Sex Outside of Marriage is Sin

The Bible is Clear: Sex Outside of Marriage is Sin.
Years ago, a young woman in a Bible study told me I was old-fashioned to think that genuine believers wouldn’t live together before marriage. 

If I’m old-fashioned, so is God. 

God always knows what’s best for us, and Scripture defines all sex outside of marriage as sinful

What happens when Christians sin sexually?

They'll be deeply troubled and prove their repentance. They'll get help from more mature Christians and avoid all situations that cause temptation.(1)

“No one who continues to sin has either seen [Christ] or known him.” 1 John 3:6

"Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor men who have sex with men nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor slanderers nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God. And that is what some of you were. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God."  1 Corinthians 6:9-11

God says sexual sin is serious.

He forgives the repentant (Acts 3:19).
(1) Christians have the power (Philippians 4:13) and the motivation (Romans 12:1; 1 Corinthians 6:19-20) to overcome these sins because "God has called us to live holy lives, not impure lives" (1 Thessalonians 4:7).
Bible Study
Please read "What Scripture Says About Sex Outside of Marriage" before doing this study.

1.Sexual sins are not the same as other sins:

1 Corinthians 6:15-18: Don’t you realize that your bodies are actually parts of Christ? Should a man take his body, which is part of Christ, and join it to a prostitute? Never! 16 And don’t you realize that if a man joins himself to a prostitute, he becomes one body with her? For the Scriptures say, “The two are united into one.” 17 But the person who is joined to the Lord is one spirit with him. 18 Run from sexual sin! No other sin so clearly affects the body as this one does. For sexual immorality is a sin against your own body.
The Bible is Clear: Sex Outside of Marriage is Sin.
Sexual sins violate us in a serious way, involving our bodies, the temple of the Holy Spirit. The only appropriate intimacy is between a man and woman married to each other.
See Mark 10:6-9

2. Most non-Christians believe it's impossible to remain sexually pure.

But Christians have a "power source" beyond ourselves: Philippians 4:13: For I can do everything through Christ, who gives me strength. 

We have a motivation beyond ourselves:
Romans 12:1: Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God's mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God--this is your true and proper worship.  

We have a calling beyond ourselves: 
1 Thessalonians 4:7: For God did not call us to be impure, but to live a holy life. 

3. In the passage below note the emphasis on words as well as actions. 

Ephesians 5:3-10:  But among you there must not be even a hint of sexual immorality, or of any kind of impurity, or of greed, because these are improper for God’s holy people. 4 Nor should there be obscenity, foolish talk or coarse joking, which are out of place, but rather thanksgiving. 5 For of this you can be sure: No immoral, impure or greedy person—such a person is an idolater—has any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God. 6 Let no one deceive you with empty words, for because of such things God’s wrath comes on those who are disobedient. 7 Therefore do not be partners with them. 8 For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Live as children of light 9 (for the fruit of the light consists in all goodness, righteousness and truth) 10 and find out what pleases the Lord. 

The phrase that the NIV (above) translates "not be even a hint" in the Greek literally means "not even be named." This doesn't mean we can't discuss these issues, but we are to be careful not to discuss them flippantly, foolishly, crudely, or with approval. We definitely should not discuss them in such a way that tempts us to sin.
copyright, Gail Burton Purath, 


  1. I don't see how this is saying that sex within a committed relationship is wrong, where you love one another but are still navigating whether marriage is going to work. Sex with a prostitute is very different to sex with a partner. We are built to desire and want sex from an early age (physiologically) and our sexual peek can occur before marriage, some of us may never marry... It seems awfully strange to fight this urge without very good reason. The desire tends to give way to other temptations which are not good. If someone uses masterbation their whole life to satisfy this, it seems a shame. Why would God design us in such a way and then condemn us for it? I'm not saying be promiscuous, just in loving relationships.

    1. Hi Unknown,
      God created us and knows us better than we know ourselves.

      He designed us to have sexual intimacy in a marriage relationship with a lifelong commitment because that is best for our body, soul, and spirit.
      When we go against God's design, we harm ourselves whether we realize it or not.

      We can do things our way or we can do things God's way. It all depends on who we think knows what's best for us.

    2. I would say, it's because sex creates a very special strong intimacy between two beings. And if it happens that this couple finally sees the other as not suitable for marriage and they break up, it leads to a lot of separation pain, deeper than one who has not entered into such a strong intimacy level.

      In the past people get married at a much younger age, and I guess that struggle of keeping ourselves clear from intimacy vs the strong need for intimacy is much lesser cos most people get married at a much younger age. The world has changed and now many of us do not get married at our teenage, so indeed we do struggle more in some sense. We do (I believe many do) fall into sinful sexual acts, we do, but I believe it is the continual struggle and fighting against our old selves that is such a geniune and precious journey in our spiritual life, much more geniune and precious that if we are so perfect that we just keep ourselves pure 100% of the time. The falling down, the tears, the thinking of the Cross, the need for His blood to cleanse us, the need for Holy Spirit to fill us with the power to cruxify our flesh, the need for a community to walk with us together because we do stray away so easily... I believe these are what makes our spiritual journey with Jesus so precious and so REAL too.

  2. It is also a deed of the flesh (Gal. 5:19), characteristic of unbelievers, not of believers (Eph. 4:19-20). God has given the marriage relationship as the proper place for sexual relations. To engage in any sexual activity outside of marriage is to participate in the deeds of darkness (Eph. 5:3-12).

  3. My parent is now a widower.He is sexually active with a woman who is a widow.he told me having a sexual relationship outside of marriage does not apply to them, since they have been married before. They are both in their eighties.

    1. Yes, Rhonda, sadly the low morals of our culture are affecting seniors as well as young people. But God's commands and purposes for sexual purity are relevant at any age.

  4. Let us be leaded by the holy spirit, let him inspire our lives on which path is good or not to be taken, therefore we wont accomplish our flesh desires.

    God bless y'all!