Where is the physical line before marriage?

1 Corinthians 7:9 – But if they cannot exercise self-control, they should marry. For it is better to marry than to burn with passion. 

I would say that if a single person were asking this question, it’s the wrong question and probably doesn’t come from the purest heart.

Song of Songs 8:4 says, “Do not stir up or awaken love until the appropriate time.” The point is, there’s certain things you save for when you’re married. Ephesians 5:3 says, “Among God’s people, there must not even be a hint of sexual immorality.” The word there is porneia, where we get pornography, but it’s basically a junk drawer word for sexual sin.

If a guy says, “We’re living together but not sleeping together”, first off, you’re weird. Secondly, that’s more than a hint of sexual immorality towards someone who you’re “supposed to treat as [a sister] in all purity” (1 Timothy 5:2). 

So, then a guy asks, “Ok how much can we do?” Where’s the line? They want to know where the line is so they can dance vigorously on it continually but not cross it. You’re like “I can’t even see the line because you’ve danced on it so vigorously.” 

For the dads, because it gets much clearer when you’re a dad, does this potentially reveal a bad heart in a young man? Yes. Because what he’s asking is “How much can I get away with before the dad kills me and Jesus sends me to Hell?” 

Here’s the issue: The issue is not where is the line but when is the time? Both God’s will and God’s timing is important. 

Ecclesiastes 3:1 says, “For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven.”

If you do indeed get married, there will come a day when most, if not all, of the things you’re asking about will become completely permissible because, as Genesis 2:24 says, “they shall become one flesh”. Until then, if you’re asking this question, start focusing on building your emotional relationship, praying together and planning your future together, rather than being so focused on your physical relationship.

Have you ever gotten ahead of God’s timing even though it may have been God’s will? 

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