Is it wrong to be physically intimate before marriage?

Author: BibleAsk Team

God’s Original Plan

It is not part of God’s plan for couples to be intimate and live together before marriage. The marriage union was established and sanctified by God from the very beginning (Genesis 2:18-25). 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).

The Lord designed that sex, between a husband and wife within the marriage union, should be an expression of their love for each other. Therefore, “Marriage is to be held in honor among all, and the marriage bed is to be undefiled; for fornicators and adulterers God will judge” (Hebrews 13:4).

Why We Should Not Be Physically Intimate Before Marriage:

  1. Sex outside marriage is a sin. “You shall not commit adultery” (Exodus 20:14).
  2. A person should not miss out on the uniqueness of the wedding night (Song of Solomon 4-5).
  3. A person will not have guilt baggage and emotional pain if things didn’t work out. “Keep a clear conscience before God…” (1 Peter 3:16).
  4. Waiting is a test of true love. “Love suffers long and … bears all things” (1 Corinthians 13:4,7).
  5. A person will show respect to his/her partner by exhibiting self-control. “For this very reason, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue, to virtue knowledge, to knowledge self-control, to self-control…” (2 Peter 5-8).
  6. A person will earn his/her spouse future trust by showing will-power now. “The heart of her husband (wife) trusts in her…” (Proverbs 31:11).
  7. A person will not settle for less than what God has prepared for him/her. “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future” (Jeremiah 29:11).
  8. A person will not have to deal with the risk of contracting sexual diseases. “let us purify ourselves from everything that contaminates body and spirit…” (2 Corinthians 7:1).
  9. A person will be a good example of purity to others. “Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven” (Matthew 5:16).
  10. He/she will reap the rewards of being faithful to God. “Happy are those who remain faithful under trials, because when they succeed in passing such a test, they will receive as their reward the life which God has promised to those who love him” (James 1:12).


Therefore, abstinence from sex before marriage saves lives, protects babies, gives sexual relations their proper value, and above all honors God. The Psalmist wrote, “Happy are those who live pure lives, who follow the Lord’s teachings. Happy are those who keep his rules, who try to obey him with their whole heart. They don’t do what is wrong; they follow his ways” (Psalms 119:1-3).

In His service,
BibleAsk Team

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