Questions: Chapter 11

  1. The practice of cohabitation on a large scale is strikingly unusual in human history. Why do you think this practice was forbidden in previous eras and cultures?  Why do you think cohabitation has become such a popular and accepted practice in contemporary culture?
  2. How is cohabitation “less than marriage” (page 169)? (Be as specific as possible.) Why does this matter?
  3. When you understand God’s purposes for sex, does the Bible’s insistence on restricting sex to marriage make sense? How would you summarize the Bible’s argument?  (Note: For a fuller development of God’s design for sex, see Part 4 of Singleness, Marriage, and the Will of God.)
  4. Biblical perspective: “Cohabitation is a corrupted hybrid of the two sanctioned states of celibate singleness and faithful marriage” (page 168).  Why is celibate singleness better than cohabitation?
  5. Many social scientists were surprised by the “cohabitation effect.” What dynamics inherent in cohabitation did they apparently overlook?
  6. As you consider the potential role of cohabitation in marital decision making, what conclusions have you come to? What points, pro or con, have been most persuasive to you?
  7. What counsel would you give to Christians who are currently living together? (To learn the author’s opinion, see the article, “What Should I Do If I Am Cohabiting or I Have Cohabited in the Past” on this website.)