"Marriage is to be held in honor among all,
and the marriage bed is to be undefiled;
for fornicators and adulterers God will judge."
One of my favorite toys growing up, which is still available in stores, was the sketchpad with a little plastic stick to draw with; then the sheet could be pulled up and everything could be erased. It is kind of like sin, committed, forgiven, and forgotten by God. But the only problem is that since Eve first picked the fruit of the forbidden tree, with the knowledge of good and evil, is that it is impossible for us to completely forget sin. That knowledge sticks with us embedded in our memories. So unless you look forward to the forgetfulness of Alzheimer's, the best thing would of course not sin at all. But nobody can raise their hand and say, "That's me," because the Bible teaches that all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.
Thus, when the sheet is pulled up in the marriage bed, the past can still be haunting at times. I believe that sexual sin is singled out so much, first because of the inability to forget past sins, but mostly because marriage is a special symbol God chose to represent His love with His bride the Church. The best protection for a marriage is making the right choice in the first place.
Sadly in our society today, fornication is taught even in our youth's health classes as acceptable without addressing it's echo of pain that will come back. To speak against fornication is to go against most entertainment. It is a little more obvious to see the pain adultery causes, but even that is found to be entertainment, not to mention the overwhelming destruction of porn. Is porn a form of adultery? Jesus said to even look at a woman with lust is adultery. Hmm. When wives have asked me in the past, I have had to say that is between them and God since adultery is the only grounds given in the Bible for divorce. Regrettably, if this was used for grounds for divorce, there wouldn't be many marriages left intact.
So all sin can be repented of and forgiven, but there are still lingering consequences. Consequences almost always are handed down to the next generation like sour grapes making the children cringe, especially if it is due to a parent's sin against the marriage bed. Fortunately, when it says God will judge, he will pound His gavel and say, "Not Guilty!" if the sin is confessed and forgiven before going before the Judge. No one is so merciful, not even your wounded spouse.
Here are a couple of quotes from George MacDonald which I used in part in my last story...
"If I had a sister now,
and saw a man coming to woo her,
all beclotted with puddle-filth--
or if I knew that he had just left some woman as good as she,
crying eyes and heart out over his child--
I don't know if I could keep my hands off him--
at least if I feared she might take him.
What do you think now?
Mightn't it be a righteous thing
to throttle the scum and be hanged for it?"
(a beautiful part of the Old English wedding vows that is no longer used...)
"'With my body I thee worship.'
That's as it should be,
the man whose body does not worship
the woman he weds,
he should marry a harlot...
(rather there should be)
Purity in the arms a man holds out to her."