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Evangelism:
The Time Is Now!

Section 6, Chapter 15

The Bible Supports Sex Outside of Marriage?

By Dale P. Kruse

Back to Chapter 14, Chapter 16

In Evangelism on the field I have had people say to me that there is nothing in the Old Testament which teaches you cannot live and have sex with someone outside the bounds of marriage. What does the Old Testament teach on the subject? Exodus 22:16 states the following: "And if a man seduces a virgin who is not engaged, and lies with her, he must pay a dowry for her to be his wife." The Bible is clear, if you lie with a virgin, you must marry her, take her as your wife. Others will say that what Moses means here is only if they are not engaged. This is not what Moses is saying. In Hebrew Culture to be engaged was the same as marriage except for the consummation of the marriage: sexual intercourse. If a woman was engaged, she was to be treated the same as a married woman having sex with someone other than her spouse. The penalty for both consenting parties was death by stoning (Lev 20:10). Exodus 20:14, number 5 of the 10 commandments, states the following, "You shall not commit adultery."

The word in the Hebrew for seduce is hT,p'y (ypatei) meaning "to entice or seduce."66 the words in Hebrew for virgin are hl;WtB] (botulah)67 and hm;l][' (almah).68 Both mean: a girl or woman who has never had sexual intercourse. The Word almah is the word used in Isaiah 7:14: "Therefore Yahweh Himself will give you a sign: Behold, a virgin will be with child and bear a son, and she will call His name Immanuel." The Apostle Matthew in the Gospel of Matthew Chapter 1 tells us that this prophecy was fulfilled in the person of Jesus Christ of Nazareth through the virgin Mary. Some scholars have tried to tell us that almah is not referring to a virgin but to a maid. This is easily cleared up by going to the Greek Septuagent,48/842 a translation of the Bible into Greek that was done by 70 Hebrew scribes (Septuagent means 70) around 250 B.C.48/Preface These Hebrew scholars translated the word almah into the Greek word parqevno" (parthenos).74 This is the same word Matthew uses in Matthew 1:23. The word means: a girl or woman who has never had sexual intercourse, a virgin.74 The Hebrew translators of the Septuagint and Matthew understood the Hebrew Word almah to mean a virgin, a girl or woman who has never had sexual intercourse.75/145-146

Matthew records in the book of Matthew that when Joseph found that Mary was pregnant with child that he sought to put her away. He sought to put her away because he had not had sexual relations with Mary and therefore knew the child was not his. As he was contemplating this Matthew tells us that an angel of the Lord appeard to Joseph in a dream and told him to not be afraid to take Mary as his wife because she was not pregant because she had committed fornication with another man, but that her concepted was through the Holy Spirit. As a result not only did Joseph take Mary as his wife, but kept her a virgin, did not have sexual intercourse with her, consummate the marriage, until after Jesus71, 30, 31 was born.

What is the point of all this? Moses in Exodus 22:16 tells us plainly that if you have intercourse with a woman you are to marry her. She is now your wife. Joseph did not have relations with Mary until after they were married and he did not have sexual intercourse with her before they were married. That was why he was going to put her away because he knew he had not had sex with her so the child had to be someone elses.

There are two words in the Greek used concerning sexual sin: They are porneuvw (porneuo) Meaning fornication69 and moicov" (moikos) meaning adultery.70 The Greek word porneuo is the word we get pornography from. Fornication is two people outside of the bounds of marriage having sexual intercourse. Adultery is a married person having sexual intercourse with someone other than their spouse. Exodus 20:14 quoted above is one of the Ten commandments and clearly condemns adultery. Fornication is clearly condemned in Exodus 22:16. It states clearly that if you have sex with someone out side of the bounds of marriage you are to marry them. She is now Your wife. The new Testament also makes it very plain that these two practices are not only wrong, but if not repented of will lead to hell. Key passages are the following:

Matthew 15:18-20 "But the things that proceed out of the mouth come from the heart, and those defile the man. For out of the heart come evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, slanders. These are the things which defile the man."

1 Cor 6:9-10 "Or do you not know that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived; neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor homosexuals, nor thieves, nor the covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers, shall inherit the kingdom of God."

Eph 5:5-6 "For this you know with certainty, that no fornicator or impure person or covetous man, who is an idolater, has an inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and God. Let no one deceive you with empty words, for because of these things the wrath of God comes upon the sons of disobedience." (see also Gal 5:19-21)

Hebrews 13:4 "Let marriage be held in honor among all; and let the marriage bed be undefiled; for fornicators and adulterers God will judge."

1 Thessalonians 4:2-6 "For you know what commandments we gave you by the authority of the Lord Jesus. For this is the will of God, your sanctification; that is, that you abstain from fornication, that each of you know how to possess his own vessel in sanctification and honor, not in lustful passion, like the Gentiles who do not know God; and that no man transgress and defraud his brother in the matter because the Lord is the avenger in all these things, just as we also told you before and solemnly warned you."

Hebrews 10:26-27 "For if we go on sinning willfully after receiving the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins, but a certain terrifying expectation of judgment, and the fury of a fire which will consume the adversaries."

Chapter 16
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