What Does the Bible Say About Sex?
Sex is the topic that mothers and the older generation try very hard to avoid discussing openly. That has left many believers wondering whether or not sex is a taboo. Is it something biblical? But then, if you look at all of those people condemning sexual topics, many of them have children who are complete evidence that they’ve had their own sexual experiences.
Why do people try as much as possible to avoid sex topics when they have their own experiences that weren’t so bad after all? Are believers forbidden from talking about sex? Is sex so sacred that people should not discuss it openly? What exactly does the Bible have to say about all of these questions?
Well, you’re not the only one asking yourself such questions, and the good news is that we’re going to find answers in this article. So, what does the Bible say about sex?
Sex for Procreation
Our first introduction to a sexual topic in the Bible is in the book of Genesis when God instructed Adam and Eve to go into the earth and multiply (Genesis 1:27-28). Their main mission was to be fruitful and fill the earth, which they would only do if they had sex.
The same book (Genesis) goes on to tell us in Chapter 2:24 that a man shall leave his mother and father, join hands with the woman and be one flesh. Well, here we not only see sex as a means of procreation but intimacy and love that makes people make tough decisions and sacrifices. Think about it, who in their right mind would love to leave their parents to go and live with a stranger he just met a few weeks or months ago?
This passage in the Bible establishes sex as a way of bonding, showing love and care for your partner. A strong Christian marriage and a bond between a husband and wife are strengthened through the act of sexual intercourse.
Sex is a Gift from God for Marriage
According to Hebrews 13:4, sex is honorable in marriage. When married couples engage in it, then the bed is undefiled.
The chapter goes on to say that adulterers will, however, face God’s judgment. This tells us that as long as a couple is joined in a Christian marriage, sex between them is not a sin but an honorable act before God. However, by punishing the adulterous, the Bible says that uninhibited sex is a sin before God.
If you look at other books such as Proverbs 5:18-19, sexual acts unlock sexual pleasure sanctioned by God. According to how this verse describes the feeling of sex, it is made of pleasure and intimacy. “Let your fountain be blessed, and rejoice in the wife of your youth, a lovely deer, a graceful doe. Let her breasts fill you at all times with delight; be intoxicated always in her love.“
Couples Owe One Another Sex
The Bible describes sex as a conjugal right that husbands should give to their wives and wives should do the same in return. 1 Corinthians 7:3-4 goes on to say that once married, the wife does not have authority over her body, but that authority belongs to her husband. The same applies to husbands.
From this text, it is clear that sex is mutual and the husband has a right to claim it from the wife and vice versa. Christianity, therefore, teaches that sex in marriage should be generous, free, and reciprocal.
God’s intention is for both husbands and wives to enjoy sex. He instructs husbands and wives to satisfy one another in their sexual needs (1st Corinthians 7:3).
Is Sexual Pleasure Limited in The Bible?
According to the word of God in various Bible verses, sexual pleasure is only reserved for the sanctity of marriage. Most verses talk about sex between husbands and wives and not just male and female.
This doesn’t mean that you won’t experience any pleasure if you engage in sex outside marriage. However, even though sexual pleasure is the same for both the married and unmarried people in a physical sense, God doesn’t permit sex outside marriage.
Christians should understand this and abstain from any sexual pleasures until they can earn approval which is only given through a covenant of marriage.
Once they are married, couples should remain faithful to one another because any sexual activity that is not between a husband and his wife is considered adultery.
Therefore, commitment to one another is important for the purity of the marital bed. Faithfulness will result in more delight rather than achieving this through selfish gratification through adulterous behavior.
Is it Wrong to Engage in Premarital Sex?
This is a question that has been a bother for many people, especially teenagers and young adults. This is the time when they are more active and sexual desires are high even though they are not ready to settle down in a covenant of marriage.
No matter how much people try to justify themselves, the simple answer to this question is yes. Premarital sex is wrong in God’s eyes. Several Bible verses prove that God is not pleased with sex before marriage.
Thessalonians 4: 3-5, “For this is the will of God, your sanctification: that you abstain from sexual immorality; that each one of you knows how to control his own body in holiness and honor, not in the passion of lust like the Gentiles who do not know God.”
Is Sex Between People of Same Genders Wrong?
Recently, sex between people of the same gender has become so common that we often see homosexuals fighting for their rights all over the world. The Bible is very clear in its description of sex as an act of intimate pleasure between a man and a woman.
The purpose of sex is to unite two people that are fundamentally different. One body is carefully crafted to unify with the other. These people are described as male and female and not just a generalization of two people. No matter what society tries to force-feed the public, Christians, along with many other faiths, acknowledge that God does not sanction or approve of same-sex intercourse.
Bible Verses About Sex
I am afraid that when I come again my God will humble me before you, and I will be grieved over many who have sinned earlier and have not repented of the impurity, sexual sin and debauchery in which they have indulged.2 Corinthians 12:21 New International Version (NIV)
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.Ephesians 5:3 New International Version (NIV)
However, each one of you also must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband.Ephesians 5:33 New International Version (NIV)
The acts of the flesh are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery;Galatians 5:19 New International Version (NIV)
That is why a man leaves his father and mother and is united to his wife, and they become one flesh.Genesis 2:24 New International Version (NIV)
Marriage should be honored by all, and the marriage bed kept pure, for God will judge the adulterer and all the sexually immoral.Hebrews 13:4 New International Version (NIV)
Or do you not know that wrongdoers will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor men who have sex with men1 Corinthians 6:9 New International Version (NIV)
Flee from sexual immorality. All other sins a person commits are outside the body, but whoever sins sexually, sins against their own body.1 Corinthians 6:18 New International Version (NIV)
If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.1 John 1:9 New International Version (NIV)
But I tell you that anyone who looks at a woman lustfully has already committed adultery with her in his heart.Matthew 5:28 New International Version (NIV)
22 adultery, greed, malice, deceit, lewdness, envy, slander, arrogance and folly.23 All these evils come from inside and defile a person.”Mark 7:22-23 New International Version (NIV)
3 It is God’s will that you should be sanctified: that you should avoid sexual immorality; 4 that each of you should learn to control your own body in a way that is holy and honorable, 5 not in passionate lust like the pagans, who do not know God;1 Thessalonians 4:3-5 New International Version (NIV)
6 “But at the beginning of creation God ‘made them male and female.’ 7 ‘For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, 8 and the two will become one flesh.’ So they are no longer two, but one flesh. 9 Therefore what God has joined together, let no one separate.”Mark 10:6-9 New International Version (NIV)
15 Drink water from your own cistern,Proverbs 5:15-19 New International Version (NIV)
running water from your own well.
16 Should your springs overflow in the streets,
your streams of water in the public squares?
17 Let them be yours alone,
never to be shared with strangers.
18 May your fountain be blessed,
and may you rejoice in the wife of your youth.
19 A loving doe, a graceful deer—
may her breasts satisfy you always,
may you ever be intoxicated with her love.
4 Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5 It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6 Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 7 It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.
8 Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away.1 Corinthians 13:4-8 New International Version (NIV)
6 How beautiful you are and how pleasing,
my love, with your delights!
7 Your stature is like that of the palm,
and your breasts like clusters of fruit.
8 I said, “I will climb the palm tree;
I will take hold of its fruit.”
May your breasts be like clusters of grapes on the vine,
the fragrance of your breath like apples,
9 and your mouth like the best wine.
May the wine go straight to my beloved,Song of Songs 7:6-12 New International Version (NIV)
flowing gently over lips and teeth.
10 I belong to my beloved,
and his desire is for me.
11 Come, my beloved, let us go to the countryside,
let us spend the night in the villages.
12 Let us go early to the vineyards
to see if the vines have budded,
if their blossoms have opened,
and if the pomegranates are in bloom—
there I will give you my love.
13 You say, “Food for the stomach and the stomach for food, and God will destroy them both.” The body, however, is not meant for sexual immorality but for the Lord, and the Lord for the body. 14 By his power God raised the Lord from the dead, and he will raise us also. 15 Do you not know that your bodies are members of Christ himself? Shall I then take the members of Christ and unite them with a prostitute? Never! 16 Do you not know that he who unites himself with a prostitute is one with her in body? For it is said, “The two will become one flesh.” 17 But whoever is united with the Lord is one with him in spirit.
18 Flee from sexual immorality. All other sins a person commits are outside the body, but whoever sins sexually, sins against their own body. 19 Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; 20 you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your bodies.1 Corinthians 6:13-20 New International Version (NIV)
Christian Sex Books
The following titles are a collection of useful resources on the topic of Christian Sex and intimacy. These wonderful books combine a faith-based lifestyle with our natural biological urges in a way that is enriching to a Christian lifestyle.
- Good Christian Sex: Why Chastity Isn’t the Only Option-And Other Things the Bible Says About Sex by Bromleigh McCleneghan
- Sex, Jesus, and the Conversations the Church Forgot by Mo Isom
- Love & Sex: A Christian Guide to Healthy Intimacy by Nancy Houston
- Holy Sexuality and the Gospel: Sex, Desire, and Relationships Shaped by God’s Grand Story by Christopher Yuan
- The Talk: 7 Lessons to Introduce Your Child to Biblical Sexuality by Luke Gilkerson
- Come as You Are: The Surprising New Science that Will Transform Your Sex Life by Emily Nagoski Ph.D.