Biblical Matrimony verses Ring Ceremony
There was a wedding celebration when Jesus turned water into wine, and one can notice that they celebrated several days, but neither Jesus nor anyone else did any ceremony of joining the young couple in marriage using some kind of a symbolic token to seal the marriage as we use today (a wedding ring).
The laws and practices of getting married in Jesusí days were identical to those in Mosesí day and are still in practice in some orthodox Jewish communities. The old biblical law and tradition is that the young virginís parents establish an engagement to her future husband, before the wedding by making arrangements and contracts about their future life. The groom needs to provide a house for his bride and future family, then at an appointed time the brideís father brings his daughter to the groom's home without any ceremony, but with two witnesses, who would testify about leaving the bride with the groom alone as a marriage contract between them. After that, the groom and bride would spend seven days alone together and during that time become a married couple, "one flesh" in the act of sexual intercourse, and the transaction of marriage is fulfilled, she became his wife. In that time her parents are preparing a wedding celebration to announce them to the community as newly wedded couple, inviting all to celebrate it for several days.
The Jews had one Temple to worship God, but it was not in the custom or in the law for married couples to go to the Temple in order to establish their marriage. However there was customary to bring their child on the eight day after birth to the Temple to present the child to the Lord (Luke 1:59; 2:27).
But if the groom finds out that the young lady is not a virgin in the act of marriage, he can annul the contract and bring her back to her parents, because she is the wife of another man whom she gave her virginity, he cannot keep another manís wife, it would be an unlawful marriage and a sin of adultery. Only in the case that the man does not know she is not a virgin because she somehow disguised the situation and made him believe that she is a virgin, only then is he not guilty of sin, but she alone is, because she committed the sin of adultery, engaging in an unlawful marriage. It is manís responsibility however to do everything possible to find out and make sure he knows of her status before as well as after he has sex with her. It is his duty before God, and Godís angels to make sure his wife is a virgin, and belongs to no other man.
That is Godís law, and that law applies to all people regardless if they are atheists, pagans or Christian believers, regardless of their understanding of Godís law, regardless of their religious doctrinal or denominational beliefs. Godís law is not subject to change or to fit peopleís religious standards or mind set. Godís law is the same for all people on earth. And people will have no excuse for not knowing, because manís duty is to find out. God makes Himself known to all who are interested in finding Him and His law. It is the duty of people to seek God, and not religion that teaches contrary to Godís law.
The first sexual intercourse is therefore a marriage, and in that case there is no such thing as premarital sex, therefore she need not, and cannot repent having sex with someone whom she didnít want as her husband. She becomes his wife regardless if she knew this or not, regardless if she wanted to or not, she became one flesh with the man whom she joined her body with Ė she is his wife. Such is the law of God, plain and simple. And as long as she and he are alive, in Godís books they are a married couple "one flesh", even if they donít physically stay together.
The story of Jacobís daughter Dinah illustrates this concept. When Shechem, the Hivite prince fell in love with Dinah, took her, and raped her in order to marry her by force. He knew that by raping her, she became his wife. He took the only possible chance knowing that they would not want to give her to him otherwise, but since he had sex with her chances were that Jacob would give her to him as a wife. He was stronger, and knew if they would not give him Dinah in a peaceful way, he had the option to take her by force. That was very clear to Dinahís brothers, and having no other choice they did what they did. Because by refusing Dinah to the Hivite, they would probably all die. They all knew the Law of God, that she is his wife by Godís law, and in order to set her free from her husband they have to kill him. Otherwise, even if they didnít give her to Shechem and stayed alive (read about it Geneses 34), she wouldnít be able to marry another man as long as Shechem, her husband was alive.
Read the story of Jacob and his wives Leah and Rachel, how he was tricked into marrying Leah and he had to keep her even though he didn't want her, in fact it says he hated her, but had to keep her to the rest of his life, and he did having many children with her (Geneses 29:21-35).
Today people don't know about God's law, because they do not care to know, people blindly follow traditions and examples of other people not knowing and not caring to find out if they are a sinners or not. But as Godís law was known by the people long before Moses, so is available today. Who is truly seeking - will find it, and who is asking - will receive, and who is knocking - it will be open for him (Matthew 7:7), the wisdom, and knowledge of Godís law, by the power of The Spirit of Truth, He has the ability to write the law of God on the heart of men and women.
John 16:8-13 New King James
"And when He has come, He will convict the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment: of sin, because they do not believe in Me; of righteousness, because I go to My Father and you see Me no more; of judgment, because the ruler of this world is judged. I still have many things to say to you, but you cannot bear [them] now. However, when He, the Spirit of truth, has come, He will guide you into all truth; for He will not speak on His own [authority], but whatever He hears He will speak; and He will tell you things to come."