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We welcome you heartily to this study of one of the most important facets of your life. In this course we want to explore the relationship between love and sex, especially as it affects the Christian teenager and young adult.

One of the first things we should recognize is the confusion between these two terms, sex and love. There should never be sex without love, but love is much more than sex. They are close friends, but they are not synonyms! Therefore the equation "love = sex" is incorrect.

We all have seen the slogan, sometimes used as a sticker on the back of a car: Make love, not war! What is the meaning of this slogan?

It is a protest against war and violence - and we will all agree that war and violence are bad things in themselves. But the opposite of war is peace. The slogan would be more correct if it said: Make peace, not war!

In modern English to "make love" means to have - or intend to have - a sexual relationship with someone. "Make love, not war" is really a nonsense slogan - because even in wartime people do make love! War and sex are not opposites. And more women are raped in wartime than in times of peace.

Wars have often started because of people "making love". The great battle between the followers of Ndlambe and Ngqika at Emalinda in the Eastern Cape was caused by the abduction of the beautiful Thuthula, wife of Ndlambe - to mention only one example. Not sex and war, but peace and war are complete opposites. And to have peace, I must love my fellow human beings.

The term "to love" has, therefore, a much wider meaning than "to make love". One can love a friend, parent or child and even an enemy, but one should "make love" only to one special person.

Unfortunately there are people who indulge in sex without love. Sex without love is only "half-sex" - it is not the real thing!

"To prostitute" something means to misuse it. Prostitution is used to describe sex without love. In the case of prostitution both "partners" recognize that they have sex not for love, but for something else, i.e. "pleasure" or money.

Sex without love does not bring satisfaction or happiness. Yet God wants us to be happy, in our sexual relationships, as in every other aspect of our lives.

Let us explore in the following chapters what the will of God is for sex in our lives.

Love, Sex and the Bible