“I think that rather than merely telling people that sex outside of marriage is bad we should be saying something along the lines of sex is so good within marriage that you are foolish to waste it outside of marriage I know that sounds like semantics but it has a more positive spin. ”
Augustine is cited by jollyblogger. I managed to find some original quotes-
The union, then, of male and female for the purpose of procreation is the natural good of marriage. But he makes a bad use of this good who uses it bestially, so that his intention is on the gratification of lust, instead of the desire of offspring……
Forasmuch, then, as the good of marriage could not be lost by the addition of this evil, some imprudent persons suppose that this is not an added
evil, but something which appertains to the original good. A distinction, however, occurs not only to subtle reason, but even to the most ordinary
natural judgment, which was both apparent in the case of the first man and woman, and also holds good still in the case of married persons today.
What they afterward effected in propagation, ” that is the good of marriage; but what they first veiled through shame, ” that is the evil of concupiscence, which everywhere shuns sight, and in its shame seeks privacy.
Since, therefore, marriage effects some good even out of that evil, it has whereof to glory; but since the good cannot be effected without the evil, it has reason for feeling shame. The case may be illustrated by the example of a lame man. Suppose him to attain to some good object by limping after it, then, on the one hand, the attainment itself is not evil because of the evil of the man’s lameness; nor, on the other hand, is the lameness good because of the goodness of the attainment. So, on the same principle, we ought not to condemn marriage because of the evil of lust; nor must we praise lust because of the good of marriage.
This disease of concupiscence is what the apostle refers to, when, speaking to married believers, he says: This is the will of God, even your
sanctification, that ye should abstain from fornication: that every one of you should know how to possess his vessel in sanctification and honor;
not in the disease of desire, even as the Gentiles which know not God. The married believer, therefore, must not only not use another man’s vessel, which is what they do who lust after others wives; but he must know that even his own vessel is not to be possessed in the disease of carnal concupiscence. And this counsel is not to be understood as if the apostle prohibited conjugal that is to say, lawful and honorable cohabitation; but so as that that cohabitation (which would have no adjunct of unwholesome lust, were it not that man’s perfect freedom of choice had become by preceding sin so disabled that it has this fatal adjunct) should not be a matter of will, but of necessity, without which, nevertheless, it would be impossible to attain to the fruition of the will itself in the procreation of children.
(ON MARRIAGE AND CONCUPISCENCE. EXTRACT FROM AUGUSTIN S RETRACTIONS, Book 2. Chap. 53,)
I have realised I have blogged an aweful lot about sex– what does that say about me?