Is having sex before marriage a sin?

The Lord created sex as an expression of love, intimacy, sharing, unity and procreation between spouses. Jesus said, “At the beginning the Creator ‘made them male and female,’ and said, ‘For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh.’ So they are no longer two, but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, let no one separate” (Matthew 19:4-6). And the Lord also said, “Be fruitful, and multiply” (Genesis 1:22). So, Sex is God’s gift of love and procreation to a married couple.

Before we look at sex in the scriptures, we need to understand the modern meanings for the words fornication and adultery. Fornication is defined as the voluntary sexual intercourse between persons not married to each other, which would include adultery. And adultery is defined as the voluntary sexual intercourse between a married person and a partner other than the lawful spouse. So, sex before marriage is fornication.

The Bible gives many references that teach that sex before marriage is a sin (Acts 15:20; 1 Corinthians 5:1;6:13, 18;10:8; 2 Corinthians 12:21; Galatians 5:19; Ephesians 5:3; Colossians 3:5;1 Thessalonians 4:3; Jude 7).

Sex outside of marriage is breaking the seventh commandment “Thou shalt not commit adultery” (Exodus 20:14). This prohibition for sex covers not just adultery and fornication but impurity of every act, word, and thought (Matt. 5:27, 28). This is, our third duty toward our “neighbor,” to respect and honor the bond upon which the family is built, that of the marriage relationship, which to the Christian is as precious as life itself (Heb. 13:4).

In first Corinthians 6:9-10 Paul says, “Do you not know that wrongdoers will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor men who have sex with men . . . will inherit the kingdom of God”; “it is God’s will that you should be sanctified: that you should avoid sexual immorality” (1 Thessalonians 4:3).

God kept sex within marriage for the happiness and well being of the family. Abstinence before marriage saves lives, protects babies and gives sexual relations the proper beauty, respect and value.

In His service,
BibleAsk Team

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