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How far is too far in Christian Dating?


You trusted God to lead you into a romantic relationship and he did.

And as your love deepened, the physical space between you two diminished as if an invisible thread pulled you closer to each other.

You went from holding hands to snuggling each other.

You can’t quite remember how you both decided to start sleeping over at either person’s apartment, whenever you visited. it happened naturally. I mean, why leave the warm embrace of your beloved to go back to a cold, empty bed at home?

“Nothing will happen”, you both said. You’ll exercise self-control and not ‘do it.’

But each time you crossed a physical boundary, your heart started talking:

“ Are we doing the right thing? Isn’t this level of physical involvement too much? Maybe we should stop. But if I stop he’ll think I’m naive and boring. But I don’t really want to stop either it feels so good. I feel so loved, so wanted. Gosh!”

I can say these things with clarity because I’ve been in similar situations in the past.

Thankfully, my desire to honour God won and now that I’m married to a man who didn’t push my physical boundaries, I’m glad I didn’t settle for the ones who tried to.

*****Let me add this, dear brothers: You already know how to please God in your daily living, for you know the commands we gave you from the Lord Jesus himself. Now we beg you—yes, we demand of you in the name of the Lord Jesus—that you live more and more closely to that ideal.  ***For God wants you to be holy and pure and to keep clear of all sexual sin so that each of you will marry in holiness and honour— not in lustful passion as the heathen do, in their ignorance of God and his ways.

And this also is God’s will: that you never cheat in this matter by taking another man’s wife because the Lord will punish you terribly for this, as we have solemnly told you before. For God has not called us to be dirty-minded and full of lust but to be holy and clean.  If anyone refuses to live by these rules, he is not disobeying the rules of men but of God who gives his Holy Spirit to you.

(1 Thessalonians 4:1-6 TLB) emphasis mine

When it comes to acceptable sexual behaviour as Christians, most of us know that sexual intercourse before or outside marriage is a sin (1 Corinthians 6:13; Acts 15:29; Hebrews 13:4). The more common questions, however, have to do with understanding the Bible’s stance with regards to all the other ways we can experience physical/sexual pleasure without actual sexual intercourse – kissing, cuddling, making out, solo masturbation, mutual masturbation, petting with clothes on, petting with clothes off, oral sex, sharing a bed (without having sex), using sex toys etc., all of which aren’t directly mentioned in scripture.

I’ve found at least three scriptures that help me answer questions pertaining to these seemingly ‘grey’ areas:

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. Nor should there be obscenity, foolish talk or coarse joking, which are out of place, but rather thanksgiving.

(Ephesians 5:3-4 NIV)

Abstain from all appearance of evil.

(1 Thessalonians 5:22 KJV)

It is good [to do the right thing and] not eat meat or drink wine, or do anything that offends your brother and weakens him spiritually.

(Romans 14:21 AMP)

From the above scriptures we see that:

  • God’s standard for His children is ‘not even a hint’. Meaning, we’re called to keep from engaging in any activity that either indulges the lustful desires of our flesh or inevitably leads us down the road to sexual intercourse outside of marriage.
  • We’re admonished to flee all appearances of evil: When it comes to appearances of evil with regard to sexual sin, this is how I define it;

Whatever action a spirit-filled husband or wife will see their spouse engaging in with another person and feel betrayed is an action that has an appearance of sexual evil.

When we apply this definition to God’s instructions to us in 1 Thessalonians 5:22, we see that God’s desire is for us to flee or run away from such activities.

  • Even when we have a clear conscience about specific behaviours, we are also to consider how our actions affect the faith of other believers. If doing something would cause a brother or sister in the faith to doubt, waver, or fall, then we shouldn’t engage in such activities.

How can God expect me to ever live up to this?

If after reading all I’ve said, you asked this question, then permit me to ask you a question of my own;

Don’t you think God would be unjust to have asked us to do something he knew we could never do?

Thankfully, God is just (Deuteronomy 32:4 Psalm 25:8).

By his divine power, God has given us everything we need for living a godly life. We have received all of this by coming to know him, the one who called us to himself by means of his marvelous glory and excellence. And because of his glory and excellence, he has given us great and precious promises. These are the promises that enable you to share his divine nature and escape the world’s corruption caused by human desires.

(1 Peter 2:3-4 NLT) emphasis mine

God expects us to live up to His standards because we’re saved and we have His word!

At salvation:

  • The old sinful nature that compelled us to sin died (Romans 6:1-11) and as a result, we’re no longer slaves to sin (bound to commit sin). We’ve been set free from the power of sin. (John 8:36; Romans 8:2).
  • He gave us His nature and with His nature came the desire and the ability to obey his instructions (Philippians 2:13).
  • We became slaves of righteousness (Romans 6:17-18). What this means is that in the same way, we were compelled to sin as unbelievers, our new nature in Christ is wired to obey God completely.

Pull your seat closer and listen to me as I close.

God’s got you. Don’t compromise your faith just to keep a relationship. It’s not worth it. No one else may know. You may even marry that person eventually but when you compromise your faith you miss out on God’s best – whether you feel that way or not.

Keep your dating relationship pure and if the person you’re dating or courting keeps trying to encourage you to keep exploring each other’s bodies or to even go all the way, then end that relationship. God has many sons and daughters who are single and committed to honouring hIm with their bodies. He’ll bring one of them your way if you’d just trust him completely and not sell out.

I trust you’ll do the right thing.

Talk soon,


PS: I wrote an amazing FREE eBook just for you – titled: ‘SINGLE, CHRISTIAN AND HORNY: 13 Proven Ways to Manage Your God-given Desire for Sex without Feeling Guilty.” Get it NOW by clicking on DOWNLOAD


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