Church Background
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