Seriously, how many years has it been since 'making love' simply meant showing affection? For a man to make love to a woman could be anything from paying attention to her ( specifically ) or respectfully holding her hand at a party ( ball )! How have we come so far, or progressed to the point that to 'make love' to a woman ( including, but not limited to your spouse ) means doing much more than it ever did 100 years ago?
Although the word ( love ) means basically the same thing that it did then, much has changed over that century! Probably most infamous was the Era of Free Love, from sometime in the 60s to...................well,it's never really ended, has it? Even before that, and some might blame it on The Beatles or Elvis, when the Era of Rock 'N Roll with that devilish African beat, loomed large on the horizon, wars, in particular World War II had a great effect on confusing what many at the time saw as the separate roles of men & women!
What is love, though? We have explored this important subject previously, but we might do well here to look at it again! Is love merely the act of sexual intercourse or is it something more, and different from that? Certainly, in making love to your spouse, sexual intercourse might be involved ( likely ), but making love to your spouse could mean anything from just cuddling with her to having a sort of 'spiritual intercourse'! It could be just showing your love for her by deferring to her, by doing something for or with her ( or him ) that usually isn't really your 'cup of tea'! Love is active, and although it often involves having sexual intercourse with your spouse, it doesn't have to; we can make love ( show love ) for our spouse in many different ways!
In this Age of Grace, as it is often called, those who believe that since 'we are under Grace, not Law' seem to think that it's okay to have sexual relations outside of marriage. 'Making Love', especially since the 60s, involves having sexual intercourse with just about anyone we feel like, when we feel like it, even if they're not our spouse ( especially if they aren't, maybe ). According to Scripture, this is all wrong, and whether we agree or not, whether we judge those outside or not, our Heavenly Father condemns it as sin, and so, therefore, should we! 'Just sayin'!'
'Making Love', when defined as the act of sexual intercourse, should be reserved for one's spouse, according to Scripture, but in the original sense of the phrase, and in the truer sense, to 'make love' to another person does not necessarily involve this act! One can show love for a person of the opposite sex ( not one's spouse ) without fornicating or having sexual intercourse with them! We must admit though, in this day & age, especially with the influence of the Entertainment Industry ( music, movies, TV, etc ) it can be very hard not to lapse into the emotions of the moment!
Is it possible to show love for someone ( or a number of someones ) of the opposite ( or even the same ) sex, with reverting to your basic animal feelings? There may be differing opinions on whether or not this is possible, or even 'the right thing to do', but just because different people have differing opinions does not mean that all are right!
Sexual Intercourse, while it is an act of love between spouses, is not so between two unmarried people! Scripture defines it as 'The Marriage Bed', and so, unless the participants are not married ( to each other ), it is not an 'act of love', but is merely the natural course when our feelings ( animal instincts ) take over! While it is not necessarily wrong for these feelings to overcome those who are married to each other, it is wrong for those who have not been covenantally joined together!
Let us show our love for each other, not by falling prey to our animal instincts & fornicating, but by acting within the boundaries which God has prescribed for us in His Book of the Covenant! We can love each other without lawlessly jumping into bed with just anyone, and letting our feelings & animal lusts have free rein! By the Grace of God, we can follow His Law concerning this matter, and love one another as He first loved us!
Charles Haddon Shank