WHAT DOES THE BIBLE SAY ABOUT....FORNICATION?
1 Corinthians 6:18-20 & 1 Corinthians 7:1-2
"Flee fornication. Every sin that a man doeth is without the body; but he
that committeth fornication sinneth against his own body. What? know ye not that your body
is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your
own? For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your
spirit, which are God's. Now concerning the things whereof ye wrote unto me: It is good
for a man not to touch a woman. Nevertheless, to avoid fornication, let every man have his
own wife, and let every woman have her own husband."
The dictionary meaning of the word "fornication" means any
unlawful sexual intercourse including adultery. In the Bible the Greek definition of the
word "fornication" means to commit illicit sexual intercourse. What
constitutes unlawful sex? Whose laws do we live by? Worldly standards or laws many times
do not always line up with the Word of God. The founding fathers of the United States
established many laws that were originally based on Christian standards and the laws of
the Bible. However, through time the United States has drifted far from these standards
and at the present our moral standards are shocking the world. However, immorality is not
only found in the U.S. but is a world-wide epidemic. Societies throughout history and
around the globe have embraced sexual standards that are called sins in the Bible.
Fornication is not just tolerated in our society but is actually being
encouraged. The sin of fornication is being committed even among Christians, as many
couples "live together" and have sex before marriage. The Bible tells us to flee
this sin. We have counseled Christians of the opposite sex who share an apartment and they
told us they were not having sex so this surely wasn't wrong. The Bible declares these
words in 1 Thessalonians 5:22-23:
"Abstain from all appearance of evil. And the very God of
peace sanctify you wholly; and I pray God your whole spirit and soul and body be preserved
blameless unto the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ."
Our lives as Christians are a living witness to others and we cannot break
the laws of God without hindering others from coming to Christ. We must live our lives in
purity before a sinful and wicked world. We should not be living according to their
standards but according to God's standard in the Bible. No couple should live together
outside the bonds of marriage.
Many say they live together before marriage to see if they are compatible
as they don't want to divorce. This may sound like a justifiable reason for committing the
sin of fornication, but in God's eyes it is still sin. Statistics however, show that those
who live together before marriage are more likely to get a divorce than those who do not.
Living together shows a total lack of trust in God and a failure to commit to Him the
choosing of a mate. Christians who are living in this situation are out
of the will of God and need to repent and seek God as to whether this person is the right
one for them. If it is God's will for them to be together they should
marry. Otherwise, they need to change their living arrangements.
As Christians, the goal of any relationship should be to cause the people
in our lives to love and know the Lord better. Living together is shameful and selfish as
the parties do not care what others think or how they might affect their families and
others. They are living to please their own lust and selfish desires. This type of life
style is destructive and especially so for children whose parents are living a bad example
before them. No wonder our children are confused about right and wrong
when parents degrade the sanctity of marriage by living together out of
wedlock. How can living together cause children to love and honor God when their parents
break the laws of God before them because they are lustful?
Young people today need to be taught to abstain from sexual intercourse
and remain pure virgins before marriage. So many problems in marriages today stem from the
fact that they are not virgins when they marry. Young people are bringing wounded emotions
and diseased bodies into their marriages because of prior promiscuous affairs. STDs
(Sexually Transmitted Diseases) are so widespread that the statistics are shocking. There
are 12 million new cases of STDs annually in the United states and 67% of these occur
among persons under the age of 25. In fact, every year one out of six teens contracts an
STD. 100,000 to 150,000 women become infertile each year as a result of STDs.¹ Others
endure years of pain as some of these diseases are incurable. What a tragic price to pay
for sexual sins. The Bible is right when it says fornication is a sin against one's own
The sin of fornication is not only defined as illicit sexual intercourse
between those who are not married but also is an umbrella for other sexual sins as well.
The Bible also speaks of the sin of incest as fornication in 1 Corinthians 5:1:
"It is reported commonly that there is fornication among you,
and such fornication as is not so much as named among the Gentiles, that one should have
his father's wife."
The Bible also lists whoremongers as fornicators in Revelation
But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and
murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their
part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.
All prostitutes and pimps are fornicators. Couples who just "live
together" according to the Bible, are committing the same sin that whores commit.
Singles who "make love" fall into the same category. Just because
society has accepted this type of living does not make it right. The Bible must be our
standard of what is right and wrong. We must change our standards if we
do not want the wrath of God to fall on us. God hates sin but He loves the sinner. If
anyone repents and calls on Jesus today He will help them to come out of any illicit
relationship and heal them of all past hurts and even heal any disease that they may have
God gave us the laws in the Bible for our good. They are not meant to deny
us any good thing but they are given so we can enjoy the proper sexual relationship in the
proper time. If we obey the words of the Bible and "flee fornication" and
glorify God in our bodies, the Lord will bless us beyond what we could believe.
Psalm 145:17-21: "The LORD is righteous in all his ways, and
holy in all his works. The LORD is nigh unto all them that call upon him, to all that call
upon him in truth. He will fulfil the desire of them that fear him: he also will hear
their cry, and will save them. The LORD preserveth all them that love him: but all the
wicked will he destroy. My mouth shall speak the praise of the LORD: and let all flesh
bless his holy name for ever and ever."
¹ Statistics from the April 1, 1993 issue of the San Francisco
Editor's Note: For help if you are struggling with any
sexual perversions we recommend the following ministry that can help you.
This is a California-based Christian organization which offers programs for
people seeking sexual and relational wholeness and healing.