What’s Wrong With Living Together Before Marriage?

Living Together Before Marriage

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This post and topic has been featured over at WORLD Magazine and you can view the post by clicking here. The Pilgrim Radio Network also conducted a Radio Interview about this topic as well.

This is a pretty popular question that comes up with believers and non-believers. I asked the same question myself years ago and luckily was pointed to the Bible for answers. Sometimes it’s difficult to answer something like this and I think it takes a little more discussion than just answering this one question. In my experience, it typically involves a similar question that goes something like “How far is too far?” or “When does sin actually become sin?”

In any case, let’s look and see what Scripture says about this. Let’s see how God defines marriage and why it would be wrong to live together before getting married.

The Bible describes marriage as a committed relationship between one man and one woman that is sanctioned and blessed by God (Genesis 2:22-24). Furthermore, God instituted marriage to be between two people, a male and a female. Jesus added that it is to be permanent (Mark 10:7-9 – ‘Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and hold fast to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh.’ So they are no longer two but one flesh. What therefore God has joined together, let not man separate).

The divine institution of marriage suggests a covenant among the man, the woman, and God. The marital relationship is more important than any other relationship except one’s relationship with God. It is modeled after God’s relationship with His people, the Church. Jesus is the bride-groom, and the Church is His bride. The unique, committed setting of marriage is also the place God designed for the expression of sex. In 1 Corinthians 6:15-18 (Do you not know that your bodies are members of Christ? Shall I then take the members of Christ and make them members of a prostitute? Never! Or do you not know that he who is joined to a prostitute becomes one body with her? For, as it is written, “The two will become one flesh.” But he who is joined to the Lord becomes one spirit with him. Flee from sexual immorality. Every other sin a person commits is outside the body, but the sexually immoral person sins against his own body), Paul discusses the sinfulness of all sexual relations outside of marriage. In addition to outward sinfulness, sexual sin is a sin against one’s own body. This makes sexual sin uniquely destructive, a clear reason to follow God’s plan for sex.

When it comes to living together before marriage, you may think you are fine just because you are “living together” and nothing more, but I would suggest that you are not. In the midst of living together, you are also opening the door to even more temptation between you two, and hurting any testimony you may have of following Christ as you proclaim that it is a God glorifying thing to live together before marriage. You are also in danger of leading others down a similar path towards sin because of your example (Romans 14:13-22).

Living together before marriage doesn’t reflect the commitment that God instituted and ordained. The good news is that it is never too late to make a change. God forgives sin. That’s what He’s all about. He wants to have a relationship with us, and no situation or sin is too great for Him to forgive. If we want His forgiveness, we must stop committing the sinful act (1 John 3:6 – No one who abides in Him keeps on sinning; no one who keeps on sinning has either seen Him or known Him) and ask God for forgiveness. He will be faithful to forgive us (1 John 1:9 – If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness).

A quick personal note – I’ve made the mistake in my past, years ago, of moving in with my girlfriend and justifying it because we got a 2 bedroom place, and it saved us money because of bills including rent. Let me just say that there are plenty of excuses out there to justify our actions (money, two bedrooms, we are going to get married anyway, we should live together first to see if we are compatible, or I won’t really know him/her until we live together). I’ll be the first to tell you from personal experience, these excuses do not justify the actions.

Let me encourage you if you find yourself in this situation, there are plenty of ways to change and repent from it. There are plenty of people around you (including the Church) who can help you move out and wait patiently until you are married.

It’s also possible that it might be time to just get married. You might even want to consider going ahead and getting married in the courthouse (which is legal and still in the sight of God) if you didn’t want to wait for a larger ceremony, which you could always do down the road. The point here is to take sin as seriously as possible and make decisions starting today to remove yourself from sin or from being tempted to, and to follow Christ because He is so much better.

Let me also encourage you if you had this situation in the past, that you are forgiven in Jesus Christ. The finished work on the Cross paid the penalty for your past, present, and future sins and God no longer sees you, but rather sees His Son and what He did for you on the Cross.

Questions: So what do you think? Do you see anything wrong with this? What do you see from Scripture? You can leave a comment by clicking below.

Here are other Frequently Asked Questions and how the Bible answers them.

This post and topic has been featured over at WORLD Magazine and you can view the post by clicking here. The Pilgrim Radio Network also conducted a Radio Interview about this topic as well.

Saved by Grace through Faith. In love with Jesus, His Glory, and obviously my beautiful wife Joelle, daughter Peyton, and son Matthew! Seeking Him in everything to glorify Him and spread the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Online & Communications Minister at 121 Community Church.

Please note: We reserve the rights to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

  • Great biblical support here, Mike! Thanks for the transparent blip on your previous decisions, too-very powerful!

    • Thanks Cory! Appreciate the encouragement. I’m learning too the more I share personally, the better it resonates with others.

      Planning on sharing more personal experiences in the future!

  • Jacob

    This article is assuming that anyone living together is automatically engaged in some kind of sexual act. Lets get a few things straight, living together and having sex are two completely different things, they cannot be considered the same thing or else all logic is lost. This article only quotes scriptures pertaining to sexual immorality or marriage when the title is talking about living under the same roof….those scriptures are out of context when applied towards the concept of just living in the same household. The only way any of those scriptures would apply would be if indeed those living together are actually sexually active before marriage. Since when was assuming things considered enough justification to condemn or consider someone “guilty” or “sinful”? A better argument against a couple living together could be made about being above reproach which is found in 1 Timothy 3:2 or better yet the argument of causing a brother or sister to stumble which is found in Romans 14:20-22. Paul said if eating meat or any act/thing truly offends your brother or sister in Christ that could cause them to stumble in their faith should be avoided around them out of respect and love. This is a better argument to make towards the idea of a couple living together then what this article provides….

    • Hey Jacob, thanks for your comment.

      “In the midst of living together, you are also opening the door to even more temptation between you two, and hurting any testimony you may have of following Christ as you proclaim that it is a God glorifying thing to live together before marriage. You are also in danger of leading others down a similar path towards sin because of your example.”

      This was also mentioned within the post to discuss matters of other reasons it wouldn’t be wise for a couple to live together before marriage. Thanks for the Scripture additions as well. I am not 100% sure on 1 Tim. 3:2 working in this area since it is describing leaders within the Church, but for sure in Romans on not being a stumbling block. I’ve added that Romans reference above, good call!

      • Jacob

        “Living together before marriage doesn’t reflect the commitment that God instituted and ordained. The good news is that it is never too late to make a change. God forgives sin.”

        This is a bit far reaching. Living in the same household is far from a sin needing to be repented of. Again, having sex before marriage is clearly communicated in the Bible as being wrong and sinful, but living under the same roof would be a matter of personal conviction and judgement. To call the idea of living together “sin” is a bit far reaching.

        • Ryan Brackett

          Interesting thoughts so far. I pull from Ephesians 5:3-17. For me, it really illuminates the biblical pattern of thinking for a changed, born-again believer. “For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Live as children of light”. We have to remember that we are in this world, but we are not of this world. How we live should not resemble the patterns of this world that simply lead to death, but we pattern our lives by the Word of God and Christ.

          I’d like to take a step back and point something out: It’s pretty clear that sometimes there are circumstances that are unavoidable in life. Someone loses a job, can’t pay rent and has to live either under the same roof with someone or otherwise be out on the street. And that really may happen. I don’t think anyone reading the article thinks this is what the author is talking about. One could even debate that living in an apartment complex with other men and women is sin, and we know that would be one silly debate. Clearly, we’re talking about something different: We’re examining the wisdom and godliness of intentionally living in the same residence with someone of the opposite sex, specifically if there is romantic interest or an existing relationship.

          Let’s even look at v15-17:”Be very careful, then, how you live—not as unwise but as wise, making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil. Therefore do not be foolish, but understand what the Lord’s will is.” Right now, many Christians are staggeringly bankrupt in the area of godly wisdom. They don’t fear God or seek to understand His will. Right there in Ephesians 5:17 we read that we are to not be foolish but rather understand what God wants and what He calls for from us.

          Let’s take a look at what the secular world says, statistically about this. And yeah, it matters. An article from the NY Times has this excerpt: “Couples who cohabit before marriage (and especially before an engagement or an otherwise clear commitment) tend to be less satisfied with their marriages — and more likely to divorce — than couples who do not. These negative outcomes are called the cohabitation effect.” http://goo.gl/N5XdP

          I won’t bombard you with stats, but feel free to research to your heart’s content.

          So hey, don’t get offended or defensive. It’s just a matter of knowing the standard by which we are called by God. He gave us guidelines for a reason – so we would find success.

          Love you guys, love this topic, good dialog!

  • Guest

    I want to encourage you as you teach the truth of the Bible. I am not sure why people seem to want to pick at truth to tear down your thoughts. I have lived 62 years, through the sexual revolution, etc., and I know and have seen what causes people to fall. Thankfully, I was saved, was redeemed and was forgiven and now I can go on. But, there is always some sorrow left when you know you have forsaken the Lord, and I believe you are saying that. Thank you for your words.

    • Thank you so much! Really appreciate the encouragement!!

  • Katrina A. Lane

    What does the bible say your options for divorce and then remarriage are if you are married to someone who is abusive and refuses to get help, or use any of the biblical remedies? If they confessed to be a christian when you married them, doesn’t that constitute them deceiving their spouse? The bible does say that you can divorce do to being deceived. Plus are you then allowed to remarry?

    • Hey Katrina, thanks for your question, great question.

      I am not sure of the reference in the Bible that states that you can divorce if you are deceived, but Jesus stating in Mathew 19:9 about divorcing under the terms of sexual immorality.

      However, when it comes to abuse, that is a serious situation. I would encourage you or anyone who is experiencing something like that to seek help immediately within the Church. It might mean it brings abuse to an immediate halt including separation temporarily (for the eventual purpose of bringing restoration along with the abuse ceasing completely at that point), church discipline, confrontation and counseling, police action, a court order, and other kinds of intervention by church members, family, or friends.

      I don’t believe that is adding anything to what Jesus or Paul said about divorce and marriage in the Bible, but something like abuse needs to be taken very seriously and dealt with immediately.

  • Mael

    I agreed with Jacob as I have lived with my sister and brother in law even before they were married There were few things that I wasn’t comfortable with they’d know of it. Living together under same roof isn’t same as committing a sexual immortality. IF your reason for living together is based on sexual relations, THEN that is sexual immorality AND relationship will fall apart, been there many times, done that and lesson learned. BUT if your reason for living together is based on supporting each other without including sex just because you need sex pleasure for no specific reason, THEN that is an ENTIRELY different story. Sure, people do need this, but in my opinion (which I don’t usually share), this is a personal question and it requires personal answer. All I can say right now is, Bible always warned about sexual immorality, but it never said anything about living together before marriage.

    • Thanks for sharing Mael, I would still agree with the response below to Jacob’s comment as well. There are numerous reasons why couples shouldn’t live together before getting married, some of those are listed below as well. Appreciate you reading and sharing your thoughts.

  • Bobby

    Mike, there is true conviction in the scriptures. I am one who used the above excuses to justify my actions of living with my girlfriend, however as a result we have practiced sexual immorality. My girlfriend and I have come to this realization and definitely going to have to make some changes in our lives outside of repentance. Reading the scriptures for truth it is my understanding that even though we are forgiven after sexually immoral act, GOD still views us as one flesh. I understand currently that we’re outside of God’s will and we can’t expect his blessing for our union (that WE put together prematurely without him) but through repentance. I also can’t assume that GOD erases the union (one flesh, how it’s written in his book of life), in other words we can’t ‘undo’ what’s been done sexually even in the unfortunate event we don’t make it together to holy matrimony. I’m committed the union and desire for our relationship to fall under his grace and guidelines but there some uncertainty that existed with my mate as to her commitment in the long run. From my understanding of ‘the scriptures’ any union that exist between man and woman whether GOD approve or disapprove is still subject to fall under God’s qualification for divorce (adultery). How can we expect a ‘fresh’ start with a “new” mate when we’re bound to each other out of our ignorance? Can we believe that God will somehow bless our new unions because, “It didn’t work out?” Wouldn’t we, one or the other, find ourselves an adulterer in our new unions once the marriage is consummated? It’s no different as to having a baby out of wedlock, aborting the child, and repenting trying to “make it right” with God and expecting a blessing of another child in a sense. I’m sure I could go in detail of the post but it could get lengthy but assist me in my error by directing to further understanding if I’m in error. I can see from previous post that many arguments can be made all for the sake of appeasing our conscience which is why I believe God judges the heart (our true intentions).

    • Thanks Bobby for sharing and for being vulnerable.

      I am sure a comment won’t unpack all of this for you (and it shouldn’t, let the Bible do that), but I would encourage you first and foremost in the area of repentance like it sounds like you are doing and for you and your girlfriend to go through some pre-marital counseling before getting married if that is the route you two are on.

      These are matters you’d want to take care of before getting married because they involve making the decision of are you going to follow what God tells you to do or are you going to follow what you want to do. That would be the same case for any believer or non believer.

      Your question is indeed a tough one because there are various circumstances that the Bible doesn’t speak specifically on so it’s best to discuss what it does say and trust in that. For example, a marriage that involves infidelity or abuse isn’t going to be supported by God. As in if a wife were to leave an abusive husband and then find herself marrying down the road, her next marriage isn’t “voided” because of her previous one. There are so many circumstances with this though and I can’t cover all of them such as seeking help, counseling, prayer, and time/energy/attempts to make things work, etc. in that whole process.

      Another example is when we sin (because we all do), what does God see when He looks at us as followers of Christ? Our sin? No. He sees His Son and doesn’t hold our sins against us because of what Jesus did. If God still did, that would be like saying what Jesus did on the Cross was pointless or not enough. That doesn’t mean however we just treat that as a free game to sin however we want since we are covered, but means that God isn’t going to hold that against us in the present time or in the future. There is consequences yes, but how that all works…I can’t speak to.

      Personal example could be something like this….let’s say you have premarital sex with someone….yes…there are major things that happen with that person Biblically that we probably wouldn’t even understand, but let’s say things don’t work out and you get married later on down the road. God would still love you and see His Son through you in that new marriage, but there could be consequences that you wouldn’t have if you didn’t follow through sinful actions in the past. Kind of like if you are married, what if you are fighting off thoughts with your mind on past girlfriends, etc.? That is one example of temptation you may face that previously you may not have had to.

      Again, Bobby it would be difficult to explain all of this in detail, but I am hoping this gives you a start. I’d encourage you to keep repenting in the areas of sin (like we all need to), strive to live like Christ in every way, and most of all, be thankful and encouraged for what Jesus has done for you on the Cross and remind yourself of this, daily.

      Blessings.

  • lrek

    Wait till your Christian wife wants a divorce(when u have a chronic illness), & u can’t be with your traumatized children like u were before. Btw your Christian pastors & friends disappear. Worse..give bad advice. Marriage should not involve the state. Quite frankly if 2 people r committed living together who says they’re not in covenant. Good luck with the divorce rates in the church…when all the pagentry is gone, & the person wants out you’ll be dealing with bloodthirsty lawyers. I know…it won’t happen 2 U.

    • So sorry to hear of what’s happened for you. I would encourage you to get involved with your local Church that teaches the Bible accurately for counsel and wisdom in these tough situations. Don’t let something like this spur you on to live in isolation away from your brothers and sisters in Christ who we all need each and every day. On top of our relationship with Christ, our growth/sanctification is going to come through the Church.

  • CF

    Mike, thank you so much for this article, you have blessed me by the truths you shared. Just this morning I was trying to figure out where in the Bible it says not to live together and this has made it abundantly clear. God bless.

    • Awesome!! Thanks so much for sharing, love hearing it!

  • sunflower

    I thank you kindly for your insight and direct link to scripture. I almost made this mistake (for the 2nd time) to move out with a boyfriend..but I rather wait on the Lord and have my relationship be blessed. Thank you for clarifying this for me.. I was spinning in equivocation but I see that this is because I am trying to follow my own desire rather than the will of the Lord. God bless.

    • Thanks for the kind words! Speaking from someone who did make the mistake, I can tell you that you’re indeed making the right decision. Anytime you’re choosing God’s will over your own desires is always the right choice! Awesome to hear it!

  • SinnerSavedByGrace04

    My wife and I are providing food and shelter for her brother and his girlfriend who would likely be on the street otherwise. They both claim Christianity but their lifestyle and choices seem to disagree, probably most importantly they wont go to church despite a verbalized intent to go. We have a two bedroom house. Should I insist that one of them sleeps on the couch in the living room, or should I continue to allow them to share a bed? We have already expressed our biblical values concerning premarital sex and I have suggested that one of them sleep on the couch to avoid temptation. I have to balance providing for them and not being a stumbling block. thank you for your insight and council.

    • Thanks so much for this question, appreciate you sharing this. I obviously don’t want to act like I have all the answers to a situation like this, but I can point you in the direction of what the Bible says and what I would personally do.

      I feel like Biblically, it shouldn’t take an investigation into someone’s life whether or not they are a believer. True that anyone can claim Jesus, but if there is no fruit of evidence in their life…it makes it pretty difficult to believe. Not impossible, but difficult.

      The great opportunity with someone who claims Jesus and may not be living in a way that represents Him well and might just be flat out obedience is that it lets you counsel that person Biblically. For example, they both claim Christianity. Well, now that lets you say something like “you guys have told me you claim Christianity, or you follow Jesus, etc….well, this is what the Bible has to say about sex outside of marriage….or this is what the Bible has to say about Church”

      You can counsel them in such a way where you teach them what the Bible says and if they show no interest or don’t care at all about it, I think it’s safe to say you can treat them like unbelievers. Not so much in loving them any differently, but you definitely know how to pray for them now (which is the best encouragement I could give you regardless of what they say).

      Lastly, when it comes your house. It’s your house. It’s the way you want your family to live (glorifying God in all circumstances and sharing the love of Christ) and you setting up boundaries of them not sleeping together, etc. is not too much to ask. In fact, I’d encourage you in a direction of why you haven’t already done that. Whether it’s sex or anything you allow in your home that sets the stage for sin…I would repent of that and apologize to those that you’ve allowed it to happen in front of, and then make a change to not stand for it anymore.

      It helps show them and everyone (and yourself) that you treat sin seriously. My suggestion would be to have some form of conversation with them where you lay out the guidelines if they are to continue to live in your home:

      -Must not sleep in the same room whatsoever or sleep together at all
      -Must attend Church with us each week because we do that as a family
      -Must….whatever else you do here that you’d have everyone else in your home to do

      It’s a privilege for them to be there to have food and shelter and it’s a privilege for you to have the opportunity to share the love of Christ with them during this unique time. If they say no, then they would need to leave and I bet at the end of the day they won’t be left all alone on the streets and there could be programs, shelters, etc. that could take them in.

      Sorry for the long response. Hope that helps!

      • SinnerSavedByGrace04

        Thank You.
        We plan to have a family meeting tonight and this is very helpful

        • Awesome, sounds great! Hope everything goes well!

  • james

    My son has grown up in our church, and was plaing music in the praise bamd. Last year he moved in with his girlfriend amd was told he was no longer allowed to play. He was hurt that it was so callous. No one offered counseling. He quit attendin services all together. A year later no one contacted him. My thought is the church damaged his walk with God. Who is the bigger sinner?my wife amd I have now left as well

    • James, I’m sorry for the response you received. It would be difficult for me to speak on behalf of that local Church or anything, but shows that we all including everyone within the Church still needs Jesus and won’t always handle things perfectly.

      My encouragement to you would be to not let a situation like that distract you or your son away from what you will be held accountable to. A temptation might be to be so upset about what Church’s response, that you become less upset with sin.

      I would say you guys should talk to that Church and provide feedback for them for their growth, still seek out a local Church to be a part of (since we are all called to be in community), and maybe start the Biblical counseling yourself with your son to discuss why He would want to live life that goes against the Bible. And then encourage him to become part of a Church as well regardless of what bad reactions there have been in the past.

      The biggest thing here is how is everyone’s relationship with Christ doing and if any of us are living in sin, that should be addressed first and foremost regardless of reactions around you. Thanks so much for sharing, really appreciate it!

  • Clark

    Mike, I’ve been debating and battling the idea of moving in with my boyfriend for months now. It’s a hard decision. I’m now unemployed and jobs are hard to find around my area. I have to travel an hour away for most job opportunities, which is in the area he lives. Ive sorted through other places I could live, and even the thought of trying to get a place on my own. I can’t afford myself a place and options are looking next to nothing slim. He works away all week and is only home on the weekends. He could use a little help with money and taking care of the house. And taking care of the dog while he’s away. And on top of that, my parents are in a similar boat looking for jobs, and without having to support me being at the house, it would help them as well. I seem to be stuck in a rut.
    Without sexual sins being committed and me sleeping on the couch when he’s home, would that still be wrong?
    I’ve been praying about it and can’t seem to figure it out. I’ve been waiting it out a while now. I didn’t want to make a move being in the wrong.

    • Thanks so much for sharing. All situations are tough and there are a million scenarios where people might be able to get away moving in together (like I’ve done in the past too). My encouragement to you would be if you guys are in this relationship anyway, to consider getting married. If money is a problem, you can get married at the courthouse and do another celebration down the road.

      If marriage isn’t an option anytime soon, I wouldn’t advise you (now or ever) to move in before marriage. Again, there are many scenarios where you or him could sleep on the couch, use 2 rooms, etc. and it may save money, etc. but it isn’t worth it.

      Biblically, what does it show others with your walk with Christ? The message you are sending is “it’s ok to move in before marriage,” when it’s not. Plus, if you (and all of us) are serious about following Christ, then we’ll be serious about sin and want to stay as far away from it as possible including not putting ourselves in situations to sin where living together puts us in all sorts of compromising positions.

      Some practical suggestions would be:

      -If money is tight for your boyfriend, then he should assess what he can live on and adjust his budget, how many jobs he has, etc.
      -If money is tight for your parents, then maybe while you live with them you work or try to help them as much as possible as you prepare for marriage and to move out.
      -What Church are you all a part of? You can ask your local Church for help and seriously pursue what other avenues you can take (which there will be some as you seek them out).

      I would read the Bible, spend time with the Lord, pray, and be diligent about asking the Holy Spirit to lead you in areas away from sin at all costs. Moving in shouldn’t even be considered an option (especially for financial reasons and/or problems) and should only be an option when you guys choose to get married.

      Hope that helps! Thanks again so much for commenting!

  • Alexandria

    Mike, I am a baptized Catholic and I was wondering…is it a sin to live together after getting married through the courthouse before having a ceremony through the church?

    • Great question Alexandria.

      Once you are married through the courthouse, you are legally married and at that point, I believe you can live together and do everything within a marriage that the Bible says you can.

      I’m not aware of any area of Scripture that says you must be married within a Church building or anything, but more in regards to the law and authorities God has put in place – which in this example would be appropriately through the courthouse.

      Thanks so much for asking!

  • Jess

    My fiancé and I legally married in court, however my family does not recognize the marriage until we are joined before God in church. I don’t disagree with that since marriage is meant to be a covenant. However, my fiancé feels we are just as married as the next couple.

    • Hey Jess, thanks for the comment.

      Being that you legally got married, you are married. Even in the sight of God, He would recognize you two as a married couple. Just because it happened in the Courthouse Building vs a Church Building doesn’t mean that God wasn’t present when you got married.

      You and your husband do have an opportunity to honor your parents if they want to have an additional ceremony, which is great, but I would be careful to deny that you are married today since you are. Plus, since it is a covenant and commitment you both have already made to each other, you’ll want to make sure your husband and yourself are in agreement first (since your marriage is now the primary relationship outside of God) to how you want to handle things going forward.

      I would suggest maybe you both seek out counsel from within your local Church about it if you need some more help with this, but at the end of the day, if you’re both legally married…you are married and are within all the rights and privileges that’s allotted towards marriage according to the Bible. That’s great news!

  • Angel

    Hi mike,
    I have a couple in which my husband and i are friends with that insist that there is nothing biblical that states that they can not live together before marriage. We have known them from church and we know that they know it is wrong but they are justifying their actions based on the fact that they will be married soon. They have been engaged for 2 years and at the beginning of their engagement moved into a 2 bedroom apartment and justified that situation by saying they were not staying in the same room but had different rooms at the time. The guy moved out because he felt things were being rushed and now they plan on moving back in together. How do we help them through this situation in love? What scriptures can we have to support this?

    • Hey Angel, great question.

      That is strikingly similar to what I did in the past and how I “justified” moving in with my girlfriend…especially because we got 2 bedrooms.

      I would suggest you read through this blog post slowly. It actually addresses everything you’re asking.

      Outside of talking with them and sharing Scripture with them in what is sin and how to live above reproach as followers of Christ, the best thing you can do is to continue to pray for them and spur them to remain in community within the Church. Prayer will help address their hearts and community can help keep them accountable and help with living options that don’t include living together before marriage.

      Thanks so much!

      • Angel

        Thank u for responding mike. you have alot of great points. i just spoke to a minister about this and he stated that it is not living together that makes it wrong but having sex that makes it wrong. how do u feel about that statement?

        • I can’t really speak specifically to advice given or anything because I don’t have the full context, but I would never encourage anyone to live together before marriage.

          It opens the doors to temptation, is not a good testimony, and more. I discussed this a little more in the post as well.

          • Angel

            ok i will re read your post! Thank you again for your help and insight!

          • Anytime!

  • The Great Multitude

    so what your saying is that if you live together then you going to have sex either way, whether you are a christian or not. I feel like you are speaking this onto peoples lives. Yes I am a Christian, but there is a difference in being a fence sitting christian and truly being in Christ. No where in the bible does it say that a couple can’t live with each other, it talks about the marriage and keeping it pure. First of all if you are dating then you should have that intention of marrying that person if not then don’t date. See if we are truly in Christ and live by the spirit then we can fight any temptation that comes against us, especially when both are in Christ, you can help each other out. We must find are identity in Christ before we can do anything, so if you haven’t found your identity in Christ then i warn you not to live with each other before marriage but if you have found your identity in Christ to over come Satan then go ahead. See we must face Satan not flee from him. Yes temptation can be fought, but you have to be willing and strong in Christ to win over the temptation.

    • Thank you for your comment. I don’t agree that I am telling people what they are doing, but if you read within the post there are plenty of reasons why you shouldn’t live together before marriage. Great point on finding our identity in Christ first and foremost. With that happening, we will think through any decision to see if it will glorify Him and represent Christ well.

      • The Great Multitude

        yes i have read the post and read the bible, but no where does it say that you can’t live together, Its like taking a guy and telling him that he can’t have any electronic devices because if he does then he will look at porn, it his choice either to obey god and not look at porn or disobey god and do. Same thing with living together, you tell a couple that they can’t live together because they will have sex, but its their choice to either obey god and live pure lives until marriage or disobey god and have sex. If the couple is a christian then they know that sex before marriage is against God’s will and wrong, and if they are strong enough christians then they will avoid temptation all together because they are in christ. Its like the pornography example you can only avoid electronics for so long, we shouldn’t need to avoid temptation but confront, not letting Satan say “well you are living together so you might as well have sex”. We shouldn’t have to avoid things to avoid temptation. For example is me, i used to look at pornography all the time, but with other people helping me and God’s help i stopped because i didn’t need it in my life, i didn’t stop using my computer but stopped looking up porn. I’m not trying to bash on your post but i feel like i need to tell you about the revelation i got from God about it.

        • Thanks again for your comment. I would still need to disagree with you on what you are saying the major points are of this post. There’s a lot more to the point of the topic besides just sex. Same thing would go for someone struggling with pornography or anything in regards to our identity being in Christ and thinking through our decisions and circumstances to see if we are glorying Him.

          Great to hear you’ve been walking in community and spending time with the Lord to deliver you from sin. That’s awesome. Praise Him!

        • India Saini

          Omg thank-you sooooo much. Like I totally agree with you and your examples are perfect. You just answered my question to what I’ve been stressing about. Like at home I have had the worst of times. I’m about to be 20 next year and so is my boyfriend. We want to get married and everything, we are in college studying the same thing, and since its so much stress at home, I brought up the suggestion of being roommates. My little sister said that it was against the bible, and I’m like I’ve never seen that verse. Me and my bf both know that we are supposed to wait until marriage for sex. Like that’s not a problem, the only thing I was scared about was whether it would be a sin to live together. Your comment cleared everything up for me. Thanks. And I’ve also been thinking about the courtroom thing, and then like breaking the news to my family later in life. But as for now, I really have made up my mind. :-)

          • Anytime, thanks so much for reading!

            I think that’s a great decision to not do it and to consider getting married before moving in. Best suggestion I could give you is to consider what Jesus has done for you and what His Word says before making any decisions to see if it would be sinful, or would make much of Him!

  • Faith 66

    There is nothing wrong with a man and a woman who are dating living in the same house—if there is nothing immoral taking place. However, the problem arises in that there is still the appearance of immorality (1 Thessalonians 5:22; Ephesians 5:3), and it could be a tremendous temptation for immorality. The Bible tells us to flee immorality, not expose ourselves to constant temptations to immorality (1 Corinthians 6:18). Then there is the problem of appearances. A couple who is living together is assumed to be sleeping together—that is just the nature of things. Even though living in the same house is not sinful in and of itself, the appearance of sin is there. The Bible tells us to avoid the appearance of evil (1 Thessalonians 5:22; Ephesians 5:3), to flee from immorality, and not to cause anyone to stumble or be offended. As a result, it is not honoring to God for a man and a woman to live together outside of marriage.

    • Thanks so much for the comment!

    • hcat

      That’s about what I think. I suppose a couple which was attracted to each other COULD live in the same house without having sex, but it would be hard. If there were other people in the house as chaperones, it might work out.
      I didn’t sleep with my wife before we got married, but we did take some road trips together unchaperoned – always two separate hotel rooms though. I remember a time when even an unchaperoned trip would have been scandalous, however.

  • Faith 66

    Sadly many Christians who attempt to justify a particular action use the classic excuse ‘There’s nowhere in the Bible that it says’ …………..and while that may be true of many things our focus should be on God’s revealed word. For example there is nothing in scripture to overtly tell us that smoking is wrong but most Christians don’t do it as they see it as physically and spiritually unhealthy based on what IS illuminated in scripture about the way that we treat our bodies and how our bodies are the temple of the Holy Spirit. There are many things that the Bible does not out rightly and overtly condemn but when we become true students of the word we will not be consumed with merely looking at what is not in the word but what is. When we rightly divide the word we see that God’s word covers every circumstance and situation that we could ever come across in life because of the Biblical foundations contained in it. The word is a guide of how to live in true fellowship with our creator not an exhaustive list of what we can or cannot get away with.

  • B3579

    Me and my fiancé currently live together. We were both raised in church and have not been walking with god like we should the past couple years. Now we are engaged and have both decided to honor god again. We have no longer been having any sexual relations since this decision. We still live together and even sleep in the same bed. Our wedding is in four months. I have talked to her about getting married at the court house so that we can glorify god in our relationship but she sees that as unromantic and if we did that she thinks there would be no point in having a ceremony. How do I convince her that our current situation does not honor god and that there is nothing wrong with getting married legally now and having a ceremony on the day we already have planned? I just want to be the leader I am called to be in our marriage and am trying to lead us into what I think is the right direction. We have no options in moving out until marriage because neither of us could afford it on our own. We have only recently gotten involved with a church again so we have not made any friends that would help us out with living areangments that we know of. Sorry this was long and thanks for any advice!

    • What I would suggest to you both would be to start seeking some out within your local Church and possibly Staff to get some premarital counseling and just to have some good discussions. That would be key to get involved in the Church since all followers of Christ need to, and would set up a good foundation for your future marriage as well.

      I wouldn’t think of it in terms of convincing your fiance, but rather…how you can pray for her for God to change her heart on the matter. For you both, it’s a bigger question of are you really wanting to follow Jesus and do you really trust Him and what the Bible says about everything, including sin?

      It seems to be when we take sin seriously, we’ll do whatever it takes to turn away from that sin (repent) and follow Christ. As you guys discuss this more, I would start with Jesus and who He is to both of you, and then when it comes to marriage…if you find yourself in a tough situation like this…the question would be why wouldn’t you get married asap in the courthouse to avoid continued sin and/or temptation and/or being a stumbling block to others?

      As you feel convicted that it would honor God to get married now, share that with her and ask her to pray through that, but I would seriously suggest getting counsel from your Church (that’s hopefully teaching the Bible and sharing the Gospel making Jesus everything).

      It’s worth it to take sin as seriously as possible and do everything we can to make wise decisions to avoid it or put us in tempting situations. Christ is bigger than any sinful situation we are in and can deliver all of us from that if we trust Him and follow Him.

  • Savannah

    Do you have to be married by a pastor to be considered married in God’s eyes? Or is getting married in court and verbally committing yourself to one another sufficient? Me and my fiancé we planning on having a court marriage and then having an “official” ceremony later when we could afford it, but now he disagrees and says that marriage in court isn’t enough to be considered married by God. Is a court marriage enough for God?

    • You can get married in a courthouse in front of witnesses and it’s perfectly legal. It would also be in front of God’s eyes because His eyes aren’t limited to a specific building. There’s nothing in the Bible that says that you must be married within a specific Church building by a specific Pastor.

      It’s a great idea to do a ceremony later on if you would like for friends and family.

      If you’re thinking through whether to get married now in a courthouse and ceremony later because you’re living together or in a situation where it would be considered sinful since you’re not married…the best option is to get married as soon as possible. Taking sin seriously is incredibly important.

      • Savannah

        no we are not living together, and thanks for your help:)

  • E.

    My boyfriend and I have been together for two years and we plan on getting married in the next year or two. We are both christian, but he is less strict with his interpretation of the Bible than I am. Ever since we have decided to get married, the issue of cohabitation and sexual immorality has been a recurring issue between us. We have given up sex for the past six months or so, and have mostly given up anything beyond kissing, but “backtracking” in the relationship is hard for my boyfriend because he doesn’t feel that we were doing anything wrong. He feels like he is restraining his affection for me, and it doesn’t make sense to him when we have already decided we will get married. Sexual immorality is one of my weakest areas of sin, so it’s been very hard to stop when I am the only one in the relationship who is convicted to stop. Recently, I’ve decided that I could not in good conscience continue to sleep in the same bed or apartment as him, even though we weren’t technically doing anything wrong. He tries to hide it because he really wants to support my convictions, but I know he feels a lot of hurt and loss during this process. It’s just hard to stand firm when I know I am the one putting him through all this pain. What can I do?

    • Thanks E for the question, really appreciate you being vulnerable and asking for help.

      I would suggest for you both to seek out some premarital counseling at your local Church that you’re a part of. If you’re not part of one, I would really encourage you both to become part of one.

      As followers of Christ, we are called to live life in community, especially within the context of the local Church. If you both are serious about following Christ and call yourself Christians, then you would want to pursue holiness and what the Bible has to say…not only about marriage…but about all sins.

      That would be my best suggestion for a start for you both. Plus, if you both know you’re going to get married, I would urge you to go ahead and get married as soon as possible.

      Does that help for now?

      • E.

        Yes, this helps, thank you! It’s just nice to be able to share my struggles with fellow christians. We are actually trying to find a church community right now. The only trouble is, I’m non-denominational and he’s catholic, which makes things a little more difficult. We’ve been going to my church one week and his church another, which isn’t ideal, but its the best fit we can do right now.

        • Ok great. I would suggest you both pray about it and read the Bible together and individually to see where the Lord will have you both be a part of the Church. Sounds like there are a lot of good things to process through and get some counseling for.

  • Nayomi Fernandez

    My finance and I have a 5 month old baby we never got married because we both scared ourselves away, obviously we opened the door for the enemy to come in, our relationship fell apart because of my past his past, no trust and alot of craziness fighting verbal abuse selfishness, manipulation, lies, everything toxifying sometimes it got physically abusive, he recently served time in jail and hes coming out soon we both met in church, we both know the word …I need major help with the baby and rent, it seems through letters and visitations hes a man of God now and integrity should we work this out and marry so we wont live in sin or should we sleep in separate rooms and get counsling, the other option is for him to live with his alcoholic father thats divorced and is super negative, we both are at the end of ourselves with the lust we clearly see what tore us apart, I almost had an abortion because of the major shame so we both know better than to sleep with each other until we marry, I just wanna do the right thing before God and our daughter we both dont really have a home church, in my gut I kinda of still dnt trust him, he had a major porn problem and lust of the eyes and I called him on it and that was the source of all our explosions I still feel in my heart he waters down the offense, trys to rationalize it with generalization, like other guys have the same problem, im not really sure what to do, am I suppose to turn the cheek forgive keep hopeful and strive for marriage

    • Thanks for sharing Nayomi.

      There’s not going to be a fool proof answer in this situation. The best think I could suggest to you is to seek out Biblical counseling at your local Church. If you are not part of a Church, I would start that asap (maybe even tomorrow since it’s Sunday) and take seriously your relationship with Christ if you indeed follow Christ.

      By doing that first, you will get counsel on how to be a woman of God following Jesus and how that will play out through your baby and potential husband down the road. For everything you expressed above about abuse, trust, etc. you need to get involved in counseling as soon as possible and to take the situation very seriously.

      I would turn all my efforts towards that if I were you vs trying to figure out what a living situation would look like (living together before marriage won’t work anyway), or bills, or anything really. Biblically counseling through the Church is an immediate first step of the long journey that’s ahead of you. The great news is that it sounds like you are ready to take this journey and seek out what the Lord may have for you in this time. Thanks so much for sharing!

  • Becca

    Thank you for you words. I am struggling because of a very troubled and difficult relationship, and I moved 1100 miles away from all family and friends to marry a man I had loved for years. I knew we were going to marry and since we were committed to each other I have been justifying it for a while. Not only has it been 17 months and still no ring, but I found out he slept with what I thought was an ex-girlfriend and hdt it from me with a huge tangled web of lies just 9 months ago. I love him dearly, and stayed (the hard thing to do) to make this work, and despite what all others told me, I believed he had gotten saved after it happen. I have struggled with trying to learn forgiveness, (which I always thought I was good at till now), and trying to move past it all, but now I find myself in a financial nightmare where I cannot move out except to move 1100 miles back and leave a good job I really like and feel God has led me to.
    I am struggling today, I am praying and I am searching the scriptures. Thank you for your frank honesty.
    Becca
    As if this wasn’t beating me up inside daily, I am struggling with how to forgive and that is a dangerous cancerous thing to harbor wrongs in your heart when you cannot forgive.

    • Hey Becca, first think you for sharing what you did. It’s an incredibly tough position to be in, but you definitely have some choices you can make.

      Are you a part of a local Church? You would want to get into counseling immediately (even if you don’t continue in the relationship) to walk through all of this. Also, to get teaching and encouragement to forgive anyone because of how Jesus has forgiven you.

      In regards to any trust issues, etc. I don’t think I would be qualified to really go there, but my honest response would be that you need to move out…at least for a season of time and see if both of you are willing to work on things biblically and then can move back on after you are married. But I would not go about doing this alone, you need to do this with the Church and with other believers who can keep you accountable and walk this with you.

      God may have moved you into a position (at your job), but wouldn’t be honored with the living lifestyle and everything that’s going on so if you needed to make a decision that means you would have to leave, etc. that’s not a bad option.

      At the end of the day, if you are a follower of Christ….that means you are now living for Him and not for yourself. That includes striving to be as holy as possible (and running away from sin as far as possible) because Christ deserves nothing less from what He has done for us.

      If you’re a follower of Christ, you’re a new creation and don’t live for yourself anymore, but for Him. In any situation…it’s a matter of if God is calling you to do it for His glory.

      A blog post or this comment won’t be suffice to really walk you through this so becoming a part of a bible believing community would be huge for you.

  • allie

    Thanks Mike. My situation…pregnant and moving in w/baby’s dad. How much support should I expect from my parents? They want us to marry. We don’t know if we will stay together anyway. They say it’s wrong to live together. They say they love us but if we wait, we are on our own as far as finances go. They are not rejecting us but they don’t agree. What to do?

    • Thanks Allie for the comment.

      There is no simple answer for the tough situation you’re in. I would suggest that everyone starts with if you are following Christ or not. Because if you start there, then you either follow what the Bible teaches on all of this or not.

      The best suggestion I could give you is to get involved in your local Church that teaches the Bible and teaches that Jesus is the only way to salvation and to God. You want to get involved to also get counseling on the matter.

      Your parents may disagree with your lifestyle and may not financially support you (which is totally their choice). I would focus more on if you are following Christ, to not put yourself in a tempting situation which would include moving in with your boyfriend….and to seriously consider marriage since you both are having a child and hopefully were already considering marriage since you were both involved anyway.

      Hope this helps!

  • Az

    I total agree with what God’s word says. Today ppl do not read HIs word so how would they know. Knowledge is the key. My daughter is a sophomore in college and is struggling with the same issue you did, she can save 10thou a yr. by living with her boyfriend and they are gonna get married anyways…….. I believe God will bless their marriage if she will honor God and not live with him. Thank you for all your info. Pray for us we are going to talk this weekend about the situation

  • Jesus

    Fuck you all.

  • Trey

    Hi, I am 20 years old. A sophomore in college. My girlfriend is a freshman and plans to move about six hours away to go to school. She is new to the church and enjoys attending my invite to services. My dad is a pastor and she knows it. I am comfortable around her parents and she is comfortable around my parents. Anyway, I was planning on staying while she went off to school. Until she asked if I could move in with her, because she wanted me to help with rent and she thinks it’ll help our relationship because it’s been a long distant relationship for two years. I looked into it and there are opportunities there for me. School is cheaper, rent will be less, excellent nursing program. And for me to be 20 years old, I want to go out and learn to become independent, I don’t want to end up staying on the native reservation my whole life. (which is my justification) I spoke to this with my parents but they don’t really agree with my choice. I’ve been praying about it for about two months now and I’m leaning more into going and moving in with her. But after reading this article, I am a bit skeptical and reevaluating everything.

    • Hey Trey, thanks so much for commenting…really appreciate it.

      Everything starts with your relationship with Christ. If you follow Jesus, then you will take things in the Bible seriously. You can still grow up, be dependent, and become a man (which is awesome that you want to do this), without that road taking you into sin. There’s also nothing wrong with staying home, working hard, and saving money as you prepare to move out in adulthood.

      That’s not really the point though. The big point here is if you are a believer and if your girlfriend follows Christ. If she does, then see too should take seriously the things in the Bible. Moving in together (might look great on paper and will save you money), but is absolutely not worth it and not worth the sin. Trust me because I have thought the same and done the same and I would never encourage someone to make those mistakes. They effect you for the rest of your life…not just during that season.

      I couldn’t give you the most sound advice from a distance like this on your relationship, but what will help your relationship the most will be to treat it as Godly as possible. That includes being pure within the relationship. THAT will tell you if it will work out or not.

      Start with following Christ and what the Bible says and go from there. If you read the post, you’ll see that living together is not going to be justified by God…so why would we think we can justify it? I’d talk more with your parents about this and maybe seek out some counseling from your local Church.

      Hope that helps man! Keep me posted!

  • Pekka

    Hi Mike,
    I was about to write a blogpost on our church website (saalem.com) when I came across your excellent post. I copied the text to our “pastors blog” section with a link to your blow. Please let me know if that is ok. If not, I will remove the blogpost immediately. Thank you for an excellent and Biblical article!!

    • That’s perfectly fine! Thanks so much for sharing, appreciate it and encouraged!

  • California Dan

    you should move with her, after all how can anyone claim to really be 100% sure of what god wants anyone to do? think about it there are thousands of major religons out there each one claiming to be the one true religon and each of those thousands have millions of people like this guy claiming to share knowledge that may work for them but certainly not for everyone. I can tell you from personal experiance if I had married any of my ex gfs before living with them or traveling with them, I’d be divorced three or four times already. Which incedently holds true to the bible belt having THE highest divorce rates in the country, also that brings up another point what if your traveling together? does that count as living in sin? haha I’ll tell you whenever you need a laugh just look up christian fundamentalist’s blogs.

    • Appreciate the comment Dan, thank you for sharing.

      The best advice I could give you in regards to this is that this post is based from the Bible. Instead of my opinion, the Bible is clear on these matters so it sounds like your question is more about the validity of the Bible as opposed to this topic being sin.

      Without knowing matters for sure, I would probably suggest that if your past relationships broke up because of living together or traveling with them, that it probably wasn’t going to work out anyway down the road and was a good thing you didn’t get married, but that’s more based on what principles would you live by along with your potential wife.

      Divorce rates are certainly climbing, but I’d be careful on trusting whatever statistics you are pulling from. The “bible belt” may or may not have a lot of them (I don’t know), but one thing’s for sure, for those who actually follow Christ and are obedient to what the Bible has to say….divorce rates are the lowest in the country for these people.

      For your point on traveling, get two rooms. Simple. But again that is based on someone who wants to live according to the Bible and out of obedience for what Jesus has done for them. Why would any follower of Christ put themselves in a situation to be tempted to sin or lead others down a path of sin?

      Thanks again!

  • Abz

    Hey Mike, I’m having some thoughts between me and my girlfriend. We have committed sinful acts and we are repenting them and we started to increase our relationship with God. We still love each other very much, which is why we both agreed to wait for marriage because we aren’t feeling too good about committing sin. But my question is, would it be alright if we move in together BUT not alone? We want to become independent specially me since I used to follow the Islamic belief and I don’t want to continue to live under my parents Islamic rules. And her parents are giving her a hard time for no apparent reason and telling her to move out. I would like to know if we move in with 2 other friends each in our own separate rooms (3-4), would that be a better way to remove our self from temptation? We have started praying together every night through phone or skype for God to give us strength and thank him for everything hes done for us and we have also started reading the Bible together. We live in NY so its very hard to find a cheap place for each of us.

    • Thanks so much for the question and sharing this, really appreciate it!

      Are you guys part of a Church? You’re going to want to be part of a Bible believing and teaching Church…one that teaches salvation is through Christ alone and everything He has done for us, and for those that believe and follow Him…they are saved.

      I think it would be great for you guys to do that and seek pre-martial counseling. If you’re serious about getting married, there’s no reason not to. More importantly, if you’re serious about following Christ and believing the Bible, then Church is not an option…and you guys really need to be part of one.

      Tim Keller’s Redeemer Church in NY would be amazing if you could get there.

      I’d encourage you to seek being independent and live out of your parents house if possible (sounds like you’re doing this), but I wouldn’t advise for you two to move in together…even if it was with 10 other people. Reason being is that you guys will be just as tempted in various scenarios like that and it still brings into question of what type of relationship with Christ do you want including the example you’re setting for those within the Church and outside of the Church.

      At the end of the day, if you follow Christ…you’ll treat sin as seriously and dangerously as possible because of just how bad sin is…and how much Jesus had to suffer for those sins. With that being said, you’ll do everything you can to kill and stay away from sin, trusting for the Holy Spirit to be the deliverer and to continue to forgive you, etc. through Jesus.

      Does that make sense?

      • Abz

        Yes thank you so much, and yes we are part of the same church we both go every Sunday, only in an emergency is when we don’t. Shes been going for a few years now and I just recently about 5 months ago. But i guess I’ll have to move somewhere else and she can move in with her friend. Thank You for your help!!

        • Awesome! Be encouraged that God will be glorified in your decision and it will help the relationship tremendously!

          Maybe you guys can get in pre-marital counseling at your Church? That would be great!

          • Abz

            Will do!! again Thank you so much.

          • Anytime!!

  • angela

    I just recently joined this church and the pastor was talking about how a woman lievs with her parents until she gets married. Well, I’ve been moved out since I was 18 and I was married once (because the father of my child’s parents wouldn’t let us move in with them unmarried) and now I’m divorced. My new boyfriend is divorced. We will eventually marry each other, but I’m not sure if I should move into his house or if he should sell it and we’ll get another one. (we each have thee children). The question is, does that mean a woman shouldn’t move out of her parents’ house if she’s not planning to marry at all? After I divorced my first husband (he was abusive), I did move back home and my parents got upset when I moved myself and the children out of there a few years later because they wanted me at home until I married. I don’t want to go against the bible, but if you do live seperatey and you both have a place to live before that and it’s too expensive to have two house payments … how do you handle that? what if my lease runs out first?

    • Thanks Angela for sharing and asking great questions!

      A women can absolutely move out of her parents house whenever she sees fit as an adult…no question there…obviously she would want to think wisely on paying for her bills, etc. and providing as she lives in her own as an adult. There’s nothing in the Bible that would say this is wrong. The wrong part is if she was moving in with her boyfriend or finance, etc. before marriage.

      Everyone has difficult circumstances and situations and yours is no different, it’s really tough like you’re saying to have two house payments and everything. I would consider some things to help guide you in these tough decisions:

      -What glorifies God and exalts Christ in this situation?
      -Are you doing everything you can to stay away from sin as far as possible? Even if it’s inconvenient?

      I would talk to your Pastor for more guidance as well, assuming he’s leading a Bible believing Church that teaches that Jesus is the only way and believes Scripture is the authority. There’s no doubt some scenarios that must be available for you to act on that doesn’t include moving in with anyone before you get married. If you both feel the Lord leading you to get married, maybe you just need to get married and then you’ll be good to go.

      Biggest takeaway is are you making decisions as a follower of Christ or a follower of self. You’ll know what to do as you read the Bible and make your decisions as a follower of Christ.

      Hope this helps!

  • lala

    Hello,
    Me and my boyfriend are both waiting until marriage for sexual activity. We have not even come close. Everytime I do research, living together before marriage is always about not having sex before marriage and not having the temptation. Because we are both committed to not having sex until we are married we do not have any temptation. Therefore, I do not see the issue with living with him. So why is this “so wrong”?

    • Thanks so much for commenting, really appreciate it.

      It’s not just a matter of sexual activity, but more importantly treating sin seriously. If there is any chance of temptation or leading others down a sinful path, why would you even take a chance with it?

      It’s a matter of if you are following Jesus, to follow His Word (The Bible) and make much of Him in everything you do. That includes decisions like not moving in with your boyfriend or girlfriend until marriage because of what that opens the door to. You may not be tempted today, but that’s not the point. Also, anyone else can look at think it’s a wise, “Christian,” decision to do so, and they sin. You would have played a role in that. Here’s an excerpt from the post that addresses your question:

      “When it comes to living together before marriage, you may think you are fine just because you are “living together” and nothing more, but I would suggest that you are not. In the midst of living together, you are also opening the door to even more temptation between you two, and hurting any testimony you may have of following Christ as you proclaim that it is a God glorifying thing to live together before marriage. You are also in danger of leading others down a similar path towards sin because of your example (Romans 14:13-22).”

      Hope that helps, thanks!

  • Roberta

    My problem is my adult daughter. We raised her Catholic (yes, I know this is not a Catholic Forum so please bear with me) including sending her to Catholic School from pre-school – 12th grade. We made sure she was involved in CCD, youth group, church activities, and the like. We let her have some public-school friends and friends of different religions, buy we always made our values clear to the parents of her friends before they visited each other. Since most religions have similar values (not drinking under 21, not doing illegal drugs, not having sex outside marriage, not engaging in homosexuality and not suppporting any of those things), we really just wanted to make sure that the parents were on the same page we were. We made it clear that there were to be no friends in the bedroom (male or female) and we restricted access to music/tv shows/books/movies that went against our values. We respected other people’s homes and made it clear that their rules applied, but that if our daughters came to their homes, they were expected to follow our rules still while respecting their rules. If anything happened that went against this, we asked for open communication. Not a parent had a problem with this! All were glad that we had laid down those rules.
    Both daughters were allowed and encouraged to work if it wasn’t the school year, butt hey were to show us where the money was spent and we discussed it if they couldn’t prove it or if we didn’t approve. We didn’t allow them to get driver’s licenses because we were always available to take them where they needed to go and we really just didn’t want the opportunity for rebellion to be there. Also, we were trying to instill good habits of responsibility and self-respect. All dates were to be public, for short periods, and we wanted to meet the parents and discuss values they had in dating. Again, all thought that was great. We made it clear that while our daughters may have had a pure intention of just watching a movie at their boyfriends house, or that they might just want a private conversation with a friend in their room, or that they may not have wanted to drink (just go to a party where people were), not everyone had that intent and it was a bad idea to make it LOOK like they were condoning anything. We always told them to avoid the appearance of impropriety in the first place – not to let someone have the opportunity to take advantage of them and not to share private details of their life with people who didn’t need to know.
    We didn’t have a problem with our youngest, it was our oldest. We constantly caught her (or had her little sister tell us) that she was watching some TV show we didn’t approve of, locking herself in her room, or having phone conversations that were NOT appropriate. So we removed her door, we kept her out of her room unless she had to change/sleep/get something and we arranged it so that a friend of ours would “drop by” on the rare occasion she was home alone or we or someone would stop by or show up wherever she was supposed to be when she was with friends and it sounded “funny”. While that’s not terrible rebellion, it really should have told us something. We thought that she would grow out of it and we felt VERY blessed that we had so little trouble with her.
    Then she went to college and we found otu she was NOT attending church, that she had quit the work-study job that I had helped her find in place of one that had her working OFF campus until late. She was not attending classes or doing very well in school at all and we began to suspect that she was part of a gay st udent group. That is because I went through her computer (which we paid for) and found some websites that she had frequented. I was astounded at the things she was saying and talking about (she had gotten drunk TWICE, tried pot, had a blog where she was very open about sexuality and her dorm room reeked of smoke!) She, of course, was VERY disrespectful toward us, complaining that we were on her computer – and her roomate mouthed off to us too! We told her that we were going to speak to the resident advisor and that we were staying around until she agreed to an emergency meeting with the building supervisor in order to get her a new roommate to get her out of there.
    We agreed to give her one more chance for another semester, introduced her to the priest and youth group leader at the campus church and gave them OUR phone number, facebook, and e-mail address. We live 200 miles away so it is hard to come up all the time Of course, our daughter was VERY unhappy to find out that we were joining facebook too and that I started following her on twitter – I was NOT happy with what I was reading! I found out later that she made a NEW facebook and twitter account and is now living a “double life” We have a relative who lives 45 minutes away and who has agreed to come visit every other weekend. The remaining two weeekends, we try to come up so that she can go to church. We requested her schedule, sylabus, and work schedule (it is set) so that we can know what to talk about with her and to make sure she IS going to class and doing well. She is still very disrespectufl and constantly yelling at us that we are ruining her life
    We finally got tired of it and told her that we would be withdrawing her from college and helping her pack because she was coming home and that she could attend a community or online college from home. She hung up on us, refused to answer the phone, and when we arrived, we found through her roommate that she had packed her things and moved in with a complete stranger! Our daughter has dropped out of school, gotten a new job (she won’t tell us where), and will not tell us where she lives or who she lives with.
    I feel like making a fake facebook myself, pretending to be a young adult like her and seeing if she’ll add me so tha I can keep tabs on her! I didn’t tell my husband that because I’m afraid that IS what he will do. She does communicate sometimes, though e-mail and facebook, to say that she is paying her bills, that she is going to college again when she’s “old enough” to take a loan out without a co-signer, or when she saves up month for a few semesters. She claims that she is paying her bills, that her new roommate is “great about all that” and that they don’t tell her what to do. I am so afraid for her! Afraid of what that roommate (male or female, it’s any guesss) will do to her, afraid of the people she’s hanging out with, afraid of where she’s earning her money (she seems to have a lot of it judging by the pictures she shows of her new phone, tablet, clothing) We have talked about coming up to visit and she has suggested meeting at a hotel or at a restaurant (offered to pay, even) because she still doesn’t want us to know where she lives and works!
    It *seems* like she is taking care of some responsibilities but we don’t know if this is a boyfriend she is living with or who orw hat is going on! I do see things in the background of the pictures that disturb me. One of our relatives pointed out some … toys and I definitely saw some drug paraphinalia. She is losing weight rapidly and NOT dressing the way we raised her too. And she CERTAINLY is not going to church. there are also tagged pictures of friends of hers and there are always males in the background.
    This isn’t exactly “cohabiting” but our attempts at being loving, continuing to point her in the right direction, keeping communication up, and encouraging the youth group leaders and church membesr to drop by and visit her have backfired! I would love some advice, my husband and I are at a loss and people at our church are no help. Many say we were too strict and that we should have taught her more about how to be independent, how to handle situations (she has been taken advantage of, her old roommate told us that much), and she is TERRIBLE with directions so I don’t know how she would ever get out of a bad situation – she still does not have a license and I know she doesn’t have a car. We have talked to our priest and he frequently messages her and e-mails her (as do people in our family and church) with letters of concern (and some chastising) and they go unanswered. When she does answer, she is very disrespectful and stops just short of cursing any family membe rout! This little girl used to be so afraid of hurting her elder’s feelings that she had to be encouraged to correct an adult when they said her name wrong! This is a little girl who te food she was allergic to because she didn’t want to hurt feelings!
    What on earth can we do, where did we go wrong, and how do we get her back? All I want is to have her home or at least in our hometown to get her back on the right track and back in school I don’t even care at this point whether or not she joins “our” church or another one, as long as she is active in it! I don’t care if she’s addicted to drugs, pregnant, has a disease … anything. I want her in counseling, I want her in school, I just want her back I want her to be honest and to go back to making safe decisions
    I apologize for the length, I guess I keep telling the same sto ry over and over again because no one in church is able to really help (just pray and write her) and no one in our da ughter’s area will tell us where she lives and what she is up to.

    • Hey Roberta, thanks so much for sharing.

      I can’t even imagine what you guys have gone through over the years and can’t speak from personal experience. I do have a background in the Catholic Church (you can read my testimony at http://www.beforethecross.com/encouragements/jesus-died-for-me/ )

      All I can do is maybe share some personal experiences and share some options that you guys have Biblically.

      My life growing up in the Catholic Church was full of rules and traditions and “things” for me to do without asking questions as to why I was to do them. I can tell you as I grew up, these played no role in my personal life outside of rebellion because I just had to follow “so many rules.” At the end of the day when I was growing up, there was nothing about the Gospel…nothing about Jesus…and nothing about having a relationship with God. It was all about what I had to do (including go to Church) to “be right” with God. That never had a lasting impact.

      I can’t speak personally into your situation, but my main suggestion would be to start with prayer. If you follow Christ, then at one point in your life you made a decision to trust on Faith. Why would your life be any different today in regards to Faith?

      Pray, through faith, believing God will change her heart and lead her in repentance. Pray ultimately for her to become a follower of Christ (her actions show she isn’t a follower of Christ).

      Growing up in the Church personally, I told many people that I was a Christian, but I never was. I never followed Christ and only followed myself.

      At this point and with her age, being moved out and an adult, all you can do is pray and keep taking advantage of opportunities to love your daughter and communicate with her. Something not to do (in my opinion) would be to try to control the situation, or force her to do anything (sounds like past situations like this drove her more into rebellion…it would have for me too in the past). The more you push and try to control the situation, the more likely she’ll be to run away.

      The more you pray and love her and share Christ’s love for her offering her forgiveness for everything she has done….the better odds of her responding to you. Plus, you have to forgive her for everything she has done because Christ first loved you. (1 John 4:19)

      Hope that helps and hope that’s a start. Thanks for sharing!

    • Kaite

      Roberta: just happened to see this. Why not use technology to your advantage? She is probably telling on herself thru her computer/tablet/fancy phone because some of them have GPS and all leave a “trail” See if there is someone computer-savvy in your church who can figure out the ISP she is posting from or anything like that. Does she post pictures when she goes out to restaurants? If so, you can VISIT that restaurant, show her picture to people (staff and customers) and tell them you are very worried. Tell them you have no idea where she lives, that she is vulnerable and you fear for her safety. People are amazingly helpfuland since you are not the police but a parent, I am sure they will be willing to tell you SOMETHING. Even a simple, “She is here every Friday. She comes in with a guy named Bill. They live in International Apartments” I don’t know what you will learn, but ou can find little clues like that that will help you

    • Eden

      Maybe you should just let her be. You CANNOT force a child into something. You really went wrong in raising her on such strict rules. She was a kid, you need to realize you’re supposed to be raising a future adult not a child. Which is what you must have treated her like all her life by the sound of it. You’re supposed to GUIDE her not force her. It sounds like there was a lot of forcing going on in your household. She wants to become her own person, not a mini you or your husband. Because you went wrong in forcing her through life with going to church and not allowing her to have the freedom of expression, freedom is what she is finding now. In America we have the right to be free. She more than likely has a waitressing job and is not pregnant and I doubt she is addicted to drugs. So you can relax. But let her be for crying out loud, she’s a young adult and you took away most of her childhood with all these restrictions. She will make it out just fine and someday she may allow you all to have more of a part in her life, but you can bet that if you keep trying to change her she will keep rebelling against you. Let her be herself. Accept her for who she is and remember that she’s learning about life. Someday she might thank you. I’m sure she still has god in her heart and he will forgive her. Just let her be, please, I can’t stress it enough. She needs to find herself because she never has found herself, she’s only been a carbon copy of someone else.

    • alyssa terranova

      Where do I start? I find that there are certain personalities that will resist even more, with force.
      You can parent anyway you like, but be prepared to deal with the consequences. You really had a heavy presents over her life and it back fired. Why would you now continue the same behavior expecting a different result?
      I’ve noticed that when someone is raised with a very strict household, they actually go overboard later on.
      If you do find out where she lives, what are you going to do?
      Really please read what you wrote… You go through her computer, took off her door … Where has this gotten you? If you continue this I can almost guarantee you will lose your daughter for good.
      Christianity is not about forcing, it’s about teaching.

  • Justin Failing

    The only thing I see you saying is dont sin cause someone may see it and sin too. The bible doesnt say dont live together. And we have temptation to sin everyday and we all do. Im a recovering alcoholic so should I not go in a store that sells beer because I may be tempted to buy it? God never once said it is wrong to live together. That is man’s politics in gods word. If youre alone with your man or woman you may be tempted to sin with them. So every date should be chapparoned no matter the age right?

    • Thanks for the response Justin, appreciate you commenting.

      There’s a lot more to it than just being a temptation (although that is huge) or leading someone else to sin (which is important enough as well).

      I can’t answer your question specifically about alcohol, but should an alcoholic avoid a place that sells alcohol if it tempts them and puts them in a bad situation? Absolutely! Anything that is a wise decision to avoid sin because we want to be obedient to the Lord just shows how high of a priority it is for us to serve and make much of Him.

      Same goes for your other question. Thanks again!

      • Justin Failing

        So what if they sleep in seperate rooms and honor god in everything they do? We all have a commitment to the lord. Can 2 ppl live together without defiling the marriage bed? Yes they can. I am dating a woman and have told her no funny business till marriage. We will not even kiss as a married couple does. So why could that not continue in the same house?

        • For those who follow Christ, they are committed to serving the Lord in everything that they do. We all don’t hold separate commitments on separate terms, where we define what those terms are. Instead, the Bible defines what those terms are.

          If you read within Scripture, you see just how ugly and bad sin is. Just how much our Savior had to suffer and take on for us…in our place…in regards to sin.

          That being said, any type of sin (and there are a lot of them) should be taken seriously and be hold in a view where on top of letting the Holy Spirit lead us, we make wise decisions to stay away from them, not put ourselves in situations where they could happen at all possible, and consistently discerning our actions to see if they could lead someone else down a path of sin or following Christ.

          Just like as the post says above, living together before being married has multiple opportunities for sin while sin is more than likely being committed anyway, but the biggest question isn’t…..what about this situation or that situation….and instead is more of….what am I doing to glorify God in everything I do as a share the love of Christ. When I stand before the Lord and give an account for all my actions, will they line up with Scripture?

          Thanks for sharing.

  • CA Dan

    your right Justin! the bible doesn’t say a lot of the things these people bring up. What they do is cut and paste passages to fit what thier version of “christianity” is. Then string them together and judge and condem people. Well doesnt the bible say “judge not lest ye be judged”? or how about a more modern take; “people who live in glass houses should’nt throw stones” People need to speak up for themselves and question what they are told after all faith un-examined is no faith at all.

    • Thanks Dan for sharing, appreciate you commenting and joining the conversation.

      I absolutely agree with you that people should seek out what they are told and see what lines up with the Bible or not. For those who are interested in the Bible, God, Jesus, etc. they should read the Bible for themselves (from cover to cover) to get a better understanding of what the Bible actually says. Obviously relationships can help and they should get in a Church (since the Bible says so), but can’t substitute those things for not spending time with the Lord themselves while reading the Bible. Definitely should examine, great point!

      What that examination of Scripture, you’ll see that at the end of the day…it’s all about Jesus. The Word shows that throughout the OT leading up to the NT, including the Gospels, and then everything after that still points to Jesus. It’s all about Him and will always be all about Him.

      For those who follow Jesus, we would take sin seriously and not put ourselves in many situations where sin can take place, have a temptation, or lead others down a path. A follower of Christ would think first, “is moving in with my girlfriend or boyfriend” Godly? Would it make much of Christ? Would I represent Jesus well by doing this? Is this a wise decision according to the Bible? Then…they would act on that.

      God even calls those who follow Him (the Church) to be able to look at those on the inside of the Church and judge accordingly with their sin. That goes for everyone since we are all sinners, but to help a brother or sister of Christ out by pointing out their sin is a loving act, not a judgmental act. Judging is simply watching what is going on and loving others by showing them sin is wrong and they need to repent. “Condemning” someone (which I think is what you mean…like telling someone they are going to heaven or hell) is ultimately up to the Lord since God can only look on the heart.

      We know from Scripture that for those who trust in Jesus and follow Him, they will spend eternity with God in heaven. For those who do not follow Christ, they will spend eternity apart from God in hell.

  • Mary Yeo

    what if someone says they are married since they are having sex and living together. no need for wedding or paper

    • Hey Mary, thanks for your question.

      That line of thinking is the same as just making up any reason that you “could be married.” I could just say that my girlfriend and I looked at the sky today…so we must be married. Or we shared a sno cone today…so now we are married. Maybe we even kissed each other on the cheek…we’re probably just married now.

      God has put everyone in authority in place and we are called to follow the laws of the land (unless they go against God directly). In our culture and area, we know we are legally married when there’s a legal ceremony done including when we get our papers. When we are pronounced husband and wife legally, THEN, we are married.

      Anything else besides that is just us making an excuse and a reason to be married to do whatever we want to do (typically sin) and to justify our actions. In the case of the couple you are referring to, they are not married. More importantly, they are sinning and have no regard to what the Bible has to say.

      • Mary Yeo

        what if they argue that there are no passages in the bible saying that. that i am just mouthing worldly ideas

        • I would start in the beginning of Romans 13 for some clear passages on that.

          I would also consider just praying for them and encouraging them to become part of a Church and even have some conversations with them about the Gospel. Maybe ask them “who is Jesus to you?”

          That can help determine where they are at because if they claim that Jesus is their Lord and Savior, then the way they are living doesn’t match up to what the Bible has to say.

          If they don’t claim to be followers of Christ, praying would be huge. We can’t expect those who don’t follow Christ to live in such a way that would be God honoring. At the end of the day, people are either for God or against God…there’s no grey area.

  • Aaron

    I totally agree what say, but what if you stay under the same roof as your fiancé and your parents are there too and your not even sleeping in the same room? And they say it’s tempting but we don’t find it tempting whatsoever not cause we wanna wait until marriage anyway cause that’s what the bible says.

    • Hey Aaron, great question.

      I think anyone can make a case for staying in the same place and not being tempted…even getting two bedrooms (I even did that), but we underestimate sin or even being anywhere close to sin.

      If we are following Jesus, then we will take sin very seriously. If there’s even an option for sin to occur or to lead others down a path where they can be tempted to sin, then it’s not a wise decision for us to entertain that. Living together regardless of the situation is just opening yourselves up for not just sin, but to lead others into that. We may not take an account before the Lord of someone’s literal sin choice, but we will take an account for helping them down a path towards sin.

      At the end of the day, our questions would be better served towards God through prayer, the Bible, and through the local Church to see how we are doing at just being a disciple of Jesus vs figuring out “how far is too far” in our situation…that question alone shows that we are more concerned with getting away with however much we want to instead of just being obedient to what the Bible already says.

      Hope that helps.

      • Aaron

        Yes it yes it helped!:)) there’s 5 other people living in the house (her family) it just not us getting a place with two room in it cause that’s wrong I believe and I know the family is fine with it and that’s all who know but I don’t wanna say that not telling anyone cause we wanna hide it which is wrong too but at the same time it’s not cause it might lead others down the wrong path which I totally understand cause I for sure don’t wanna have influence about leading someone the wrong way when I (we) don’t even try to!

        • It’s always a great thing to be able to line ourselves up with Scripture to see if we are living according to how God says to live. Ultimately, being joyfully obedient because of everything Jesus has done for us. That includes doing things that God says is wise even if we have the best intentions and say we would never think of/do anything sinful…God still knows much more than we ever could so I’d rather trust Him to guide me instead of myself.

          • Aaron

            Thank you so much for your help!!:)

          • Anytime!

  • CA Dan

    “that question alone shows that we are more concerned with getting away with however much we want to instead of just being obedient to what the Bible already says.”
    That statement alone says it all…THE BIBLE ACCORDING TO MIKE MOBLEY, I don’t think anyones trying to get away with anything, only doing what feels right and natural to them. And as I said before theres plenty of ways to interpret the bible, If I wanted to I could use the bible to say God only wants you to get food from chick fillet becasue they’re closed on the sabbath and anyone who gets service or does work is a sinner and trying to find ways around and get away with it. I could find bible verses, psalms quotes etc and concoct anything I want from that brew. I have to ask; just how concerned is God with our paper marriage licenses? will he be inspecting them in heaven? is that of more a concern to him then living a good liffe with the person you love? even if GASP, you’re not married?

  • CA Dan

    People: you need to figure out what the bible means to you individually, the bible does not belong to a select few to interpret, but to everyone who believes. Just as your relationship to god is unique and personal so is your interpration of the bible, life and ultimatly what’s right and wrong. There are certian universal truths that we understand to be true, murder, rape, greed etc…but we aren’t arguing those we are arguing a MAN MADE insitution, don’t forget that men in the bible also had many wives at one point, should we too? when we let people like Mike Mobley or anyone else tell us whats good for us and wag their finger in our face we need to speak up and I applaud those of you who have. Don’t forget there was also a time when a divorce was considered a sin the same way living together is.

    • Dan, I think you make a great point that no matter what anyone is reading, people should read the Bible for themselves and see what the Lord is actually saying in there. Luckily, He does give us right and wrong…truth and facts…versus so many things in the Bible that we try to interpret and make it our own when there are multiple areas in Scripture that speak to things like:

      What is sin and what is not sin.
      That Jesus is the only way to God.
      That we are all sinners in need of salvation.
      That salvation is available to all people who choose to believe and follow Jesus.

      There’s much more there and I even wrote about the dangers of blogs and social media – http://www.beforethecross.com/encouragements/dangers-of-blogs-and-social-media/

      At the end of the day, the questions we ask ourselves should be more concerned with what the Bible actually says vs asking “how far is too far.” If we are following Christ, we will always be more concerned with Him and His glory instead of being more concerned with ourselves.

      • Jonathan Hughes

        The body not able to be in God’s kingdom in the way it is is in sin.

  • Jonathan Hughes

    Absolutely nothing wrong with it. Guilt giving devils in religions are hard at work hiding truth. Deuteronomy
    22: 28If a man find a damsel that is a virgin, which is not betrothed, and lay
    hold on her, and lie with her, and they be found; 29Then the man that lay with
    her shall give unto the damsel’s father fifty shekels of silver, and she shall
    be his wife; because he hath humbled her, he may not put her away all his days.

    This says sex this: sex was not given guilt when seen. In our day Police are eager to arrest a person for anything.

    • Jonathan, I’m not really 100% sure on what your point is within your comment, but appreciate you being a part of the conversation and I think if you read through the post, the points in Scripture (truth) are clear on why it’s sin and what would glorify God. Thank you sir!

  • Lillian Temple

    Hi my name is Lillian and I’m 29 years old my boyfriend is 43 years old and we been living together for three years and we have two beautiful daughters sex its really important to him but we both know it’s a sin too keep doing it and we’re not married I’m ready to get married it’s him that’s not ready we argue all the time because he wants to do it every night and i don’t i feel so
    bad because I’m ready to live right i feel like God is not blessing me and my family because we’re not living Wright we been together for eight years i don’t know what to do i dont know what he’s waiting on I’m tired of arguing about sex its not that serious to me. What should i do?

    • Hey Lillian, thanks so much for commenting and I’m sorry for the difficult situation you find yourself in.

      While I couldn’t give you a perfect answer, I can point you towards the Bible and towards having a relationship with Christ. Also, are you guys part of a Church? I would suggest praying to God asking Him to reveal Himself to you and consider surrendering your life to Christ. Which means from that day forward, you live for him and not for yourself.

      I would also suggest becoming part of a local Church where you two can get counseling and some people walking with you because God calls us to be part of a community and part of His Church. All too often we live in isolation and that’s not good for us. Make sure the Church teaches the Gospel and that Jesus is the only way to salvation.

      At the end of the day, you never want to live a lifestyle that goes against God or His Word so everything you can do to make changes in your life but starting with praying to God and surrendering your life to Christ…is the absolute best advice I could ever give you!

  • alyssa terranova

    I really need some advise. I am engaged to get married in 3 months. My fiancé is Baptist & so is his family. I am a believer of Christ, but we did move in together 2 years ago.
    I became very sick, & lost my job after we met. My family is not in the area, but I’m not going to make excuses to validate our sin.
    We planned a very nice wedding & it costs a decent amount of money. My mother visited me recently to help pay for some of the wedding things. We haven’t paid the place off yet, but have the money.
    Problem is my fiance’s father will not attend the wedding and didn’t tell us till now. This is embarrassing to us. I understand his beliefs and not wanting to go because we lived together first, but I feel he should have been pro active in telling us right away. Not after we purchased things. It seems the rest of the family is following suit.
    So we book place for 150 people, because his large family, & they just weren’t going to tell us… Just not show up to “prove a point”
    What are we supposed to do? Will it ever be right to his family, or will our relationship always be tainted?

    • Hey Alyssa, thanks so much for sharing.

      I would suggest starting with your relationship with Christ. How is that going? Are you following Jesus? Are you both part of the local Church and would be consider going to counseling and working through these matters Biblically?

      You can’t control what others think or how they will treat you, but you can make every effort to live in a way worthy of the Gospel, which sounds like it might include making some tough changes before you get married. That sounds like it would be the Godly thing to do and would benefit your marriage greatly at the end of the day. Then you can also pursue peace with all relationships around you since we are called to be peacemakers as followers of Christ.

      At the end of the day, I would be more concerned with what God thinks and says in the Bible vs any other relationship you have because ultimately, He should be first.

      • alyssa terranova

        Well thank you. I know it isn’t the right thing to do, but I want to make it right.
        I just wish his family would be more supportive of us. I was brought up catholic. I don’t follow the Catholic Church strictly. I believe in Christ & want to live by the word. I want to be involved with the Baptist Church they belong to, I feel that they are making difficult for me to want to belong because the way they are behaving. I find this to be frustrating for many people.
        When Christians focus on the judging more than leading by example, it can be off putting.
        Thank you for your advice. I will try to make sure my relationship with God is strong.

        • Sounds great. And with that, it’s ultimately your obedience for the reason of being in the Church and following Christ vs whatever anyone else does or the way they act towards you. It makes it hard for sure, but can’t be the driving force behind the actions you take. Let Jesus be the reason you do anything at all because He first loved you. (1 John 4:19)

  • Brogan Fuentes

    Hello Mike my name is Brogan. I am 22 and my girlfreind is also. I have given my life to christ and repent of my sins but have been living with my girlfreind for 5yrs. She has not surrendered her life to Jesus and rejects him when I ask if she would be willing to live a life of purpose faith and love in the foundation of God and his word. She is very angry with me for choosing me choosing the plan God has for my life as his obedient servant. Problem is that we have a one year old daughter and I am in a tough place, I no it is late but I feel the lord has led me to this page. I seek advise and please pray for me and her. Thank you.

    • Hey Brogan,

      Thanks so much for sharing. It’s a tough position to be in since you’re involved with someone who does not follow Christ. I would first consider your own relationship with Jesus and make decisions to live a lifestyle worthy of the Gospel, which means making decisions to change and avoid sin and leading others down a similar path at all costs.

      I would also consider joining a local Church that teaches Jesus is the only way and believes scripture is the authority in everything as soon as you can since that’s a command for believers. As you do that, I would seek out counsel for your situation and how to proceed from there.

      That’s the best advice I could give you in the immediate term because there’s no simple one sentence answer for this situation because they are all different. Rest assured at the end of the day…think on your own relationship with Christ and what brings Him glory FIRST, and then go from there.

      • Brogan Fuentes

        Thank you Mike, I do appreciate your advise. I am blessed with a church that loves and follows My Lord, Greatly. I will continue to go. I struggle with My girlfriend getting mad at me because I desire deeply to please the Lord. I do not no if it would be wrong of me to get my own place, while of course taking care of her and my daughter as well, or if I should just wait for her to go herself even though her reactions to my pursuing God is not pleasant role modeling for our daughter, and it hurts me. we were going to get married but then I relized that she truly isn’t commited to me but she gets mad because she “thinks” that all of a sudden I changed my mind to be non physical, thinking that all of a sudden I have flipped into some weirdo because weve been living how we have for 5 yrs, but really its because My Lord has saved me and called me to be his. Pray for me Please and More importantly for her, I would Greatly Appreciate all the prayers for God to move me in the proper direction because I am stuck.

        • That’s great your in a great Church then. Definitely get counsel from leadership there to help you. I think you should move towards moving out and ending the relationship if you think there’s no future in it. The hard part is obviously having a child together, but with all of this, I would get counsel and make decisions immediately to avoid sin at all costs.

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  • abigail

    Hi Mike

    So glad about this open and honest ddiscussion. Are there consequences for living together.? Because it seems not. Seems as tthough those living together in actual fact face no problems. You just need to repent get married and God will forgive you and you live happily ever after. So why stress about it. If anything the person saving themselves finds it more difficult to find a partner in this day and age. Apart from doing the will of God (I know this is important and key) are there any benefits from it. Please forgive me if my last questions sounds like a no brainer I just need help and enlightenment

    Thanks.

    • Thanks Abigail for your question and comments.

      The different question we should be asking ourselves if we are followers of Christ is, what gives God the most glory? How can we best serve the Lord (since our lives are now about Him and not us) and what does the Bible say.

      If we go that route, living together with someone before marriage would be wrong for multiple reasons that are listed in the post above. Typically though, people will disagree because they are asking questions that basically are saying “how far can I go without sinning” or “is it really that bad” instead of thinking through what will glorify God the most as we deny ourselves and make our lives about Jesus.

  • Susan

    I’m a mature Christian female and I’m in a 4 year relationship with a man I don’t want to marry. We bought a house together (although my name only is on the title) and share the bills but he had a horrible divorce and we’re both 44 years old and I’ve never had the desire to marry and risk my financial future like that let alone trust someone else with my feelings and my life. One of my sisters was in a committed, apparently loving marriage for 15 years until she had to divorce him because of physical and emotional abuse. I know what the Bible says about cohabiting but I just won’t get married ever. It seems like an outdated, overrated institution that people adhere to only out of societal expectations. It’s unnecessary and let’s face it even Christians cheat and lie to each other and get divorced. People can be just as committed without the marriage certificate and for me knowing I can walk away at any time is part of what is keeping us together.

    • Thanks for your comment Susan. I think you’re right that even Christians cheat and lie to each other just like anyone else because no one is perfect and we are all sinful. The difference would be for those who follow Jesus (what a real Christian does), they admit that they need Jesus and that believe He died on the Cross and rose again paying the penalty for their sins.

      For someone who follows Christ means they believe the Bible and what God has to say about marriage. Including actually getting married according to the law of the land (that He put in place since He’s God) and making an actual commitment between one man and one woman.

      I don’t quite understand or agree that someone is “committed” if their “commitment” is that they can walk away at any time…seems like that’s more of a commitment to self instead of to the other person.

      I would encourage you to look to the Bible to see more on what it says about marriage and why living together before getting married is wrong according to the Bible (in this post). Thanks so much!

  • sel

    This message is for me. I am in the same situation where I was living with my boyfriend for 4 years now and lately feeling really miserable and depressed because he doesn’t want to marry me anymore. I feel lied to and insulted. Not only I feel worthless because he change his mind of marrying me but I feel like God had abandon me. I guess I would like someone to pray for me coz I feel lost. I keep praying for Gods wisdom on what to do next and that god bless me with a Good job so I can support me financially. Also I am still hoping that my boyfriend will decide to keep his promise and marry me coz I want this relationship to work out. Please pray for me….. I dnt know what to do..
    sel

    • Thanks so much for sharing sel, I can understand it’s a difficult situation.

      I can tell you that you’re not worthless and you’re valuable to God. He would never abandon you, but makes salvation possible to you every day through Jesus. Who is Jesus to you and do you have a relationship with Him?

      If that’s the case, I would urge you to move into making decisions that glorify God first and foremost before anything to do with your relationship. Since God is the author of life and everything including your relationship, why would you not go to Him first…He knows how everything works.

      As you seek the Lord and make decisions not to sin, get involved in your local Church, pray, read the Bible, etc. you’ll see clearly if God wants you to get married to your boyfriend. It’s a matter of serving the Lord and seeking Him out first before anyone else. Will definitely be praying.

  • simara

    I am going through a situation similar to this.My boyfriend is new to following Christ but he wants to live with me for 3 years before marrying me.He knows I do not want to do this,but want to wait till we’re married to live together.He keeps saying we wouldn’t “do anything” if you get what I mean.His family are Buddhist and his mom believes people should live together for 3 years before marrying.It really hurts me that he wants to do this and isn’t respecting my wishes.I just keep praying that God will change his heart.I think he needs a male Christian figure to learn from.It’s really stressing me out,I don’t know what to do. :(

    • Thanks Simara for posting. I would consider getting in pre-martial counseling with him in your local Church. If he’s new to following Christ, he still needs to learn how the Bible is th authority and if he’s following Christ…then he’s not following anything else anymore, including himself or anything buddhist related.

      The best thing for both of you would be to be involved in the Church as you pray and read the Bible daily becoming more like Christ. Through that, you’ll both make decisions that are holy instead of sinful. Ultimately, you’ll want to glorify God in your relationship and in your marriage when the time comes.

      Keep praying and seeking counsel and don’t make decisions to move in with him before marriage.

  • Daniel

    Hey Mike, I think you’ve laid out the case very well. This is something that I have been asking myself about lately, as an engaged man. My fiancee has recently landed intern work and is in need of a place to stay for two months or so. I have to admit, the thought has crossed our minds about simply having her stay here at my house; it would save a huge amount of money for us, both now and as we move forward into our marriage. We would, of course, make every effort to resist and avoid sin; separate bedrooms and all that.

    But you’ve made an excellent point. It’s not just about us and our sexual behavior; it’s about the example we present to others. Unbelievers will quite naturally assume that we are having sex, and even believers, who know that we are not, may be tempted to place themselves in situations that they cannot handle. I think there’s also, aside from these, a question about the nature of marriage. While sex is one of the major distinguishing factors that defines marriage and differentiates it from other human relationships, Scripture seems to suggest that cohabitation is another major, defining aspect of marriage that makes it distinct from other relationships between persons of the opposite sex, as when Scriptures speaks of a man being “united” to his wife. This verse could be referring exclusively to the sexual unity of marriage, but I wonder if it isn’t also referring to the domestic unity associated with the marital relationship. Paul, later on, when he speaks of a Christian who finds herself in a relationship with an unbeliever, advises that she is “not bound” to this person maritally if the unbelieving spouse does not “consent to live with her”.

    Where I’m going with this is that there may be a third reason to discourage living together, even without sexual immorality, before marriage. I wonder if premarital cohabitation, aside from the temptation to sin and the bad example it sets, also reflects a violation of marriage insofar as the two people are sort of “pretending” to be married, or living “as if” they are married, when in fact they are not. Perhaps there is little scripture to fully and completely support this argument, but it definitely feels persuasive to me; by living together before we’re married, even if we avoid sexual temptation and successfully avoid setting a bad example, we would be trying to enjoy a particular type of holy relationship that God has not granted to us yet.

    What do you think? Also, in light of all of these points, is it your opinion that living together is, in absolute terms, a *sin*, as in an offense against God’s holy character that must be repented of? Or do you view living together as simply a highly inadvisable practice that you would strongly discourage, but are not prepared to affirm positively and with a fully convinced mind to be a sin? This is something I’ve been wondering about. Is it absolutely *sinful* or just a really, really bad idea?

    • Hey Daniel, thanks so much for the comments and great questions!

      Most of the time people are looking to find a specific instruction on a specific sin to get their answers if it’s wrong or right. I’m not saying you’re doing this by the way, but I think all of us are guilty of missing some of the main points sometimes when it comes to following Christ or not.

      My point is, I do believe it is sin. If we are followers of Christ, then we are no longer our old selves….but new creations….equivalent to having a new name. Not just a “more moral and better version of our old self, but a completely new creation” who is now a disciple of Jesus.

      If we follow Jesus, He was always about His Father’s will in every way and never sinned. If we are now Christians who want to glorify God in everything we do…our questions will always be more focused on making much of Him and staying as far away from sin as possible including not leading someone down a path of temptation or sin as well.

      Honestly, living together before marriage wouldn’t even be on the table, ever, for discussion because of the issues with it.

      I think the attitude and heart that goes behind the questions of trying to live together (however good the intentions are), is sinful because it can’t be rooted in the Holy Spirit leading you and following Jesus because it wouldn’t even be an option. We all just have more sanctification coming our way and can be encouraged knowing that God is never done with us so there’s always room to grow…just can’t let that be an excuse to make unwise decisions.

      Hope that helps!

      • Daniel

        It does, thank you! I agree with you; ultimately, obeying God and growing in holiness involves more than strict adherence to discrete, explicitly codified rules (though that *is* part of it). It’s also about growing in one’s likeness to Christ, learning to think like him, learning to see the world through the lens of God’s Word and having the Holy Spirit convict your sensibilities and inclinations rather than the other way around. Sanctification affects the whole way we think about the world and make decisions in it, and the fact that a given act “technically” doesn’t violate any clearly stated “rules” doesn’t make it good for a Christian to do, or make it any more advisable. I do think, though, that there can be genuine, well-meaning Christians who are not simply trying to figure out “how far can we go before it’s a ‘sin’?” There are some Christians who are seeking to walk according to the gospel, and who seek guidance in following the precepts of the Lord by gaining insight into where “sin” ends and where “permissible but not beneficial” begins. Discernment is needed in order to determine into which of these two groups a given believer falls, though of course, the Lord alone knows ultimately where their heart is. God bless!

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  • Tammara

    Hi Mike, I’m going to graduate school this fall and I will be 3 hours away from my boyfriend. We are growing in Christ together with each day as we recently chose to start over and become abstinent with the forgiveness of Christ. However, I seem to have a problem that I need your help with. When he comes to visit me for graduate school, would it be wrong of him to stay the night as place as he stays for the weekend? Should he spend money to get a hotel? We have learned to control our temptations, although as sinful humans, temptation always lurks. We don’t live together, so would him staying the night to visit still be sinful and unpleasing to God? What should we do?

    Thank you for your time,

    Tammara

  • Dale Jeffries

    Any advise or thoughts on this?

    Something I’m struggling with is having a covenant relationship with others. Is it not true when a Man and Women get Married they become one Flesh? So would it be the same if they where not Married and made a commitment under a Holy Covenant witnessed by 3 people? Back then they didn’t have paper just commitments, then Holy Covenants came next, but in the beginning someone says your Married and that’s it, your Married. So follow me so I can ask you to think on my terms in this new age we live in, ok?

    I would like to be one Flesh with my Fiancé right now even though we are not Married yet so we can stay on the same page and under God to keep us strong before we get Married, understand?

    Matthew 19:5 says,
    Jesus said, ‘For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh’?

    Can you become one flesh with your Girl Friend in Gods eyes with Gods approval by just a Holy Covenant witnessed by three people in this day and age without the legal issues made up by our Government: I mean without a piece of legal paper that says your Married? Can God alone give a Man and Women approval just like the old days? Why and why not?

    • Hey Dale, thank you for your comments and questions.

      I think a “piece of legal paper” may be more than you think. If you’re asking about that, you might as well be asking about every other law that has been put in place as well. God puts everyone in authority and places us under that authority and we are to follow that with the exception of something going against God. (Romans 13:1).

      Where we live in our culture, we get married legally in front of witnesses at a place like the courthouse, a church building, etc. and yes…you do get a piece of legal paper…which means you are legally married and now you are one with your husband or wife.

      There are different cultures that practice different things including various other time periods, but God doesn’t make mistakes in placing is exactly where we are at..and under the governing authorities we find ourselves under.

      At the end of the day, who is Jesus to you? Is He your Lord and Savior? If so, the better question is more about what gives God the greater Glory and how can I make much of Him in everything I do. Including with your girlfriend being pure and moving towards marriage and getting married. If you are going to get married, I would ask what are you continuing in or why would you not want to get married? If we live in an area that says to get married, you _______, and if you’re already going to get married, why not take every step to make that happen asap?

      Lastly, to go the route you’re asking, then it’s putting yourself above what the Bible says and will play out with you asking in every situation, “why can’t it be like this instead?” instead of asking “how can I be obedient as the Bible teaches me to”

      Thanks so much for asking!

  • Kari

    I have been living with my boyfriend for 5 years with the intent to be married by now. Well, it hasn’t happened so far and I really seeing it happening. I have been in 2 very bad marriages where alcohol and other women were more than an important than myself and the 2 very small children I was trying to raise from the first marriage. After all of the that I felt the guilt and rejection and the unworthiness to be ever be with anyone again. The sometime later I was set up on a blind date with dream man. After 1 1/2 we decides to see how things would go since the had been through the same with he’s last two relationships just with marriage. everything has been great. He has helped me raise my girls, buy their 1st vehicles, provide a home, been a father figure for the……but still he says that he just don’t know that he can marry me. He is very aware for the coming of out Christ and that it could be any day and he is worry bout our salvation. so his answer to that is that we live together as “room Mates” and sleep in our same bed but there be absolutely no sex between us that way we will be good in Goods eyes. I need some out opinions….in my heart this a conviction that I’m struggling with.

    • Thanks Kari so much for sharing and commenting.

      I couldn’t speak into all of the struggles you’ve had throughout your life, but I can encourage you that for those who follow Christ….they are forgiven of all their sins and redeemed for all eternity. Basically no matter what you are going through, if you think about what Jesus has done for you (if you follow Him), that should give you perspective on the day that it’s really all for Him and you can take on anything each day because you have been forgiven through Jesus.

      About your boyfriend, are you guys involved in a Church? Have you ever sought out Christian counseling? I would suggest doing that asap because at the end of the day…if he isn’t willing to be married….I wouldn’t continue in the relationship. This is not to diminish what he has done and I’m sure some things have been great, but the example you are setting for others including your children are basically saying “it’s ok to play house and be in relationships even if they aren’t going anywhere and marriage is not involved”.

      More importantly, if you follow Christ, the example you’re setting does not glorify God and I would consider either getting married asap or not living together. You can see the reasons for this within the post if you’d like.

      Hoping this helps!

  • Racheal Barton

    My fiancé and I just recently about two weeks ago moved in together we are getting married in two weeks as well. Is this wrong because some have told us it is and some have told us there is no problem with it.

    • Thanks for the question and for commenting Racheal.

      I think the greater question in this case isn’t so much about how far you can go or what exactly can you do…but more of are we doing everything we can to glorify God in our relationship with each other and with others?

      If you’re a follower of Christ, then you are His disciple. And as His disciple, you’re constantly following Him and wanting to make much of Him. So when the time came to think through if you should move in together yet, the question would have been, does this glorify God or not?

      I would say it doesn’t for the reasons expressed in the post. Maybe you can temporarily move out and wait until you are married, then move back in?

      • David

        HI Mike, I live with 3 other believers, one of them has his girlfriend sleep over a lot, she is a recent christian. I think I have allowed this to go on as I hadn’t said anything earlier.Its almost like shes moved in. We are all close but
        it does bother me, I want to let them know but they may think I am being judgemental. Need some advice on how to share it with them. Thnx brother

        • Hey David,

          Thanks so much for the comment and the question. Definitely a tough situation you find yourself in and the best way I could encourage you is that if you follow Christ…then that conversation is worth it and shouldn’t be scary because you’re standing up for what the Bible says and showing gratitude for what Jesus has done.

          If those other people are believers, they should agree and want to do the same thing. There is no excuse obviously for sinning or for “playing with fire”…there will never be any need for that or any justification worthy for that when you look to the Cross.

          Since you guys are close, I would just speak to them in love and explain the Lord has been growing you and has convicted you on actions that have been taking place in the house. Be prepared to not support it going forward as you might have to make arrangements to move out if you don’t believe what they are doing is God glorifying so you don’t have to continue to be a part of it. Does that make sense?

          Hope this helps!

  • Jason Eric Kent

    me and my girlfriend have been together for 8 years, and have 2 children together. we are both born again, we want to be married but she is on disabilty and i work too, and if we marry the state will take away half of her disabilty and we would be out on the street, is there away we can get married by a pastor in secret so it wont hurt us money wise, please help us, we love the lord and truth! god has been on my heart about this!

    • Hey Jason,

      Great and hard question, I’m sorry for some of the tough situations you guys find yourselves in.

      While this is indeed a tough situation, I’d encourage you to consider your walk with the Lord and witness to Him more important than money or anything else that could come up. I’m not trying to be insensitive in saying that, but that your identity in Christ and trust in the Lord to provide for you and your family will always trump problems we face.

      If you guys are following Christ, then I’m assuming that you’re part of a Church. I would get with your Church and ask for help in regards to finances and helping with disabilities…and get married legally as soon as possible. Trust that God will provide for you by being obedient to what He is calling you to do. Going down a path of secrecy isn’t ever going to help.

      Thanks for your question!

  • lexi

    i want to share a testimony of my life to every one. i was married to my husband, i love him so much we have been married for 5 years now with two kids. when he went for a vacation to France he meant a lady who en charm him with her beauty, he told me that he is no longer interested in the marriage any more. i was so confuse and seeking for help, i don’t know what to do until I complained to my friend and told her about my problem. she told me not to worry about it that she had a similar problem before and introduce me to a man called Dr Saibaba. who cast a spell on her ex and bring him back to her after 2days. she ask me to contact Dr Saibaba. I contacted him to help me bring back my husband and he ask me not to worry about it that the gods of his fore-fathers will fight for me. He told me by two days he will re-unite me and my husband together. After two days my husband called and told me he is coming back to sought out things with me, I was surprise when I saw him and he started crying for forgiveness and that he never knew what came upon him that he will never leave me again or the kids. Right now I am the happiest woman on earth for what this great spell caster did for me and my husband, you can contact Dr Saibaba on any problem, he is very nice, here is his contact templesaibaba@yahoo.com

  • marcus carlos

    Hello Mike,
    First of all, God bless you and all the work that you do. I know from the heart that what you are saying is true because it is written in the Bible, the beautiful Word of God.
    Now to start things off I want to say that I was raised in a Christian home since the age of 6months. I was saved at an early age myself and accepted the Lord Jesus Christ as my Savior. But as the years went by I lost that fire and I got cold and I left the ways of the Lord. Fast forward to the present and I wad blessed to meet my girlfriend and everything is going great. I decided to give myself to the Lord and to serve Him again about two months ago. I realized that without Him I am nothing and I know where my destination is if I die without Jesus in my heart. Well it turns out my girlfriend is pregnant and this happened right before I gave myself to the Lord, as we found out she is pregnant after the decision I made. Now my question is, I want to marry her and please the Lord because I don’t want to live in sin. But will I be living in sin if we move in together in the mean time I save for the wedding. I don’t want to leave her and the baby at her mom’s house. I want to be with her so I can help her during the pregnancy. We both are blessed with great jobs and it won’t take long to marry her. I honestly just want to tell her let’s get married by court first so we can please the Lord. Any thoughts or advice would be a great blessing. Thank you and God bless you Mike!

    • Hey Marcus,

      Thanks so much for writing and appreciate the encouragement!

      That’s awesome to hear how you are desiring to follow Christ in every way, praise God for this! While I never want to “tell someone what to do” or anything, I would suggest in your situation to either get married as soon as possible as to honor the Lord in everything you and that would be a testimony to what it seems like He is leading you to do…and since you’re living together would help your testimony in your walk with Christ.

      If you don’t get married yet, I would advise for her to move back out with her parents in the meantime, where you can still help her as much as possible, and at the same time will not hinder anyone else around you or tempt either one of you. Since you’re a disciple first and foremost before anything else, I would wage all your decisions to see what glorifies God most and staying far away from sin and/or the appearance of sin is thinking of God first before anything else.

      I know this is incredibly difficult at times, but think about Jesus and how much He has done for us….I would say His situation was more difficult to go through than anything we will ever experience!

      • marcus carlos

        Mike,
        God bless you once again brother. Thank you so much for responding back. I can truly say that what you are saying is right. God does want me live a pure life and to honor Him in every aspect of my life. Thank you very much for the encouragement and advice! It has been what I needed. I’m more than sure that you know this; God always has a way of talking to us. Whether it be through His Word, through prayer, or through a someone. Once again, thank you and may God bless you! I’ll make sure to subscribe for emails, because reading through your posts have been a blessing. And I can see that you are a real servant of God. It’s always great to see when a brother in Christ is out to glorify the Lord. Once again, thank you and God bless you and your wife and children, brother!

        • Anytime man. Thank YOU for the encouragement…made my day and it’s amazing to think how God uses His Church in so many ways!

  • Jazzybear

    Ok I would just like to throw out there that there is nothing wrong with having a house with the opposite sex as long as you don’t give into temptation

    • Thanks for your comment, appreciate it. I think the points in the post above explain this that it goes much beyond just temptation as a reason not to do it. It’s also a matter in regards to temptation like “playing with fire” and why would we as Christ followers even put ourselves into positions where we can get burned.

      Proverbs 6:27-28 – Can a man carry fire next to his chest and his clothes not be burned? Or can one walk on hot coals and his feet not be scorched?

  • Needing advice

    Hi,

    I am getting married at the end of this year. We have bought our house and at the minute I am planning to move in and my fiancé after the wedding. I am now not sure if this is the right thing to do. Could you please provide some advice? I have began to walk with Christ in recent years and we have made changes in our relationship as a result, I have asked my fiancé if I move in for him to not stay overnight which I know he will respect
    Thank you

    • Thanks so much for sharing. The best advice I could give you is to wait until you are married before moving in at all costs for the reasons explained in the post. To help avoid temptation not to sin, to not put yourself in a dangerous situation, and most of all…to help do whatever it takes to stay way from sin and seek to glorify God as much as possible because of what Jesus has done for you.

      Maybe you can get married sooner if it’s too hard to wait until you get married but with the support of other followers of Christ and your Church…those can be avenues of help between now and the end of the year. Almost there!

      • Needing advice

        Thanks for your advice and honesty. Its so exciting.

        I guess I am finding it hard to see how by me moving in by myself without my fiancé is not glorifying god? I have lived out of home by myself for 7 years, I recently moved to my family home while our house was built…staying at home was always a temporary arrangement (although can now be discussed). I completely understand avoiding temptation and avoiding sin but I am not happy in my family home as I am so used to my own space, my fiancé would not ever be staying and we would have the support of others to help us with this. I am not really too sure what I am trying to say but I feel I am in turmoil over it all…

        • My mistake on the moving out question. If you are just talking about you moving out on your own…there’s absolutely nothing wrong with that at all.

          There’s nothing wrong with having your own place whatsoever. Just wanted to clear that up in case there is confusion.

          What I meant earlier was to apply to if you and your fiancee wanted to move in together, that’s all.

          Thanks!

  • T

    Hi there. Thank you so much for the post, but I’m a person who likes statistics, psychology, and facts to justify what a person is saying since the Bible can be silent on some issues. Culture can be a funny creature each decade and century or country. But what amount of times has sweet couples played with fire and got burned concerning this issue if what is claimed to be true?

    • I think it goes way beyond how many couples are burned with temptation, and more of how many people are burned all together when playing with fire.

      Ultimately, the best statistic…or fact…I could give you is the Bible. The Bible isn’t silent on this issue and is in fact, very clear. Where it gets fuzzy is because our culture approves of this type of living in so many ways (I did it too), but we don’t look to culture to define how a follower of Christ lives. We only look to the Bible and what Jesus has done for us.

      The best fact is that Jesus was and is real. Lived a real, perfect life. Died on the cross and paid the price for all our sins, then rose again defeating death and sin. That’s a fact and the only statistic you’ll never need to live a life as a follower of Christ while letting the Holy Spirit and Bible lead you along the way.

      When we become a follower of Christ, we are a new creation and have a new identity and live a life full of gratitude and joy for what Jesus has done for us so in every situation (including living together with someone before marriage), we need to ask if we are living for God or living for ourselves.

  • Rebecca Miller

    My name is Rebecca Miller I’m from united state, i have been married for 4 years and i have a break up with my husband 3 months ago and i was worried and so confuse because i love him so much. i was really going too depressed and a friend directed me to this spell caster Dr. Laco and i made all my problems known to him and he told me not to worry that he was going to make my husband to come back to me and in just 48hours i receive a call from my husband and he was appealing that i should come back to the house. i have never in my life believe in spell and but now it have just helped me and i am now so happy. All Thanks to him and if you also want to have your Husband back to yourself here !! his emailAddress(lacopowerfulspellcaster@yahoo.com) i am so happy to testify of your work and kindness.

  • ann

    I re dedicated mt life to the lord. I find myself in a situation and I don’t know how to present it to My boyfriend we are on a lease together but I don’t want to sin against God anymore what do I do I have no where else to go

    • Ann, thank you for sharing and I can’t imagine how hard it must be to be in the situation you are in. Are you part of a local Church?

      I would contact your local Church (one that teaches the Gospel specifically) about how best they can help you so you are able to move out and not sin and be in a situation you don’t want to be in. Also any friends and family to help?

      If no one lives near you, start with the Church asap and begin to pray asap as well for God to deliver you from that situation and provide for you to be able to move out. If you seek Him and turn away from sin, there’s no doubt He provides and will provide for you.

      • ann

        I dont have a local church at all… I feel so defeated. I just want jesus, why is it so hard, just to throw myself to jesus when all I want is him.

        • Hey Ann, I’m sorry to hear that. If you give me your general area or just state, I can refer some Churches to you if that would help.

  • meribeth

    Hello every one, I really want to share my testimony to the hearing of every body on this site, December 2013, I saw a post on a particular site shearing her testimony on how the great spell caster brought back her ex who name is Dr. ogul Malaca so I just see it common and i said let me see what will happen because my husband left me and my three kids, i and my husband was married for ten year living happily, he left me and go for another woman so when i saw the post, i contacted the spell caster on his email and he told me not to worry that my husband will come back to me in three days after once he finish casting the love spell and to my greatest surprise, i now have my husband back to me again and i want to use the medium to let every body know that this is real and if you are out here having this same problem please contact the great spell caster on his email now because he can do the unexpected. Email doctorogul@gmail.com

  • meribeth

    Hello every one, I really want to share my testimony to the hearing of
    every body on this site, December 2013, I saw a post on a particular
    site shearing her testimony on how the great spell caster brought back
    her ex who name is Dr. ogul Malaca so I just see it common and i said
    let me see what will happen because my husband left me and my three
    kids, i and my husband was married for ten year living happily, he left
    me and go for another woman so when i saw the post, i contacted the
    spell caster on his email and he told me not to worry that my husband
    will come back to me in three days after once he finish casting the love
    spell and to my greatest surprise, i now have my husband back to me
    again and i want to use the medium to let every body know that this is
    real and if you are out here having this same problem please contact the
    great spell caster on his email now because he can do the unexpected.
    Email doctorogul@gmail.com

  • juith

    i am juith from united state my mouth is filled with laughter because of the help Dr.Love place on me my ex boyfriend just come back to me after dumping me for my close friend,his spell opened his eyes to see how much i loved him,thanks for your spell that you did for me.if you are in my same situation you can reach him at drlovetemple@gmail.com thank you i will never forget you.

  • Anonymous

    Last 3 weeks i was in need of getting my boyfriend back so a friend recommended me to contact this email robinsonbuckler@yahoo.com, I was very skeptical about using a love spell at first but I was desperate to do anything to get my boyfriend back, after 4 days contacting Mr Robinson, i was absolutely shocked that Robinson used his powerful love spell to bring my boyfriend back. my boyfriend came to my house and he (practically knelt on his knees) to ask for my forgiveness and he asked me to accept him back and now we are happier than ever. This is the cheapest and best service i have ever seen anywhere. i will advise anyone in need of help to contact Robinson by email or by mobile + 19715126745

  • Gloria Marshall

    Thanks for the wonderful message from God. I heard a preacher over the radio preaching about couples shagging(staying together/ not married). His message was, God said don’t socialize with couples that live together that are not married! And at the end of his message, he started in was written in the bible. Can you tell me where in the bible(book and verse) where God said those words (if it is written).

    • Thanks so much Gloria for the encouragement!

      He must be referring to 1 Corinthians 5:1-15. You have to put what he is saying out of the Bible within context. In that passage, Paul is talking to the Church and how there are sexually immoral people within the Church. The attitude he is taking for us to not associate ourselves with people who do that doesn’t mean to never talk with them or love people, but rather if you are dealing with people claiming to follow Christ..but are in unrepentant sin…to be careful.

      It’s not someone you would really “do life with” and be best friends with…get wisdom from…etc…but it’s still someone you would love and share the Gospel with.

      Same goes with anyone outside of the Church who is involved in sin. At the end of the day, following Jesus is the first priority as we love others and share the Gospel. Hope this helps!

      Here is 1 Corinthians 5:1-11:
      It is actually reported that there is sexual immorality among you, and of a kind that is not tolerated even among pagans, for a man has his father’s wife. 2 And you are arrogant! Ought you not rather to mourn? Let him who has done this be removed from among you.

      3 For though absent in body, I am present in spirit; and as if present, I have already pronounced judgment on the one who did such a thing. 4 When you are assembled in the name of the Lord Jesus and my spirit is present, with the power of our Lord Jesus, 5 you are to deliver this man to Satan for the destruction of the flesh, so that his spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord.[a]

      6 Your boasting is not good. Do you not know that a little leaven leavens the whole lump? 7 Cleanse out the old leaven that you may be a new lump, as you really are unleavened. For Christ, our Passover lamb, has been sacrificed. 8 Let us therefore celebrate the festival, not with the old leaven, the leaven of malice and evil, but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth.

      9 I wrote to you in my letter not to associate with sexually immoral people— 10 not at all meaning the sexually immoral of this world, or the greedy and swindlers, or idolaters, since then you would need to go out of the world. 11 But now I am writing to you not to associate with anyone who bears the name of brother if he is guilty of sexual immorality or greed, or is an idolater, reviler, drunkard, or swindler—not even to eat with such a one. 12 For what have I to do with judging outsiders? Is it not those inside the church[b] whom you are to judge? 13 God judges[c] those outside. “Purge the evil person from among you.”

  • Shelly

    Hi Mike,
    If someone who claims to be a follower of Christ moves in with their boyfriend and states, we are going to get married anyway, and then does, what do you do if you have followed through with Matt. 18 after the person gets married?

    • Great question Shelly, thanks for asking.

      It’s a tough situation to watch someone go through that scenario and still choose to sin in the process…justifying their sin however they want “we’ll get married anyway, etc.” and there’s nothing you can do to control that.

      Once they are married, Biblically….they are married….and that marriage will be honored by God and they are now not in that unrepentant sin anymore. God will take care of holding them accountable for what they did in their past, present, and future…not us. Same goes for all of us with God holding us accountable.

      Sounds like you stated where you stand Biblically when they were sinning and I would encourage you to have a relationship with them. Be on guard though that if they still believe it wasn’t sin….more than likely there is a new sin going on. Maybe. Hard to assume that, but you’ll know quickly if they have repented before God and are most interested in following Christ instead of themselves.

      Hopefully you guys will be able to have a great relationship!!

  • Chris

    Hi Mike,
    Great Post and very true about tempting fate in any situation, people are so quick to make excuses to justify rather than walk in obedience. I have recently come back to the ‘Lord’ and have been determined to be as obedient as I can. I separated from my wife last year due to differences of opinion & stress, and have recently met another Christian Lady of whom I discussed spending time and sharing bed, for the weekend.
    I can see that this is not an option as we have previously engaged in other activities and I explained that we should abstain at all costs. I should remain single for a while and focus on building my relationship with both our heavenly father and the Lord Jesus rather than engaging in distractions.
    Once again thanks Mike

    • Thanks so much for sharing Chris!

      Agreed on focusing on the Lord and building a relationship with Him. Next, if you are not divorced, I would seek reconciliation with your wife. That is the next primary relationship God gives us outside of Him and He is interested in that reconciliation vs separation.

      It probably goes without saying, but yes…absolutely stay far away from sin as possible and trust and press into the Lord. The more you follow Christ (since you have a new identity as a disciple now) the more you will see just how bad sin is and just how much Jesus has done for you.

      Yes, you will still sin…but remember you are forgiven each and every day because of what Jesus has done. Thanks so much for sharing!

  • Chris

    Hi Mike thanks for the reply, absolutely I can feel the benefits of obedience already, although I must confess reconciliation with my wife, a non believer who calls me obsessed (about the Lord); is a real earthly treasure gatherer, and would favour a kids party on a Sunday morning rather than church I would rather avoid. Both her parents are disliking of me and unforgiving people. The bible does say of others try to cut you off from the Lord you must cut them off. I am happier on my own currently, enabling me to enjoy the children when I can on my own, hopefully getting them to church as they are currently not going.

    • Chris, that’s great to hear about obedience. I would pray about the situation with your wife and seek counsel from your local Church in regards to the relationship. I would always be careful before “cutting anyone off”…especially when it’s your wife or other family members without truly exhausting all avenues that are available for you like counseling, etc.

      Thanks again for sharing.

  • Evone Payton Banks

    No, living together it is not a sin..Fornacation is the sin. People living together do not always have to be having sex. that is an assumption. Joseph lived with Mary a year before he married her, to keep her hidden, from peoples views. As God said. Then a yr after Christ was born, he married her and they had a son soon after. The Bible Says in Mathew 1; that Joseph was “enspoused”, that means engaged. Then a yr later they marry (take unto him his wife,..no longer enspoused) n seal it with sex…n have a son. People have been taught the word of God a certain way…read it for yourself. Just like “what would Jesus do?”, um…He Flipped tables n kicked but beating them. or drinking is a sin, no..drinking to absess is the sin…Jesus was drinking wine for three days n provided more wine, but he did it in moderation, n warned us of being drunk. people need to read…because God tells you exactly what sins are what…its not hidden…he gives specifics and a parable to get the message across…or a senario to back what he says. Bless.

    • Thank you for sharing Evone.

      There are many factors at stake including sin in this situation that is not just related to sex that are explained within the post.

      I’m not really sure what drinking or Jesus flipping tables has to do with the post, but I would just encourage you to read through it again if you’d like and for the main point for you to take away would be in that anything that you do (including writing comments on blogs)….are you serving the Lord or serving yourself? Is your first identity as a follower of Jesus or something else?

      That way whether you are reading, writing, living with someone, drinking, wanting to flip a table, you’ll think through as a follower of Christ and what the Bible says first…before doing anything else.

      Thanks so much for sharing.

    • Sarah Martins

      Dr. Trust who just helped me to retrieve back my union with my husband and make our relationship very stronger and brought joy and happiness into our marriage. I have been scammed by a lot of fake spell casters but i was later introduced to Dr. Trust by a friend named tucker stacey to this great man who help her to restore her relationship back with his husband.He also help me and wipe away my tears. So viewers of this wonderful testimony who wants to contact him like:ULTIMATESPELLCAST@YAHAOO.COM

      1. GETTING YOUR EX LOVER BACK.

      2. DIVORCE SPELL.

      3. WINNING LOTTERIES.

      4. BREAKING OF GENERATION COURSE.

      5. GETTING OF JOB.

      6. CHILD BEARING.

      7. MONEY SPELL.

      8. CURING OF HIV AND MANY MORE

      9. HERBAL CARE.

      10. BEAUTY SPELL.

      11. BUSINESS CHARMS TO ENQUIRE MORE CUSTOMERS AND LOT’S MORE..

      So brothers and sisters i have tested this man DR. Trust and i have found that he is real and genuine. i am now the happiest woman on earth today, Contact his via email id and be joyful in your life.(ultimatespellcast@gmail.com or ultimatespellcast@yahoo.com Tel:+23481566885231).

      More gratitude and thanks to you again the great DOCTOR

    • Hansford ann

      My name is Handford Ann,i base in canada.i want to share my wonderful testimony on how i got back my ex-lover of my life back, who i sworn to be with until when he left me to another woman for no reason and i try to make things work for both of us yet things where getting worse and i love him so much and there is nothing i could do to get my ex back until i met a testimony share by Maria from USA on the internet talking about a powerful spell caster who brought his ex lover back within 48hours and i decide to give it a try and to my greatest surprise he also did it for me just as he did for Maria and i have a lot of people complaining of fake spell caster but this one i met was a real spell caster who help me to solve my problem i have no solution to,i introduce many of my best friends that have a similar problems,and their problem were solve with the great help of dr.Trust.they get back their ex within 48 hours.i am so happy that my ex is back to me again,and the most surprise,is that our love is very strong,every day is happiness and joy. and there is nothing like been with the man you love.i am so happy my love is back to me with the help of Dr.Trust.if you have similar problem i will advice you to contact him ,he is there to help you and put a smile on your face ask he did to me and others.contact email(ultimatespellcast@gmail.com or ultimatespellcast@yahoo.com call +2348156885231) what will i have done if not the great help of dr.trust. Thanks Handford Ann from canada. ..

  • Sarah Martins

    Dr. Trust who just helped me to retrieve back my union with my husband and make our relationship very stronger and brought joy and happiness into our marriage. I have been scammed by a lot of fake spell casters but i was later introduced to Dr. Trust by a friend named tucker stacey to this great man who help her to restore her relationship back with his husband.He also help me and wipe away my tears. So viewers of this wonderful testimony who wants to contact him like:ULTIMATESPELLCAST@YAHAOO.COM

    1. GETTING YOUR EX LOVER BACK.

    2. DIVORCE SPELL.

    3. WINNING LOTTERIES.

    4. BREAKING OF GENERATION COURSE.

    5. GETTING OF JOB.

    6. CHILD BEARING.

    7. MONEY SPELL.

    8. CURING OF HIV AND MANY MORE.

    9. HERBAL CARE.

    10. BEAUTY SPELL.

    11. BUSINESS CHARMS TO ENQUIRE MORE CUSTOMERS AND LOT’S MORE..

    So brothers and sisters i have tested this man DR. Trust and i have found that he is real and genuine. i am now the happiest woman on earth today, Contact his via email id and be joyful in your life.(ultimatespellcast@gmail.com or ultimatespellcast@yahoo.com Tel:+23481566885231).

    More gratitude and thanks to you again the great DOCTOR

  • Hansford ann

    My name is Handford Ann,i base in canada.i want to share my wonderful testimony on how i got back my ex-lover of my life back, who i sworn to be with until when he left me to another woman for no reason and i try to make things work for both of us yet things where getting worse and i love him so much and there is nothing i could do to get my ex back until i met a testimony share by Maria from USA on the internet talking about a powerful spell caster who brought his ex lover back within 48hours and i decide to give it a try and to my greatest surprise he also did it for me just as he did for Maria and i have a lot of people complaining of fake spell caster but this one i met was a real spell caster who help me to solve my problem i have no solution to,i introduce many of my best friends that have a similar problems,and their problem were solve with the great help of dr.Trust.they get back their ex within 48 hours.i am so happy that my ex is back to me again,and the most surprise,is that our love is very strong,every day is happiness and joy. and there is nothing like been with the man you love.i am so happy my love is back to me with the help of Dr.Trust.if you have similar problem i will advice you to contact him ,he is there to help you and put a smile on your face ask he did to me and others.contact email(ultimatespellcast@gmail.com or ultimatespellcast@yahoo.com call +2348156885231) what will i have done if not the great help of dr.trust. Thanks Handford Ann from canada. ……

  • Ruba Abbassi Bilaty

    we are a family with two kids live in Poughkeepsie NY 12603 arrived to the USA a month ago and we don’t know how to find a good church for us and for our kids because its hard to raise kids without the words of God … I am thankful for your help

  • Debbie miller

    I live with my partner..he says God put Its together..we are not under the law…Jesus commands us to love one another..if we are committing sin..why is he lead by the Holy Spirit and talk in tongues?

    • Hey Debbie,

      Great question. Jesus does command us to love one another, but if he is using that to justify living together, that doesn’t work and he is taking advantage of Scripture to go against Scripture, which God wouldn’t allow.

      That’s like saying something like “God wants me to be happy so I’ll sin”…and God wouldn’t contradict Himself.

      I’d be careful before claiming he is being led by the Holy Spirit because again, if he is wanting to sin and go against God (which is what we do when we sin), then he could not be led by the Holy Spirit because God wouldn’t lead him against God.

      Who is Jesus to you? Do you follow Him?

      If you are His disciple, you should be reading the Bible, praying, and be part of a Church where you can get continued counsel and guidance for situations like this. If you read the post, you’ll see you are going to be held accountable for your own actions before the Lord and I would consider who Jesus is to you first before who your partner is to you.

      The biggest emphasis is….am I living to glorify God or glorify myself? That would be the question I would pursue answering before anything else.

  • Natasha

    I couldn’t agree more. My situation has continued to cause me a lot of pain and resentment. I do not live with my SO and we are trying very desperately to live pure and not fall into temptation, like we have in the past.

    We very much want to get married as soon as possible. We both live a cash only existence and believe living debt free will increase our chances of not having a marriage where we constantly fight about our finances.

    I am divorced with two small children and am a full time nursing student. We are both in our early 30s and have been dating for almost two years.

    I am so frustrated with continuing to “date” and wanting to be married, but feeling unable to do so because of our financial circumstances. He would not be simply marrying me, but also taking on two small children.

    I am at my wits end on this situation. I would appreciate any Christian advice that you may have. I am tired of waiting for all the “pieces to fall into place,” while continuously being tempted. We have discussed everything from getting married secretly and living apart, until financial issues are resolved, to continuing to date and try not to fall into the trap of sexual temptation.

    It seems like my expectations may be unrealistic and our society embraces living a life that is not pure and holy. It is so hard not to live in this world. I am now at the place to where something has to give. I cannot continue to be content with this arrangement. This issue has caused many an argument and many tears between us. Any suggestions or different ideas would be appreciated.

    • Natasha, thank you for your question and that’s a difficult situation you’re in for sure.

      The best way I feel like I could advise you is to make sure you are following Jesus first and foremost, including your SO as well. Start there, read the Bible, pray, and be part of His Church.

      As you do that, consider this…just like having children (like you can imagine), there’s never a “perfect” time to wait to be able to move forward with something. For example, you might get debt free, but will still have to work through finances together and more than likely face some difficult times around that subject…whether you have debt or not.

      I would go with the Bible on this and if the temptation you feel is too strong and you guys are going to get married anyway, get married. The worse thing you can do would be to fall into sin and start your marriage off of a foundation like that vs getting married now, striving to follow Jesus in your marriage, and work through issues within your marriage and grow together.

  • Rin

    I am moved cities after starting a new job, and I am now in training to fulfill my career as a Midwife. During this process I have found the one I want to marry. We moved into together after a year and a half of our relationship to cut down bill as it is really expensive in the city we are living.

    We are planning on getting married next year, but I feel I am in a hard place. Do I move out and be broke every month paying half the rent for 2 places, or do I stay living with my partner so that we can actually save to get married and is it wrong to do this.

    I really need some advice, please help and could you use scriptures. Thank you.

    • Hey Rin,

      Thanks so much for sharing and I definitely know your situation.

      The better question is in regards to your relationship with Jesus. If you follow Jesus, then there’s not a question of how long you can stick something out that would be sinful in order to gain something. It would be instead, making decisions immediately to repent and change what you’re doing and then trusting that God will honor you in that and will provide as He always does.

      It also would be the best way to start off your marriage and have the strongest foundation in place with Jesus being the center, if He is for you guys. If that is the case, I would suggest moving out quickly or getting married now. It’s not worth going on even one more day in a situation like that if you reflect on what Jesus has done for you and the penalty for sins that He has paid for you and for all of us.

  • Wise Woman of God

    Great article! My boyfriend and I are planning to marry and would like to move in together in order to save on money. Reading your responses has helped me realize that making that decision based on that reason is not a good choice. We are both firm believers and will have to believe that God will provide more than enough to cover our bills as well as our wedding. Thanks for the words of wisdom!
    -Wise Woman Of God

    • Awesome! Thanks so much for sharing and love hearing how the Lord is working through so many people to show what glorifies Him and what doesn’t. Congrats on you guys getting married soon!!

  • Amy

    While I agree that living together before marriage isn’t the best idea because of greater temptation, I disagree with a motivation in this article namely, “If we want His forgiveness, we must stop committing the sinful act.” This statement directly contradicts your later statement that all of our past, present, and future sins are forgiven, which I gladly agree with. We already have His forgiveness. There is no need to constantly name every thing we’ve ever done wrong because it’s already paid for.

    Also, Christians still sin once in a while, though we are not of a sinful nature anymore. But we won’t lose God’s forgiveness because of it. So “stopping the sinful act” before we get forgiveness either implies Jesus never truly saved us from every one of our sins at the cross once and for all, and/or we are not saved by grace but by our works, of which neither is the case.

    Instead, we are called to repentance by seeing how wonderful God truly is, and not how wonderful we are. 1 John 3:6, explains this. When we abide in Him, when we are not looking to ourselves and our efforts but looking to God, that is when we do not feel the need to sin because we realize how much God loves us and we are called to higher things so we act accordingly. And those who do not abide in Him for their needs, but seek to fix their sins themselves because they feel the need to be forgiven, that’s when they do not know their worth in God and they continue to stumble even more.

    • Hey Amy,

      Thanks so much for the comment. I agree with you wholeheartedly that Jesus did everything for us on the cross and that there is nothing we can do to earn salvation. The context if your quote is in regards to if someone is “following Jesus” or not, if they live in unrepentant sin, what does that say? Does that even show any regard for what Jesus did for them?

      Just like you said, those who don’t abide in Him, they don’t know their worth and what Jesus has done and they’ll continue to stumble even more. Repenting and asking forgiveness is coming before the cross, realizing your need for Jesus, surrendering your life to Him, and then following Him the rest of your life. Yes, you won’t be perfect, but there’s a big difference between fighting sin and embracing sin.

      • Amy

        If they are wholly unrepentant of sin, then it is most likely they are not believers to begin with. However, my disagreement is not with the issue of living together before marriage. I agree that it is not very conducive to fostering a healthier partnership. My main concern was one of the points given in the article to gain forgiveness when we already have it in Christ. Nowadays I have a knee-jerk reaction when anything is mentioned about maintaining salvation/forgiveness because it’s been taken care of already. Many times it is reminiscent of the Catholic confession, which is more of a reflection upon self efforts than God’s efforts. I apologize if anything I’ve said has come off as rude, because I don’t mean to be, but I’ve become adamant about this. Thank you for your response, and I will leave my comments at a close here.

        • Sounds good, thanks for the response. Jesus is definitely the only way and nothing will ever change that..especially our performance. I would agree with you that if someone is living like that, it’s most likely they were never a follower of Christ to begin with.

          Thanks so much for sharing!

  • jannie

    Mike.please help me out.there is some biblicly stuff I dont understand.when is a man and a woman married in the eyes of the Lord?when they marry in the church(the building) or when they make a wov to each other with the holy spirit in the hearts? Can you give verses out of the script to help me with the answer?God bless

    • Hey Jannie, GREAT question.

      Best area I can point you to is towards Romans 13:1 in regards to the authorities God has put in place and how/why we should follow them.

      Because if we didn’t do that, we could justify anything we want to at all because we could claim we have done it in our hearts. You know what I mean?

      For example, I could steal something from someone, but claim, “I’m really just loving them in my heart” and act like that would glorify God. We do the same when couples claim “we are married in our hearts and that’s the only important thing,” but they never legally even get married.

      I don’t think in our culture you have to get married in a building for it to be legal, but to follow the law in what makes the marriage legal, THEN, you are married. It might be different in other countries, but that is what makes you married and official.

      Everything we do is in the sight of the Lord whether we are going through an official wedding or are living in sin with a boyfriend or girlfriend before marriage. The good news is that we always have an option to surrender our lives to Jesus and find true forgiveness. Plus, getting married is not that hard to do so if a couple is wanting to do that anyway, it would be better to get married than to burn with passion. (1 Corinthians 7:9)

  • Camille

    I lived with my boyfriend on weekends before I married him (I was in grad school in a different city and only went home on weekends) and 8 years into a very happy marriage, I can honestly say that it was a really good and constructive experience for us. I decided to stay at his place instead of finding a place of my own or spending weekends at a friend’s house because I had no family in the country that I could stay with, finding decent part-time accommodation is extremely expensive and impractical, and my friends have lives and families of their own and asking them to entertain me every week and allow me to use up their resources sounded rude and also impractical. We had no sex (I was really particular about wanting to be officially married before doing it) and respected each others’ space and boundaries. The experience helped us learn how to manage a household together as a couple given our different lifestyles and habits and gave us a lot of opportunities to get to know each other and ourselves better (in the context of relationships). I know that living together can lead some couples to relationship problems in the future, but you have to remember that that isn’t a sure fire or absolute outcome. And oftentimes living together isn’t in and of itself the problem – it could be that one or both ‘halves’ of the couple saw very unsettling sides of their partner that were normally hidden from view and that they felt couldn’t be changed, so they decided to abandon ship. I knew a girl who found out her then live-in boyfriend was quite abusive behind closed doors and decided to get out and save herself. It could also be that they felt they were too young to make such a commitment, etc. But if we’re talking about mature adults who are compatible as a couple and are capable of resolving conflicts in order to keep the peace, then I don’t see any problem in allowing them to live together and learn from the experience. And at the risk of sounding TMI, living together helped us in the more intimate aspects of our marriage as well. I know a lot of good Catholic and Christian couples who had/have issues in the bedroom because they just aren’t used to being completely vulnerable or physically comfortable with their partners and shaking off years of being told to be wary of physical contact with their significant others to avoid sin was really hard for them to do. After cuddling before falling asleep with my husband for 2 years before tying the knot, sex just felt like a really natural progression in our relationship. So I don’t think the Church should really meddle in the intricacies of a couple’s relationship, because a one-size-fits-all solution doesn’t work. People are different, couples are different, and forcing really rigid and specific checklists to avoid sin make people scrupulous and patronize their ability to make intelligent and moral decisions.

    • Thanks for charing Camille.

      I don’t think any of this is a matter of “the Church meddling into peoples lives,” but more of people who want to live how they want, when they want, and aren’t interested in what the Bible has to say on how God has designed things.

      For followers of Christ, we would believe the Bible is 100% truth and is perfectly God’s Word. That being said, God designed marriage and everything to do with it. That means we can learn a lot of how marriage works and doesn’t work through the Bible and how God teaches us those things.

      It’s not a matter of “how far is too far” whether you’re living with someone or not, but more of “is this glorifying God and make much of Him or much of me?”. Are we living our lives for Jesus because of what He has done for us or are we living for ourselves?

      If we are living for Him (as you can read in the post), we would use caution in any environment with anyone when it comes to sin and what would be a wise move that would glorify God instead of doing what we want to do. When we surrendered our lives to Christ, we gave up our rights (and gladly so because of our forgiveness found in Jesus).

      • Camille

        But the Bible doesn’t even condemn sexless cohabitation. In fact, Mary and Joseph lived together before they were married! You could argue that Mary was conceived without Original Sin and would therefore definitely not give in to temptation, but Joseph wasn’t and was just as susceptible to temptation as every human being to ever walk on the planet Earth. And besides, most Christian faiths ignore many of the very specific dictums the Bible enumerated for ‘good’ Christians, such as the ban on consuming pork and shrimp, whereas other Abrahamic religions like Islam and Judaism see violations of the diets prescribed by the Divine as proper sins. The point I’m trying to make is that what the Bible says and what followers, heck, even churches do are not always in agreement with one another, and imposing derived rules while ignoring specific ones and ignoring actual biblical events that nullify the validity of derived rules is a very wishy-washy, Choose Your Own Adventure way of living the teachings of God. You either follow it consistently or don’t follow it at all. And even if we were to follow it word-for-word, sexless cohabitation among engaged couples still wouldn’t in and of itself be a sin.

        • Appreciate you sharing again Camille. There’s no need for us to go into an argument or debate over things..especially online. More than likely not going to build up the Church with things like that happening. Thanks for sharing your viewpoint and if you read the post, you can see the viewpoints in there about what the Bible says and what would make much of Christ vs the opposite. Thanks again.

    • **justhangingaround**

      Actually I would have to agree with Mike as far as people being careful of the decision we make. I also disagree with your statement, “forcing really rigid and specific checklists to avoid sin make people scrupulous and patronize their ability to make intelligent and moral decisions.” I personally interpreted that comment as just your interpretation of what he was saying. However I agree with Mike that Christians should not lean on their own understanding of things, ” patronize their ability to make intelligent and moral decisions.” I believe the solution is not for the Church to really make a checklist but to encourage people to pray and ask God what will glorify him and allow the spirit to lead them. Not just choose to do something because you, yourself has analysed it. Based on your statement you seem to believe its ok for people to make their own decisions as to what they think God will except(correct me if I’m wrong but that’s how I took what you said). In fact I believe Christians should be careful of that. This is how I interpreted Mike’s stance. In other words, pray and let God lead your decision making on matters that could put you in tempting situations. In my opinion that is the best advice someone can give. I agree that we as man don’t know what really glorifies God on a lot of things so asking him is better than assuming. This also applies to your statement, “Choose Your Own Adventure way of living the teachings of God.” Honestly I find that statement to be A bit dangerous. But Hey I acknowledge some people believe as you do. However I personally would tell someone “ask God first” as opposed to “make your own decision as to how you will serve him.” I’m really speaking from experience on this. I have made some poor decisions myself by doing as you said, “choosing my own adventure way of living the teachings of God.” I now understand that my adventure way may not be what’s pleasing to God. And I was at times convicted of my actions although I thought they were right. But again I do understand where you are coming from for the most part, there is a lot of confusion as to what we should follow, however that’s where asking God should be a persons priority.

      • Excellent points! Thanks so much for sharing!

    • Brian

      A signed piece of paper and a ring does not constitute a marriage in the sight of God, that is not biblical, no more than being Christened as a baby makes you a Christian. As in the case of the marriage certificate it was set up judicially, no one actually knows why, it differs from country to country and in the case of the USA from sate to state. The assumption is that it keeps a record of two people living together for judicial purpose, what ever those purposes may be, there were no certificates in England before the 14th centuries, this is all documented, it did not require witnesses. So lets look at this outside of the establishment box that we have created. 1) A certificate does not change a person who he or she is, if that person is sexually immoral then that person will be sexually immoral, a certificate will never change that, God does not say that two people living together without a said certificate is creating sexual amorality and for any one to say so is in error of scripture, God does not call that sin, we do because it does not fit in with our establishment, do you not think that God can handle such things that we call amoral? A certificate does not constitute marriage, the word marriage has a wide meaning but for our purposes it means the joining of two people together in the sight of God, this is scripture, it does not ask for a certificate, it does not ask for witnesses, God is the witness. Brothers and sisters, I am talking about what is right in the sight of God, not in the sight of man, what the judicial system does is up to them, they could very well at the next election abolish all marriage certificates, what then brothers and sisters, will we all be living in sin for the rest of our lives? I don’t think so. If people wish to get “married” to claim judicial privileges then good for them, but its not the bases of a marriage in Gods eyes, if two people want to get married to show people how much money they have to waist then so be it but it’s not a marriage that will last, the commitment to each other is not there. Two people get “married” in Church in the sight of God and don’t even believe in God the bible says more about hypocrisy than it does about two people living together with out a certificate because the Bible says nothing about two people living together without a certificate let alone calling it a sin. The system has taken over our thinking, we must tow the line, not rock the boat, Jesus rocked the boat and told the truth, brothers and sisters I tell you the same, a marriage in the sight of God is two people giving their lives to each other in the sight of God, that is the commitment to each other and God a covenant made in Heaven, not on earth for it’s system as we would have it to day. Unless you can back what you say is sin don’t say it. I will conclude with this. If I were to ask you, are you married? And you say yes, tell me how would I know unless you carry a judicial certificate with you? I could wear a ring so people could see i’m married, people wear crucifix’s but are not Christian, strange world. God bless brothers and sisters, remember we must first take the plank out of our own eye before we can take the splinter out of our brothers eye, Amen

  • henry

    Why is it that it’s stated as absolute fact that something legal or religious has to happen to be married and that anything outside of that is sin? I’m fully and completely committed to the person I am with now, and we made this known to each other out loud.. isn’t that in the sight of God too? As an evangelical Christian, we are led to believe that Christ is our only way to salvation and we can directly communicate. The way we are taught that the marriage process is, seems to indicate that we need a government or religious entity to intercede for us. My email is hpml84 @ Gmail if anyone would be so kind as to help me sort this out. Thanks!

    • Thanks so much for sharing Henry. Great question.

      Best area I can point you to is towards Romans 13:1 in regards to the authorities God has put in place and how/why we should follow them.

      Because if we didn’t do that, we could justify anything we want to at all because we could claim we have done it in our hearts. You know what I mean?

      For example, I could steal something from someone, but claim, “I’m really just loving them in my heart or I’ve said it out loud” and act like that would glorify God. We do the same when couples claim “we are married in our hearts and that’s the only important thing,” but they never legally even get married.

      I don’t think in our culture you have to get married in a building for it to be legal, but to follow the law in what makes the marriage legal, THEN, you are married. It might be different in other countries, but that is what makes you married and official.

      Everything we do is in the sight of the Lord whether we are going through an official wedding or are living in sin with a boyfriend or girlfriend before marriage. The good news is that we always have an option to surrender our lives to Jesus and find true forgiveness. Plus, getting married is not that hard to do so if a couple is wanting to do that anyway, it would be better to get married than to burn with passion. (1 Corinthians 7:9)

    • Shawn E Dix

      TO answer your question, yes its religion,  you see as sinner we do what ever we want, but as Christians we must live a certain way.
      The bible says to seperate your self from the world. If we act like the world we ate not being an example.
      We are to stand out from the world. God’s light must be showned through you.
      Pretty much we live by God’s rules. Understand?

  • ^_^

    this is a nice article.

  • Sidney Smith

    The church’s error is in not having thriving, healthy ministries to singles. As a whole, churches focus on youth and married. Singles are neglected. Singles are not a priority. Then the church wants to condemn them for stepping out of line. So I ask you church in America, Why don’t singles matter to you? Put up or shut up.

  • Shawn E Dix

    That is how I believe, What’s going on with me is that my wife has moved in with another guy and is sleeping with him (No Sex yet) an . Is already engaged with him, I believe that you can’t get engaged to someone else while you are still married. Am I Right?
    So That is why I am searching for answers. My mother in law does not believe sleeping together is wrong, she only believes that if it involves sex then its wrong.

    E-mail me @ Shawndx26@gmail.com

    • Thanks for sharing Shawn. I’m really sorry to hear about the situation.

      You are very much right in the fact that your wife – should not have left you, should not be with another man, should not be sleeping with another man, etc.

      I want to be fair because I don’t know all the details of the situation and don’t need to know everything, but I would get with your local Church for guidance and counseling on how best to handle this. I would encourage your wife to go along with you and fight for the marriage. I would have her end any and all relationships with other men since you are her man as her husband.

      Getting with your pastor and your church in this situation is crucial so you have brothers and sisters in Christ walking with you in this and so that you won’t be doing this alone. We as followers of Christ are not meant to spend our lives in isolation, but within community. Will be praying for you!

      • Shawn E Dix

        Well I have arranged a time and day to go talk to my wife, and I am bringing a pastor with me, don’t know if it will do any good but it’s worth a shot, she tells her mom she is happy with him and not with me. But I don’t believe in getting a divorce.
        I really hope I’m doing the right thing.
        Levitcus 18:22

  • cannon shelly

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  • Gabe

    So… You don’t have an answer. Just blah blah like all the other articles I’m reading. You put your spin on it and I’ll put mine. Except mine is right… There is NOTHING in the bible that says its wrong. I’m a christ-follower hoping the real love of being a Christian will eventually come out, not just random peoples interpretation of the bible.

    • Appreciate you sharing Gabe. I believe the post points to a very specific answer of the fact of it being wrong, on top of other topics that you can take the same scripture learn about as well. As you say you follow Christ (which is awesome if you do), I would encourage you to seek Him about this topic and about living a life that is glorifying to Him and doesn’t even come close to sin at all. After all, when we remember what Jesus did for us, that should motivate us to live holy lives because He has loved us that much.

      • Kbs201

        Hey Mike – I really have to disagree with you here. I agree with the notion that our job as Christians is to glorify Him, but I don’t necessarily think that living together takes away from that purpose. Sure, it may not be for everyone. If you cannot possibly live with another person and continue practicing abstinence, then its not for you. If you can, it does not deflect from biblical teachings and I feel its far too assumptive to say definitively “it is wrong.”

        • Thank you for sharing. I would disagree (I’m sure that’s obvious from the post) and believe that it is in fact wrong and there are always better solutions in place for something like this and I know not everyone would agree with me. I wouldn’t even want to go anywhere near sin personally, including if someone was watching my life…not leading them down a dangerous path…especially if they thought living with a boyfriend or girlfriend was “ok”.

    • Luke

      Hey Gabe, just wanted to give you my view on it! Firstly i totally agree with you. I dont believe it says in the bible specifically, that it is a sin to LIVE with someone else. although i do think, it mentions in the bible about two things in relation to this. 1) That we are to feel from sin, and sexual immorality. What causes sin? Temptations, and temptations can come from many different things. But in order to avoid these temptations we must remove ourselves from situations and scenarios that place those certain temptations on us, in this case, living with another person (obviously being a woman). The idea on the whole living together thing, is not as such looking at it as a sin, but more of a path to sin and as Christians, we are to glorify God and what he does for us. Many will argue, “I trust in God to help me persevere!” but as it reads in Matthew 4:7, we are not to put our God to the test and by placing ourselves in a area of temptation we are relying on God to do what we surely cant. These extra temptations as a Christian are also hindering our personal growth with God. As i have discovered through my own journey, that the less temptations in life, the easier it is to fully focus and give yourself to God. I hope this has cleared some stuff up for you, if you wish to talk any further feel free to email me :) God bless Gabe

  • Catherine

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  • Aaron

    According to whats been said, if you are living together as believers in Christ, that it can lead to sin. The basis of this conversation is from Paul in If it’s truly a sin to live with one person for multiple years, why weren’t the men of God from the old testament not convicted from God on this? Let’s name examples of people who had multiple wives and concubines: Jacob had 2 wives and had children with 2 maids…David had multiple wives and concubines…Solomon had hundreds of concubines…Lot had sex with his two daughters…Abraham had sex with hagar etc. Yet God blessed every single one of them and used them mightily. Why didn’t God frown upon such acts? David killed hundreds of men, had multiple wives, yet was proclaimed as “a man after God’s heart”. If we look at the Levitical law, how much of the law is used in today’s standards by the Jews? Hardly any. What about Christians? Well no, cause we aren’t an israelite. So what laws do Christians ultimately follow by example to lead a healthy Christian life? They look at one man and it’s Paul. Isn’t it weird that the church rarely speaks on the old testament, a little on the gospels, but mostly on Paul’s writings? In today’s society to become any sort of Pastor, you need to be mentored by another Pastor. Yes you can go out and preach on your own, but believers want to know if you have a reputable source, before venturing out on your own mission. Paul was never mentored by any disciple, infact he did his own thing for 3 years, stayed with Peter for a few days, and joined up with Barnabas and silas afterwords. You would think as a new believer in Christ, he would yearn to be mentored with the disciples that actually walked with Jesus himself, but he did his own mission instead. So is Paul a reliable source, when it comes to the rules of the church? Paul has the same reputation as anyone else currently today who never walked with God in the flesh. As one man today is spirit filled, he as well is entitled to his own opinions that benefits the society he lives in today. For how much does the church actually follow in Paul’s writings today? I can definitely say that when Paul speaks about how women should be submissive to men, and should be covered and should not speak in the church…is definitely not followed. Why? Because our society is not the society of 2000+ yrs ago. As such when it comes to this whole living together law..has our culture not deemed it appropriate? Is our culture the same culture from the time of Abraham, David or Paul? If the law of Moses and Paul’s laws are void to us, then whose views are we ultimately following? God’s or men?

    • Thanks Aaron for your comment.

      The best thing I could think of saying is that the Church doesn’t ultimately look to the man of Paul, but to Jesus.

      You’d have to go into some depth Bible study to see all the specific of everything you pointed out, but to sum it up as best as I could within a blog comment, we should look to Jesus to be our model for everything. Not only that, but for those who follow Him, we’d realize just how much Jesus has done on our behalf and the forgiveness we have in Him.

      If we are forgiven, and we are now His disciples….with Him being our model….we wouldn’t even flirt with the idea of sin or even come close to it. We aren’t perfect so we will still sin and we still need Jesus’ forgiveness everyday, but we are called to live holy lives being obedient to God just like Jesus was obedient to what His Father called him to do.

      It’s not a question of “how close can I get to sin or is this technically sin, etc.” but more of “does this glorify God and make much of Christ or how am I representing Jesus in this scenario” and when it comes to sin, the hope is we would make wise decisions to go nowhere near them and draw closer to Christ instead.

      • Laurie House

        I have to disagree with you on the church looking to Paul. That’s all they ever do is look to Paul, especially in regards to what he says about abstaining from sex and what not. So that is looking to men. If we want to follow Jesus, we’d be following what he had to say on sex.

        • Thanks for sharing Laurie. Paul himself constantly pointed the Church to look to Jesus and what model He gave us. He even had to tell them to stop looking at him or other men, but to the one who is greater than all of them. We need the same lesson today, especially in regards to sex and living together before marriage and look to Jesus as we strive to be obedient.

          Thanks for sharing!

  • Melissa

    Hello, I’m in a relationship, I’m 18 and my boyfriend is three years older than me. I’ve been with my boyfriend going on 3 years now and at one point in our relationship he mentioned that he would want to live with whoever he was with when he got older to see if it worked living together before marriage. I didn’t say much about the situation then because I really didn’t know what was good in God’s eyes and we are still young, but now that I know that it isn’t a good idea and he is looking at long term for our relationship I really want to bring it up to see if we can come to an agreement before we get to that point in our relationship. Instead of waiting when he asks and I have to say no when the situation could have been resolved much earlier in the relationship.

    • Melissa

      my question being: when should I bring it up? and, what do I say?

      • Great question Melissa and thank you for sharing!

        Is he a believer? Does he really follow Jesus? Do you? I obviously don’t know you guys but I would start with these questions first.

        Are you guys involved in a Church? Etc?

        Following Jesus would be the first point and major thing to think about because if that is happening, then God would be the ultimate authority in your marriage down the road. If God is the ultimate authority in your relationship now and down the road, then I would talk about this with him now and see where he is at.

        Living with someone doesn’t dictate the validity of the relationship. If he can’t determine if he would see a future or marry you today, living together doesn’t change that. Likewise for you. You would marry someone if God is leading you to that person. After you would decide to marry someone, plenty of things happen like living together, having kids, etc. but you don’t do all those things to “test” the relationship first.

        Anyways, hope some of that helps!

  • 12khaling

    Hi Mike, thanks so much for the article. Im mainly commenting on here because im desperate for some good godly advice me and my fiance met about 9 months ago at my home church and fell in love. We both love jesus with everything but in the last 5 months alot has happened that has caused us to slip up. In our first month or so of dating he lived in his own apartment and i lived in my own home that was provided by the church i attended because i worked there. Because of my new position in church alot of people started rumors about me and my now fiance that were very hurtful and all together led to me getting a different job and moving out of my house. We now have a new church we go to but because of not having the accoubtability we once had and not really families to provide us with that either. We slipped into a sinful lifestyle of sex and staying the night with one another. Mostly because other than our close friends thats all weve had for the last couple months. We both know its wrong but we also know marriage is a smart way to make it right. Now were stuck with our wedding not being until may and living together. I would like to move back with my parents but situationally that would put even more stress on the situation and im just so torn on what to do because we both want to please God. I would appreciate any advice you have to give. thanks so much!

    • Thank you so much for sharing, appreciate you being vulnerable with you sharing this.

      I would say if you follow Jesus, then put Jesus at the highest priority in your life. Then, make decisions through that filter. If your fiancé follows Jesus too, same thing.

      As you read the Bible and pray yourself and be part of the Church yourself, your fiancé should be doing the same thing, and THEN you guys do those things together in your relationship. Make sure you’re doing them first.

      I can’t speak into very past situation with people obviously, but I know if you follow Jesus then you’ll read the Bible, you’ll pray, you’ll be involved in Church…you’ll do the things that a disciple does because you follow Him.

      As you do all those things, now, in terms of marriage or living together, if you guys aren’t going to live a part from each other, then you need to get married….today. Whatever just popped in your head when I said “today” is not bigger than God and what His Word says about sin. It’s not worth going another day in sin and if you’re going to get married, then get married.

      If you aren’t going to get married yet, then move out…today. Again, whatever family problem or whatever else there is…is not bigger than God and what He says about sin. Again, if you follow Jesus, you’ll do whatever it takes to actually follow Him then and stay away from sin. If you don’t stay away from sin, then what does that tell you about what you think of Jesus? Does that make sense?

      Blessings on you guys and hope that you make decisions that truly puts Jesus first in your lives every step of the way.

      • 12khaling

        Thanks so much that really does help me alot mike. Your completely right and two months really isnt that bad to live with my parents. Ultimately i do want to have a blessed marriage and please god. I appreciate the advice greatly

        • That’s great!! Great decision and thanks for sharing!

  • Zebra

    Dear Mike, this article was a great find. Thank you for writing it and your honesty. I have never actually commented on an article before so hear it goes….

    I have been living with my boyfriend for nearly two years and we are taking things to the next exciting level- marriage! We are a strong and happy couple who always knew we would get married
    and are both God believing people. He has asked my mum for her blessing and she
    has said no based on her faith and biblical position. She has said we “are living in sin” and that the “devil is pleased with us” and that “God never had the say/consent initially” and “we have broken a
    covenant”. I know she means this in love and my partner has seen this in a positive way, accepting this as a challenge and is hopeful that he can change her mind. She was not angry when she said this and said that he would make a great husband to me and father of our future children. There is no intentional hurt involved. She is applying the word of God in our situation and I hear her.

    A couple of “issues” (I mean this as an FYI), I do not “feel” like I have sinned and wake
    up every day the happiest person because I am with my partner. I don’t feel compelled to ask for forgiveness or see my actions as “rebellious” orinsulting to God or her. I am a mature women (30) and certainly aware of myself and needs and made the decision in love when I moved in. We have a happy home. I do not feel shame and have been totally honest with her and my family (about
    moving in with him and definitely about knowing we’re getting married).

    My question to you is how do we get her blessing and move past this? And how do I do
    this in a way that I am humble and respectful to my mother but also pleasing to God. Do I (or Future Husband (FH)) simply move out? Go to a court house and get married (would prefer the traditional big wedding way to do this)? Or do we start the marriage counselling with our pastor and get his advice on this situation? This is where we would be going anyway but only after FH proposes.
    We have asked her for her blessing not her permission but in some ways you can’t
    separate this…I am disappointed and of course my ego is bruised but I believe
    in Gods promises for my life and family so am reasonable and open to suggestions.

    My father died 8yrs ago and would be the ideal person in this situation but I
    now have only my mother who I suppose is speaking for them both. They divorced
    when I was nine as an FYI are very different people.

    FH has the ring and wants to propose but I know I will not be happy/content until
    I have this blessing from her. Any and all help very welcome.

    • Hey Zebra, thank you so much for sharing. While every situation is different, here’s some advice. I’m not perfect at this or anything, but believe this to be Biblical in regards to how you guys can move forward.

      I would be really careful that even though things “feel right and happy”, that doesn’t always mean it’s Godly. The heart is deceitful above all things (Jeremiah 17:9) and we can be led astray with our feelings vs what God calls us to do. Typically, we “feel” and go towards the path of sin because we are sinful and need Jesus.

      I think a lot comes down to this – who do you say Jesus is? Are you following Him? Are you really? What about FH? If Jesus is at the center of your live and you are following Him, that will include staying as far away from sin as possible and not putting yourselves in any situation to sin, like living together. It’s just not worth it.

      I would strive to do what glorifies God the most and start there. Besides, you don’t want to start off your marriage on a bad foundation. In regards to honoring your mom, we are called to honor our parents as believers and you’re right…that doesn’t always mean permission…because there’s something to be said that if she follows Jesus and says what she says, you’ll want to listen. The issue though isn’t about getting mom’s permission, the issue is making a Jesus honoring decision.

      I would either get married today (you can always do a big celebration later..but you’d rather do that and glorify God with it…vs still living in disobedience), or move out today and plan to get married quickly. Whatever pops in your head thinking of how you can’t get married asap or can’t move out asap is NOT more important than what God says in the Bible. That, in my opinion, is the difference maker in making your decision.

      Just remember, whatever decisions we make as we follow Christ, we are proclaiming something. So if you guys make a decision to not be in sin as soon as you can, what are you saying? I think you are saying Jesus is better.

      If you don’t do that, then you really need to think through, what are you saying and what are you putting higher on the priority list than Jesus?

      Thanks so much for sharing! Blessings on your family and hope you make a decision that will honor The Lord.

  • CJ

    Hi my name is CJ My Story is different without TMI I would like to ask you something but first give you the back round. I am a born again believer of about three and a half years. I did over 12 and half years in prison. When released I moved in with my mother and sister and her son. For some odd reason my sister and nephew had a problem with me being a christian. I did not disturb or bother nor harass them, honestly I was quite courteous to them. My mother gave me the ultimatum of moving out in a week. At the time I was dating my girlfriend who is now my fiance. I had no other place to live and she allowed me to live with her. We have not had sex and she is really adamant about it. I like to always consult with God and He has not given me any promptings in the Spirit to move out or that this is wrong. I receive revelation on a regular basis from the spirit and intervene in others lives daily through the Spirit. Now I dont like to be in wrong standing with God so I inquired to my fiance how we can start to get married at her church because I don’t have a home church being incarcerated for so long. She told me about pre-marital counseling. I took the steps to start, In the end the pastor that she wanted to marry us was the same person that started our pre marital counseling. I was basically told that the pastor wouldnt marry us if we stayed living together but would continue to counsel us on marriage. The last counseling session we had the pastor basically gave us an ultimatum that they could not continue to counsel us until we moved out.Having a criminal background makes it even harder to find work so I could at least do it on my own.The sad part is she gave us this information without trying to help us. We both prayed and reached out to see if there would be any one that would like to help us. No help as of yet. This Church is huge and I dont see why she wouldnt try to help us find a concrete solution through help from people in the church. Not only does this sadden me but also shows me peoples real focus: Religion. yeah it looks bad and might make your testimony look questionable but God is Love. I believe 2 highly involved Born again Christians who are being honest and transparent with there situations would get help if the Church actually believed what they say. My question is how can so many point fingers as to what is wrong and not try to help if they know it is wrong??? Jesus broke the rules not the Law.I can go on and on quoting scripture but that is not my point. my point is How can people tell you something is wrong but not try to help you solve the problem? any advice or help would be much appreciated, like I said I want to do what is right in Gods eyes not man. Sincerely CJ

    • Hey CJ, thanks so much for sharing.

      I don’t know all the details here, but here’s some thoughts and advice.

      At the end of the day, you mentioned you want to do what is right in God’s eyes and not in mans. That is a great place to start. Do you follow Jesus? If you do, then I would seek to make decisions that will glorify Him, which would include not living with your fiancé because you’re not married yet.

      Yes, the Church should be able to help you and I would suggest you find a Church that teaches the Bible where Jesus is the center, and a Church that can help you in the process, but even if you don’t get physical help…you can make a decision today to either move out or get married asap and trust that God will provide for you.

      God isn’t going to not provide for you to get out of sin…He isn’t like that and the proof is in Jesus. God sent His one and only Son for us…so that same God wouldn’t leave you high and dry, however, you really have to make decisions and move forward to eliminate any sin from your life and seek Him.

      I would suggest praying and repenting from any decisions you are making that would involve sin, and start (seriously today) to make decisions to move out or get married now. Nothing is more important than the glory of God and what the Bible says, and whatever reasoning or even help that you need…can’t become a higher priority than God.

      Hope this helps! Blessings on you guys!

      • CJ

        Thank you for your speedy response Mike! I have told my fiance the same thing we could get married at the courthouse so that we are safe from sin and then have a big wedding. Some people shy away from this idea because it doesnt appear right and doesnt live to there expectations. But your right the initial solution is to live free of sin and the guilt that comes with it aka the appearance of evil. I will be praying for this page Love CJ

        • Awesome to hear CJ! Thanks so much for sharing!!

  • Carlton

    Ok. My wife to be and I are getting legally married in a few months. Both of us are God loving Christians who a bit confused about all of this. I proclaimed my love and commitment to my wife to be. In front of God, who is in both our hearts. Why do we need anyone (the government, or a church body) to decide that this commitment is anything other than Godly? We got engaged and now live togeather. The whole wedding is for our friends and family whom we want to be apart if our union. Does it say somewhere in the bible that you “must”be legally married to someone in the eyes of man to be spiritually married?

    • Hey Carlton, appreciate you sharing and great question, you’re not alone in asking this question.

      There are lots of people walking around proclaiming they know they are married or in love because it’s “in their hearts” or “God already knows” so why do anything official……well, God does know since He knows everything, but calls us to still obey the authorities that He has put in place.

      “Let every person be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and those that exist have been instituted by God.” – Romans 13:1

      So we do things like obey the law and follow procedures that the law sets for things like, marriage.

      To follow your same question, anyone can justify their actions with that line of thinking. For example, I could steal a candy bar from the store, get caught, and as I’m accused that I stole something..I could just tell them in my heart I didn’t steal anything or that God knows I really didn’t steal it, when in reality…I broke the law and I stole the candy bar. Does that make sense?

      So with marriage, yes, you do have to make it official for it to be an official wedding. I would rather go the other direction and ask you, what is the problem with following the law and getting married? You don’t have to have an elaborate wedding and it doesn’t have to cost you a fortune, so if you love someone and want to marry them, why not do whatever the law states to get married? I’m not saying you do this, but sometimes people ask the same question you did when they really have a problem going on under the surface.

      Regardless, God calls us to obey the authorities that He put in place and when it’s involving marriage, to make it official to really be a married couple. Hope that helps!

      • Carlton

        Hello Mike and thanks for the reply. My bride to be and I are getting legally married in 3 months. So no problems there. Our problem is the church we have been attending for the past two months has denied us membership because we live together. They told us to split until we are married, or come back in three months when we are. Then, were told that they want us to stay, worry about becoming member in three months, still come to worship and give money, and server the church in one or more of the 10 different areas of the church that they need help in.

        With all that being said, I have a problem with the church not wanting us to be named
        Members but, want us to give them money, and go as a representing the church, and do work. So, I’m not good enough to become a member of your church and you don’t want my co-habitation with my fiancée to be a bad influence one the rest of the church, and in doing so being a constant sinner, but you still want my money and work?…

        As the leaders of the church stand on stage week after week and say no one can judge us but God. That no amount of money or good works will get you into heaven. That the only way in is thru Jesus and repentance. But that won’t let me become a member because I’m a sinner.? I feel they are judging us. This has broken our hearts as we are closer to God thru Jesus than ever before. Been baptized and living in the Christian life. Except, I guess, we live together without being married. Which is in three months…We have read the scriptures and are saddened by being judged by man and rejected by the church that God has brought us to.

        • I totally understand your frustration Carlton. The same thing actually happened to me when I was living with my girlfriend who I was thinking I was going to marry. We wanted to join and become members of a Church and we were “rejected”..or at least that is how I felt.

          Let me tell you what I wish they would have explained to me and maybe that can help. I work on Staff today at a Church and I have had the exact same conversations with other people now and explain to them that it’s more important for us to discuss the issue of living together and walk through that together…and then later on down the road, we can discuss membership. People will still feel rejected at times, but the priority is addressing sin and what’s going on in someone’s life, vs just making someone a member…if that makes sense.

          I can’t speak for your Church and have no context there, but they will and should always let anyone attend and be a part of it, but when it comes to being a member, they probably want to address anyone who is “living in sin” (still needing to address some things) before making them a member. Imagine if Churches just said “ok” to everyone who wants to be a member and never cared enough to address anything. At the end of the day, they are acting in love to care enough to address it, even though they may not communicate that well. I had to learn that the hard way from my past and I can see that now…but at the time I was really upset. I honestly had to get over myself and my selfishness to think “the Church rejected me” because when I reflected on what Jesus actually did for me…that line of thinking became wrong and ridiculous.

          I would encourage you to turn your energy into focusing on making some decisions. You say you have a few months…well instead of thinking you have a few months and then you’ll be fine, why not think you only have a few months…so just get married now? What are you waiting for? If it’s for a celebration or plans, do that in 3 months, and get married now. It would be better to honor The Lord today than tell Him that you’ll get to him in 3 months…what would that say about your relationship with Him at the end of the day?

          • Carlton

            Galatians 2. 16-20

          • Great verse Carlton! That goes very well with what we are talking about. Since it’s no longer yourself that you live for, but Christ within you (if you follow Jesus), then that means you’ll make decisions that are about Christ and not about you. In this case, it would be, what gives Jesus the most glory out of our living situation vs what would we prefer or what do we feel like we want to do.

            I’d suggest again taking steps to get married now and not be in that situation or taking steps to move out temporarily until you get married. Either way, you’d be making a decision that is less of you, and more of Him. (John 3:30)

      • Carlton

        Thanks again Mike for your reply. We hear what you and the church are saying about being married before living together. Thank you for you insight. But I think what’s more important to us is my second question. If you could review that and give us some insight please.?

        • Can you clarify your second question? It sounds like you are hurt from the Church “rejecting” you, but from what I said, I hope you guys can see that you might not be getting rejected, but more cared for by their response. God actually calls us to judge within the Church and He will judge those outside the Church (1 Corinthians 5:12). We have to be careful with the term judging here. It’s not that someone is making a judgement call on if you follow Christ or not..only God knows that…but we can look at our brothers and sisters in Christ and call them out for living in sin. THAT is biblical and “judging” which we are allowed to do.

          Imagine if you’re living in sin and as a fellow brother in Christ, I never said anything to you. How much would I have to hate you to never speak to you in love and help you see a problem such as living in sin? That is something we are allowed and should do.

          Let me know if that wasn’t the question, would love to help however I can!

    • Brian

      You do not, it is purely tradition, being seen to do the right thing, you only loose on judicial status, in fact in the 80’s when Margaret Thatcher was prime minister she actually encouraged people not to have a certificate, why? because the housing benefits were better for two people living together than having a certificate, is that then sin?Not according to Mike after all they are following the law of the land, and God does not call it sin either, so there is no argument here, living together with out a certificate does not constitute sin in the eyes of God or the country that a lows you to live together. Why do people not like hearing this? because it goes against the grain of the institution, they don’t know what to do if people do not have a certificate except the countries that do not issue certificates, so be careful you do not become institutionalized. Amen

      • mike jr

        just like other Christian things,this issue go by faith,witnesses, a ring&a piece of paper to get married is Gods plan by faith that’s the BEST answer&explaination sometimes,glory 2 Jesus my wife &I born again 11 yrs 3/10/15

      • M

        What stops you (“living together”) from leaving? NOTHING!!! You may leave if and when you want to, and when you live in my country, you can’t claim anything for “living together” with someone for 20 years.
        What stops you “being legally married” from leaving? EVERYTHING!!!! You suddenly think twice before leaving as you gain to loose more from leaving your spouse then if you were just living together.

        DON’T underestimate the integrity of GOD!!! When and if you get married, you make it public and you proclaim it to everyone and to the authorities and you celebrate (you may even have strong wine), because it is a beautiful thing. Why is it such a hard thing for you to do? To proclaim, to celebrate and to get the evidence for it? See, this is the difference, when you actually do get married you are so happy about it that you want everyone to know about it. Not even Margaret Thatcher’s money will keep me away from claiming my lawful spouse.

        Yes, it doesn’t say anything about “living together”, we do read in the New Testament Matthew 1:18-20 that Joseph and Mary were promised to each other for marriage, but before they got married Mary became pregnant. Joseph was thinking of divorcing her quietly and secretly. Then the angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph asking him not to divorce and explaining the fulfillment of the Lord though His prophet. Then we read about Joseph took Mary by his side as his wife. And he had no union with her until after the baby (Jesus) was born. In John 2 we read that the first miracle of Jesus was when He turned water into wine at a wedding (which He with His disciple and the mother of Jesus, with other people was invited to). We can conclude by this, that wedding/marriage in the Bible means that there are other people with (not just 2 people). Then we can also read in Matthew 5:31 Jesus telling the crowd: “It has also been said, Whoever divorces his wife must give her a certificate of divorce.” – This we can conclude that the only way you can give a “certificate” is by getting legally married and then obtaining one, and by divorce, you have to go to court to obtain a “certificate” of divorce. So now we can conclude that just promising to each other you are together and married, wouldn’t work.

  • Brian

    Two people living together does not constitute sin according to the Bible, if two people love each other and commit them selves to each other in front of God is not a sin, first you must define marriage. We have ceremonies for what purpose?So people can say they are married? To what value is this, does a certificate change who a person is? Of course not, we as a Church has to rethink what the Bible says about marriage and put things in their right perspective. Amen
    A certificate does not make person love another any more than if they did not have a certificate, this is purely judicial and nothing more. How does God view two people getting married in Church and going through all the rituals and do not believe in Gog?Hypocrisy comes to mind, but that seems to be justified.

    • Thanks for sharing Brian.

      There are lots of people walking around proclaiming they know they are married or in love because it’s “in their hearts” or “God already knows” so why do anything official……well, God does know since He knows everything, but calls us to still obey the authorities that He has put in place.

      “Let every person be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and those that exist have been instituted by God.” – Romans 13:1

      So we do things like obey the law and follow procedures that the law sets for things like, marriage. Otherwise, you can imagine, everyone would walk around proclaiming whatever it is they want at anytime without following any laws, etc.

  • Brian

    Hi Mike thanks for your reply, yes that is true that we subject our selves to the authorities, but in the case of the UK it’s not against the law for two people to live together with out a “certificate” all it means is that you cannot claim judicial benefits because you have not got a “certificate” this in Gods eyes then does not constitute living in sin. If two people get married in a Church but do not believe in God, is this not hypocrisy? What does Jesus say about hypocrisy? Is it not also in some states in the USA that a common law man and wife are recognized to have the same status as one with a “certificate” is that a sin in Gods eyes? of course not. So my friend you have still not answered the question “what in Gods eyes constitutes a marriage”.Two people living together does not constitute sin because they are not breaking any law, and the Bible does not say so either. We have been indoctrinated over the years on pure tradition because it is seen to be doing the proper thing and people making a fortune at it at the same time, this is not a marriage, it’s a convenience, tell me does a certificate make a person love one more that one that doesn’t? Of course not, if two people make a covenant vow to each other in front of God then in the eyes of God, not man, God, they are married, now if you can show me in the Bible where this is wrong I apologize for my revelations. Did you know that it was banns that were read before they ever thought of certificates? If hypothetically that the next government were to ban marriage certificates, not needed any more, what then is the situation in the eyes of God? after all we must obey the law of the land as long as it does not lead us way from Him. God bless Brian

    • Thanks Brian for sharing again, appreciate you reading the post. From the post, you can tell the points made on living together being wrong before being married. The points are in there in regards to including doing things like leading others down a dangerous path, and followers of Christ are called to not even have a hint of sexual immorality in their lives…which living together with your boyfriend/girlfriend before marriage obviously is going to violate that “hint.”

      Regardless, people can probably debate all day long on “how far is too far”, but it’s the matter of the heart that is the bigger issue. Instead of asking “what can I do” or “how far is too far” or “prove this point to me”…that shows a different heart motivation vs the person who says “how can I glorify God the most in my decision making.” I believe the person who processes that first is genuinely interested in following Jesus and wanting to glorify Him and would immediately see the dangers of living together with someone before marriage and would stay far from it…or get married immediately in order to not put themselves in a sinful situation.

      Thanks again for sharing.

      • Charlene Tersmette

        Hi Mike, I am really glad that you are helping people with this! Nowadays, most people live together before they get married. Because most people do it and we see it in the media, people start thinking that it is normal. But it is against God and it will not bring us happiness. God gives us laws and regulations to live by to protect and help us to be happy. If we follow Him, we will be happy and peace inour hearts! Hebrews 13:4.
        The Bible also says that sex before marriage is not good. We should save ourselves for our husbands or wives. 1
        Korintiërs 6:13

        • Thanks so much for sharing Charlene and for the encouragement!

  • Brian

    Hi Mike, as of today no one has been able to tell me that two people living together with out a certificate live in sin, why is this a dangerous path?”sexual immorality” two people committing them selves to each other before God, 1 John 5: 9 as witness does not constitute sexual immorality, the Bible doesn’t say that at all, the Bible is quite clear that sexual immorality is of adultery. To glorify God is to put Him in front of you as witness, not man. Signing a piece of paper does not eradicate sexual immorality, no more that walking into a Church and then saying I’m Christian.

    I say again if that country does not have certificates of marriage can you tell me biblicaly how these people stand? Does a ceremony suffice? or will they be forever living in sin? Gods definition of Marriage, Malachi 2:14 You ask, “Why?” It is because the Lord is the witness between you and the wife of your youth. You have been unfaithful to her, though she is your partner, the wife of your marriage covenant. As you are a Christian are you not married to Christ? Do you have a certificate to say that you are? Is God not your witness? Lets put it another way, I write to my girl friend, I tell her that I love here and want to be with her “married”, I sign a piece of paper saying so and my girl friend does the same, so we have now before God made a covenant, does this mean we are husband and wife in the eyes of God because we now have these pieces of paper? If people wish to get married in the normal tradition of things, that’s fine, but it is not a sin for people not to do so, this is not biblical. We can add all sorts of moral issues to this, but we have no right to tell people they are living in sin because they do not have that certificate or ceremony, as I repeat my self again, if a country does not have such certificates then please tell us what is the situation in that country for the people who live together? Biblical answer please would suffice. God bless Brian.

    • Thanks Brian. I don’t think I’m going to give you an answer that will satisfy all your needs so I’d rather not turn this into a debate. Subjecting yourself to the governing authorities that God has put in place (Romans 13:1) is much more than just a certification conversation.

      God knows the authorities that are put in place and unless they are blatantly going against Him, we are to subject ourselves to them. For example, to get married within a courthouse or in front of witnesses, by someone who is licensed to marry, and having a marriage certificate…is what makes you married…at least in the United States. I’m not caught up on all the other governments in place, but that is what someone would do to be married. Nothing else and we can’t just make up our own laws and rules and “think” something through in order for it to be true. That wouldn’t glorify God and that wouldn’t subject yourself to governing authorities.

      Most people don’t want to submit to authority, whether that be our government, or God Himself and most of us walk around saying “prove it” or “prove that” or “show me”. That type of thinking reflects where the heart is at, and that, in my opinion, is a much better conversation to have. Regardless of living together with someone is sin or not (which it is sin), the more important conversation is about where someone is at in their walk with Jesus, who Jesus is to them, and have they made a decision to follow Jesus. Starting there, that will help determine all of these answers because we will seek to follow Jesus in our decision making, instead of following ourselves.

  • Brian

    Romans 13:1, does the USA authorities say that it is against the law for two people to live together with out a certificate? I think the answer is no, therefore they are subjecting them selves to the law, the only difference here is that they have no certificate to say they “Judicially” married and cannot claim to be married by judicial law, but that does constitute that people that do not have a certificate are living in sin, by the governing law or God’s law, the Bible does not say that, we would like it that way because it’s the way the Church constitution likes it, it tidy for them, but not required by God to be so, that is the truth. It’s not a question of submitting to authority or not it’s a question, does God require you to have a certificate or not to be married in the eyes of God? And the answer is no, unless you can show me in the Bible where it says you have to, and not Romans 13: 1, that does not hold water biblically. Lets look at before there were certificates, where these people living in sin? Of course not, but since the introduction of certificates it has now become a sin, surely God is the same, yesterday, today and tomorrow, it is mans law that changes not God’s laws.

    To conclude, any one who tells two people that they are living in sin if they are living together with out a fore said certificate and that same law does not forbid them to live together is in error of scripture. there is only one marriage, that is two people of opposite sex making a covenant between them selves and God, wherever they may be the world, this is all God requires of two people. Is not Gods testimony of witness greater than that of man? We are in great error to say these thing’s to people because it suites the establishment of men, we condemn where God does not, brother I respect how you see things because it fits in the wall with all the other bricks, towing the line so to speak, but the Church is in error, Yes I am a Christian a born again Christian hallelujah and what I say go’s against the grain purely because they cannot disprove what I say in the Bible. God bless brother Mike

  • Kathy

    People have become so accustomed to sin all around us that they are becoming confused. The Bible defines about sin. Not your laws, nor friends, nor anyone writing an article, or a comment to an article. The Bible teaches against fornication. You won’t hear about that from our politicians or laws of the land. The Bible teaches that the marriage bed in undefiled. That is something else we don’t hear much about anymore. If you truly want to know what is sin, read your Bible. Surely you won’t argue with it. I agree with the article, but only because it teaches what the Bible teaches. The Bible only speaks truth. That’s where we need to get our authority. Our own thoughts and arguments might lead us astray.

    • Thanks for sharing Kathy! Agreed that at the end of the day we must take everything to the Bible to get the real answers. It’s our only true source of truth!

    • The Lucky and Rocco show

      Hi there, I hope Mike replies as well. I agree, read the bible. I have been struggling with ‘how’ the bible was translated. What if it is wrong? This may be a Spiritual Attack on me as I am always in the word. What is the bible says, “it is good for every man to have a woman” vs “wife”? (Same Greek word). Wouldn’t that allow committed common-law marriages? I’m not trying to look for loop holes just struggling to know how they know when to translate what. Another exams is when JESUS says to lust for a woman is adultry. That term “woman” is the same Greek word for “wife” which makes more sense. If you lust after someone’s “wife” I’ve commited Adulatry in my heart” ( weak paraphrase to get my point across). I hope someone replies. I hope I explained it properly.

      • Thanks for sharing and I think a lot of people struggle about the Bible in areas like that. One thing I know for sure is that when you’re reading the Bible…you have to take the whole thing into context. For example, if marriage is discussed as between one man and one woman, etc. and it says it multiple times…well then when you come across it once and don’t understand 100% of the passage…you can still see the overall context of the point at times. That example would help someone know that marriages to multiple people, etc. would go against the Bible.

        Same thing in regards to lust for women and sexual immorality. If sexual immorality is all over the Bible, which it is, something like looking lustfully at a woman wouldn’t be specific to just other wives…but all women. If you take the other wives approach, that’s like saying you can lust…as long as the woman is single, which also wouldn’t make sense.

        All in all, we know the Bible is truth because God says it is and it’s His Word, which must mean it’s perfect because God is perfect.

        I would encourage you to be involved in your local Church, get in a small group and walk with some disciples and be discipled yourself, including in the area of reading the Bible. Plus, a resource like the ESV Study Bible would be great for taking you deeper within the Word.

        Hope that helps!!

        • The Lucky and Rocco show

          Hi Mike, wow. That was one quick reply. Thank you. Rest assured I am Born Again, in a good bible believing church etc. I have ESV, KJV, NKJV, NET, NASB, NIV, NLT, and many other ones I don’t refer to. I constantly search different interpretations. And there are so many takes on the study notes (ESV vs NKJV vs McARthur etc.) ..mind boggling. back to the lusting after a woman… The same Greek work used there for lust is the same Greek word used in 1Tim referring to Elders ‘desiring’ a good work.. When it’s positive = desire when its negative = lust. Anyway, again, my only point being was really seeking an answer to what methodology when translating determines when the word is “wife” and when the word is “woman”… Perhaps that is for a translation team. I agree , the bible is God’s erroneous word, I’m just trying to make sure some humans don’t mess with it when I can’t read or understand Greek (aka NWT)… Thank you for the super quick reply and God Bless.

          • Ok great…I definitely don’t want to speak out of something I don’t know so I may not have the most definitive answer, but I would lean towards letting Scripture interpret Scripture and believe you can always get to the right answer by going that route.

            It would be the same thing for anyone reading the Bible and I think we if lead people to read more of the Bible, it would interpret itself. So in this context, you would get the point of what Jesus is saying about lusting about other women and how that is the same as committing adultery.

            Sometimes the danger in going “too deep” is that we miss the point that is pretty obvious in the context of the whole Bible. Not saying you’re doing that, just a point overall that if we read more of the Bible…we would see more clearly what He is trying to tell us.

          • The Lucky and Rocco show

            Thanks again. And good point. I think I delve into every word and check it against numerous translations and perhaps confuse myself as when I started down that path, I knew what it said only to be confused afterword. So, thank you. I think I’ll stick to whatever Adrian Rogers tells me it is…. -not that he trumps JESUS, not even close obviously, his preaching just sets Gods word in my heart. And I need someone to trust in the translation.. Anyway. Thanks again.

          • Sounds great, anytime!

        • The Lucky and Rocco show

          So “lusting” for someone’s wife = sin but perhaps “desiring” (same Greek work) a woman, is not a sin. Just the point I was making. Because as I said the list word when used in non sinful context is desire..

      • Kathy

        I definitely don’t know the Greek language, but I’ve heard many sermons from men much smarter than I who have done extensive study of the language. I don’t remember ever hearing woman and wife used interchangeably. If it contradicts what the scripture says elsewhere, then it is not the correct translation. If it is good for man to have a woman, then he could have a different woman every day. He could also have someone else’s wife because she is a woman. The scripture never promotes that behavior anywhere else. God designed the family – a husband, wife, and children. Not multiple husbands, wives, or women. To your other comment about lusting for a woman, I’m not sure what you meant about wife making more sense than woman. I agree that men shouldn’t lust after someone’s wife, but they also shouldn’t be lusting after women either, so I’m not understanding. I admire your interest, your knowledge, and your desire to learn the correct meaning of the scripture. Be careful with a lot of the newer translations of the Bible, and be careful what you read on the internet (wink). Keep studying, and remember that the Bible does not contradict itself. May God bless you with the understanding.

      • Thank you for sharing. I think a good study on how the Bible has been translated, what that means, and to really understand that process would be a big help for you. You also have to take the whole scripture into context..for example…obviously lusting after any woman would be sin, not just other people’s wife. That would mean I could lust after any single women and still not be sinning…that obviously wouldn’t be true and it would be a sin and committing adultery to lust after any woman, like Jesus said.

        I would consider reading this recent book out from Kevin DeYoung (Taking God at His Word) and think it would be a big help. – http://www.amazon.com/Taking-God-His-Word-Necessary/dp/161045846X

      • Angela Viveros-Lopez

        I went through this too about the editing and misinterpreted parts of the bible due to change of language. I have taken up learning to read in hebrew and arameic and hopefully soon Greek. I believe this is the only way of getting the true word of God as it is in the original language.

    • The Lucky and Rocco show

      Thanks for the reply. My point about lusting at a woman vs lusting at someone’s wife can be better explained here (please note it is about masterbation…my point starts at the 8 minute mark, again sorry about the content):

      http://youtu.be/cKSvJJMAlqk

      So that being said, it is the same Greek work that is interchanged for ‘wife’ and ‘woman’ and ‘husband’ and ‘man’. So my point was how the translators know when to use what word when, and I sort of tried to illustrate it with JESUS telling us lusting after someone’s ‘wife’ commits adultery makes more sense then just lust after an woman ( which I agree is still wrong). Since adultery is having sex with someone else’s spouse, it makes sense that the thought of it is equally wrong. Then I went on, as does the video, to illustrate the Greek work for lust is the same as desire. So one can desire something and it isn’t sin, but lusting after something is…yet same word .

      Anyway, hopefully you get what I was trying to decipher..when the translators knew to use what word translation where and if that is explainable then someone can have confidence I. The translation.

      The lady at the well is another example, some translations say JESUS said she had 5 husbands…others 5 men… And they Interchange, u had 5 husbands and the man you have now is not ur husband…u have had 5 men now and the one you have now is not ur husband…husband and man all the same Greek word.

      Anyway, the common-law marriage thing does cause some confusion. In JESUS’ day there were no certificates of marriage. Apparently 3 things took place, a celebration, public presentation the other is their spouse and a dowry. Those 3 things constituted a marriage. So, if a common-law couple did those 3 things, but didn’t get married with a certificate per se (which could be construed as a worldly marriage and we are not to be friends of the world) I don’t see God having a problem with it. And I don’t see scripture saying it is wrong either. The lady at the well obviously didnt do those 3 things with her latest man. And, the way people are allowed to divorce now, their is no proof that it is a stronger commitment. It is pretty simple to get a divorce and common law coues don’t have it any easier. Just a passing thought. So, if a coue did those 3 things above and did not get a marriage certificate, would God accept them as married or not? And let’s say they stay together until both of their deaths ( which is irelevant as most marriages don’t). Just some thoughts.

  • Akhona

    Thank you for words of wisdom, I’ m I in the same situation what worce is that we have child and my boyfriend is a moslem and I know what God says by being unequally yoked with unbelievers. So I really need your prayers.

    • Appreciate you sharing Akhona…will be praying for sure! Is there a local Church you can be a part of and get some help if you are wanting to move out? It would be great for you to have some support to make the move. I would continue to read the Bible and have time with The Lord and look to pursue Jesus first and foremost as you make the decision to move out until you guys are married.

  • sylvia

    hi, so I am a born again Christian who is considering moving in with my catholic boyfriend in separate rooms ect. the only thing i have been given as reason not to (as we will not fornicate,have sexual relation ect because of a past trauma committed against me and because of faith) is what people will think. biblically speaking there is nothing against it, so long as sexual desires ect are not present and acted upon. I’ve been told we cant because it would bear false witness as people would judge us as a couple living together and assume we are having relations although its not physically possible for me

    • Hey Sylvia, first off, thank you so much for sharing and asking about this…really appreciate your question and your vulnerability to ask.

      Some of the questions I would have is before anything else, if you guys are in a relationship headed towards marriage, why not just get married and then move in? Whatever the answer is to that…that is something I would take before The Lord for sure. If it’s money, time, etc. I would really weigh the cost of potentially never getting married down the road vs just getting married now (which you can do and for a low cost) and always celebrate later. It would be better to be married and as husband and wife to live together before anything else.

      Making a move like that would glorify The Lord because you would be honoring Him by getting married before moving in. The better question to what you are asking is “how can I best glorify God in this decision?” Most people don’t ask that question before anything else and it’s typically “can I do this or that thing” instead.

      I obviously don’t know you guys and can’t speak into your motivations, but I would not move in with your boyfriend, but rather wait until your married, or get married now and then move in. It’s not worth tempting yourselves (or just him..maybe not you) in regards to sex, your testimonies to other people, etc.

      If your boyfriend is a follower of Jesus and if you are too, I would treat this decision and any other one in terms of what best glorifies God. If there is even a hint whatsoever of sin or potential sin, that is where I would stay far away from that as much as possible, pray to God about that, and make decisions that glorify Him and not your preferences.

      Hope that helps!!

      • Sylvia

        Thank you for your reply. it’s difficult for us to get married where we live as I am Protestant and he is Catholic but as soon as we can we will.

        Simply being his girlfriend has meant that some members of both of our families have disowned us… Which is why we are considering moving in together.

        Thanks for replying
        God bless

        • I would just encourage you guys to make your decisions first and foremost on what will glorify Jesus the most. If you guys follow Him, how to best follow Him in this circumstance and let Him be the authority in your lives before any denomination or family member if that makes sense. Thanks again for sharing!

          • Angela Viveros-Lopez

            Where are the biblical verse to back this? I like having the biblical back up for this so I can share these with others. I know those able abstaining but not those of not being able to cohabit before marriage as it dishonour God.
            please could you point these out for me.
            Thank you

          • Hey Angela, no problem….if you read above in the post you’ll see Scripture backing up couples living together before marriage in regards to sexual activity, temptation, being a stumbling block for others, and choosing own preferences and rights vs what will glorify Jesus first and foremost.

            Hope that helps!

          • Angela Viveros-Lopez

            Hello Mike thank you very much for your diligent reply. I do see that I states verses on how to avoid sexual immorality but I can say my fiancé and I lived together for 11 months completely abstaining. And never faltering. Our church forced him to move out or he would’ve been kicked out of servitude within the church. Now we are living apart and expiriencing tempation something that we didn’t expirience whilst we Cohabited for 11 month which is why I ask for specific verses that state this. The ones you provided in the article speak more about sexual immorality. Could you please help me to understand

          • No problem Angela. There’s more at stake than just sexual immorality or the temptation for that, which is already enough to make wise decisions to stay far from it. The Scripture above supports why not to be a stumbling block to others…as in…another couple might look at you, see you living together and as you profess you’re a follower of Christ, think it would be the Biblical thing to do the same thing…but then fall into sin. You would play a role in them doing that, which you don’t want to do.

            Another is when the Church is making decisions and telling you not to do something because of sin, it’s probably a good thing to listen and see why that leadership is saying it in the first place. God has appointed leaders and authority specifically and when they are telling you something like that, that should be a red flag for you. I’m not saying they are perfect, but there’s more at stake here than just sexual things.

            It’s not a question like “we haven’t done anything wrong, what’s the problem,” but more of “what glorifies God the MOST in this decision” and if you could avoid temptation, not lead people down a bad path, and choose to get married before moving in, I would pursue those options any day. That help at all?

          • Angela Viveros-Lopez

            Yes you have made it much clearer. My relationship is a testimony for others. Makes perfect sense. Others we have spoken to have come across judgemental rather than discernment. Ok thank you. Our wedding will be in error next 3 months.

            Actually another question for you as you strike me as very knowledgeable in the word. My fiancé was previously married through a civil wedding not through the church with an ex partner who needed status here in the UK.
            They divorced because the relationship was bad.

            Does his previous marriage mean God won’t recognise my marriage with him?

          • Awesome Angela, yes, your relationship and everything you do is a testimony to others about Jesus if you claim to follow Him!

            Great question on getting married after a previous one. Here are some notes from the ESV Study Bible and I believe them to be accurate. This is put in words way better than I could explain, but I hope you find encouragement in them.

            “What should be done if someone has been divorced for other reasons than those given in the Bible and then has married someone else? Jesus says that in such a case the person has committed “adultery” (Matt. 19:9), so the marriage began with adultery. But when Jesus says, “and marries another” in that same verse, he implies that the second marriage is in fact a true marriage. Jesus does not say, “and lives outside of marriage with another” (which was possible, see John 4:18), but “and marries another.” Therefore, once a second marriage has occurred, it would be further sin to break it up, for it would be destroying another marriage. The second marriage should not be thought of as continually living in adultery, for the man and woman are married to each other, not to anyone else. The responsibility of the husband and wife in such a case is to ask God for his forgiveness for previous sin, and then for his blessing on the current marriage, and to strive to make the current marriage a good and lasting one.”

  • Kelly

    I am divorced with 2 children and am now engaged to a wonderful man. He is not legally able to get married until early next year. We have our wedding planned for the first available time that i can get us and kids all together. I could go into all of the reasons why but wont, i will just say that we would like to know if there is a way to do a religious ceremony or something ahead of the big wedding so that we can live together and be in God’s graces? We don’t want to live in sin or set a bad example for the kids, but would like to start our family life now.

    • Hey Kelly,

      Thank you so much for sharing. I haven’t quite come across that scenario before and first let me say I think it’s awesome that you guys are wanting to get married and strive to glorify God in your marriage and start off on the right foot.

      Biblically speaking, you would need to legally get married under the authorities God has placed over you guys in order to be married. The good news about this is that you can easily do this in a courthouse or something and then do a big celebration later. The bad news about this perhaps for your situation is that it needs to be legal.

      I’m not sure what situation your fiancé is in, but I would do whatever it takes to make things legal as fast as possible, legally get married, then have a great celebration! That will even help lead your kids to see you want to do what the Bible says and that includes submitting yourself to the governing authorities in regards to what it legally means to get married.

      I’m not sure where you guys are on being followers of Jesus or not, but if you are, the bigger question in all of this is “how can I glorify God the most” in this decision. Read the Bible, pray, and let the Holy Spirit lead you in making the God glorifying decision in all of this. Thanks so much for sharing!

  • Kingdom Bound

    Hi, I have a question for the writer of this article. The bible is the inspiration of the Holy Spirit written by men chosen by God 2000 years ago. Marriage is an institution ordained by God and not man. In 1923 marriage became a national law because during that time interacial couples wanted to marry and it was illegal. In those days people did not go to a courthouse to request permission to be married. The man and woman had the blessing of the father and they wrote their names, and date in the family bible of the covenant they made before God in the presence of a local minister. Many christian couples married this way and God honored their marriage. They made a vow before God and that was it. The government had no iinvolvement in this matter. It was a family matter. Christian and non christian men and women all throughout history married this way. My grandparents never went to a courthouse. They met, they vowed before God and lived over 80 years together had 8 children and were blessed by God. After 1923 when marriage became a law, the institution of marriage changed. Today in the 21st century you have the government passing laws that same sex genders can marry before God. Just because the governing bodies made this a national law it doesn’t make it right before God. If the institution of marriage would have been left the way it was, and the government not get involved in family matters, this new law would never have been passed. I know the end is near, where God would allow these laws to be passed and man blaspheme against the Godly institution that God ordained between a man and woman since the beginning of time. My question to you is, since marriage became a law in 1923 why are people saying that if a person doesn’t go to the courthouse and get married, they are shacking up. If two people make a covenant before God and do not want to involve this corrupt government in their family affairs would God honor their marriage?

    • Angela Viveros-Lopez

      Ooh My Gosh! I love this question. It makes me think a lot about it. But this thought just came to mind: in the bible it does say we must pray and obey our leaders in power.

      Romans 13King James Version (KJV)

      13 Let every soul be subject unto the higher powers. For there is no power but of God: the powers that be are ordained of God.

      2 Whosoever therefore resisteth the power, resisteth the ordinance of God: and they that resist shall receive to themselves damnation.

      3 For rulers are not a terror to good works, but to the evil. Wilt thou then not be afraid of the power? do that which is good, and thou shalt have praise of the same:

      4 For he is the minister of God to thee for good. But if thou do that which is evil, be afraid; for he beareth not the sword in vain: for he is the minister of God, a revenger to execute wrath upon him that doeth evil.

      That came to mind but am very eager to hear from Mike.

      • Great Word Angela….and spot on. Feel free to read my response above. Thanks so much!

    • Great question and very glad you asked that! Many people I think wonder the same things at time at why they can’t “just be married before God or in their hearts”.

      The Bible says in Romans 13:1 – Let every person be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and those that exist have been instituted by God.

      God has put the government and authorities in place and calls us to submit ourselves to them. That includes with whatever country or time period we are in, the legal procedure for something such as getting married. I’m not saying that we follow laws that strictly go against God such as same sex marriage, but something in terms of legally going to a courthouse and getting married in front of witnesses…is not against God. Plus, that is the same for many other laws including something like speeding on the highway.

      Where it gets hairy is if people start making up their own laws. Imagine if someone went 90mph down the road in a school zone of 20mph and said “I know in my heart or I made a covenant with God that I can go 90mph.” That person would still be illegal and there would be a consequence for that. Would you want people walking around making up their own rules because of how they feel or because of an agreement they said they made with God? God would say otherwise in Romans 13:1 so we want to be very careful before we proclaim the “covenants” we have made with God.

      Now, take it to marriage. Many people believe they are married in their own hearts or married before God, yet they have not taken the steps to actually, legally, get married. Not only does that go against Scripture in Romans 13:1, but another question might be….”why would you not get married legally?” Typically, that question uncovers the true problem or issue at hand.

      If our country says you go to a courthouse, or get a piece of paper and get married in front of witnesses, or says whatever that does not include going against God, why would you NOT do whatever it takes to get married to someone? The bigger danger is when you don’t do that, you open yourself up to your own interpretation of what is legal based on your feelings or opinions rather than what the Bible says is fact.

  • savannah.hemmes

    Hello, my boyfriend and I have lived together for 2 almost 3 years now and been together 10 as of Oct 31. We’ve rededicated our lives to the Lord just recently and have stopped having relations in addition to many other sins of the flesh. We live with his grandmother and share a room and bed. Is this okay since we have already been in this situation? I don’t really have anywhere else to go either, and there really isn’t anywhere else for me to sleep here. We have always planned to get married, and he even sometimes refers to me as his wife. The only things stopping us were first age (started dating at 14), then I was away at college, then health insurance, then money and now he doesn’t want to be joined into holy union until we’ve become stronger in our faith. Should I try to seek a different living situation? I really can’t afford to live on my own, I cannot go home to my mother as she has sold her home to move in with and take care of my Grandfather. As of right now we are finding a church, and since I left for college I no longer have girlfriends I can move in with and even with if I did rent around here is simply too expensive to even split 2 ways. At the same time I want to live up to God’s word so badly and please Him. I just don’t know how to make it all work in the meanwhile.

    • Hey Savannah, thanks so much for sharing.

      It’s awesome to hear that you guys are turning towards The Lord and I hope you continue to spend time with God in His Word and prayer and the local Church.

      If you’re a follower of Jesus, I would make every decision based on what would glorify Him the most. I wouldn’t continue living in the same situation you have been just because you’ve already been doing it…with following Christ…comes changes in our lives that sometimes can be really difficult, but again, our priority now is to follow Christ and not ourselves.

      Is there any reason you guys can’t get married? I would imagine if you’ve been together for 10 years, that you are moving towards marriage? If so, I would get married asap, which there will always be excuses to wait, etc. but why? If you guys believe you are going to get married, make every effort to do that now and you can do that where it barely costs you anything, and you can always celebrate in a larger way later. If you’re not moving towards marriage, after 10 years, I would seriously consider ending the relationship because what else are you moving towards then?

      I would do whatever it takes to change the living situation where you guys aren’t living together until you’re married. Become part of a local Church that teaches Jesus and the Gospel first and foremost, and ask them for help…they will help you.

      In all of this, it’s not easy, but following Jesus is worth it and if He says we shouldn’t do something, there’s a huge reason for that and He has a better plan for our lives than anything we can ask or imagine. Consider what will glorify God first before any other decision you make whether it’s this or the next thing that comes up. Hope that helps!

  • I Love God

    Hi,
    Well my fiance and I have been born again Christians for about 2 years now. We’ve been dating for 5 and engaged for almost a year. We have a 3 year old daughter. We’re both 23 and full time college students and engaged to be married next may. I live with my parents with our daughter. He lives about 2 hours away with a roommate at school. He comes gome evety weekend to see hour daughter. Hes done tgus for the past 3 years. I feel like I’ve raised our daughter alone for the most part. We first decided not to live together after having our daughter due to financial reasons then because we gave our lives to God. Lately I’ve been feeling like we need to move in together now because raising our daughter alone takes a toll on me along with school and work. I also feel like he needs to be with her on a daily basis. I feel like the issue is taking a toll on our relationship because he says we are doing this for God which I agree with but I feel like I’m suffering alone and he’s not there to help. I know this is a little aside from the topic but I really need some advice. Thank you in advance. God bless you. This is my second time reading this article by the way. So I felt a post was due.

    • Hey there, thank you for sharing. It’s definitely a tough situation being that you guys have a daughter…love hearing that you two gave your lives over to Christ and that you have chosen to follow Him for the rest of your life, that’s great!!

      That being said, I would make your decisions based off of what will glorify God first and foremost. That way, you can be sure you’re making a Biblical decision and trusting what God’s Word has to say as well. In this case, He knows if you’re striving to follow Jesus and He is our provider so you can trust that He will provide for you.

      Another part of this would be to seriously consider getting married asap and finding a living situation that works for your whole family being together after you get married. I know there are many things with that with school, etc. but my opinion would be it’s better to get married and come together as a family unit now, and you can finish school the following year. I would go that route vs waiting another year. Is there any reason you guys can’t get married now?

      Lastly, keep reading the Bible, pray, and become members of a local Church that teaches Jesus is the only way..you need to do this life in community and not in isolation and God commands us to be part of the Church anyway since we are His Church.

      Hope that helps!!

  • Brandy Brown

    Thank you so much for this article. Me and my boyfriend are born again Christians and want to have gods full blessings in our life. after showing this to my boyfriend we decided not to have any sexual relations with each other and decided to get engaged in December when he gets back from deployment and have a small wedding in may in move to his hometown in June

    • Wow Brandy that is amazing to hear! Thank you so much for sharing this!!

      From what the Bible says, you are making the RIGHT decision in what you’re doing and choosing to do what glorifies God the most first and foremost before anything else.

      It’s encouraging to hear of this happening and use this situation to glorify God more and more by sharing your story with others and making the wise decision to marry before moving in or doing anything else that could be sinful.

      Thanks again for sharing!

  • Keziah Schwartz

    Hi Mike. I am a theological student. This article of yours really helped me with an assignment i had to finish for class. You have been an amazing help to me. Thank you.

    The assignment is a tutorial

    The tutorial question is-Paul and
    Paula are engage to get married. Wedding plans are on with the support of
    parents and families from both sides. The two feel they can now start living together
    awaiting the wedding day. What advice can you give them, from the Biblical
    perspective?

    • Awesome Keziah, thanks for sharing!

      It sounds like from the post above and also even comments below that you got your answer you needed for the tutorial question. Thanks for the encouragement!!

  • Lanette Rung

    I agree with you. But I have a question. I can’t find anything in scripture that says you have to get a certificate for .marriage. Only a certificate for divorce. I had a person I was trying to counsel on this and he believes that marriage is once you have sex together. What can we say to him?

    • Thanks Lanette. Great question!

      In regards to where we live, God has placed governing authorities over us which includes laws for us to abide by. That’s the same reason why someone can’t drive 90mph through a school zone just because “they believe” that should be the case.

      It’s the same thing for marriage. Many people think they are “married in their own hearts” or if they have sexy, they are married. While having sex is a huge deal and does bring two people together, that doesn’t mean they are married. Imagine how many marriages and divorces would be walking around constantly because of so much sex that happens.

      “Let every person be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and those that exist have been instituted by God.” – Romans 13:1

      Here, at least in the US, you have to legally get married, in a courthouse, with a certificate, in front of witnesses.

      I would say to the person asking, “why would you NOT want to do everything possible to be married if you really want to be married?” Not only to glorify God first and foremost, but what’s the problem? Typically the answer to that question reveals where someone really is in the relationship.

      Hope that helps!

  • Ashley

    I have a complicated situation. Me and my ex husband was together since i was 15. We got married when i was 18. We have 3 kids. Sadly we divorced after being married 13 years after really bad things happened. Within a year of being divorced we moved back in together. .. .I want a godly realationship. I waant to be married again. but he doesn’t. He thinks bc we were was one before god the first time that we are still as one before god. To me i think we are not bc of our divorce 2 years ago. Is this still sin to god bc we are not married?

    • Hey Ashley, thanks so much for sharing and appreciate you being vulnerable during a tough situation.

      The best response I could give you is that you guys are not married and if you want to follow Jesus and glorify God first and foremost in everything you are doing, I would not continue living together and make a change asap. Also, if he doesn’t want to be married again, I would seriously consider not pursuing the relationship, because he is saying a lot by not getting married again.

      I do believe God can reconcile any marriage and there is definitely hope because we place our hope in Christ, but both parties have to want to get married and be willing to do that. If he doesn’t want to, then I would question why he even wants a relationship then. If he really wanted a relationship, nothing would stop him from being married. Even with you guys being married and getting divorced…if you’re getting back together and want to glorify God in your relationship, get married now or move out and continue to date (if you want) to see if it moves towards marriage.

      My honest opinion would be to not date anyone if they aren’t willing to get married because if you’re not moving in that direction, what’s the point of dating then? Also, what are you telling your 3 kids then as well?

      It’s awesome you are wanting to to the right and Godly thing and maybe your example will help lead him and turn some of his viewpoints around, but at the end of the day since we all have to stand before The Lord and give an account, you’ll want to make the right decision and make some changes today…all to glorify God first and foremost at the end of the day.

      Really hope that helps!!

  • Maria

    Hi mike, i am 18 years old. i moved in with my boyfriend because him and i have been in a long distance relationship for 3 years and i finihed high school and we both decided that i should come over to england from Canada and we could move on forward with our relationship. but lately Mike we have failed and i feel horrible i just cry all the time because i feel like God is stugging in my heart that its not right and it seems like my boyfriend just is not ready for the next step. but i just dont feel like he wants to or is ready. i just ask if you could pray for me and just ask God to give me the strength to leave if i need to or for God to touch my boyfriends heart.

    • Hey Maria,

      Thank you for sharing and yes, I will pray for you for sure. Very sorry to hear about your situation and I’m hoping if you follow Jesus, this would be a time you would trust Him to be your comforter.

      The reason you feel God tugging at your heart is because…He is. I felt the same way in my past when I started following Jesus…I realized living together was sin. It is most definitely not right and I would make plans now to move out.

      If your boyfriend wants to get married, then I would stay in the relationship if it’s moving in that direction. If he doesn’t, I would honestly end the relationship asap. You don’t want to be in a relationship that isn’t moving towards marriage anyway…that won’t be good for you or for him. Either way, I would make plans to move out asap because that situation is sinful will not glorify God.

      Trust Jesus to give you strength because of what He has done for you on the cross and for Him to lead you out of temptation and out of your living situation. Read the Bible, pray, and become a part of the Church as quickly as you can so you don’t do this alone.

      Hope that helps Maria! Praying for you!

      • Maria

        I’m in the UK all alone I have no one to go to! And your right I’m going to connect myself with a church family and God will work something out! Thank you so much mild! Also what do you think about young people getting married?

        • Joining a Church would be huge Maria, great move!

          I think young people getting married is great…depend on how you define young I guess. I think if they are following The Lord, God is leading them to be married, and in my opinion have gone through pre-marital counseling to address all the many things included within marriage, then I’d say it would have to be a good thing!

          That’s of course outside of my contexts depending on who’s asking, but that’s the general thought at least.

  • Isaac Mitchell

    Hey Mike!
    Me and my girlfriend of nearly two years are considering moving in together. I have been a lifelong believer and she is newer to the faith and still has a lot of questions and concerns. I am sure that I want to make our relationship the second most important in my life and we both want to spend every moment together. We are also both dedicated to remaining abstinent until we are legally married. Another factor in our decision is the fact that we will be living with another roommate as well so it won’t be just the two of us. What are your thoughts?

    • Hey Isaac! Thanks for sharing and for asking!

      Congrats on the relationship and sounds like you are taking it seriously by asking questions and wanting to keep it 2nd most important in your life, after your relationship with The Lord.

      That being said, since following Jesus seems to be your highest priority (with what you said), I would make decisions with what most honors Him first and foremost. That will also set the stage for your girlfriend on what kind of relationship that will be. Not just being abstinent, but being a Christ centered relationship where He is the ultimate authority in your lives, nothing else.

      Regardless of the situation (and I know personally how tough they can be), whether you’d be abstinent or have a roommate really isn’t the point, but more of does this move glorify God in every way? I would say no in regards to putting both of you in temptation at all times and setting that an example to other believers and non believers.

      If you are guys are moving towards marriage and both follow Jesus, I honestly would get into pre-marital counseling and then just get married. If you’re not moving towards marriage, I honestly wouldn’t even pursue the relationship any more. The sooner you can both glorify God and get married (if you guys are headed that way), the better…and then I’d move in together.

      Hope that helps and hope the reasons laid out in the post help as well! Thanks again so much for sharing and for asking!

  • jaclyn

    Hey Mike,
    I am wondering what you think about this situation: my boyfriend and I have been dating 2 and a half years, and recently he has been stay at my apartment for purposes of convenience and proximity to school. We plan on getting married in the future, and I always told him that I did not want to live together until we were married because that’s not what God wants. So, when I noticed he was staying with me for longer periods of time each week, I told him that it is basically the same as us living together and we should get married if we are going to continue down the same path. I take sin seriously, and I liked your suggestion about going to the courthouse and getting married asap even if we want to have a “normal” wedding ceremony later in life.
    However, when I approached my boyfriend and our families with these idea, I did not get the reaction that I expected. I thought my parents would be happy, but instead they freaked out. His parents said they would basically cut him out of their lives if he got married this young. I want to honor my mother and father, but this puts me in a bad situation. My boyfriend wants to get married, but he does not want to go against what his parents say either. I also want to stop living in sin and thought getting married would please God and honestly just make everyone happy.
    I am almost 23 and my boyfriend is almost 24, so we are more than old enough to make our own decisions. I really care about what my parents think but is there a certain point where I should do what I think is right and not listen to what they are saying?
    This has really been taking a toll on my relationship with my boyfriend and my parents. I feel like I am trying to make things right with God and do the right thing and I have only encountered opposition.

    • Hey Jaclyn,

      Thanks for sharing your situation. This is a tough one because the Bible does call us to honor our parents. I believe that doesn’t necessarily mean “obedience” to our parents at all times, but that depends on a lot of factors. Are your parents believers? Are your boyfriends parents believers?

      It seems like you’re trying to honor God with your decisions, which is the RIGHT thing to do no matter what, but you’re getting opposition at the same time. I would ask your boyfriend to stay at his parents house or friends house immediately while you guys talk about this more. I would get with the local Church that you’re a part of (if you’re not, get to be a part of one) and get some guidance/counseling on decisions coming up for you.

      At the end of the day (and I’m not trying to make this sound too easy or anything), you are an adult and from what you write…a follower of Jesus Christ, and you are going to be held accountable for your own actions. God will have you take an account while you are standing there alone so I would view the decision making as “What would glorify God the most in this situation” and take it one moment at a time. Make sure you’re reading the Bible consistently and praying and seeking wise counsel…you need to be doing that during this time and helps tell others you’re really taking it serious.

      It’s possible the parents are thinking you guys are just rushing into it, but if you have a solid relationship and follow The Lord, you should be able to explain why it is you want to get married and to not be in sin and the hope is they will support you in that.

      I think you can still honor your parents without obeying them at times and those situations happen with adult children in my opinion. The opposite would be saying while you’re 30, your Dad tells you to do something and you’d be sinning if you didn’t do exactly what he said…that’s kind of off because you’re an adult now making your own decisions. Still seek to honor your parents, but because you’re a follower of Christ first…before anything else.

  • Nicholas Bjorn Bidell

    Hey Mike, this was a great piece and makes everything quite clear about God’s and the Bible’s stance of living together before marriage. I agree 100% with you here. But I was wondering if I could have your honest, unfiltered advice on how to handle this situation.

    My girlfriend and I have been dating for almost 2 years now and we’re very much in love. We’re both Christians however she has only been saved for a few years where as I was born into a Christian family and acquired my own salvation when I was considerably younger. My issue is this:

    My girlfriend’s sister and her boyfriend are going to be moving in together this November. They both are professing Christians and he himself used to be a youth pastor in my church. This is very troubling for me as I know that they still have many of our youth group teens on social media etc. and it’s clearly setting a poor example. What’s troubling to me is not only that my friends are moving together but my girlfriend seems totally okay with it because they’ll have a roomate and is planning on helping them move in as well.

    I love her very much and we even run a kids ministry together. We want to get married but now I’m worried about the state of her beliefs if she thinks this is perfectly acceptable behavior for a Christian. How should I address her and the fact that she thinks its okay and how should I handle two of my friends that are going to be living in sin without sounding like a Pharisee?

    Help!

    • Hey Nicholas, thanks so much man for the encouragement and appreciate you sharing!

      Let me encourage you in a few things and by no way am I saying I have it all figured out…

      In regards to talking to your two friends…I would in love and grace just talk with them, share with them what you believe and show them Biblical evidence or maybe this post, etc. in regards to why this is not a good thing for them to do if they are followers of Christ. Ask them to show you Biblical evidence towards their decision making. Talk to them about making decisions that choose Jesus first and foremost above anything else. Ask them some tough questions, but in humility. None of those should be issues for them to talk about unless there is a bigger issue.

      We are called as Christians to help love and serve one another and discuss issues like this because sin is too great to ignore and Jesus is too great to not consider Him in all things..especially for followers. Pray, be patient, be humble, and don’t delay in talking with them.

      Before you do that..talk to you girlfriend…

      Share with her the exact same concerns and ask her what she thinks about that as a follower of Christ and ask her to show you the Biblical evidence supporting her thoughts. Explain to her since you choose Jesus first, you want her to do the same, and that says a lot about where you guys are going as a couple. Perhaps seek out some Biblical counseling to have another Christian speak Biblical authority in your lives…it can’t hurt.

      Make sure you’re spending time with The Lord every day in His Word and through prayer so you can make sure you are following Him yourself and out of doing that, truly speaking the truth in love and serving your girlfriend and your friends.

      Hope that helps man!!

  • Carolyn

    I’m really confused. I have been with my mate for five years and I’m so ready to get married but he isn’t at the moment for whatever crazy reasons. One excuse is that we don’t have a lot of money…should I move on and prepare myself for God’s plan or be patient? Also we have a child on the way which makes our first one.

    • Hey Carolyn, thank you for being honest and sharing.

      I would be hard pressed to give you the exact, official, and right answer in this situation, but there’s a lot to be said on “waiting until ______” because there will always be something. That is definitely part of the discussion just to see where the relationship is really headed and I’d encourage you guys to get with a Christian counselor to go through this or partner with your local Church to walk you through this to help.

      Whether you’re living together, have children, etc. the best encouragement I could give you is to get married asap. So if marriage is not in the future, I would make some changes quickly in order to glorify God. Maybe this is a time period to take marriage seriously to really pursue it or not and have some help with these dialogues with others, a pastor, a counselor, instead of just you two.

      Does that make sense? Hopefully that helps!!

  • Scar

    hey
    I think it is unwise to get married for sexual reasons, and for money reasons. i also think it is unwise to NOT live with a partner before marriage. What if you can’t live with them? I did “gods way” and lead me down divorce, abuse, and pain. I wanted to have sex, and be okay wiht god, I wanted to live with him, and be okay with god. I realized, God is okay with me, no matter what. HE see’s my heart. It’s people that will not be okay with me, and I am not going to get married for the sake of sex because people pointed out verses from a book, that gets taken out of cultural context constantly. I have been with God my entire life. Now i am a sinlge mom, with two kids, and no dad. I plan on living with my future mate first, and then if me and my kids can manage a function home together, then I will marry him. Honestly, this stuff, is nobody else’s business. When i was married, and struggling the church was not there, in many different states! Yes, we traveled STATES to save my marriage. EVERYBODY Had an opinion and a bible verse, nobody had any practical advice for the abuse both of us were enduring from eachother. I say this matter is for the couple, and the couple only. When stuff hits the fan, it really is just you and God in the end. My entire life, and world came crashign down on me, homeless, jobless, with two babies! 1 and 2!…and every siongle person who had there bilical opinion, did they help me find a job? no, daycare? no, help me? no! It was just God, if i can live with my choice before god, nobody else matters.

    • I’m very sorry to hear of your situation and don’t want to act like I can relate to it, but I hope you would be encouraged in a few things.

      God cares for you. Even with the situation you’re in and the difficulties you’ve faced, He cares for you and sent Jesus for you. I don’t know if you follow Jesus or not, but I do know if you do, you’re forgiven…forever.

      Also, if you’re a follower of Jesus, then you..me…or anyone who is a follower is supposed to…follow…Jesus. That means as we read the Bible, pray, spend time with God, and serve/love others, we’re called to make disciples which is what Jesus told us to do before He left.

      I’ve heard of many stories where Christians or the Church give people some verses, etc. and nothing else and agreed, that can be tough and actually send the wrong message at times, but I’d encourage you to not give up on people. Jesus never gave up on you and that same Jesus has called you to love and serve others so you need people. I need people. We all do because we are wired for community.

      I’m hoping you can become part of a local Church that teaches the Bible where you can find true brothers and sisters in Christ that will do life with you, walk with you, be there with you during the hard times, and celebrate with you in the good times.

      In regards to living with someone, I’d have to respectfully disagree with you on that. If you “can’t live with someone”…then I’d question if you should marry that person to begin with. The whole point is making a commitment no matter what. Even if “living conditions are great”, that doesn’t mean they won’t become terrible after the first few years. Either way…a “test run” isn’t Biblical and isn’t going to do you any good.

      I guess the best thing I could say is that if you are a follower of Jesus, then your decision making needs to take Jesus into account.

      -Does this decision glorify God?

      -What does the Bible say about it?

      -Am I following Jesus and closer to Him because of this decision?

      -Does this decision help lead others to Jesus?

      Those are just a few questions, but relevant ones to ask before making any decision…especially when it comes to dating someone, marriage, living together, your viewpoint on people, the church, the Bible, etc.

      Hope that helps! Thanks for sharing!

  • Lida la Vida

    hello,
    this is a really important issue for me as well. My boyfriend and I are living together for a while.
    We both think it is sinful and thats why we wanted to get married a while ago. It never worked out, because he is self employed and we both couldn´t save enough money to have a small wedding. now it got more complicated, since I got pregnant 3 months ago. We now definitely want to get married somehow befor our baby is coming. My family tells me to move out until we get married, which would be in about 3 months. It would be a more stressful situation for us financially to be able to save money for our wedding and move out at the same time. I also dont want the pregnancy full of hectic which is clearly not good for me and the baby. I dont know what to do. I feel like whatever I do next, it will be wrong.
    Does anyone have an advice ? Thank you!

    • Hey there, thank you so much for sharing!

      If you both believe it is sinful (I’m assuming you both follow Jesus), then I would do whatever it takes to be out of sin. Not only will that start your marriage off the right way, but it’ll set an example for your children as well.

      In terms of a wedding, if glorifying God is the more important thing (to stay out of sin), go get your license, go to the courthouse, and get married. Then save money and have a larger celebration later. It would be better to celebrate and not be in sin, then to continue to save and save and stay in sin. Again, it’s a matter of priorities at the end of the day and from what you’re saying, it sounds like you both don’t want to be in sin so I would take steps asap to be out of it.

      At the end of the day, if you’re a follower of Christ, then think through “how can I follow Jesus” in this situation and what would most glorify God. It would be better to glorify God and just get married to not be in sin than to do anything else. Any celebration, etc. you guys want to do (which is great by the way) can come later and doesn’t have to be the priority because God is the priority. There’s nothing standing in the way of you guys just going to get married now….which is a huge celebration in itself and a God glorifying move!

      Hope that helps!

      • Lida la Vida

        thank you! this was very helpful!

        • Awesome Lida! Thanks for sharing!!

          • Atif John

            borther… i have a girl friend. we kiss each other and touch. but i think that this is not good.
            plz clearly tell me having a girlfriend in any way is good or not?

          • Atif, thanks for sharing. Having a girlfriend can be a great thing as long as you guys are staying away from a sinful relationship. The post above hopefully outlines some guidelines that you can can watch out for in your relationship to glorify God the most! Hope that helps!

          • Lida la Vida

            got married a week ago!! God is good!

          • That is amazing!! Congratulations and thank you so much for sharing!! What an amazing decision and way to get the marriage going on a great foundation honoring Christ above all else!! That is awesome!!

  • Atif John

    i have girlfriend and we love each other. but i don’t want to do any sinful act with her so what would i do… is it good to leave her for Jesus.?

    • Hey Atif, great question and thanks for sharing. Having a girlfriend is completely fine obviously and that is great! However, you want to make sure you guys are headed on a path towards marriage in your relationship, otherwise, there’s not much of a point to it.

      When following Jesus, He needs to be the authority in your life and hopefully He is the authority in your girlfriend’s life as well. If you guys keep engaging in sinful behavior, I would take steps to stop doing that immediately, repent, confess that before The Lord and with the help from the Church (that hopefully you’re a part of), get some other believers to help encourage you and take steps to stop being in sin.

      If you guys can’t agree on Jesus being the authority or can’t stop sinning, I’d encourage you to pray about if this relationship really is worth it and is heading towards marriage and if it’s not, I would end it personally.

      At the end of the day, Jesus hasn’t called you to leave your girlfriend just because she is your girlfriend, but has called you to follow Him, making Him the authority in your life. So if you can make your decisions based on what the Bible says and what Jesus should have you do..that’s a step in the right direction.

      Hope that helps!

      • Melissa Butler

        I just think it is wrong only two people on SSI can get married but one person on SSI can’t marry a person not on SSI without losing all their benefits !!! Government penalizes you for getting married & takes away your check, health insurance & prescription plan !!! If a person is sick & poor than why can’t
        they be allowed to marry, But two homosexual people can marry & keep benefits & a spouse after
        death in gay marriage can get benefits !!! Tell me this country is not totally messed up !!!

        • Hey Melissa, sorry to hear about that. I’m not all up to date on how SSI works, but seems like it maybe could be a case by case scenario where if the spouse could support that new spouse…then they wouldn’t need benefits anymore, but agreed with you that it seems like a bummer that someone could lose the benefits if they really need it.

  • Jeff Varga

    Interestingly, there’s no prescription for a ceremony nor vows mentioned anywhere in the Bible. Certainly Adam and Eve did not. Marriage seems to be for the purpose of having children. Also, all these words like “sexual immorality” “fornication” etc. are not definitions in themselves. They are just labels. If you want to know what all the sexual sins are exactly, they are defined in no uncertain terms in Leviticus 18 and 20. There’s no mention of sex outside of marriage being a sin, but everything else in the world is defined without room for mistake.

    • Hey Jeff, appreciate you sharing.

      Ceremonies or vows (covenants, etc.) are actually all over the Bible. Whether it was during Old Testament times or New Testament where families had ceremonies, traditions, etc. when it came to marriage or when it comes to vows…we ultimately see a covenant established between God and His People.

      Marriage isn’t just for children either, but ultimately to show the world the picture of Jesus and His Church. Ephesians 5:22-33 would show you everything I’m talking about here.

      That also means since sex is only for one husband and one wife, anything outside of that covenant between them is sin. (1 Corinthians 7:2).

      I’d encourage you Jeff to actually read through the Bible and take your time if you’re seriously wanting to know more about this and what it actually says. The Bible is very clear on this, but not at the end of the day to just prescribe a list of laws…but more to describe the grace and peace we can have through Jesus Christ…EVEN WITH our sins we commit daily in marriage and outside of marriage.

      If we are forgiven (for those who follow Jesus), how could we NOT then want to read and obey His Bible?

      Thanks again for sharing.

  • Sam Martino

    Great article, I just have one question though. Me and a friend (notice I said friend and not something like girlfriend) are planning on living in the same house in order to help pay for food and mortgage, plus my friend also has a disability and may need help. We have no interest in each other. Would this still be considered sin?

    • Hey Sam, great question. I totally get you guys are in a different situation than most people commenting here or reading this post.

      However, I would still caution you or anyone when it comes to opposite genders. God has made us male and female and for one man to be with one woman…that being said…when a man and woman are together, consistently, and alone at times, it can be dangerous. Even if there are no feelings at first, things can happen.

      For example, you’ve probably heard of many people who end up getting in affairs with people from work. Opposite genders, together for awhile, and sometimes alone. I even have it where I won’t be in the car, alone, with a woman. Not because I don’t trust the woman, but because I don’t need to put myself in the situation. Most things that seem harmless at first, might be deadly down the road.

      So when it comes to living with her, I’d still encourage you not to do this. Are you guys followers of Jesus? Are y’all a part of the Church? Have you asked for help this way or for different roommates of the same gender to help with your living situation? I would look into all of those options.

      At the end of the day, our decision making must be what glorifies God the most (if we are followers of Jesus), and that includes not putting ourselves in situations that might be unwise….even if not today…could be down the road.

      Hope that helps!

  • Jennifer

    Hi, I came across this posting because I wanted clarity on what God says about cohabitation. My now ex boyfriend & I had separate apartments formally, but spent almost every night together at my apartment. He came home to me, we shared dinner together, did laundry together, etc… We functioned as a unit and were happy. I recently felt convicted about how we were living and suggested we started spending our nights apart; as a result he broke up with me. To him we weren’t living together & there was nothing wrong with our holding one another at night. Was I wrong to try to make that change in our relationship, even though I felt God telling me to do so? Was what we were doing considered living together? And can you please spare a prayer for a broken heart?

    • Hey Jennifer, I’m so sorry for your broken heart and yes of course, you’ll be prayed for!

      Let me encourage you with a few things. First, you are NEVER wrong choosing God first in your decision making with what He wants you to do. You can believe that for a fact. Second, yes, you guys were basically living together even if you had two places, but you absolutely did the right thing by following The Lord and not wanting to put yourself in a tempting situation or “live together” without being married.

      Third, if your decision caused him to breakup with you, then that relationship wasn’t going to last. Here’s why. You felt it important to follow God and make your decision and it ended up with him ending the relationship. I know you might have a broken heart right now, but you just saved yourself a much bigger broken heart down the road. If that is how he reacted to all of this, you wouldn’t want that in a husband anyway.

      Perhaps God was moving you in a direction to get healthier and eventually find a real man who will honor and love you by putting God first, and you second. Just like how you’re trying to put God first, and then relationship second.

      Hope that encourages you and please continue to follow The Lord even if it means making tough decisions and getting hurt. Remember what Jesus has done for you enduring the pain and hostility He did for you….and that you’re forgiven, forever, if you follow Jesus.

      Read the Bible, pray, become part of the Church, and keep spending time with The Lord trusting that He is directing your steps!

  • Drew

    Hi Mr Mobley. I’m intrigued by the honesty of people in the situation I am experiencing and your insight as to how the the bible still pertains to my so far life events. My heart has been convicted for the past couple months because I and my fiancè have been living in sin. And it scares me for both her’s and my spiritual sake. But mainly mine as God has said I am to be the spiritual leader of my household. My daily devotion gripped my attention with the term Apostasy. So when I got home this evening I dove into my bible and started to research and decipher what I could. I was saved at a young age ( I think 9) but I was told it was legitimate. But with years of psychiatric problem and massive amounts of medications I have lost every recollection of my life. But I have fairly established memories as long as 8 years ago. So a question of whether I was truly saved or not.and if not why I have conviction for wrongs I have done. But my situation is to long to go into detail. I met a beautiful Christian woman who has had lifelong trials of rape, an abusive husband, existing children from her marriage being taken by the state due to loss of everything she had. She moved a few states over to pursue a fresh start but a few months before she left, she was drugged and raped. Thus baring a baby girl. As time went on love was evident. I have to say that it felt of God. As time went on my psychiatric problems got worse so we split for awhile. We got back together and a few days went by and she found out she was pregnant from a man who threatened to kill her. I pray with her for her struggles she deals with. So now the state she was in offered no pediatricians and the doctors her 18m old was seeing were killing her compromising her immune system with steroids and setting up treatment for chemo. So I set it up with a pediatrician where I lived and all that was wrong was an ear infection. All is well until pregnancy complications started at 8 weeks. Threats of miscarriage. And no doctor was close enough to be affordable for the drive. I sat on the sidelines offering support in any way I could. But I couldn’t let anything happen to her or the baby. So I packed her up and moved her with in me where she got the definitive care she needed. It’s been a year since she moved in and I proposed in late August and a date set in early April. The option of her moving out so we can be right is hindered as we are in the process of trying to find out why her neurological state is deteriorating that began shortly after giving birth to our baby Boy. She can’t get a job to help with support and my finances barely cover home basics diapers and prescriptions. I want to be right with God. We turn to him for so much but I can’t in good conscious have her leave in this state. It was instilled in me long ago to be selfless and do whatever my being can offer to help another. I truly know what’s in my heart but I’m not sure if that means anything while in sin. Any advice would be appreciated.

    • Hey Drew, thank you so much for sharing. This is a huge situation in so many ways!

      Let me give this response a shot as best as I can from a blog post comment.

      First off, whether or not you can remember or if you’re sure or not, you can be sure of your salvation by believing in Jesus Christ and choosing to follow Him for the rest of your life. If you’ve made that decision and have started to follow Him, the Bible says you’re saved. You can know for a fact that you are saved if that is the case and read more here if needed – http://www.beforethecross.com/biblical-teachings/how-can-i-know-i-am-saved/

      Being if you’re a follower of Christ, you want to make decisions that give God the most glory and don’t go against Him or His Word. I’d encourage you in this situation for you guys to just get married now. You can always celebrate the marriage in April, but getting married now would be the right decision if you guys are going to get married anyway. There’s no sense in waiting, especially in the situation you guys are in.

      That’s the best encouragement I can give you besides pressing on to continue to love her and love others because of how Jesus first loved you. (1 John 4:19). So I’d get married literally asap, have a celebration later, but the better part is being able to celebrate immediately after being married that you guys wouldn’t have to worry about being in sin or not because God would honor your marriage.

      Hope that helps!

  • Boos Clues

    Hi.

    I have a question. When I started dating my ex 8 yrs ago, I thought we would get married. we moved in together and shared everything. Fast forward 8 yrs, we broke up earlier this year but yet still live together. We rarely see each other. He lives his own life, I live my own. I recently started dating again and found a guy that I am interested in. He is a good Christian man but does not like that I still live with my ex. He says that I should kick him out if I want to go to heaven. He says that I need to make things right with God by not living with my ex. I am Catholic and go to church every week and repent my sins each week. I am also the type of person that feels guilty for certain actions. I know that if I tell my ex that he needs to go, I will feel bad for kicking him out since he has no place to go. He does not have any family that lives around us. Any advice? I really like this guy and he likes me but the only problem is my ex.

    • Hey there, thanks so much for sharing.

      From reading the post, you can probably guess that I’ll encourage you to not live with your ex. If you’re a follower of Christ, you have to ask the question what will glorify God the most with my actions and what does the Bible say…first and foremost. That would be in making decisions about your ex and when making decisions about this new guy as well.

      For the ex, you guys should never have been living together anyway since you weren’t married, so that would certainly include not living together post-breakup as well. The Lord is the provider for all of us…not you…so it’s not your responsibility to provide for your ex. Obviously you shouldn’t hate him or anything, but his provision is not up to you. Your decision is the follow Jesus or not with how you live your life…if Jesus is your Lord and Savior at this point.

      I would pray, read the Bible, make sure you’re part of the Church for help and support, and move forward making decisions that will honor God above all else. I’d have the ex move out or you move out..either way..cut ties from a relationship/providing standpoint and move forward. I would also make clear to your new guy that you are a follower of Jesus first and foremost. That you going to heaven or hell is whether or not you’re a believer or not…not whether or not your living with someone. However, I would NOT live with your ex OR live with this new guy until you are married to a man who can respect you and a man who is following Jesus as well.

      Making those decisions now not only honor God first, but also show others what you want your life to be about now, and down the road so it would be best to start your new relationship on a truly Biblical foundation first.

      Hope that helps!

      • Francisco

        Hello thank you for your enlightenment,
        We have the same situation with Boos Clues but my only problem my GF and I had a kid already Age 8. Until now we are not married with my GF. But more problem added because we have no money yet for getting married. Do you advice us not to live in one roof?

        • Hey Francisco, thanks for sharing. Yes, I would give the same advice and tell you to get married asap and to not live together unless you’re married.

          You don’t have to pay for a large ceremony or anything (you can do that later), but can just come up with the money for the license and to get married at a courthouse. Have the Church help you pay for it…friends…family…etc. You can find a way for that low cost.

          Either way, if you’re a follower of Jesus, it’s making the decisions that glorify God the most first and foremost before anything else. Besides that, it would be a great example for your 8 year old child to see you guys putting Jesus first in your life, your new marriage, and family going forward.

          Hope that helps!

  • Shira Garnett

    Absolutely Scripturally Correct!

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  • anon

    How do you define living together? Is it as simple as sleeping in the same bed? My boyfriend lives out of town and he stays at my apartment on weekends. We are not sexually active but we do sleep in the same bed.

    • Hey Anon, great question and thanks for asking.

      I’d define living together as living together under the same roof. There are so many reasons as to why this is not a good thing for a follower of Christ (as mentioned above in the post). I’d encourage you both to live in separate places until you get married.

      If you guys are in a long distance relationship, I’d do your best to see each other, date, etc. but not spend the time with one another because that is reserved for marriage and will lead to many dangerous sins.

      At the end of the day, if you follow Jesus, I’d make your decisions based off of what will glorify God in the most in the situation and use the Bible as your guide in that.

      Thanks again for asking!!

  • Ryan Sears

    It’s so expensive to live alone. If I had the choice financially I would not live with my girl friend. Not to say I do not love her or that I don’t know its wrong. The choice to move came about the fact that she basically live with me for about a year & we both could not really save money. We decided to move in together but now I realised this was a decision made without God’s approval how do I change this without hurting her & how do I survive.

    • Hey Ryan, thanks so much for sharing. I was in the same exact situation and just like you’re realizing…it is not the Godly decision. I can’t lie and tell you it won’t be hard, but the change is worth it and God glorifying so you know it’s the right change.

      If you guys are going to have any future relationship anyway, it needs to be built on God’s foundation, and this is the first step. If she doesn’t agree with you on this, it tells you a lot of what you need to know in regards to the relationship in the first place.

      Either way, you guys should move out, and trust God will provide the means to live on your own until you are married. You can always get help from the church you’re a part of. I’m assuming you are part of one if you follow Jesus..if not…be a part of one.

      Making these decisions are definitely hard, but not impossible. They are also the right and God glorifying decisions to make as a follower of Jesus. The reason you realize it’s wrong is because it is wrong and God is teaching you that. Now it’s a matter of applying what God is teaching you and making decisions to change things.

      Hope that helps man!

  • Maria

    My boyfriend and I just discussed this last night! We have been together for 4 years and have been living with each other majority of our relationship, he’s a believer and I just recently started putting my faith in God, like literally a couple of months ago. I’m still learning everyday and want to learn more about him. He came to me last night saying that we should live in separate homes until marriage, I was extremely confused and really bothered by the whole thing. I definitely took it the wrong way. A lot started going through my head but after him reading off a few scriptures to me and explaining to me that he loves me and wants to spend the rest of his life with me and bless our relationship and do it right, it really touched my heart. I just didn’t really know how we were going to reverse our sins we have already committed the past 4 years? I also have a 6 year old daughter and he has raised her as his own, is that a sin? I know she’s going to take the moving situation hard. I’m just super confused about the whole thing and I also want to make things right but is it too late? I’m really new at this.

    • Hey Maria, thanks so much for sharing!

      Let me encourage you with a few things since you said you just now recently started putting your faith in God. First off, I’m not sure if you follow Jesus or not by what you’re saying, but the beauty of “The Gospel” is that God sent His only Son, Jesus Christ, who lived a perfect life here on earth, died and paid the penalty for all our past, present, AND future sins on the cross, and rose again defeating death and sin in Victory.

      That means, for those who follow Jesus and believe in Jesus, they are forgiven…forever. It doesn’t matter what you did in your past, present, or what you do in your future..you’re only forgiven because of what Jesus did..not because of anything you can do. Now of course, this doesn’t mean we have a free pass to sin, but hopefully encourages you that your past sins can be forgiven through Christ!

      The fact your boyfriend came to you with this is GREAT news. That tells you he is concerned with glorifying God first in your relationship and has you move towards marriage, what better thing could you teach your daughter in this process? Even with it being a huge decision and a difficult one, the fact he is saying this should be showing you signs that he is very much husband potential because he wants to honor God first, which means he’ll strive to treat you like a wife according to the Bible (I’m assuming he is a follower of Jesus).

      If you guys get married, God views you two as married. And for him to treat your daughter like his own after you’re married, is fine. Take this as an opportunity to teach your daughter what it means to follow Jesus and why you’re making this decision. She may not understand currently, but she will understand over time and look back on this. Just like how you would teach her with anything else in life when she might not understand, you still know it’s better for her. And when it comes to following Jesus, NOTHING will be better for her than to do that!

      Hopefully that helps.

      1. If you follow Jesus, you are forgiven because of HIM…not because of you. So you need to let go of all sins because that’s why Jesus came in the first place.

      2. Take this as an opportunity to teach and love your daughter with what it means to follow Christ.

      3. Be very encouraged that your boyfriend wants to do the right and Biblical thing in this situation. That is a great move!

  • Midnight Mist

    Hi I’m pretty lost and disheartened at this point. I’m a Christian but my partner is not. He’s very much against marriage (comes from a broken home, hates the church). We’ve been together for about 12 years now and of course moved in with each other when I was young, naive and lacking the wisdom that comes with age! We have a 4 year old girl & are committed. What do I do when I want to get married but he doesn’t? Living with this constant feeling of shame is awful, every day feeling trapped into ‘sinning’, when I want to move forward but he’s content being committed without ‘the piece of paper’ (his words.
    I don’t want to mess my daughter up by breaking up, and I want to be married. At a loss.

    • Hey there, thank you so much for sharing. I’m really sorry you’re in a tough situation and will pray for God to continue to work in this.

      If you’re a follower of Christ, I’d encourage you to really consider your relationship with your boyfriend for the sake of your future, marriage, and even your daughter.

      I’d seek out some counsel from your local Church that you’re a part of (assuming you are a part of one since you said you are a follower of Jesus). And see if your boyfriend would be willing to meet as well.

      It’s hard to say that he is “committed” when he won’t “commit” in regards to getting married. Whether or not he thinks a piece of paper is important (which it is), it shouldn’t matter to him if he wants to be committed to the relationship anyway.

      And if you follow Jesus, you have an opportunity to explain to her as well that you live for God first, and you guys have to make decisions according to the Bible that would glorify God first, above all else.

      I know I don’t have a perfect answer, but I’d really encourage you to see if he is willing to get counseling with you and if not, really think through if this relationship could continue or not since you guys aren’t married. Perhaps in the meantime you could stay with a family member or friend temporarily to help show you’re serious about this and to not put yourself in a situation to sin.

      Hope any of that helps!

  • youngman on mission

    Hey, Mike its encouraging to hear these words. I have been a Youth Pastor and at this time I am working in a secular job with a lot of young people fresh out of college (some still there). I have never see the number of individuals who openly admit they live together and they are openly proud of it. Just today some one stated that their Pastor said they would not perform their upcoming marriage ceremony because they were living together. The individual said they were mad and would not go back to the church and did not need their help. Others came to their rescue and supported them given stories of how bad the church treated them in similar cases. I just set in awe. Prayers..Prayers..prayers for our young people and for the churches in knowing how to respond.

    • Thanks for sharing and appreciate the encouragement. I hear ya and think prayer is really the best answer for all of us. I myself really didn’t understand why it was wrong and had a bad experience in the church too…but that was because there wasn’t really a willingness to discuss things or have a relationship…it was more like a “that’s wrong” and a slap on the wrist so I didn’t get it.

      It’s a good lesson for all of us to be patient with others, take it one step at a time, stick to what the Bible says, and keep walking with people as they hopefully make decisions to follow Jesus including doing what the Bible says.

      Appreciate you sharing!

    • BeerOnTap

      Welcome to 2016.
      Despite what a book written 2000 years ago by men says, we have the right, in our walk with God, to believe that living with our Fiances is not a sin and not wrong.
      I couldn’t care less about what the bible says about it because it’s wrong.

  • Yvonne

    Mike, I have been drowning in my own sorrow and tears for a week. The man I had been living with for 5 years and engaged for 3 left without a word a week ago. Came home to find his things were gone, partially. We had been very distant weeks prior to this happening but did not expect for him to get up and leave. He told me over a text, he has yet to face me, that he didn’t plan anything. That he sensed that it was God calling him to leave that one day. He tells me that we were doing everything wrong and living in sin since we weren’t married. That I seemed unhappy and that he was holding me back, to not doubt God’s will.

    I am having such a hard time digesting this, if only he had spoken to me. I now come to the realization that yes, we both missed all the signs that we needed to put God before everything. That we needed to attend church regularly and together. That we needed to change our lifestyle but in agreement with each other and work together with God, not apart from each other.

    We were a man and a woman living together and committed to each other. Financial circumstances prevented us from getting married by the law, had we done this, then one of use would of inherited the other’s bad credit. We were working on resolving that. Now it’s all lost.

    • Hey Yvonne,

      I’m so sorry you’re having to go through this. I don’t want to act like there’s a quick fix for this and I’m truly very sorry this has happened to you.

      Sounds like you guys were working on stuff like you said and that The Lord was showing you guys some changes you needed to make moving forward to glorify Him and not to sin, which hopefully at some point soon would be great encouragement to you that God is working in your lives.

      The fact that he left is not a Godly thing regardless of what he said and I’m praying for you and hope for his return and ultimately for The Lord to give you peace and comfort during this time. One things is for sure in this is that Jesus is faithful and true. I know that is hard to understand when people do sinful things, but since Jesus isn’t sinful, you can count on Him, always.

      Are you a part of the local Church? Do you have any friends that are followers of Jesus who can walk with you during this time? I pray you do so you have community which is very important so you’re not in isolation.

      I have no idea why he left and maybe he has to process, but I also pray that you can forgive him and hope that maybe he can come back and you guys can work on things…and even if he doesn’t…that you can run to The Lord to protect you and guide you during this time.

      I know that’s not a lot and it’s through a blog post comment, but I hope that helps in some way.

    • BeerOnTap

      God has nothing to do with that. He just wasn’t ready and, like many people, is using God as a cop-out.

      • We want to strive to have meaningful dialogue here on BTC and really appreciate your view point. That being said, if you don’t mind, let’s have a conversation then rather then commenting on everyone’s thread making the same statements. Continuing to do so will result in deletion of spamming everyone’s thread. Thanks.

      • Layton Holcombe

        You will be disciplined “Beer” …God disciplines those He loves when they are willingly disobedient…and additionally disciplining of those who choose to be teachers. The Bible is God’s Inspired Word and you will pay for eternity if you never accept the Holy Spirit’s offering of His Grace through Jesus Christ. I will pray for you every single day of my life.

  • Alex

    Hello, I am still struggling. I have only been with one man and I know that he is the one I will be with forever. Is it wrong for us to move in together even if we are engaged?

    • Hey Alex, thanks so much for sharing.

      Are you a follower of Christ? Is your fiance is a follower of Christ?

      I’m only asking because I don’t know where you guys are at, but assuming if you are, I’d say what would be more important is what would glorify God first and foremost. Especially in your relationship that is headed towards marriage, you’d want your marriage to start off on the right foundation with Christ being in the Authority and at the center of your marriage.

      That way, when you both have disagreements or are striving to do life, you know the Bible is your authority. Not you and not him.

      Dating would be no different. When you date, or when you’re engaged, Christ should be your Authority if you follow Him and for all the reasons mentioned in the post, moving in together before being married would not be good. If you guys are for sure going to get married, I’d get married asap, and THEN move in. It wouldn’t be worth it for all the reasons in this post to move in first and in fact, would be choosing yourselves first before Christ.

      I don’t mean to make it sound easy, it’s difficult. It’s challenging to follow Jesus and it’s really hard in terms of relationships with other people, I’ve been through the same thing so I can relate with you, but I can also personally tell you it is SO worth it to be following Christ now and as you get married because your marriage will flourish with Christ being at the center of all your decision making!

      Hope that helps!

    • BeerOnTap

      According to a book written 2000 years ago by men, yes.

      But no it is not wrong. It is a beautiful thing.

      • We want to strive to have meaningful dialogue here on BTC and really appreciate your view point. That being said, if you don’t mind, let’s have a conversation then rather then commenting on everyone’s thread making the same statements. Continuing to do so will result in deletion of spamming everyone’s thread. Thank you.

  • BeerOnTap

    “This is a pretty popular question that comes up with believers and non-believers”

    You can believe in God and yet believe that living with the woman you love and are engaged to and even having sex is not a sin.

    The Bible has many great things in it, sure. But the reality is that it is a book written by man. Not everything in it is correct and I don’t have to go along with everything in it in my walk with God. If I want to make love to my wife to be, that is not a sin.

    The whole bit about God pulling a rib from Adam and making Eve is so stupid it’s painful.

    I can feel this way about it and yet still believe in God.

    • Hey there, thanks for sharing.

      We want to strive to have meaningful dialogue here on BTC and really appreciate your view point. That being said, if you don’t mind, let’s have a conversation then rather then commenting on everyone’s thread making the same statements. Continuing to do so will result in deletion of spamming everyone’s thread. Thank you.

      In terms of your comment, it comes down to how you are defining “god.”

      If you mean the God of the Bible, then you can’t believe in that God and go against His Word…the Bible. The fact is God Himself tells us that The Bible is His perfect Word. Which means it’s 100% perfect. It would have to be if God says so.

      “All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness,that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work.” – 2 Timothy 3:16-17

      And

      “For no prophecy was ever produced by the will of man, but men spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit.” – 2 Peter 1:21

      I’m not saying you HAVE to believe that (because everyone can believe whatever they want to), but from the Bible itself and from the God of the Bible..we can’t just make up whatever believe in and call it truth. If we don’t believe the Bible to be truth, then we don’t believe in the God of the Bible because we then call Himself a liar at that point.

  • Nadine Kelsay

    I love this article! It is very well spoken and respectful! Thank you for sharing, I believe this is THE most heartbreaking thing happening in our society. Less than 20 years ago this was rarely an issue in the Church. The only people I knew growing up that were living together were people that weren’t confessing to be Christians. Now it is a total rarity to go into a church and find couples committed to keeping the marriage bed pure.
    The devil has done outstanding work in this area. He has been able to completely brain wash not just the world but “Christians” into believing you can pick and choose what you want the Bible to mean.
    We have forgotten this world and life are temporary. To say that you would rather have financial security than eternal security is heartbreaking.
    “But store up for yourselves treasures in Heaven, where moth and rust do not destroy and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there, your heart will be also.” Matthew 6:20-21
    I grew up in a very conservative Christian home. I was told many things about the Bible, one of them being you are not to have sex before marriage, period. But while I was told these things I never really was taught what it meant to LOVE Jesus. And so I rebelled for many years because “Obedience follows love”. Without love there’s no real reason to be obedient. I was involved in relationships that I knew were wrong but I always justified because compared to the world I was a “good person”. But the emptiness inside was never truly fulfilled, just covered by words of love and lustful actions of men I sought to be with.
    I went my own way for many many years, but because God is faithful and my family continued to pray for me, I slowly began to allow my heart to open…not to another man but to Christ. It was a long journey with many ups and downs but God never let me go and has blessed me with a husband that loves me with the love of Christ-pure and gracious.
    All of this to say, my husband and I, (though we had both had sex outside of marriage) were able to date for a year and a half (however I do not necessarily recommend waiting for a long period of time to marry if you are both confident God has chosen this man/women for you) remain completely pure and not live together before getting married. It was extremely difficult. It was financially taxing. Satan was constantly trying to tear us apart. And if it wasn’t for Christ’s strength in us, we would never have been able to do it!
    The thing we had to constantly remind ourselves is that we weren’t doing it to please ourselves or anyone else, we were maintaining purity to please God! Because of this I know He has already been faithful in blessing us financially, spiritually, and physically. Not that He “owes” that to us but yet He gives blessings freely!
    I continue to thank God that He gave us the strength to do this because I know our foundation has been built on a solid rock and the devil will never have that as a foothold!!
    It is ALWAYS worth it to put Gods desires ahead of your own!

    • Awesome Nadine! Thank you very much for sharing and that’s super encouraging!!

  • Layton Holcombe

    Mike, Thank you for sharing gently with all these people who are hurting due, basically to their lack of trust in the Lord.

    • Thanks for sharing Layton and appreciate the encouragement. It’s always a tough situation if someone is going through this and my hope is God continues to reveal His Word to all of us so that we can grow in our trust.

  • Amanda Zacha

    I grew up on a Christian family. My parents were ministers. I had a serious relationship out of high school and wanted to move in with my boyfriend. But because of my beliefs we married first. Big mistake! We could not live with each other. Went to counseling. It was a lost cause. I swore I would never marry someone until I lived with them. However, 5 years ago I did it again! We married, he was strict Catholic and we wanted to be accepted in the eyes of the church. However, once we married he was very abusive and controlling. I again divorced. Now I have met the love of my life. We have lived together for almost a year. Both of our parents are ministers but accept our living arrangement. They see us as married and we consider ourselves committed to each other and God. That marriage license only caused me heart ache and lost of money in this past. This time I am doing things differently and finally happy. We are hoping to try for children soon as well. Marriage is not what it used to be back in bible days. Today is is a legal trap and a way for the government to control you. God loves us no matter what. I feel no same in what I am doing and offended that some people do. I feel I am as good of a Christian as anyone else. I shouldn’t be judged because I sin differently than you do.

    • Hey Amanda, thank you so much for sharing, really appreciate it.

      I’m very sorry to hear about the past difficulties you’ve had to face and what you’ve had to go through, and happy to hear that you have found a man who isn’t abusive and is interested in treating you in a proper and loving way.

      I’m sure you could tell what I believe from the post, but from what you’ve said, I don’t think you guys getting married or getting the license is what caused the mistakes of the past, but rather it sounds like sin and bad choices that the previous husbands that made is what was making the situation bad. Seems like regardless if you lived with them or not, or got the license or not, it was a matter of their character and they chose to treat you that way either way…which is really unfortunate and again, I’m sorry.

      That being said, I also don’t think living together with your boyfriend is what has made you guys work either…it sounds like he is treating you right and that is why it’s working. Not because you’re living together before being married. It’s hard to tell from what you’ve said if you guys follow Jesus or not and obviously I wouldn’t be able to tell from a blog post comment, but my encouragement to you both would be to look at what the Bible says about having a marriage that is built on a Biblical foundation.

      There’s not a spot to be found in the Bible that teaches us “we are whatever we believe we are” as in “we’re married” because “we believe we are.” Rather, you’re married when you’re legally married according to the authorities that God has put in place. You can imagine if you go down a path of “whatever you believe” it gets dangerous. For example, I could tell you I believe I am a 15 year old or I believe I’m the parent of my neighbors kids, but the reality is I’m legally my age and I’m legally parents of my own kids, not just others.

      God does love us, you’re right and that is why He sent Jesus to us including giving us His Word. It’s not outdated and it’s not wrong, in fact it’s perfect and what is says about marriage is still true to this day and will be forever. We have made marriage difficult and yes sometimes there are government issues, but the fact remains it’s between one man, one woman, and if we say we follow Jesus…then we would follow the Bible and what it says for our own lives, our marriages, and for our children.

      Otherwise, we become our own authority and get to make up our own rules based on however we feel. I hope you’d consider what the Bible has to say vs what any man has to say (including myself). We are all sinners, we’ve all fallen short, and we all need Jesus’ forgiveness. No one is judging you because God is the ultimately judge. However, we can as believers, look to the Bible and encourage each other to live out what it actually says vs our own opinions.

      Hope that helps!

      • Amanda Zacha

        It does help! Thank you so much! It’s good hearing what others think that don’t know us or our situation. I am just scared to death to get married again. And also I haven’t been divorced two years and I am scared what people will think! I know it shouldn’t matter what people think but it’s hard not to think about it! Yes my boyfriend and I are strong followers of Christ. This is really the only thing we struggle with. I pray about it all the time and I’m sure God can see and understand my struggle.

  • Nathan

    I have been with the same woman for over seventeen years. A few years after we were together she was in a program that helped her with housing they said that we were not able to be together while she was in the program without being married. We were told that if we got married she would lose her SSI benefits. There was a Christian minister that worked there and he married us within the church before God. That was back in 2003. Now at this time we are attending the mormon church. We were told that we have to be married to be apart of the church. We said that we were. Then we are told that we need to be married through the courts before God will see us as being married. other then that we are sinning against the word of God. That is not true.
    Back
    when Jesus walked the earth, they didnt have papers for marriage. Paper
    was a scarcity, and when people married, it wasnt through a legal
    system, it was through the eyes of God. The minister, the attendants,
    the audience, they are all just witnesses to your big day. The couple
    actually marry themselves, by reciting the ancient vows to each other.
    Marriage in the eyes of God is complete when you pledge yourself to each
    other, agree to forsake all others, and to live with them no matter the
    situation. Recite the vows to each other in front of a minister, and
    have him bless the union, and you are married in the eyes of God.

    • Hey Nathan,

      Appreciate you sharing. As you can imagine from the content of this post, I would have to respectfully disagree with your points in what your sharing. One of the main reasons is because God has still put the governing authorities in place and tells us to follow those laws:

      “Let every person be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and those that exist have been instituted by God.” – Romans 13:1

      The only exception to this would be if the “law” would be to go against what the Bible says. In terms of marriage and it whatever culture you’re in, there’s a legal way to get married and when we do that..THEN…we are married. Not before.

      Going the route of “we are married in God’s eyes” doesn’t line up with Scripture. He would tell you what He has already told you through the Bible and in fact, that marriage would not line up in God’s eyes.

      We have to be careful not to justify the things we are doing with our own assumptions or thoughts, but rather let the actual Bible define things and tell us what is truth or not. It’s a slippery slope of “what feels right” and “this seems right” kind of paths that lead us into major trouble. Our hearts are troubling and can be deceitful (Jeremiah 17:9) so “what feels right” will lead us into trouble, but the Bible will lead us into the things that Glorify God.

      If I were you, I would seriously consider really getting married, legally. And if you can’t or don’t want to do that..ask yourself why? That answer will show you what you really value over what the Bible has to say.

      I’d also become part of a local Church that teaches the whole Bible, teaches the Gospel, and how Jesus is man and God, lived a perfect life, died paying the penalty for all past, present, and future sins..then rose again defeating death and sin in Victory. And that He is the only way to God, period. Find a Church that teaches that, become part of the community there, and you’ll find brothers and sisters in Christ who will spur you on to follow Jesus and be obedient to what the Bible has to say.

      Hope that helps man!

      • hcat

        I wonder if civil “marriage” is what you have to do before you have sex, when the actual civil authorities and the law don’t give a good cahoot whether you have sex or live together before a civil “marriage” or not.

  • hcat

    Holy matrimony is now so different from civil “marriage” that in some cases where a civil marriage would cause a tax disadvantage I might be OK with the church granting a holy matrimony without a civil marriage. As a matter of fact, civil “marriage” has about as much to do with holy matrimony as a birth certificate to a baptismal certificate. OK we shouldn’t have sex until we’re married, but which kind of “married” do we mean?

    • Hey there hcat, I’m not sure if I’m following your question completely, but married would be marriage according to the Bible, between one man, and one woman, and it would also need to be legal.

      “Let every person be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and those that exist have been instituted by God.” – Romans 13:1

      God still has put legal authorities in place and we should follow them unless they completely go against scripture.

      Otherwise, you can imagine the chaos of all of walking around saying “I feel we are married” or “I think we’ve been married already” and everyone being left to their own conclusion and opinion. That’s simply not true and we have factual answers straight out of the Bible that we can follow.

      Hope that helps!

      • hcat

        Getting “married” is not, at civil law, a prerequisite for doing anything, least of all sex. Plus, the definition of “marriage” at civil law has nothing to do with the Christian definition of matrimony. It may be dissolved for no reason at the will of a ne partner, and it can be between two people of the same sex. So, I have to conclude that government “marriage” has nothing to do with Christian matrimony, which is governed by the Church’s rules, not the state’s.

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  • Eldonna

    The problem that I have with churches denying a cohabitation couple from getting married in the church, is that they are closing the doors on sinners and opening the door to evil. And, quite frankly then, no one should be going through the doors of a church, for we are all sinners; We confess our sins, we ask for forgiveness, but we keep on sinning. The good news however is that Christ didn’t come into the world to condemn the world but to save. And, if cohabitation couples are seeking marriage through the church, I feel the church should do everything they can to lovingly teach, direct, and marry them. God works through us, but if we turn our backs on people and point our fingers at their wrong doing, we are only giving in to the Devils way.

    • Hey Eldonna, thanks for sharing. I agree if a church denies everything and isn’t willing to walk with a couple and show them what Scripture says, that would be bad. Sometimes though couples aren’t willing to change anything in their lives when things are called out Biblically, and that shows a big problem.

      Agreed, we are all sinners and all fall short, so hopefully anyone is welcome to church. There could be times however when it comes to being a member or other things, that the local church may require someone to not currently be involved in sin. It’s not a matter of saying fighting sin is bad (we are all fighting sin), but embracing sin is the bad thing.

      When/If a couple wants to get married through the local church and a pastor might ask them to do a few things in preparation for the wedding, hopefully they are willing and able to do so, especially if that includes changing up their current sinful situation. At the end of the day, this all comes down to authority. If the Bible is the authority, then any follower of Christ shouldn’t have a problem doing whatever the Bible says, today. If the Bible is not the authority in their life, then chances are they aren’t going to want to make any changes.

      Hope that helps!

  • Nabeel Shahzad

    I am 100% agree with you sir. American society is going toward right direction. I am christian minister from Pakistan and living here in states. It was shaking for me to see culture like that which i experience when I came here. I also wrote a blog post that goes along with that.

    You did great Job sir.

    Nabeel

    • Thanks so much Nabeel!! Appreciate you sharing and reading!

  • LJ

    Which is the sin, living together or living together and engaging in sex? Please share from Scripture where living together is a sin.
    Temptation can occur whether living together or not, in either case as Christ followers filled with his Spirit, through submission we yield to his empowerment of grace and self-control.
    Honestly for many living together is definitely not the wisest thing to do, but for the truly mature in Christ I believe it can be done and know people who have done it.
    I don’t believe that the only example that can be displayed is the sin of sex before marriage, but I believe also a resolved commitment to Christ and the power of submission to his Word and Spirit can also be displayed as an example.
    Sex is not a temptation for everyone although it is for many. We must be honest with ourselves and do nothing to lead ourselves into temptation.
    Great post and awesome comments!

    • Hey LJ, thanks for sharing and thanks for the encouragement.

      The main context of this post are people living together before marriage and a lot of the many reasons as to why it would not be a good idea (sexual temptation, leading others down the wrong path, potential relationship issues to begin with to “test” things, etc.), however, I think there’s similar principles that any follower of Jesus could take away from this.

      I think whether or not they are “mature,” it’s a dangerous road to go down, especially when we think we are mature enough. In my opinion, most growing and faithful Christians would admit they need Jesus even more today than they did in their past. Meaning, regardless of however mature we are, putting ourselves in a situation to be tempted, or to help lead others down a dangerous path themselves, etc. would never be the wise thing to do.

      Like you said, we must be honest with ourselves and I think that includes who and what the authority is in our lives. Is it Jesus and the Bible or perhaps our feelings, maturity, and preferences. I’m not really aware of any situation where a couple absolutely, just had to, live together. There’s always a way to find alternative living situations or to get married all together, but whatever the reason is at that moment to continue living together typically exposes what could be most important in someone’s life.

      Hope that helps. Thanks so much for sharing!

  • Jessica

    I am struggling with this. ME and my bf have a son together and I have grew immensely on wanting Gods will for my life. He believes that there is no rush for biblical reasons. I moved out and he said if I didn’t return he would take me to court for our son and or move to his hometown out of state where he is from ( he is well off and I am a student and mother). I moved back in with him because I knew he would have lawyer money very quickly accessible to him. Am I still living in sin?

    • Hey Jessica,

      I’m not sure if you’re a follower of Jesus or not, but I’m going to respond as if you are. As a believer, God is first and foremost in your life and if you follow Jesus, He must be first. After all, you’re “following” Him so it would make sense He is the first priority in your life.

      You mentioned you want God’s will for your life. I think you can see from the post the dangers and wrong choices it would be to live with someone before marriage, so I think you have your answer there, HOWEVER…let’s talk about something else first.

      If you are in anyway being abused or threatened in your relationship, please seek out advice and counsel immediately. You need to find pastors within your local church and counselors at all you can talk to immediately. If you call them, they will listen to you and if you mention being threatened and/or abused, they will help you take action. You need to also contact family and friends as you can to discuss another living arrangement immediately.

      That’s the best direction we can point you in because anything in regards to abuse is a sign to move out and leave, and you guys can take measures to try to work on things if there are options, but please do what you can to remove yourself from a harmful situation.

  • Summer

    Hi, I’m really struggling with the situation i am in. I am with a married man right now. When we got together, i did not know he was married. I found out after i got pregnant with my daughter. I have never been ok with it. I’ve been pushing him to get his divorce. He has had 2 separate lawyers to try to get his divorce but still hasn’t got it yet. We have been waiting for his lawyer to send off the paperwork to finally get this resolved. It’s been almost 4 years now and we have 2 beautiful babies together. I recently accepted Jesus into my life and was baptized. I have not had sex with him since then but i have found myself 24 hours from home and family and am stuck in this situation. I want to be right with God. We plan on getting married once his divorce is finalized. If you have any helpful information i would love to hear it. Thank you so much and God bless you.

    • Hey Summer, thank you for sharing and that is a very difficult situation, I’m sorry you’re having to go through it.

      Are you a part of a local church? I would start asking pastors and leaders there for help. I’m not sure of many practical solutions outside of maybe you and the kids stay home and he temporarily moves out and you all work together towards making the divorce final, get married, and then he moves back in.

      Either way, I would make sure you’re involved in Christian community as the Bible calls us to not live our lives in isolation and get help and support through this. There are going to be many steps to take place and things may take some time, but getting some help would be huge in this situation so you can get Biblical counsel and get practical help on things you can do now.

      Congrats on becoming a new believer, that is amazing! Often times there are things to change in our lives once we start following Christ. Please seek out some community and help so you don’t have to walk this alone.

      • Summer

        Yes we found a church we both love. I was going to talk with the pastor about this today. It is a very hard situation to be in and i just pray to God that it will all be ok in the end. Thank you so much for your words of encouragement

        • Good, that is a great first step. Please reach out to him. It’s an incredibly difficult situation, but you can rest assured that, “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.” – Romans 8:28

          It doesn’t mean you’ll always know in the moment that God is working, but that is where faith comes in and you can trust that He is surely working and it sounds like one of the first steps was revealing all of this…which is the first step necessary to begin healing from that point…

          Please talk with your Pastor and others within Biblical community, take things one day at a time, and trust that God is at work.

        • Summer, you could also do some other things as mentioned in my first comment back to you. Check it out and if you have any questions, let me know!

  • Brittney Bammerlin

    I still am confused about if its wrong to live with my boyfriend or not. The bible says that temptation isn’t a sin but acting on the temptation is a sin. I think that if I moved in with my boyfriend and we didn’t have sex then it’s not a sin because yeah, we might be tempted to have sex but thats not a sin. If we acted upon it, then it would become a sin. If you could make it clearer for me to understand that’d be great! Thanks

    • Hey Brittney, thanks for sharing. I actually thought the exact same thing as you and justified living with my girlfriend at the same, and it was a big mistake.

      While temptation, sinning, and putting yourself deliberately in a situation to be tempted is a huge deal, there is also something still bigger than that.

      If you call yourself a follower of Jesus, then all your decision making should consider what glorifies God the most and what does the Bible have to say. When we inform our hearts with the Bible, that requires faith and trust vs being led by our hearts, which can often deceit us, especially within relationships.

      It’s not really a “can’t I just move in and not sin?” type of attitude, but more of “why should I be moving in with my boyfriend?” to begin with. Yes, you’ll be tempted. You’re putting yourself in a day to day situation no matter what to be tempted. You’re saying others can do the same (when they can’t) and misleading others on what it means to follow Jesus. You’re choosing your relationship with another person first over your relationship with Jesus.

      I would encourage you to ask other believers, talk to your Pastor, get with our leaders within your church, ask your Biblical community about this, and humble yourself to hear their answers and see what the Bible says. Pray and read the Bible more than anything. I’m confident you’ll find the right answer that way.

      Again, I did the same thing as you and can tell you on this side, it is not the right decision and it’s definitely not the Biblical decision. Thanks again for sharing.

      • Jimmy

        But what also confuses me I the fact that Christians are suppose to “shine a good light”, while also worrying about your own salvation. I get confused when thinking about this because for one, you should set an example for others to follow, but is it you fault if someone follows your example and it leads them to sin?
        *Sorry for the spelling/errors, my phones not cooperatin well with me tonight*

        • Thanks Jimmy for sharing and asking, great question. You’re right that as followers of Jesus we are to be a light in a dark world and lead by example. We can’t force others to sin at the end of the day, but we can play a role in helping leading them into temptation or towards that sin and we will be held accountable to that according to Scripture.

          “Therefore let us not pass judgment on one another any longer, but rather decide never to put a stumbling block or hindrance in the way of a brother.” – Romans 14:13

          “And he said to his disciples, “Temptations to sin are sure to come, but woe to the one through whom they come! It would be better for him if a millstone were hung around his neck and he were cast into the sea than that he should cause one of these little ones to sin. Pay attention to yourselves! If your brother sins, rebuke him, and if he repents, forgive him, and if he sins against you seven times in the day, and turns to you seven times, saying, ‘I repent,’ you must forgive him.” – Luke 17:1-4

          “But take care that this right of yours does not somehow become a stumbling block to the weak.” – 1 Corinthians 8:9

          We play a role whether that’s helping leading someone to The Lord or helping leading someone towards sin. Yes, they are responsible for sinning themselves, but if we are living in sin and claiming to follow Jesus…and someone takes our example and does the same thing…we will both have to answer for that at the end of the day.

          That’s way it’s so crucial for the follower of Jesus to actually follow Jesus and obey what the Bible says. There’s a lot at stake and we can be really effective towards God or towards sin.

          Hope that helps!

  • Stephen Weber

    I got into a relationship with a woman, who moved in to my home to live in a spare bedroom. She’s helping out with a “rent” contribution. At first, we planned on getting married (it looked like we had a lot in common), but then I started to learn things about her that caused me great concern (her following heretical doctrine, using abusive language toward me, getting physically abusive, etc).

    Needless to say, I don’t feel comfortable moving forward with this relationship. However, the woman is still renting a room in my house (the contribution income is helpful). I wanted to know if, now that the relationship is over, I’m still considered “living in sin” on account of there not being any more relationship.

    • Hey Stephen,

      Thank you for sharing and I’m sorry to hear about the issues that came up such as doctrine and abuse. I think there’s much more at stake then just sexual temptation (although that alone is a big deal). It sounds like from the issues alone it would not be a wise decision to live with her, but even on top of that, it still isn’t a wise decision overall.

      If you’re a follower of Jesus the question should be, “what will glorify God the most with my actions and decisions” vs what may bring in good income or be a good situation for you. Plus, there was a time where you guys were in a relationship and that included would not be a wise decision to stay living together…even if that relationship is “over” for now.

      In terms of following Jesus and sin being anywhere in the picture whether that be sexual temptation or misleading others to live together as well, I would strive to follow Jesus as much as possible which would include having nothing to do with sin..not even a hint…and make decisions that bring the most glory to God before anything else.

      Hope that helps man!

      • I’d say it’s not worth the pain and hate that might be ignorantly building in your heart towards her, kick her out or find another place to live it’s just not worth it.

  • Joanna

    Mike mobley, I am literally appalled at the advice you gave to “summer”. Am I to understand, that as a Christian, you are encouraging her relationship with a married man and even encouraging his divorce from his wife, a thing which God hates ( refer to Malachi). You should be telling her to move on with her life so that her “boyfriend” can reunite with his OWN wife! He is married to another woman, which he conveniently didn’t tell “summer” to begin with. He probably already has a family with his OWN wife. Sir, you are encouraging an already adulterous relationship to the next level. Summer is involved in an adulterous relationship with a married man. Two lawyers implies he’s not really willing to give up his wife. Regardless, that relationship is an adulterous one. How could you, as a Christian, encourage that divorce so that Summer can then marry him? Biblically speaking, he should reunite with his wife. Summer should let him go. That relationship is an adulterous one.

    • Hey Joanna,

      Hopefully the post and other posts on this site would make it clear as a Christian, the answer would be no, I wouldn’t encourage adultery to continue. I may have misread the question but it comes across as if that divorce is already a done deal and paperwork is processing to make it finalized. At least that is how I read it. The encouragement were some options on what she could do post-divorce being finalized since that unfortunately already seemed like it was going to happen.

      I’ll look over the thread again to see where I can emphasize other points that would help support this. Thanks for pointing it out and once again, the answer would be no, something like adultery or any other sin is obviously not something we would point someone to or encourage them to do. That’s the whole point of BTC to begin with, is to glorify God by sharing the love of Christ.

      Thanks for sharing.

  • Faiza Khan

    Hebrews 13:4 describes the honorable state of marriage: “Marriage should be honored by all, and the marriage bed kept pure, for God will judge the adulterer and all the sexually immoral.” This verse draws a clear distinction between that which is pure and honorable—marriage—and that which is sexually immoral—anything outside of marriage. As living together outside of marriage falls into this category, it is definitely sin. Anyone living together outside of lawful marriage invites the displeasure and judgment of God.

    • Thanks for sharing Faiza. I’d just encourage you and all of us that while yes, it is a sin, we should be patient and walk with people, sharing the Gospel and sharing what the Bible has to say and pray for others. It took people being patient with me because while the Bible did talk about it being a sin, I just didn’t get that without having help to understand while I was doing it. Thanks again for sharing!

  • Dwayne Morris

    This is where this is confusing, so if you live under the same roof with your gf/bf but in completely different rooms how is that a sin? Its not like your in the same bed sleeping together or doing things together but rather help save money from struggling. So if someone can please help me understand because us two being firm believers and we know how to set boundaries, how is leaving in 2 different bed rooms under the same room a sin?

    • Hey Dwayne, thanks so much for sharing.

      So I thought the same thing and justified us living together because we had 2 bedrooms but learned that there’s so much more at stake than just sex. However, you will be tempted (if you’re not tempted with your girlfriend…that might be a problem too), and your situation alone will be telling other followers of Jesus that it’s ok to do that and you’ll be involved in misleading others who will sleep together if they moved in together.

      It all comes down to “what glorifies God the most” with our decision making. If you guys want to get married and live together, then just get married and then live together. What would be the main reason for living together beforehand? Is it money? Convenience? More time together? Those are typically the main reasons most people have and we had those too, but that doesn’t necessarily mean they are biblical reasons.

      You don’t want to have even a hint of sexual immorality and if others are watching you (as they will be), are you misleading them down a dangerous path towards sin or are you leading them in everything you do towards Jesus?

  • Anara

    If finalizing a divorce that had two children, living with boyfriend whom u have a baby with now, and don’t have money income other than boyfriend (job stuff complicated but was for the better to not work for awhile). What do u do then? Learning more about what is and isn’t allowed. At first it was ok cause it was in the process of being corrected. But obviously that wasn’t correct, so what to do now? One live in a camper other in the house? Completely move out? Trying to be better. Huge mess ups. Please help.

    • Hey Anara,

      Thank you so much for sharing and I’m very sorry for your situation. I know there are many hard and tough decisions to make with this. I don’t want to type out things like I have all the answers or anything like this, but I would encourage you to get involved with the church and with community. By community, I mean some brothers and sisters in Christ, who actually follow Jesus, and ask for help.

      Christians are meant for community and not isolation and right now I think you actually need some people around you to help you. There is help out there and there are decisions you can make to change your scenario so you’re not stuck, you just need some help.

      Maybe reach out to a local church that teaches the Gospel and the importance of following Jesus…that would be a great start.

      I sure hope that helps if even just a little bit.

  • So many issues, how to get my bf to understand that it’s more then just “A piece of paper?” I’m not christian but that doesn’t mean that I like the idea of never getting married. It just feels wrong. And this article has helped confirmed that. I don’t know what to do. He’s scared of getting married again as his last wife took the house the kids and that hurt him. I’ve head from both sides of the story that both him and her were at fault. (He blames her more though I’m trying to help him see though that. )

    While I can see that she wasn’t the sweetest person, it wasn’t fair of him to make her do all the work of paying the mortgages and other financial difficulty, as he never had a steady job. He spent his money unwisely and was always broke. Now a days he’s trying to payoff all his debt and keep a steady job. His excuse is that he can’t afford it and that if we get married I’ll lose my SSI check. This whole situation makes me sad. I’m leaving out a few lings that have to do with his kids, my child and my ex as i’ve messed up plenty. (One thing I did learn is if someone is treating your badly and being abusive then leave, stop being scared and leave. *sigh.*

    Life sure is hard. Those happy moments I wish would last a little longer.

  • Lax

    Ok so im living with my ex and were not married. shes my ex now because ive done things to hurt her really bad and i take responsibility for my actions but i truly feel that because were living in sin the enemy and my flesh are given free range in tempting me and God will not hear my prayers or defend me in my spiritual battles so the havoc can be wreaked whenever and we have no protection. Do you feel or think that’s true? Ive done things that are not in my character and really feel like God has left us until we either get married or separate. Ive told my ex that we have been having issues because of us living in sin she doesnt believe me abd thinks im usin this as an excuse to justify my actions of things ive done to her tho i take fault for everything. I told her to move in and by the time i got serious about marryin her i had done so much damage that she doesn’t want to or wants me to prove my love to her first then we get married which i understand. She doesnt work and has two children and cant support herself ive told jesus can come back at any time or we could die anytime and die in our disobedience. I don’t know what to do. She doesn’t wanna go to church either. We pray on and off worship but it doesnt help the arguments and the pain ive caused her she constantly brings up the past and she does it in a way to provoke me and then i repsond in a way i shouldnt and i feel like this is happening because of demonic influence that we cant be protected from because of our sinful lifestyle. Im lost hopeless confused discouraged dont know what to do well i do know what to do is to seperate if we arent gonna get married but its hard because she said if we do seperate meaning not live together she cant trust me and she wont be with me and its hard because i don’t want to leave her stranded. Help please.

    • Hey Lax,

      Thank you for sharing and I’m sorry for the situation you’re in, you’re not alone in this. I think there’s some encouragement to be found in the fact that there’s something in you that is making you believe there’s something wrong about the situation. It could be God working on you and growing you in areas. Personally, that had to happen to me when I lived together with my girlfriend in the past…I had to learn it was wrong and at first before I knew any better…I couldn’t shake the feeling that something was off…and now I know it’s because it was wrong.

      I can’t tell if you or your ex are followers of Jesus or not, but I’m going to respond like you both are so you can see a Biblical response.

      When we do live in sin (not fighting sin, but doing something we know is sinful repeatedly) we are being disobedient and our relationship with The Lord suffers. It doesn’t “go away” or “end,” but it suffers. Just like when we live lives of obedience, the relationships grows and becomes more intimate. It’s not surprising for any of us that when we sin, we tend to feel farther away from The Lord, but as we confess and repent of our sins, we feel close to Him again.

      For you guys, it obviously becomes harder to make Godly decisions while you’re in a continuous, sinful situation. One of the first things I would suggest is to immediately pray to God, confess your sins to Him, ask Him to lead you in repentance…and then start making some changes. I’m not prescribing things like I know it all, but let me give you some examples of things you could do:

      -Move out. Removing yourself from the situation will allow you to not only make some Godly decisions, but will give you a good perspective going forward on what’s important.

      -If she disagrees with you moving out until you’re married, ask why? Does she follow Jesus? Does she believe what the Bible says? If she doesn’t, it’s possible she won’t in the future and you’ll want to consider that for marriage in the first place. That’s why it’s so important to go through things like pre-marital counseling before marriage to work some of these things out.

      -Get married. Obviously you could move out and you guys quickly get married, but I would caution you on this because you referenced how she doesn’t want to go to church, brings up past hurts, etc. I would really consider finding some Christians in your area to walk through counseling with you guys if you’re able, to work on some relationship aspects before getting married.

      At the end of the day, I get the sense that The Lord is working in your life and you’re going through some struggles while wanting to do the right thing. I think you need to get involved in Church and get some other followers of Jesus around you to help teach you the Bible and walk with you through this. Of course if you’re in a sinful situation including being in a tempting situation, I would change that and move out immediately because your relationship with Jesus has to be more important than anyone else.

      That’s a tough pill to swallow and you might end a relationship here, but if Jesus isn’t first in your life, everything else can crumble after that. It’s actually more loving to your future wife for you to love Jesus first, in all things, then your wife after that.

      Hope that helps Lax!

      • Lax

        Thanks so much.

  • Celina Louise Habagat

    I’m a christian and I’m really avoiding to discuss this with my Victory Group leaders… Because I don’t know if this is wrong.

    What about my situation? Is it considered living together with my boyfriend if I’m renting a room from their house? Their house has three floors. 1st floor is for their ice cream business. 2nd floor is for their own house. 3rd floor is where bed spacers are living. I’m the only one renting the place as of now. And since I don’t have someone to share gas bills, I give my share for rice to his family aside from my room’s rent.

    I don’t know if my reason of leaving our house because I don’t really have my own room there and I’m pretty scared because of my uncle who’s a drug addict will justify my want to live on my own. Plus I’m also having problems commuting to work and ever since I moved in my boyfriend’s house it was easier for me to go to work because we ride his motorcycle to work every working days.

    Please help. We are going to attend marriage preparation and planning to get married late this year or early next year. I also don’t want to hide this situation from my Victory Group. :(

    • Hey Celina, thank you for sharing.

      I’m not 100% sure what a victory group is, but if it’s a group of fellow brothers and sisters in Christ, I would absolutely share your questions and concerns with them, asap. After all, if you can’t share your concerns and questions with them, then why do live with them in the first place? Since we are called to community, trust that God will use the Church (fellow Christians) to help you in these situations. That’s the same thing we are hopefully doing here on BTC and I would say your victory group would be even more important.

      My hunch is (and forgive me if I’m completely wrong on this) you already know this is not a Godly situation that you’re in. I think that’s why you haven’t told your group or feel like you’re “hiding” it.

      There are a million reasons to live with someone (even if you’re not sleeping in the same bed…that is something I used to say years ago), but at the end of the day, how we live as Christians matters. If we are putting ourselves in tempting situations and/or showing others in the world that they can live with their boyfriend/girlfriend, that’s dangerous ground and the Bible would call us to live differently.

      I think you discussing this with your group would be awesome because you’d be surprised how quickly people can help with situations sometimes with bills, commuting, and potentially with your uncle situation. Your brothers and sisters in Christ will want to help you, love you, and have you and your boyfriend draw closer to Christ in the process of making changes.

      Congrats on getting married soon! Would love for you to come back and post a wedding pic if you want to! Attending marriage preparation is huge and I’m so happy to hear you are doing that. Pre-marital counseling was a game changer for me and my wife and I would tell anyone to do that. It helps teach you where you’re both at, and how to submit to the Bible together. It’s awesome!

      Pray about your situation, confess to God what you need to confess, and I would share this with your group. They are there to love you and you would want to love someone else in the group if they shared this with you. I know you’re probably scared or nervous about it, but it will totally be worth it!

      Hope that helps Celina!

  • Joseph

    I have a question. I am a christian and truly believe sex before marriage is wrong. But whenever non-believer friends ask me why can’t a couple who love each other have sex, i can’t give them a good reason from their perspective. Not because “it is because the bible said so,” but i want to have a good reasonable answer to those ask me. I normally say(from non-christian perspective), because sex isn’t just a having fun physical activity but it also leads to a creation of new life and give you a responsibility to protect and preserve the life that isn’t yours. But, then they say, “what if we use condom? why can’t we just have fun, we love each other.” What do you think we should tell those non-believer, why they shouldn’t have sex before marriage?

    • Hey Joseph,

      Great questions, thanks for asking!

      Something like this is typically a longer conversation with someone than just giving them one, quick, answer. That typically will never satisfy someone anyway, especially if they are a non-believer because the principles and reasonings you stand by for your life simply won’t match up to theirs.

      For example, you and I both know that sex is more than just what a married couple between a man and woman can do for fun. And it’s more than just having babies. That there is a coming together as one flesh that happens within the marriage that is not fully explained in the Bible, but we see it play out in many ways.

      There’s a reason two people feel connected to each other if they have sex whether they are married or not. There’s a reason it causes massive issues when it happens outside of the marriage bed. There’s a reason it is a violation when you have sex with someone else and you cheat on the person you’re with.

      It sounds like your friend is just wanting to “have fun and love someone” where you and I know from scripture love is more than sex. Love is action and a sacrifice showed to us first by Jesus. If they are truly wanting to love one another, they can serve each other and not do things that will be harmful to them. However, they may not believe in the Bible so you can’t hold them to that standard.

      There’s nothing wrong about telling them what’s in the Bible and what you believe about Jesus and what He says about marriage. Just because the Bible may not lay out 20 specific reasons as to not have sex, doesn’t mean that it’s not wrong. God is more concerned with the matter of the heart and for your friend, the mindset seems to be “I want to live by live and love others how I want to” vs anything else.

      I don’t know about you but before I followed Jesus, I lived the same way. I wanted to live for myself and wasn’t concerned with anything else.

      Pray for your friends that God would impact them and that you would share the Gospel with them and love them because Jesus first loved you. (1 John 4:19)

      Hope that helps!

      Here’s 2 other posts with some scripture on marriage as well:

      http://www.beforethecross.com/biblical-teachings/marriage-is-one-flesh/

      http://www.beforethecross.com/scripture/marriage/

  • Derick

    Awesome article and I’m studying up on it here’s my question me and my girlfriend have been together almost a year and we are talking about marriage and moving in together how long should we wait to get married some have told us wait until the year is up some say 2 years what do you suggest and is there such a thing as being married in the hearts

    • Thanks for sharing Derick!

      I think the amount of time can vary with different couples on how long they stay engaged. I would suggest going to pre-marital counseling with your soon to be wife. That way you guys can learn how to submit to Scripture at the end of the day and walk through topics that will come up during marriage to learn how to work together and be better prepared.

      I got married a little older so we got married after 1 year. I wouldn’t suggest that to everyone, but since we were older and went through counseling, we were better prepared at the end of that year to get married.

      I would talk about it with your fiance and if you guys have sought out some counsel, talked to some leaders at your church, maybe even did counseling, I would get married sooner than later if you guys are headed in that direction anyway.

      Hope that helps!

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  • rose

    Hello I just found this thread and I need a little advice, I’ve been with my boyfriend for 5 years now I came into this relationship with a 3 year old child, whom he’s been raising and we now are 23 soon to be 24 and have 2 kids together unmarried and are expecting twins, I have always felt bad and guilty that we are not married and have tried telling him this but there was always an excuse and now it’s just gone out the window or I don’t want to bother about it because I don’t want him to do it because I made him, he even introduces me as his wife to others and it bothers me that he does, other than this issue our relationship is fine no problems hes a great partner and father but lately more than ever I’ve been feeling so down about it it makes me question him I also feel like my faith is getting lesser and less I don’t know what to do and I feel like I’m stuck what would your advice to me be ?

    • Hey Rose,

      Thanks for asking and it’s a very complicated situation..I’m sorry for the struggles. I don’t think a single comment response will give you all the advice you need but I’ll suggest a few things to you.

      I’m not sure if you or your boyfriend are followers of Jesus, but I’m going to respond as if you were. You want God to be first and foremost in everything, especially within marriage and how to raise children. If you follow Jesus, I think a better question first would be “what would most glorify God in my situation”…and then go from there.

      It your boyfriend sometimes calls you wife, but won’t actually get married, I would say that’s a red flag and would be a good question for him as to what the hold up is. It would tell you where he is at.

      It sounds like to me maybe your guilt could be conviction that you aren’t married yet and that maybe you want to be married…have a husband…raise a family…the way The Lord has intended one to be raised. I could be wrong of course, but maybe that’s why you’ve felt guilt and a desire to get married.

      I’m sure you could tell from the post but I would suggest a few things:

      -As a follower of Jesus, I would change the living situation until you’re married. I’m not saying you break up with him, but I would temporarily move out until you guys can get married…then move back in. It would be difficult…yes…but also would teach your children that God is first in the relationship.

      -I would become part of a local Church asap if you’re not already. You need to be in community with others and talk to other followers of Christ for support. For biblical support and maybe even actual physical support (living with them, helping you move, helping you with plans for marriage, etc.)

      -I would read the Bible (one of the Gospels would be a great start) to learn more of what Jesus has done for all of us and how you can follow Him. To understand more of His teachings and even what it means for you to be a wife.

      -I would talk to your boyfriend about following Jesus including getting married. This conversation will tell you a lot about the future and again, make sure you’re in some Biblical community so you don’t walk through this alone.

      Hope that helps Rose!

  • Jonathon Stubbs

    I have been with my girlfriend for 3 years now. we have a newborn girl. I work while she take care of the baby. I am in a catch 22, I understand that in order to be right with God I would need to marry my girlfriend but marriage is not something she wants as of now. We just started going to church and I am hoping to help her grow but that may take some time. If we did separate until marriage, I would lose my daughter because my girlfriend would move out of state. If we don’t separate, then we run in to the risk of sin. ether way this will not be fun.

    • Hey Jonathon,

      Thanks for sharing and I’m sorry for the difficult situation.

      That’s great that she’s growing maybe in her walk with The Lord. Are you guys actively part of that church? Are you in community with others? Have you spoken with the pastor about your situation?

      Getting help and walking in community in something like this is huge for support.

      If you’re a follower of Christ, as painful as it can be some times…the relationship you have with God is the highest priority and for good reason. But that means your decision making going forward is more of what glorifies God first and foremost and then going from there. Just like you said, staying in your current situation would be sinful…and you know for sure you can’t have that.

      I would still move out temporarily but explain exactly why you are and that you want to get married. It’s not a guarantee she will leave and you might be surprised that she might respond in a good way. Either way, it’s “what would the Lord have me do?” in this situation before anything else and trusting that God will honor that and still take care of you..even if it seems things are crazy for a season.

      Hope that helps man!

  • thesimpletruth

    I hear what all of you have been saying, but what does Jesus say. Jesus addressed the woman at the well that was “living together” with a man who wasn’t her husband and he said WITHOUT CONDEMNATION “go and sin no more”. And so WITHOUT CONDEMNATION, i say unto you all, “go and sin no more”, the sexual sin of fornication is a sin unto death and it must be repented of IMMEDIATELY, NOW, NOT LATER, NOW.

    1 Corinthians 6:15-20King James Version (KJV)

    15 Know ye not that your bodies are the members of Christ? shall I then take the members of Christ, and make them the members of an harlot? God forbid.

    16 What? know ye not that he which is joined to an harlot is one body? for two, saith he, shall be one flesh.

    17 But he that is joined unto the Lord is one spirit.

    18 Flee fornication. Every sin that a man doeth is without the body; but he that committeth fornication sinneth against his own body.

    19 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?

    20 For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s.

    The problem with today’s western christian is they do not have Gods Holy Spirit to convict them of sin and most have not truly been converted.

    • Hey “thesimpletruth”, appreciate you sharing.

      While I understand your comment and agree about the seriousness of sin and what the Bible says, I think we as Christians need to be careful and show grace and love to people. For example, your comment comes across almost like you are yelling, throwing down some scripture, and then mic dropping on the way out.

      I would encourage you to leave comments and have conversations with people that have more grace to them. I honestly thought living together with my girlfriend at the time was right and there was nothing wrong with it so if I had someone yell scripture at me, I totally would have never listened to them.

      Sometimes we don’t even realize when sin is present, and especially if someone is a nonbeliever..they have no idea what’s in scripture. Even many Christians don’t know what’s in there and have to be taught by the word, by others, and by the Holy Spirit what is sin and what is not.

      Thanks so much.

    • Bruce

      Does “harlot” mean something different from what I think it does? I think it to mean “prostitute” or “promiscuous woman”. How does this verse apply if a person’s girlfriend is not a prostitute, and is faithful only to one man (and intends to keep it that way), but without the documents required for the classification of marriage?

  • Guidance and thoughts

    Just got engaged after 2 years dating, we are both Christians, she would like us to move in together before we are married and is calling it a deal breaker if we don’t. I didn’t see this one coming, I’m thinking what does waiting 7 months mean to me as it relates to the relationship and God? It’s a tough decision for me as while I feel convicted to hold firm I also wonder what does this matter to me and if it matters to God.

  • Gabriel

    I don’t see in bible where it says living together is a sin that will send you to hell. I cannot marry my girlfriend ever anyways so that would mean I’m going to hell to suffer the lake of fire and share the same fate as someone like Hitler all because I’m living with my gf. He has millions killed out of hate, I’m a person with a disability and cannot marry so I’m supposed to be living alone and break up with my gf for the remainder of my natural life on earth….seems ridiculous to be punished that way.

    • Hey Gabriel, thank you for sharing.

      Let’s clarify a few things here. First off, there is no sin that you can do that will send you to hell….going to heaven or hell isn’t about a sin you can do or not do…but is all dependent on having a relationship with Jesus.

      Jesus paid the penalty for all of your sins…past, present, and future ones. That point is a fact and when He rose from the dead, He defeated death and sin in victory. That means for those who believe in Jesus and confess that He is Lord and they’ll follow Him…those people are saved and will be with Him in heaven for all eternity. Those who deny Jesus will spend eternity separated from Him in hell according to the Bible.

      So just want to make sure that the destination of heaven or hell is based on the fact if someone follows Jesus or not. It’s not based on our performance or whether we commit this sin or that sin, etc.

      I can’t speak to everyone’s personal situations of course through a blog and don’t know the circumstances of people getting married although I would assume that anyone can actually get married regardless of their circumstance. Disability or not, it seems like you could still get married. Maybe benefits or other things like that get effected but either way, marriage is a possibility for someone you feel God has called on you to spend the rest of your life with.

      And in regards to living together being sinful, I’d refer you to the post again if you don’t mind just because I would make the some points I already did in the post. At the end of the day, the priority is our decision making and starting with “what glorifies the most in this decision or situation” vs “what do I want to do.” It’s a matter of who is most important in our lives…God…or ourselves. I think that is the ultimate question to wrestle with in this or any other situation.

      Hope that helps!

      • Gabriel

        It does a bit yes, it is a bit of a complex scenario I’m in and it’s making me terribly depressed as I find it hard to be 100% perfect. I just feel like if I lead a good life and truly do my best that it won’t be good enough and that’s what’s stressing me out. I just want a normal life despite not being able to work. I want to be happy, I want God to be happy. If we get married I lose 100% of my benefits and yeah…a little complex to type in a post but thanks for reply.

        • I’m sorry Gabriel. I can assure you that regardless of your performance of how good you think you live or how bad you think you live, if you believe in Jesus and follow Him according to the Bible, you will be saved. That’s a fact and it’s because it’s about what Jesus has done for you, not about what you can do for Jesus.

          Maybe there is a Church you can get involved with and talk with some local pastors and leaders to help walk with you through this time to make wise and Godly decisions while meeting needs at the same time? I would suggest maybe that is a next step for you for something like this.

          • Gabriel

            I’ve tried that and basically was told I’m destined for Hell because my gf and I are fornicating as we can’t get married, I’m disabled and I would 100% lose my benefits, she’s not able to support me. So it’s stay with my gf that I love in this lifetime and have a kid and go to hell so it seems, or throw away the woman I love and become celibate for rest of my life but inherit kingdom of God, there is no exceptions to the rule in bible for what if someone truly cannot get married if they are expected to live life alone and miserable. It may sound like I’m trying to take a shortcut but I assure you I truly am not. I feel like I’m being punished because I cannot live up to his expectations 100%. No matter what version bible you read, no fornicators shall inherit kingdom…I’m not a horrible person, but according to bible, seems I am. Sorry for rant I’m just sad and miserable, no one to really talk too as 99% of people I know don’t care about God nor do they believe.

          • I’m sorry you were told you were destined for hell. That is decided based on you having a relationship with Jesus or not. I’m sure you can tell from the post that I wouldn’t support you two living together because I do believe it is sinful….but just because someone is sinning doesn’t mean they are going straight to hell. Many people including myself have to learn what sin is according to the Bible and then repent of that and make changes in our lives.

            I believe there might be options for you and I would suggest getting involved in a different church (one where someone doesn’t tell you you’re going straight to hell) where you can find genuine love and support in your situation to help you financially make it so to get married and live separately in the meantime before doing so.

            You’ll never live up to the expectations 100%, that is the whole point of Jesus coming in the first place. We need a rescuer..we need a Savior..and that is why we need Him to save us. It’s not about us and it’s all about Him.

            No one will inherit the Kingdom of God as a sinner who refuses their need for a Savior. “The fornicator” you’re speaking about from scripture is one who will not repent and turn their eyes towards Jesus…and only want to live for themselves. That person doesn’t follow Jesus and therefore will not inherit the Kingdom of God.

            I hope that clears it up a bit for you and really hope you can get plugged into community that can support you making right and Biblical decisions in your situation.

          • Rhonilda Parker

            Your disability award is yours! No one can take it from you! Married or not! Check with your local Social Security Disability Office

      • Michael

        Dear Gabriel….so what your saying is do whatever you want and you will be saved as long as you believe in Christ. St Paul believed in christ yet was in fear of losing his salvation!!! You fail to mention Christ also said, anyone who puts his wife away and marrys another commits adultry. You are sending souls to hell with your jibberish !!!!

  • Adam Williams

    My girlfriend and I were planning on getting married sometime next year, after we have both finished college. However, we have recently had a son out of wedlock (I know, bad, we beat ourselves up about it already and have just tried to do the right things since). That being the case, we have elected to put off the wedding in order to use the money to support our son. We (she) decided we should not to live together still. I was and still am caught between discerning whether I believe god would moreso advocate providing our son with a two parent household and more means by which to support him (achieved by lesser rent as a result of cohabitation), or if he would still moreso advocate a broken home. We fully intend to be married when we can afford to, and move in together shortly after. And I still contemplate what the true definition of marriage is, being that all of the legality/paperwork aspects behind marriage came far after the heaven/hell paradigm and official relationships began. Does a full commitment to each other and to god qualify as marriage, or is it the paperwork that separates virtue and sin on this issue?

    • Hey Adam, thanks so much for sharing and great questions.

      I’ll at least tell you what I believe within this situation and I don’t mean for it to come across like it’s easier than what it really is, but I think it’s the best I can for a blog comment.

      I think the best thing you could do to support your son is to get married. There are many plans and money involved I know, but at the same time you can always get married, make things official, then celebrate however you want later. Your son would have a father and mother who is husband and wife and y’all would all live together as a family.

      Your support for him you both getting married first and foremost. If for whatever reason you delay getting married, the fact that you both live in 2 places does not make you a broken home like you mentioned. It’s a wise move in a difficult situation to do what is most Godly, take steps, then get married and move in together. All of this though can be solved by you both just getting married. It doesn’t cost a lot to get officially married and you can always save up for a larger celebration. Trust me…there will never be “enough” money anyway so if you fully intend to be married and already now have a child together, there shouldn’t be anything holding you back.

      Lastly, it’s not a matter of just paper. There’s something to be said about us following the law within the areas we live in. God placed us in our areas and commands us to respect the governing authority. I know that is hard sometimes and that doesn’t mean we follow a law that would have us deny Jesus, but there are requirements for marriage and we can meet those. Some say “it’s just a piece of paper”…and while it is a certificate…the other side of all of this is “why would you not just go do it if it means you’ll be married?”

      It’s a slippery slope when we stop obeying what the Bible says and we start telling God how we feel like He will understand or agree. While He is an amazing Father, I believe most of the time He just tells us “I’ve already given you the answer” to most things we come to Him for. For example, when people say “we are fully committed” or “we are married in our hearts,”….we are proclaiming we know what is best vs the one who created us knowing what’s best for us. While He does know your heart and your commitment, part of that commitment is following through in marriage and living life as faithful disciples…striving to be more and more like Jesus every day.

      Really hope that helps man!

      • Adam Williams

        That does help immensely, and I have actually been the one pushing for us to simply go to the courthouse and get married. However, she is stuck on having a traditional marriage (the big ceremony) so I’ve kind of hit a dead end with that line of reasoning, haha. She believes it would be unhealthy for our relationship to accelerate just because we have a child and is trying to make choices without them being affected by the fact that we have a son together. I feel as though she is in a very dangerous place in that regard and that we should and need to adapt to the situation. I understand why she is doing so and I respect that, but at some point I believe our son should impact some of these decisions. I think she believes she is being wise in trying to not let the child change our relationship, but am I wrong in thinking it should? And lastly, she does not believe that the baby will force her to compromise anything, and states continuously that because we aren’t married, we don’t need to make any decisions together. I feel as though she has lost her way in that regard, as I don’t believe our wedding day should be the first time we work as a team. It has only been recently that these issues have presented themselves. Am I asking too much of her in that I wish to be considered in her decisions, even though we are not married? I realize this all presented at once may appear to indicate that our relationship is feeble or not working but I assure you we are working great, these are just the few issues we are struggling with at the moment. We are both willing to resolve them but are in the middle of deciding what we think the right path is so we are gathering as much advice as we can. Thank you so much already.

        • Well this is where it gets a little tough, but if you guys believe God has called you both to each other and you are going to get married, then there’s no reason to wait. That would be the case regardless.

          On top of that, you guys know Biblically the problem with having sex before marriage, but at the end of the day it happened and you both can repent and stay away from sexual temptations and now handle the situation with your son. That being said, of course your son plays a huge factor. He is no more or less your son regardless of a marriage, and even though you two aren’t married, your decisions as parents both need to play a role.

          I think this is a good reminder for all of us that when we go outside of the way God has designed things, they get complicated. This is for you, me, everyone. Sometimes things can get cloudy too because of the mistakes that have taken place..I would really clear it up with this:

          -Do you both believe you are to be married? Get married and yes celebrate, but not at the expense of not getting married. What is standing in the way?

          -You have a son together, even more the reason to get married and actually that would be the most supportive thing you could do for him.

          -What is standing in the way? If it’s celebration/money, then is that more important than your marriage? More important than what God has said Biblically involving marriage, children, etc. Is it something else?

          There’s not one single bad thing from getting married asap, moving in together, and having your family, etc.

          There’s many dangers and struggles continuing to wait to get married for whatever reason, etc.

  • Joe Rineer

    Great article Mike. I am sort of at an impasse in my life and ended up in this type of situation. I was married for 8 years and my girlfriend for 5. Both of our ex-spouses didn’t want the responsibility of being parents anymore. I never thought I’d be a single dad of 3 young kids and she never thought she’d be left to care for 4 young children without a job. I firmly believe the Lord brought us together, there were too many signs that couldn’t be denied. I have an awesome job that provides me with a great income. She reached out to her church and in the short term they were extremely helpful, paying some of her bills, dropping off food and other useful things. My church even stepped in to help her without me ever knowing it. We both know as time goes on help becomes less and less. We’re faced with the reality that both our children need positive male and female role models in their lives and that my girlfriend would have to get a job working all the time making very little money just to get by. I was raised by a single mother and I know the struggle it puts on a woman and the children. I know moving in together may not be ideal for us and I am not justifying our sin. To me it’s more it boils down to what kind of a man would I be to let her and the kids be on their own and struggle in life? We’re both very much in love and attending counseling together to make sure we do things right in terms of the kids and our relationship. We’re planning on getting married but we have a few months of things to clear up from our past relationships before that’s possible. Her family does not condone our decision but are supportive of our motives with the kids. If there’s one thing God cares deeply about its children and while I know what I am doing is a sin I see it as me stopping our kids from hurting inside by providing them all with a stable and loving home, rather than the unknown. I often ask myself, if Jesus were here right now would he tell me I was dead wrong to be doing what I am doing? And I honestly feel that he didn’t lay out a solution to every single circumstance for a reason. I know after marriage I will repent for us moving in together and I feel guilty for it now, but at the end of the day I would rather that guilt be on me than the pain our children would suffer if we chose the alternative.

    • Hey Joe,

      Thanks for reaching and thanks for reaching out!

      I want to be as sensitive in my response through a blog comment as possible because I can only imagine how difficult the whole situation has been for you and for her, your pasts, raising children through all of that, etc. but there are a couple of things I think I should say in light of your comment.

      I would encourage you (I’m sure you could assume this from the post) to either get married asap, or hold off on living together until you’re married. Not only for your relationship with The Lord, but also for your kids. You say “what kind of a man would I be to let her and the kids be on their own and struggle in life?” where I would counter that and say you would be a man that would tell your kids it’s ok to make a sinful move if it benefits someone else and I would disagree with that. There’s a lack of trust that God would provide and take care of your girlfriend and her kids, also take care of you and your kids, and lead you both together in marriage and take care of you then.

      You also said “If there’s one thing God cares deeply about its children and while I know what I am doing is a sin I see it as me stopping our kids from hurting inside by providing them all with a stable and loving home, rather than the unknown.” You’re right that God cares deeply about His children and that includes you and the fact He cares for us so much that He sent Jesus to pay the penalty for our sin. That would include for followers of Jesus to NOT sin. You avoiding sin, especially in the tough moments in life, actually will provide your children with even more stability because they will see you place your stability in The Lord and not yourself and your decisions. Not only would you be sinning, but you would be telling your kids they could do the same in their life instead of calling them to something greater….letting Jesus be in control and lead and avoiding sin as we are called to do as followers of Jesus.

      One thing is for sure like you said, there isn’t a solution for every circumstance in the Bible, which is why we have to take it as a whole for the context…and you can believe that if Jesus were here, He would never condone sin, ever. He came to pay the price for sins, so if anything, He would call you to repent and believe. He would ask you to trust Him and follow Him because that includes trusting He will take care of you and your children and that you’re not in control….He is.

      Your children will actually suffer more pain by you sinning, whether that be now or in the future because of how they see their Dad react in these moments. You can be sure they will be inclined to do the same.

      If we are talking a few months, you should be able to wait. If not, hopefully you could get married asap. Either way, choosing Jesus over your own plans will not only shine a light in a dark world, but will lead your children and your girlfriend and her children in a Biblical way and you’ll be able to start things off on the right foundation from the very beginning.

      Hope that helps man!

  • MelMel

    Please allow me to ask for your advise and suggestion… really need biblical prospective on an issue:
    I am currently studying the bible with a woman, she is from very poor upbringing, living with her four young children (all under the ages of 10) and their father for 14 years now), while studying the bible the issue of their living arrangement was discussed, with a brave heart and with much counseling my friend had the conversation with the father of her children, telling him her growing convictions regarding what scripture shows of their living arrangement and in as such she is asking for his support in changing same, Her kids father agrees and they are now in the process of making marriage arrangements… on my last visit to them, i was amazed when the children’s father said that for two weeks she has been sleeping away from the bedroom making his need to be married heightened, they should be Wed in the next two weeks…my question is: should I talk to them about separating? the only option I know possible is for her to move in with me and leave him for the two weeks with the children because of the space I have…. please let me know what you think…
    meail: melissa@rotoplastics.co.tt

    • Hey Melissa, thanks for sharing and great question.

      I think you could probably tell from the most what I believe and what I would encourage you to share to that woman. It sounds great they are planning to get married very soon and I would encourage them to do that asap and in the meantime making different living arrangements for a couple of weeks.

      There are plenty of ways they could do that but at the end of the day the larger question is what is the priority in their marriage? If they are followers of Jesus, then all decisions go through the filter of “what glorifies God the most” vs “what we want to do” and we can use Scripture for those answers.

      I would encourage her and both of them to become part of the local Church and have other believers pour into their lives and to help. That is a great start and we need the Church since we are not designed to live our lives on our own.

      I’d pray for them and start there. Hoping it’s a great conversation and that everything goes well!

  • Confused

    Hello. I’ve been in a relationship with someone for 8 years. We live together and have two boys 7 & 3. He doesn’t want to get married, not a believer and will not come to church. I’ve stop attending church mainly bc of shame and hurt. I truly love him but have no idea if he loves me. The good news is we’ve both been 100% faithful – no cheating. Well now I’m now exhausted waiting for marriage, and our fights are getting worse. The last one was so bad, he told me i could leave but cannot take the kids with me. He actually threatened me if I did. I want to leave but scared he will harm me. I am totally lost.

    • Mike Mobley

      Hey there,

      Thank you for sharing and very sorry to hear about everything going on. The very first thing I would say is that if you are being threatened whatsoever, please call the police immediately to report this. Safety for you and for your children needs to be your first concern in any relationship.

      Please call the police if you feel unsafe and make arrangements for you and for the kids with either them, other family or friends, and even the church to help you. You don’t have to live in shame to not go to church…we are all in need of a Savior, which is why Jesus had to come in the first place.

      Again, if you’re in danger and are threatened please call the police and start there. While that is going I’m sure you can tell from the post but I would encourage you to pray for his salvation and for things to change and in the meantime I would change up your living situation and model well for your kids what it means for Jesus to be first in all things. I know all of this is short in terms of a blog post comment but I would most definitely start there. Hope this helps!

  • TrueTeller

    Well living together is the best way to go these days especially if each couple have their own place which they just can see each other almost everyday which it would be a much better way anyway. And if you happen to have a Disagreement with each other and argue a lot over it which usually it is very Stupid most of the time which then you can go back to your own places since both of you would most likely have your own place and not to worry where to live. Well that would really make sense.

    • Hey there, I think I understand what you’re saying but it wasn’t too clear. If it was encouraging a couple not to live together then I’m sure you can tell from the post, I would definitely agree with that and biblically it’s the wise decision.

      Thanks for sharing!

      • Bukky Olowoyo

        Yes I would also agree with this type of institution that Christ the lord has established. It must be a setting where husband and wife can be equally yoked or settled in a home which is based on the covenant of marriage. If a man or women loves their partner then they should proof it by the will of faithfulness and enternal agreement such as jurisdiction and contract of marriage beside what is the point to form a relationship which isn’t going anywhere. When I mean anywhere could you see yourself getting anywhere with this person by at least forming a prayer and share a conversation with the lover what is expected and needed to be in the relationship. There must be a zeal and some meaning to it to identify the purpose of taking this course of relationship further and to necessarily secure it as marriage. It makes this covenant faithful and special if you want to share a bond with the opposite sex. I have included some vital scriptures which helps to strengthen a healthy relationship that needs to be morally stable and well maintained. The standard of a intimate relationship needs to have a firm purpose and a prosperous path that can serve a successful relationship. Matthew 19:4-6Contemporary English Version (CEV)

        4 Jesus answered, “Don’t you know that in the beginning the Creator made a man and a woman? 5 That’s why a man leaves his father and mother and gets married. He becomes like one person with his wife. 6 Then they are no longer two people, but one. And no one should separate a couple that God has joined together.” So it’s very important before moving with a man or if someone is living with a unmarried partner they need to commit marriage together with faithfulness as a priority of remaining together as a yoke or bond in any form of intimacy. Therefore they shouldn’t live together for any reason due to temptation and sexual iniquities. I said so much so I will attach one more quote passage of what God is saying; 8 Here is my advice for people who have never been married and for widows. You should stay single, just as I am. 9 But if you don’t have enough self-control, then go ahead and get married. After all, it is better to marry than to burn with desire.[b]

        10 I instruct married couples to stay together, and this is exactly what the Lord himself taught. A wife who leaves her husband 11 should either stay single or go back to her husband. And a husband should not leave his wife.

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  • Lee Williams

    So… in short, living with a member of the opposite sex is not a sin. You will never find that in the bible. It just looks bad amongst other belivers.

    • Hey Lee,

      Thanks for sharing, but I think if you were to read through the post again and see what followers of Christ are called to do and how they are called to live (for the glory of God) you would see where sin is involved and how it’s much more than just “looking bad amongst believers”. Thanks again for sharing.

      • Lee Williams

        Mike,

        Apologies. I meant to post this here. thank you for the reply. I assure you, I read through your post again and came to the same conclusion: based on what you have posted here, there is no scriptural evidence that the act of a man and woman living together is a sin in the eyes of almighty God. While you have given plenty of scriptural evidence for why it appears so in the eyes of men. We are called and encouraged to flee from fornication. I assume this is why you simply suggested that couples not live together. Whilst I will agree that it opens the door for temptation, I will also say that it is possible to fight temptation by staying in the word. Is it not the word that was used by Christ when Satan tempted him? What we as Christians are called to do is stay in the word and follow christ, seeking maturity and growth of the spirit while spreading the gospel. Where one lies their head at night (i.e. the couch of a girlfriends condo) seems arbitrary. If two mature believers made a promise to each other that they would not fornicate whilst living together, and they did not, eventually married and where faithful the entire time, we would call that sin? Have they not proven their faith to God and given Him glory? Scripture does not support that. So this takes us back to appearances. It looks bad amongst other belivers. Personal story: This was around 2010. A friend of mine said to me “I never see you in the word anymore. You’re always texting on your phone.” She didn’t know about the bible app. So even though it looked bad to have my phone out in church, no wrong doing or disrespect was occuring, but it looked bad. You gave your personal testimony, and I thank you for that. However, it is not just to assume that the same thing occurs behind every closed door. Does the bible say “where two or more are gathered in my name except a man and woman living together”? I think not, sir.

        • I agree with you that it’s possible for us to fight temptation and we can overcome that through His Word and through His Power and you made mention about how we should flee fornication…both great points. The problem is where you lie your head at night does indeed make a difference and we very much underestimate the enemy we have against us when we don’t flee.

          It would be naive of me, you, anyone who thinks they can just “make a commitment” to live with someone like that and not fall short. Not only are they sending the wrong message to others, but they are playing with fire and “making a commitment” they won’t get burned.

          Either way, it’s not about how we can prove something to God because He has already done everything for us. It’s not about what commitment we want to make in our daily decisions, but more about what God has called us to do daily. Even a relationship ultimately is not just going to be about the relationship, but an eventual marriage that reflects Christ and the Church and that obviously includes at all times making decisions that would put The Lord first before any of us.

          There’s no reason any of us honestly can’t wait until marriage. I know there are many circumstances out there, but we are often too quick to just “move in” vs work at finding the other and better solutions…including being patient. Making those decisions to honor The Lord will have a bigger impact to those around us, and will show whoever you’re in a relationship with that Jesus is first in your life. At that would be the best foundation to stand on for any relationship.

          Thanks again for sharing.

          • Lee Williams

            Thanks for that, Mike,

            I think you misunderstand my statement. However, instead of asking you to read it again, i’ll be more clear.

            There was no statement made insinuating remotely that man has anything to prove to God. This is not scriptural. However, it gives me insight to how easy it is for misinterpretation to lead to false conclusion. The God we serve is a deliberate God. He makes his intention for what he wants his children to not do very clear. So clear that there is no need for us to pick and chose scripture to fit what we want them to. The only clear scriptural conclusions based on the text that you have presented are against fornication outside of the sanctity of marriage and that’s because that’s all you’re going to find in sound doctrine. The rest is based on you opinion and perception. I only recommend that you present it as such and state clearly that while you can find zero evidence in scripture of living together in and of itself as being sinful, here’s what you interpret. However, to incite people to speak against others for situations that are not in the word is misleading believers. Here’s why: if I can find scripture speaking against homosexuality (which I can) and I decide to move in with a male roomate, should I repent for living under the same roof as another man? If it is just to assume fornication of a man and woman living together, then is it not just to assume the same of all? If this is the case, then someone should have told the disciples. Are you just in saying in the same post ” that it’s possible for us to fight temptation and we can overcome that through His Word and through His Power” and still say “It would be naive of me, you, anyone who thinks they can just “make a commitment” to live with someone like that and not fall short.” Which is it? Can I not do all things through Christ who gives me strength? I will ask the unanswered question again: If two people pure of body move in together, maintain their purity and marry, did they sin in these actions? And I ask you to anewer this with scripture. (Though the playing with fire analogy was pretty good.)

          • Thanks again for sharing Lee. I’ll wrap up this thread with the following comment only because we’ll only be able to go so far on blog post thread and the word can be misinterpreted like you said.

            When I say people “making a commitment” and falling short, what I mean is that we will always fall short. We can “make commitments” all we want, but we’ll never be able to hold them..we will always fall short and sin over and over…that’s why Jesus came.

            So to answer your final question…I still believe that those two people should not move in. There should be no reason they can’t wait and the example they are setting is not taking God into account first and foremost however much they want to make a commitment because they are not considering the misleading of others into the same situation where they can sin as well. And that first couple will have to make an account on the message they sent others with their actions. This is the same for any subject matter for any Christian at the end of the day.

            Lastly it is foolish for any of us (myself included) to not take God’s Word as seriously as God tells us to take it. For example, if we should feel from fornication…and we decide to live with that potential every day..we really are playing with fire and not believing God when He says to flee. We will fall short however much we think we won’t. And we are better off to live above reproach because since we all fall short, we want to lead others the very best way we can including helping them be put into positions of fleeing as well and not living with the temptation themselves every day.

            Romans 14:13–22
            Romans 3:23

          • Lee Williams

            Mike

            Thank you. However, you did not answer my question. The context given is that they did move in, stayed pure and married. Did they sin? Use scripture. Thanks

          • Pat

            Lee, you are trying to use scripture to justify what you are doing. Obviously, you see what scripture says in ‘fleeing from sin’ and ‘being above reproach’ and ‘not being a stumbling block to others.’ Those all refer to this subject, but because you don’t want to obey those, you look further for a scripture that says explicitly “do not live together”. The scripture you are asking Mike to show you is already there – you just have to choose whether or not you want to obey it. We can’t have a scripture for our every need or question. We have to be wise enough to read and interpret what IS there toward our situation.

          • Lee Williams

            Thanks Pat.

            I was worried that my question wasn’t answered because we ran out of room in this thread. I will make a suggestion: Instead of telling me what I’m trying to do, and telling me what I see, why not just ask? No need to be rude.

            You didn’t answer my question either, but instead decided to attack me personally. So I’ll explain where I am coming from: I think that the writer should have done a better Job separating his opinion on the word from the word itself.

            Context is important. For instance, lets take ‘not being a stumbling block to others’ this ENTIRE chapter is about Judgement among believers. This verse specifically says “Therefore let us not pass judgment on one another any longer, but rather decide never to put a stumbling block or hindrance in the way of a brother.” The writer is literally saying that we should stop focusing on placing Judgement, but instead to focus on not leading others toward sin. One would actually say that if one were to take this post in its entirety, your post, which clearly passes judgement about my situation without even asking about it gives an example to other Christians to do the same. That, Pat, is a real “Stumbling block.” Worry not. I forgive you.

            Maybe you can answer my question, though, since Mike won’t: The context given is that they did move in, stayed pure and married. Did they sin? Use scripture. Thanks

          • Bukky Olowoyo

            Matthew 19:5Expanded Bible (EXB)

            5 And God said, ‘So a man will leave his father and mother and be ·united with [joined to] his wife, and the two will become ·one body [as though they were one person; T one flesh; Gen. 2:24].’ This one scripture which also identifies Genesis 2:24 tells us about the relationship between both distinctive genders before they mutually
            join and leave together becoming one under Gods marriage seal. Therefore it would be wrong for a man either a women to leave together unless the married because one of them would need to leave their family, parents or own home to join their future partner in the ceremony of marriage. Something of that would answer your question

          • Lee Williams

            Thanks, Bukky.

            I Appreciate the response. You make a great point. We have to be careful with what we interpret as a commandment. Here’s why:

            If this commandment says “man WILL leave his father and mother and be united…” it means that every man who does not leave and does not marry is sinful. If God says “man WILL”, then how is that different from “thou SHALL?” However, Paul later writes ” I say therefore to the unmarried and widows, it is good for them if they abide even as I.(referring to the single life)” If this is a commandment, then why would Paul say that? It would be a contradiction, but the Bible has no contradictions so this can not be the case.

            If we look at the context of Mathew 19:5, we see that it is part of a response to the question 2 verses prior which is (KJV) “The Pharisees also came unto him, tempting him, and saying unto him, Is it lawful for a man to put away his wife for every cause?” Jesus then quotes what is written in Genesis to answer the question about two people who are married. When Jesus was asked a question by the Pharisees, he always went to the word.
            However, Jesus’ word is the word of God.

            He later said in response to the Pharisees, “And I say unto you, Whosoever shall put away his wife, except it be for fornication, and shall marry another, committeth adultery: and whoso marrieth her which is put away doth commit adultery.”

            Again, we see here blatant and deliberate focus on fornication, not a man and woman living under one roof.

            Honestly, I think you guys are right. I think that abstinence is always best in most situations. I think that blanket (speaking one for all) statements hurt our attempts to minister to others. I think that these statements incite people to Judge without merit. Pat Jumped to do that. Thank you, Bukky for not. It is a blessing to talk with someone patient and reasonable. T

            hat’s my opinion, though. However, that’s my word, not scripture. I think it’s important for believers to clearly separate what we think from God’s word.

            Paul was able to do this. When he had an opinion, he would say “I say these things, not the Lord.” 1 cor 17:12. This man could have left that out, but did not. Granted, the word is God inspired, so Paul still writes on strong authority, but the manner by which he wrote is an example that we all should follow.

          • Bukky Olowoyo

            You are sincerely welcome. You have a brilliant mind, Christ led by the Holy Ghost who is grace to all men that follows the wisdom of God rather the foolishness of the world. Therefore you right with the aspect of Apost Paul communicating his letter to the saints, and hopefully unbelievers would be also inspired. His letters tells us that a large feature of his word were translated by him but in the guide of the Holy Ghost originated from God. All scriptures are God breathed 2 Timothy 3:14-18 , whereby it takes Gods divine intervention to make this word alive as it extends the essence of the gospel. When he mentioned “not the lord”( but I ) he indicated that it was his speech or scripture that he promulgate to forthcoming believers and the Jews,even though he seems as he was inventing the letter by his own authority. Gods ghost hasn’t stopped to envision and interact with the chosen disciples whereby Paul and other apostles were dedicating their lives to complete the establishment of the Gospel which was brought by Christ.

            You may say that Matthew 19:5 may not speak in authoritive commandment rather than the form of teaching. It is still Gods word breath out through the ministry of the lords spirit so it is appropriate for a man to leave with a women unless the married only if the two are intimate than rather just ordinary friends.

    • Lee Williams

      Mike, thank you for the reply. I assure you, I read through your post again and came to the same conclusion: based on what you have posted here, there is no scriptural evidence that the act of a man and woman living together is a sin in the eyes of almighty God. While you have given plenty of scriptural evidence for why it appears so in the eyes of men. We are called and encouraged to flee from fornication. I assume this is why you simply suggested that couples not live together. Whilst I will agree that it opens the door for temptation, I will also say that it is possible to fight temptation by staying in the word. Is it not the word that was used by Christ when Satan tempted him? What we as Christians are called to do is stay in the word and follow christ, seeking maturity and growth of the spirit while spreading the gospel. Where one lies their head at night (i.e. the couch of a girlfriends condo) seems arbitrary. If two mature believers made a promise to each other that they would not fornicate whilst living together, and they did not, eventually married and where faithful the entire time, we would call that sin? Have they not proven their faith to God and given Him glory? Scripture does not support that. So this takes us back to appearances. It looks bad amongst other belivers. Personal story: This was around 2010. A friend of mine said to me “I never see you in the word anymore. You’re always texting on your phone.” She didn’t know about the bible app. So even though it looked bad to have my phone out in church, no wrong doing or disrespect was occuring, but it looked bad. You gave your personal testimony, and I thank you for that. However, it is not just to assume that the same thing occurs behind every closed door. Does the bible say “where two or more are gathered in my name except a man and woman living together”? I think not, sir.

  • Lee Williams

    Mike,

    Apologies. I had to start a new thread since there wasnt enough room. To recap, I asked that if a couple lived together before marriage and stayed pure (meaning no fornication) then married did they sin? I asked that you answer this with scripture. You responded that you believe they should not move in. I know you believe that. However, lets just say that they did, and did fornicate, then married. Now to further clarify, because it seems necessary, when I ask “did they sin?” I’m not asking “did they sin ever in their lives?”, but ‘how is the example that I have given disobeying God’s word?” We’re sinners. This is not subject to interpretation. This is clear. I have not said and will not say otherwise. I’m asking you to point out scripturaly the sin in this example. If you cannot, then just say that. It is apparent what you think and how you feel about this subject. You wrote a blog about it. You have personal experience with the issue. Trust me. I get it. However what God knows (i.e what really happens behind closed doors) is more important than what we think.

    To recap further, romans 3:23 states that “for all have sinned and come short of the glory of god.” This passage does not answer the question of where the sin is in the example given. Neither does romans 14:13-22. Thank you for your time.

  • Melissa Newby

    Hey Mike, I’m looking for a Godly man to help give my boyfriend some insight on this topic. Would you be willing to mentor him over email?

  • Kayla

    Hello Mike, I was wondering if you could please help my boyfriend with this topic. He doesn’t quite understand it and was hoping you could help. Maybe over E-Mail? Thanks!

  • Codey

    Show me a verse in the Bible where it specificically says not to live with a female before marriage all this article did was prove that sex before marriage is a sin but when it came to living to get her you provided no scripture to back your statement you did for everything g else but that all that is is a just an opinion

    • Thanks for sharing Codey, but I don’t think you’re going to find any answers that you’re looking for is you always want the Bible to specifically say everything about everything. There are many things the Bible doesn’t specifically talk about, but if you read the Bible as a whole, there is much more clarify than most people think.

      For example however it may sound silly, does the Bible say not to drive on the wrong side of the road? Since it doesn’t, I guess we can drive down one way streets? With that line of thinking there is a LOT of things we can do, but that doesn’t mean they are the right and Godly things to do. The Bible (in this example) discusses following the laws and authorities God has put in place, making wise decisions not to harm people, etc. so the average person can conclude driving the wrong way down a one way street is probably not the best.

      And it’s the same thing in this scenario. Living with someone before getting married is never going to be the good and Godly decision to make. For many reasons said in the post and said in these comments. You’ll be tempted to sin, you’ll lead other people down a sinful path by your example…and I’d say most of all…you’re not making every effort to live a holy, sinless life, glorifying God in your decisions, but rather making your own decisions based off of preferences, circumstances, desires, etc.

      At the end of the day it’s a heart issue. I wouldn’t expect a nonbeliever to want to strive for a holy and Biblical life (although I hope they will and I know they’ll experience a lack of satisfaction in life without Jesus), but God through the Bible commands the follower of Jesus to make every attempt to avoid sin, temptation, etc. and puts a value on decision making of if it glorifies God and leads others towards Jesus or not.

  • gregdoryt

    So given that this is just a matter of interpreting vague scripture, that is, this is the opinion of a man, and given that this nowhere says anything about living together married or not, I take it as a matter of personal conviction. I lived with my wife before marriage and it helped us grow together and adapt to each other. Our marriage was by the county clerk too, which the Bible does not actually say is recognized by God. But really, the Bible says nothing on the matter of needing a government to proclaim you married nor even a clergy member and ceremony.

    Rather marriage is described in terms of a spiritual connection and absolute commitment making one’s official status in the eyes of a government utterly moot. Rather God would know if you WERE indeed committed to each other in the way described. Your sincerety about that commitment doesn’t change when you get that marriage certificate (at least it shouldn’t). That permanent commitment itself is what matters, after all, not some official process, piece of state-stamped paper, or ceremony.

    In that case, if you are serious, and sincere, the actual wedding is a formality. Even in Biblical times wives were betrothed without ceremony and considered spouses before any cultural ceremony. This is because the relationship, not governments nor the acts of man (ceremony) ultimately matter. God knows the difference and sees our hearts. Rather, God looks at our hearts, not our ring fingers or file cabinets. Notice the absence of rings in the Bible too. My wife and I never wore rings. Our trust is absolute. There is no need to for that social and cultural convention. If you need a piece of metal to show people you love someone and that they are ‘taken’ you are missing the point completely.

    The eyes of god are everywhere anyhow. Not like you have to do it in a church to be in the eyes of god married. No scripture nor custom prior to the early middle ages supports this cultural concept. Anyone that tells you otherwise is basically proclaiming God subservient to government dictate and unable to recognize true love and genuine commitment without an absurd fancy ritual.

    Basically he made the case that what is sin one day can become acceptable to God the next day because you paid $5 to a county clerk and got a piece of paper. Sorry, but my God isn’t that petty nor relies on social convention, cultural ritual or governments to define ‘sin.’

    Funny how none of the scriptures cited say anything promoting these extreme positions, let alone the cultural and governmental procedures asserted as necessary. He merely asserts his interpretation as factual, reading WAY more into the verses than they actually say. He even defends thia ‘logic’ by admitting (in another question) that just because the Bible is NOT saying to not do something doesn’t make it OK. Well, yeah. But unless you are God, you cannot assert with certainty that you know what unstated procedures are necessary, what unstated actions are prohibited, etc. We all have the ability to make moral choices and can decide quite easily to be disciplined and live together as married without any man, any government, or any paper making that absolute love and trust official. It isn’t really that hard.

    Think about it… The Bible describes a complex ritual for curing leprosy but doesn’t even mention marriage as being ‘officially’ defined by any specific act (or lack thereof). Your will power over your genitals is stronger that a LOT of theologians would like you to believe.