Abstinance and the Bible

What is Abstinence?

Abstinence is practice of restraining from something. One can abstain from alcohol or from caffeine. One can also abstain from sex outside of marriage. In Christianity, when the term abstinence is used, it is typically in relation to saving sex for marriage. The Bible teaches that Christian couples are not to have sex until they are married.

In today’s society there are a number of issues that surround this topic.  In Public Schools condemns are handed out in sexual education classes.  In Texas, they want to give young girls shots to protect them from certain sexually transmitted diseases.  Some organizations teach that sex is sinful and evil.  Others teach that sex is to be for procreation only, minus the enjoyment.

According to the Christian Bible, sex was created by God as something to be enjoyed by two humans as an act of passionate intimacy.  It is the closest that two individuals can come to being one, when they are emotionally and physically connected.  The Bible also teaches that outside of marriage that this gift is not to be enjoyed.  The question is, is this teaching outdated?  Does it still apply in our society?

To be quite blunt, yes, it does still apply.  Sexual intimacy should be reserved for one’s husband or wife.  These people should also be faithful and committed to one another.  Sex is not evil, but it is not to be encouraged.  I believe that the current teachings on many different fences concerning this issue are flawed and a result of the absence of morality among so many people in our culture.

What does the Bible say about sex?

Hebrews 13:4 states, “Let marriage be held in honor among all, and let the marriage bed be undefiled, for God will judge the sexually immoral and adulterous.”


1 Corinthians 6:18 states, “Flee from sexual immorality. Every other sin a person commits is outside the body, but the sexually immoral person sins against his own body.”

I do not think that sex should be regarded as a “bad word” and I do not think that discussion about sex should be avoided, especially not in the home.  Instead, I think that young people should be taught about sex as the beautiful act that it is.  But they should be taught about the issue, with their hearts turned towards virtue.

There are a number of teenagers out there between the ages of 11 and 16 that lose their virginity everyday.  Many of these young people are really not ready for this mentally or physically.  But if you know a teenager out there who has lost his or her virginity at a young age, that does not mean the person needs to be condemned and cast away from your midst.  The person may need someone to talk with, may need to be educated about what he or she has done and the possible implications of it, and more than this, may need love.

I want to encourage any young lady who reads this to protect your body and not to give yourself away.  Your body is very special, and so is your heart.  You are all precious and if any guy you meet is not as interested in who you are as he is in how you look and feel, then he is not worth your time.  If you have already given yourself away and you are struggling, know that God still loves you and so do true followers of Jesus Christ.  You do not need to live with guilt, and you do not need to hate yourself.  You are still special, and you can still start over again.

I want to encourage any young teenage boys who read this to know that you do not have to have sex by the time you turn fifteen.  You do not need to feel like you are less of a man if you have never gotten a girl in bed with you.  Instead of trying to get a girl to give away her purity to you, I hope you will encourage her to hold onto it until the Lord brings her to the right stage in her life.  For now, just get to know her and love her for who she is, a beautiful creation.

How should Christians react to people who do not practice abstinence?

If someone who is not a Christian chooses not to save sex for marriage, that is their choice. We cannot hold non-Christians to that standard. However, there are health benefits to saving sex.

Why should Christians defend abstinence?

The Bible is our standard of truth, our authoritative book, as Christians, we must submit to the teachings presented in it.

What if I have already lost my virginity?

Romans 8:1 teaches that there is no condemnation for those in Christ. If you have lost your virginity, but you now desire to be obedient to God in this regard, know that your past is in the past. God does not continue to hold your sin against you and that you can move on in good conscience.