Liberated Christians
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Promoting Intimacy and Other-Centered Sexuality


Intimacy, The Bible & Sex By Bill

What Is Loving Intimacy ?
Loving intimacy is the social, emotional, spiritual and physical sharing of oneself with a partner in ways which create closeness, honest communications and communion. Intimacy involves the sharing of deep feeling (not necessarily verbal) through tactile (touch) and visual stimulation, using our bodies as well as spirits to comfort and pleasure one another. This intimacy has value in itself and may or may not lead to erotic activity.

Some Thoughts On Dealing With Sexual Fear and Guilt Which Inhibits Intimacy
The ideas of fear, guilt and punishment appeared several times in the examples of inhibitions we mentioned. A lot could be said about these elements, especially from a Christian point of view. Something else involved here that may be originally Christian, although it may appear in various forms in the emotional life of our culture, is the issue of forgiveness.

We won't go into these ideas in terms of Christian belief except to say that it is God himself who makes us sexual and causes us to seek sexual intimacy; consequently the fear and guilt we feel is not from God. Nor is God the source of the punishment or disapproval we feel from others, whether from parents, preachers, priests, popes or others.

There is no need for forgiveness if the behavior is not against the law of love that we talk about in our biblical discussions. We are not abnormal or sinful simply because we want to explore and experience non-abusive sexual expression. So, we must understand that if that kind of exploration is or has been our intent or practice, whether conscious and deliberate or subconscious (as is especially true for children and youth), then we need not worry about God's punishment and we can begin a healing process from the punishment or disapproval of parents or others.

What The Bible Teaches About Sex
God made us sexual (Genesis 1-2). We are to follow the law of love in sexual matters, as in all else. Romans 13:8-10: "Owe no one anything, except to love one another; for the one who loves another has fulfilled the law. The commandments, 'You shall not commit adultery; You shall not murder; You shall not steal; you shall not covet'; and any other commandment, are summed up in this word, 'Love your neighbor as yourself.' Loves does no wrong to a neighbor; therefore, love is the fulfilling of the law."

We are not to covet or steal another person's partner (adultery). (But this has nothing to do with either having a sexual fantasy about another person's partner nor with sharing sexually with another's partner with agreement and permission.)

We are not to engage in sexual practices that are harmful or abusive, physically, emotionally or spiritually, to anyone else or to ourselves  i.e. we are to be loving (Romans 13 again). This, incidentally, could be called the theological basis of Liberated Christians' one rule: "No" means 'no".

What The Bible Doesn't Teach About Sex
There is no prohibition on what we know as premarital sex, post-marital sex or extra-marital sex among consenting partners. There is no prohibition on adolescent or teenage sexual sharing. Here it is the responsibility of parents to properly instruct their children about how to love and how to live responsibly.

There are no grounds in the Bible for teaching sexual abstinence as a unique litmus test for spiritual "purity", as traditional Christianity has done throughout the centuries. While there is, of course, such a thing as sexual sin, i.e. abusive, selfish, unloving sexual attitudes or actions, there is no special or unusual emphasis on sexual sin in the Bible as there has been in historic Christianity.

Some Conclusions On Sexuality And Intimacy
It can be reasonably concluded that the sexual ethic of traditional Christianity is an artificial, repressive and legalistic ethic which ignores both our God-given natures and the law of love. Thus, this ethic is an abusive ethic in its basic nature which hurts rather than heals people. It is also an ineffective ethic which does not even accomplish its intended purpose of sexual repression, but rather drives sexual expression underground and into the shadows of ignorance. It is an ethic which is based on misinterpretation and false application of the biblical text and on cultural and philosophical biases imported into Christian teaching from other sources.

The driving of sexual expression underground by religious repression is at least part of the stimulus to the ignorance, irresponsible behavior and tease and titillation which characterize our society. It is the viewing of sexuality in these ways that has prevented the learning of true intimacy, even in partnerships which may experience great sex.

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