I was inspired by a post by Josh Waxman, (a.k.a. ParshaBlog), where he gives a detailed law-school exam-styled analysis of the parshat hashavuah (weekly Torah portion). I've enjoyed his analyses, and I believe that his thinking skills have real potential to do some real good in the world.
This week, he writes about Parshat Matos, where he mentions the Midianite women. In short, in Parshat Balak (two weeks ago), Bilam (the non-Jewish prophet) gave Balak the secret to the power of the Jewish people, and conversely, he gave Balak the Kryptonite to harm the Jews as well. He said that the weakness of the Jews are the Midianite women, and by causing them to sin by having them engage in sexual intercourse and intermarriage with these women, this would harm the Jewish people as a whole. As Torah is objectively Truth, and if true, it is true for today's times as well, I believe this message is a strong warning and reminder regarding the weakness of Jews even today.
I feel that a giant weakness that plagues the Jewish people today is not idolatry, not kashrut, nor any of the other sins; rather, I feel the main weakness of the Jewish people today is succumbing to sexual temptations. Today there is more intermarriage and more sex going on among traditional Jewish non-married adults, even in the modern orthodox (MO) and orthodox world. I saw it in China; these good, attractive women had non-Jewish boyfriends who they were engaged to, and warm and caring Jewish observant men were marrying non-Jewish Chinese women who promised to convert (as if conversion for love were even a valid conversion). This is not a China phenomenon -- this goes on with Jews across the world, even here in America.
Men, there is a nasty temptation today to date non-Jewish women. Do you think there is no risk dating a non-Jewish woman? Do you think you are safer having sex with non-Jewish women (for fun and practice) because you think you can then go and marry a Jewish woman and be experienced -- for her pleasure?? First of all, it is a sick thought, and it is flat out immoral and WRONG from EVERY moral standpoint to test out your sexual prowess on one woman to satisfy the next. It is also immoral to use non-Jewish women as sex toys so that you can then dump her and marry a Jewish woman. I can only imagine the horrified faces of my non-Jewish women readers at reading this.
First of all, this is simply NOT COOL. A Jew should not be having sex before he or she is married to start with. Second, when men date and have sex with women they are breaking not only Rabbinic laws, but the essential Torah laws themselves. And please don't give me any rationalizations for practicing the Halacha of pleasuring your wife, and please don't try to justify niddah hores [non-Jewish, single women (in various communities) who have sex with men for money while their wives are in niddah] or the such (if that horrible concept even happens); control yourselves.
Last and most importantly, MANY JEWISH MEN WHO DATE NON-JEWISH WOMEN AND ARE SEXUALLY ACTIVE WITH THEM END UP FALLING IN LOVE AND MARRYING THOSE WOMEN. Don't kid yourself; when you are in bed with a woman, eating her food, sipping her wine, licking your fingers and your lips (and hers), don't tell me that you won't fall in love. And don't tell me that after spending every night with a woman for weeks, months, or even years, that you will have the self-control to break it off when it comes time to getting married. You are lying to both yourself and to the rest of the world, and you are bound to get in trouble.
In parshat Balak, Bilam warned us indirectly of this problem when he told Balak how he can injure us if he really wants to. Yet at the same time, he also gave us the secret of our greatest power as Jews. Through sexual morality, a.k.a. the observance of restraint and the laws of taharas hamishpacha, we harness the greatest source of our Jewish power. Our sexual power. (For readers of other religions, we are talking about a similar concept to what can crudely be compared to the Kundalini effect.) Jews, you are bound and circumcised to be holy to Hashem (G-d). Men, even your male organs are cut and circumcised as a covenant between you and Hashem. Do you think that he chose this location of the body because He wanted a good laugh? NO! The sexual organs are the source of our purity and our power. Stick it into the wrong place and you take the covenant into a place it shouldn't be. Squander away your energy and life force through masturbation and pre-marital sex, and you will cause more death and drainage to the power of the Jewish people as a whole. This was Bilam's warning.
However, harness and properly channel that sexual force in the context of a kosher marriage with a Jewish woman in the observance of the laws of niddah and taharas hamishpacha, and you will create the biggest influx of power and spiritual force for the Jewish people and you will attract an uncountable amount of berachas upon yourself. You will tap into the source of the Jewish people's greatest power and will add to it and be part of the solution, not the problem. The greatest source of power of the Jewish people is that they are a holy people because they practice sexual morality. We're supposed to be a "priest onto the other nations." We should act that way.