I have a serious question. I have been wodering lately if it's okay for two adult Christians who love God and plan to marry one day to engage in what the world calls "foreplay."


Your question is a serious and important one. One of the issues about sexuality is in what relationship God designed it to be enjoyed. The history of humanity shows that God intended it for the marriage relationship. That's what He designed from the beginning and what He blessed throughout the history of his people. If Christians experience sexual intimacy before marriage, though it may be wonderful, what happens if they don't marry? How do they deal with their feelings toward each other, themselves, others, and most importantly, God? What do you do with the knowledge of intimacy if you don't marry? The Lord has to be the one to convince us of what is right and wrong. You may get one answer to your question     from me and a different answer from someone else. I strongly encourage Christians to be convinced about things from their own study of God's Word. You will believe something the rest of your life if God's Spirit shows it to you. Another issue we need to consider is the way God directed Christian men to treat Christian women. Paul told Timothy treat younger men as brothers, older women as mothers, and younger women as sisters, with absolute purity. (1 Timothy 5:1-2) Can Christians treat each other as brothers and sisters in Christ with absolute purity if they are experiencing sexual intimacy outside of marriage? Paul told the Corinthians Flee from sexual immorality. All other sins a man commits are outside his body, but he who sins sexually; sins against his own body, we are to honor God with our bodies. (1 Corinthians 6:18) What would you do if Jesus walked in when you and your Christian friend were being physically intimate? Would you feel comfortable with His being there? Would you thank Him for the great gift of sex that you were experiencing at that moment? What would He say to you? Would He commend you for using sexuality in the way He intended His children to use it? Would you feel clean or dirty in Christ's presence? Would you see your actions as sexually pure or impure in His presence? That's a good question for anything we do. Paul told the Ephesians, among believers there must not be even a hint of sexual immorality, or of any kind of impurity, because these are improper for God's holy people. (Ephesians 5:3) It's another great standard to place next to any sexual activity we have outside marriage. We know that God blesses sexual intimacy inside marriage. Does He bless sexual intimacy outside marriage? If we do the things the world knows is sexually wrong, are we better than them when we do it just because we're saved? Unbeliever people know that physical intimacy before marriage is wrong. Few people even questioned that idea until the last 30 years. The so-called sexual revolution has infiltrated the Church even as it has the rest of the world. Something people used to call wrong is now called okay or even held up as the way life should be lived. Christians are held to a higher standard, one that is thousands of years old. Our message is clear: It is God's will that you should be sanctified: that you should avoid sexual immorality; that each of you should learn to control his/her own body in a way that is holy and honorable, not in lustful passion like the unbelievers, God did not call us to be impure, but to live a holy life. (1 Thessalonians 4:3-7) Physical intimacy before marriage is physical lust and something Christians should avoid by learning to control their bodies. Easier said than done. I know you care deeply for your Christian friend and that you both have wonderful feelings from the intimacy. That's a physical and emotional experience God designed for a married couple. I suggest you and your friend discuss whether God is leading you to be married for all the right reasons. If you believe He is, ask God for strength to control your bodies until you are joined together in marriage. If you don't believe God is leading you to be married, ask yourselves what part physical intimacy has in the lives of a Christian brother and sister who don't intend to commit to each other for life.