Sex is a very powerful reality. It goes to the very core of what it means to be created male and female in the image of God. Indeed, it is an awesome gift from God, created to be enjoyed as He has prescribed.
Given sex’s power, it’s a prime target for the devil to aim at. If he can corrupt this powerful gift, then he can easily influence mankind away from God and righteousness. So far, he’s doing an overwhelmingly successful job.
One of Satan’s best tools of corruption is the lie. He did it in the Garden (Gen 3:1-5) and is doing it still today. It’s what he does because that’s who he is. As Jesus tells us in John 8:44, [The devil] was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth because there is no truth in him. Whenever he speaks a lie, he speaks from his own nature, for he is a liar and the father of lies. He lies and then he prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking the one who will believe the lie so that he may devour them (1 Peter 5:8).
God has clearly told us in Scripture that sex outside of marriage is sinful. The most direct verse on this truth is in Hebrews 13:4, Marriage is to be held in honor among all, and the marriage bed is to be undefiled; for fornicators and adulterers God will judge. “Fornication” is sex outside of marriage while you are single. “Adultery” is sex outside of marriage while you are married. God condemns both actions in this verse and the following verses: 1 Corinthians 6:13, 18; 10:8; 2 Corinthians 12:21; Galatians 5:19; Ephesians 5:3; Colossians 3:5; 1 Thessalonians 4:3; Jude 7). However, the devil will lie to you, saying that sex outside of marriage is not sin.
So, we must shine light onto the lies—bust the lies if you will. I’ve pulled together 13 lies the devil likes to spread about sex outside of marriage.
Lie #1: There is no God, so do whatever you want with your body. I hate to break this to you (actually, I don’t hate it because I love you and truth), but there is God, and you will be held accountable by Him based upon His moral standards for your thoughts, attitudes, and actions. He has given sex to be enjoyed only within marriage, and given the times, let me define biblical marriage: a one-flesh, life-time union between one man and one woman based upon a covenant commitment to one other before God and society. That’s where sex is to be thoroughly enjoyed.
Lie #2: Everybody’s having sex outside of marriage. No, they are not. That’s how the devil wants it to look to you so that you’ll feel inferior, but that’s not reality. But, let me ask this one pertinent question: even if everybody else was having sex outside of marriage, do you really want to be like everybody else? Jesus said to enter through the narrow gate; for the gate is wide and the way is broad that leads to destruction, and there are many who enter through it. For the gate is small and the way is narrow that leads to life, and there are few who find it, (Matthew 7:13-14). The way of the majority of this world leads to destruction. Be different!!!!
Lie #3: If it feels good, it can’t be wrong. Why not? Pleasure and rightness are not equal unless you are a hedonist, who argues that pleasure is the only intrinsic good. Indeed, shooting heroine or robbing a bank may feel good, but they’re certainly wrong. The question is not: does this feel good? The question is: is this right in God’s eyes? Sex outside of marriage may feel good momentarily, but it’s undoubtedly wrong in God’s eyes.
Lie #4: Sex outside of marriage is freedom. You are indeed exercising your ability to choose when you have sex outside of marriage, but it does not lead to freedom. Again, as demonstrated above, sex outside of marriage is sin. Listen to what Jesus reveals to us about the relationship between sin and freedom, Truly, truly, I say to you, everyone who commits sin is the slave of sin, (John 8:34). So, sexual sin does not lead to freedom but rather to slavery.
Lie #5: There is such a thing as safe sex outside of marriage. First of all, there’s no such thing as safe sex, period. What society means by “safe sex” is: sexual activity in which people take precautions to protect themselves against pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases. But, let’s be honest—there is no such thing as safe sex. You can take every precaution in the world and still end up pregnant or contract an STD. Sure, your chances of these things can be reduced, but no form of “safe sex” is 100% effective. Therefore, there is no such thing as “safe” sex, only “safer” sex.
But, are pregnancy and STDs all that you’re trying to avoid? It shouldn’t be. God commands us through Paul to abstain from every form of evil, (1 Thessalonians 5:22). Sex outside of marriage is sin, and sin is evil. Therefore, we should abstain from sex outside of marriage. So, not only is there no “safe sex” outside of marriage. There’s no righteous sex outside of marriage. The adjective “Safe” is meant to make us think that sex outside of marriage is both healthy and moral, but in reality it’s neither. Here’s a great article on the lie of “safe sex” written in 1991 after the news broke that Magic Johnson had contracted HIV.
Lie #6: As long as I don’t have vaginal intercourse outside of marriage, it’s okay. We love to rationalize our sin, don’t we? We draw these fake boundaries to justify what we want to do. We like to draw the line at vaginal intercourse so that we can feel better about doing whatever else we want to do with our orifices and hands. I’m not trying to be course—just real. Manual sex, oral sex, and anal sex are still sexually immoral outside of marriage. One could even make a strong argument that anal sex even within marriage is still sexually immoral. Stop trying to justify sin! Sex is more than just vaginal intercourse and should be kept within marriage.
Lie #7: Sex is dirty. No, sex is a gift from God and is in no way dirty if experienced the way He intended. As it was said about Adam and Eve in the Garden, And the man and his wife were both naked and were not ashamed, (Genesis 2:25). There’s no shame in sex if it’s experienced in its proper context—between a husband and wife. I grew up near the South Union Shaker Village just outside of Bowling Green, KY. I’m not sure if you’ve heard of the Shakers (or the United Society of Believers in Christ’s Second Appearing, as they call themselves), but they were and are a heretical Christian sect that jumped off the proverbial Orthodox Train in many ways. One of the ways is that they saw sex itself as immoral. They banned marriage and sex both. What a tragedy in missing God’s design and gift to mankind in sex!
Lie #8: Sex is no big deal. This lie is one of Satan’s greatest! He wants us to make light of something sacred. Sex is a one-flesh union, intertwining the physical, emotional, and spiritual aspects of humanity. It’s a BIG DEAL! Furthermore, sex outside of marriage is an even bigger deal because it’s sinful, and sin is a BIG DEAL. Finally, we cannot divorce sex from what sex creates, namely a precious child. Even though getting pregnant is not your goal, it’s very good possibility. Therefore, you’d better believe that sex is a big deal!
Lie #9: We’re just animals, so follow your instincts and have sex whenever and however you want. This lie comes straight from the atheistic, evolutionary worldview. You are not an animal. You are human being—a special creation of the highest order and made in the image of God himself. Animals have not been endued by their Creator with moral abilities, which leads to moral expectations, but you have, and God expects you to act morally. Yes, you very well may have “instincts,” but you are to discipline yourself toward godliness. As God tells us through Paul, For this is the will of God, your sanctification; that is, that you abstain from sexual immorality; 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, (1 Thessalonians 4:3-5). I pray you do so!
Lie #10: God surely wouldn’t expect me to wait until I’m married. While it’s true that societal norms are pushing marriage further back, even seeing the average person marrying in their late 20s, God’s standard has not changed. Yes, the late 20s is long after puberty brings about the strong urges toward sex, but sex is still to be enjoyed only within marriage. That means that you’ll need a Holy Spirit-powered dose of self-control. But, as God tells us through Paul, But if they do not have self-control, let them marry; for it is better to marry than to burn with passion, (1 Corinthians 7:9). He’s primarily talking about young widows here, but it’s true for any person. If you cannot control yourself, marry a godly spouse and have all the sex you desire. But, if marriage is not your desire, then abstain from sex because God expects you to wait until marriage.
Lie #11: I’ll die if I don’t have sex. Let’s turn to a chapter from the book of General Revelation to bust this lie. The reproductive system, which enables you to have sex, is one of many organ systems in your body. In fact, it’s one of 10. There’s also the circulatory, digestive, endocrine, integumentary, muscular, nervous, respiratory, skeletal, and urinary/excretory systems. I know, TMI, but I’m trying to prove a point here. Did you know that out of all 10 body systems, there’s only one that you can live without? Can you guess which one it is? Yep, you guessed it—the reproductive system. In fact, due to health complications, many people have their reproductive system partially removed at some point in their lives and do just fine.
So, you will not die if you don’t have sex. You might feel like you’ll die, but remember what I said about self-control in #10.
Lie #12: Starting sex early in a relationship will help you get to know one another better and enhance intimacy in your relationship. The truth is that sex early in a relationship will actually hinder you from getting to know one another because it will cloud how you see each other. You’ll end up just being attracted to the sex and not really the person. You’ll overlook problems and incompatibilities because the sex is good. It’ll cause you big problems down the road because your relationship will be built upon sex, and when the sex fades (it always fades!!), you’ll be stuck with regret.
True intimacy is found when you learn to love the opposite sex for whom they are and not just for their body and what they can do for you. You need a best friend, not a friend with benefits.
Lie #13: I’ve already had sex outside marriage, and since I’ve already messed up, I should just continue. Excuse me? What? That’s a great piece of rationalization. The devil loves when you think this way!
Maybe you’ve heard, “You can’t unring the bell,” or “You can’t uncrack the egg.” It’s true. You can’t. However, while it’s true that you can’t erase your past, the condemnation for you past sin can be erased. Seek forgiveness from God by grace through faith in Jesus Christ so that it will be erased, and then repent of that sin. In other words, go the other direction. If you were having sex, stop having sex. Sin no more! That’s exactly what Jesus told a woman who was caught having sex outside of marriage. He told her, I do not condemn you, either. Go. From now on sin no more, (John 8:11). Jesus is saying the same thing to you as well if you’ll only ask God to forgive you through Jesus and then have as your goal to sin no more.