Last updated: Aug, 13th 2019
As sex before marriage becomes more and more commonplace, there's a debate among Christians whether it is sin.
Such debates can be fueled by questions like,
Who determines that a couple is married or not?
Must two persons in love possess a piece of paper to prove they're married?
Must a minister officiate a ceremony to induct two people into holy matrimony?
Even though cultures differ, I believe that a couple knows exactly if they're married or just shacking up.
In the African culture, parental consent and the payment of the bride price contracts the marriage, even though many Christians wait until after the civil and white weddings to consummate the marriage.
In other cultures, parental consent is followed by a feast or ceremony when the couple is recognized as married.
It is also important to note that not all cultures are to be adhered to by professing Christians. A good Christian young man will not elope with another Christian. That is not marriage.
The Christian must seek to portray a pure life before the world, not mingle with it. What ever your culture prescribes as the marriage process, as long as it doesn't contradict Christian morals, stick to that process. Get married first.
It is a sin. It is what we call fornication, although the Bible generally uses the word to refer to all forms of sexual immoralities.
God commands all single persons with sexual urges to seek marriage.
1 Corinthians 7:8-9 NKJV
But I say to the unmarried and to the widows: It is good for them if they remain even as I am; 9 but if they cannot exercise self-control, let them marry. For it is better to marry than to burn with passion.
While in marriage, the husband and wife are to render to each other their rights to sexual fulfillment. 1 Corinthians 7:1-5.
These scriptural passages, along with others clearly spell out the sinful nature of sex out of marriage.
God made sex to be indulged only in a heterosexual marriage union. Anything out of this is sin.
For more biblical proof of the sinfulness of sexual immorality, check the following references:
I Corinthians 5:9-11 13, 1 Corinthians 6:9-10, Ephesians 5:5-7, Hebrews 12:16, Hebrews 13:4, 1 Corinthians 6:18-20, 1 Corinthians 6:13, Ephesians 5:3, Colossians 3:5, 1 Thessalonians 4:3-5, 1 Corinthians 10:8
Because God commands it.
Sex before marriage is sin because God says so.
He says the sexually immoral shall not inherit His kingdom.
Yes. Love should lead you to do the right thing. Get married, and then sex can come after.
Yes. It is not the lack of virginity that makes sex before marriage sin.
Preserve your virginity for the marriage contract night.
It is a wonderful testimony to marry as a virgin, instead of using your purity as a reasonable excuse for premarital sex.
If you've reached adulthood without having had sex, why not cross the finish line as a virgin and use your testimony to encourage others that it is still possible to live a life of sexual purity?
Our world desperately need such testimonies!
If you know of any, as a Christian, please share in the comments section below
Disadvantages to sex before marriage.
You sin against God and against your body
You can acquire sexually transmissible infections which can also result in infertility.
You lose respect and trust
You are exposed to psychological effects such as degraded self-esteem and insecurity.
You can miss out on some opportunities to end up with someone you love.
For example, in our African culture, you can't sleep with siblings or close relations. If you slept with a man or a woman and never got married to them, the chances of you ever ending up with any close relations in the future are almost zero, even if you've repented.
A youth counselor said, "it doesn't take pregnancy or disease to make you feel awful about sex before marriage".
Personally, I know that to be true. Sexual sin is ugly.
It degrades you to an object for self-gratification. Even if the other person loves you and you love them, sex out of marriage is selfish.
When you love someone, you treat them with respect. That means seeing them as a person beyond their bodies. That means getting married and connecting beyond the sensual level.
That is only possible when you accept the standard set by God in His Word and make the decision to live for Him, daily looking up to Him for strength to overcome sexual temptation and to abstain until marriage.
"Sexual Purity is less burdensome to those who hold God's honor above everything else" - John Piper