“John is a sales executive who travels frequently on business,” writes blogger and family therapist, Abe Kass, “On one recent trip, he met an attractive woman in the hotel bar where he was staying. One thing led to another, and the two wound up having a one-night stand.”
“When John returned home and spoke about the incident with his therapist, John denied that the fling amounted to infidelity. ‘One night stands don’t count,’ John maintained. And he genuinely believed it.”
“Does this scenario sound absurd?” asks Abe.
Apparent not according to a recent survey conducted by Deseret News and YouGov. Shockingly the poll revealed that more than a quarter of Americans said that they did not view a “one-night stand with someone other than your partner” as cheating, and almost a quarter said repeat extramarital sex was acceptable.
The study, which annually explores the relevance of the 10 commandments to modern life, involved 1,000 Americans. It was designed to sample citizens in a scientific and balanced way regarding their attitudes about marriage and adultery.
I suppose the good news is that three-quarters of people did agree that “having regular sexual relations with someone other than your partner” is wrong.
“The eye-opening study also confirmed that casual attitudes toward commitment seem to be increasing over time.”
“Responses were categorized by generation. The oldest Americans surveyed, those born before the mid-1940s and called the “Silent Generation,” were the most likely to view sex outside of marriage as cheating.”
“Baby Boomers,” or people born between the mid-1940s and mid-1960s, shared the same general attitude. However, both the younger “Generation X” and “Millennials” gave noticeably more liberal answers to questions about cheating.
In a culture that constantly criticizes conservative Christian values this ought not to be too surprising. What is concerning is more liberal attitude among those professing Christianity regarding marriage, morals, and sexual purity. This is reflected in the increasing divorce rate. Affairs among church members. And a decline in the commitment to marriage vows
Here’s what the Bible says regrading these matters.
“Marriage is to be held in honor among all, and the marriage bed is to be undefiled; for fornicators and adulterers God will judge” (Heb 13:4).
“But because of the temptation to sexual immorality, each man should have his own wife and each woman her own husband. The husband should give to his wife her conjugal rights, and likewise the wife to her husband” (1Cor 7:2-3).
“Flee from sexual immorality. Every other sin a person commits is outside the body, but the sexually immoral person sins against his own body” (1 Cor 6:18).
“For this is the will of God, your sanctification: that you abstain from sexual immorality; that each one of you know how to control his own body in holiness and honor, 5 not in the passion of lust like the Gentiles who do not know God” (1 Thess 4:3-5).
God calls a “one night stand” what it really is. Sexually immorality.
In a world gone mad with lust and license, these admonitions may seem out dated, unrealistic or impossible. Yet, this is the will of God for His people. Remember these commands were given during a time of pervasive sexual immorality and rampant perversion in the Roman Empire.
These exhortations impress on us that we are called to a higher standard. A nobler way of living. A purer mind. Personal self restraint. And moral accountability.
These commands are not impossible. But they demand commitment to God, a sense of moral integrity. And responsibility toward the spiritual welfare of others.
Remember God’s plea to His people.“Be holy. For I am holy.”
–Ken Weliever, The Preacherman