I think so. Marriage is an idea, a great idea, but it is still an abstract mental construction. People are real, sex is real and how we live our lives through our relationships is real. Having sex before marriage won't ruin the marriage, just like waiting to have sex won't make the marriage successful. Ultimately marriage is about unconditional love and the pledge to accompany and honor each other until death, not about sex. Braiding marriage and sex just serves to confuse what marriage should be about. When we abstain, too much energy is funneled through tense sexual channels and the excitement of discovery. You can not make an informed decision, a decision that will shape the rest of your life on Earth, with all that mental and spiritual distraction. Marriages should be entered into with clear minds and full hearts. I feel getting all the sexy bits out of the way is a wise decision.
Of course there is always the religious aspect to contend with. This is where I start to see marriage as a concept instead of a promise. Religion has a way of making one thing about another and creating rules, but all this dogma sometimes makes it confusing to follow our heart. I think of all the marriages that have been rushed into because sex was an immediate factor, and I feel remorse for all those who found that they could not happy in the relationship after all. Now you have a lifetime of unhappiness or divorce, and if divorce is an option then what is the point of abstaining? - It would be like getting a sex license instead of a marriage license.