By Francis Ewherido
For me, the critical issue is: “is it against the bible?” Once it is not against the bible, I run with it? For some other people, “is it in the bible” or “where is it in the bible?” Once I hear that, I close the discussion with you because we can never have a meaningful discussion. Are cars, aeroplanes, phones and many other advancements in the bible? No, but are they against the bible? No, so we use them.
As you grow older, you want to conserve your energy for useful purposes. It is the same reason I ignored one fellow on Facebook recently. I do not have time and strength for meaningless talk that will end in a cul-de-sac. We should face substance and leave peripherals alone. For instance, when the bible condemned adultery, it simply meant do not engage in sexual intercourse with another person except your spouse. This is what we now refer to as an affair. Here the bible said sexual intercourse with someone other than your spouse. Using a euphemism of “affair” is just to reduce the enormity of what you did in your heart and make you feel less guilty; so because “having an affair” is not in the bible in those words, does it stop the act from being adultery? No!
Young people in relationships and having pre-marital sex claim to be dating or courting. It is not dating, it is fornication, according to the bible. Courting, according to the Institute in Basic Life Principles, is “a relationship between a man and a woman in which they seek to determine if it is God’s will for them to marry each other, while dating can be described as a form of courtship and may include social activities undertaken by two persons (male and female) with the aim of assessing the other’s suitability as a life partner.” None of the definitions includes sex, although young people argue that “assessing the other’s suitability as a life partner” and “social activity” can be interpreted to include sex.
How can God, who said fornication is a sin that leads to death, encourage premarital sex? The truth is young people’s blood is hot and they do engage in sex due to lust and lack of self-control. I was also involved in premarital sex before marriage, but I never deceived myself that I was doing the right thing. I am not judging anybody. How can a bloody sinner judge anybody? Let us just call a spade a spade and stop using euphemisms to reduce our guilt and sometimes mislead others.
A well respected Christian leader once confessed to me privately that she had sex with her husband too be before they got married. She said she needed to be sure he could perform and he passed the test before she agreed to their marriage. As at the last time I met her, there was no child yet and the man was afflicted by one of the debilitating ailments that affects men. So what is the ultimate result of all the testing before marriage?
It is your responsibility to live your life the way you want. But for young girls under 30 years, live responsibly if you intend to settle down with a man. The shelf life of a girl is short. It is like European seasons: winter, spring, autumn and summer. The summer clothes that were on display start disappearing from the front of the shop and showroom once winter begins to set in. These days, girls under 20 years look so mature. Use your time well while on the shelf and display at the front of the shop before you are moved to the back of the shop. I have seen this happen so often in the last 35 years. Be careful who you listen to in this era of influencers. People who are unhappy with their lives are busy spilling out falsehood and leading younger people astray. A social media influencer whose marriage crashed under three years calls herself a marriage counsellor! Can you give what you do not have?
Bobrisky, Portable, Davido, Daddy GO Enoch Adeboye, Pastor Kumuyi and Pastor Tunde Bakare and many others are all influencers, but in a world of relativism, I dare not qualify anyone with the adjective of good or bad influencer. For instance, if I call Pastor Adeboye a good influencer, someone can come and challenge me, because for him Adeboye is a bad influencer. Adeboye helped to spread Christianity and destroyed our African religion. That is the world of relativism that we currently live in. So I hold on to my beliefs firmly, but try to mind my business.
It is this relativism that makes it difficult for me to contribute to discussions on other people’s Facebook pages. For me, your Facebook page is your sitting room. I will not come and argue with you. You arrange it the way you want. You put the content that reflects who you are. I also arrange my sitting room the way I want. I fill my Facebook page mainly with contents on family, people, marriage and insurance, which is my profession. Even if I get zero likes or comments, it means nothing. I do not want to stir up unnecessary controversy to attract traffic. I stick to my values and what makes me happy. With political campaigns coming, I will soon add politics because I feel it is sacrilegious to sit on the fence at this critical time. I have travelled to all continents except South America and Australia. I have come to the conclusion that we must make Nigeria function well. I have no intention of living elsewhere. You can call me a slave of the Nigerian nation. That is where my absolute loyalty lies. In the meantime, we should learn civility in the social media space. The social media space is a public space. We do not have to agree, but show restraint and respect in public.