Any sort of kissing that occurs prior to marriage is referred to as premarital kissing. This covers platonic kisses between friends or family members as well as romantic kisses between a couple who are romantically linked with one another. The Bible does not specifically mention any guidelines regarding premarital kissing before marriage. However, there are some principles in the Scripture that can help us make wise decisions about that matter. Here are a few of them:
1. Know that our bodies are not our own but rather to God. 1 Corinthians 6:19-20 says that our body is a temple of the Holy Spirit that belongs to God and is meant to be a way by which one goes from sinfulness to holiness. So, it must under no means be engaged in a sinful act of sexual immorality. As such, it is advisable to refrain from any premarital sexual activity even by just thinking of lustful thoughts. As much as possible, it is also vital to control our impure desires to honor God’s will (Romans 6:12-14).
2. Consider the purpose of physical affection within marriage. According to the Bible, sexual intimacy is a pure gift from God that is meant to be enjoyed within the bounds of marriage (Proverbs 5:18-19; Song of Solomon 8:4). Therefore, showing physical affection outside marriage leads to immoral sexual activity, which is something we need to be cautious of.
3. Believe that our actions have an impact on others. When we become involved in a dating relationship, we are not just impacting our own lives but also the lives of those around us. 1 Corinthians 8:9 says that our actions can either encourage or discourage others in their walk with Christ, and involving in premarital kissing, for example, might serve as a role for people to follow.So, it would be better not to indulge with it, as we will not only dishonor God but also become the propagator of lust, leading to sexual immorality. So, while the Scripture doesn’t specifically emphasize premarital kissing, it is essential to make a decision with wisdom and caution. This way, we will glorify God and be a reflection of His holiness.
What Does The Bible Say About Kissing?
Kissing is a natural human expression of affection. So, it’s no surprise to see people kissing in public and at family or church gatherings. The Bible has a lot to say about kissing, and its implications can help us understand God’s views on premarital kissing. 1 Peter 5:14 ESV tells that kissing among other believers is an act of affection: “Greet one another with the kiss of love. Peace to all of you who are in Christ.”
Furthermore, in 1 Samuel 20:41, David and Jonathan kissed each other as friends while they were weeping together, saying, “And as soon as the boy had gone, David rose from beside the stone heap and fell on his face to the ground and bowed three times. And they kissed one another and wept with one another, David weeping the most.”
These examples show that kissing is not prohibited in the Bible. It’s because it was meant to be an act of love between people who care for each other deeply. Yet, it becomes malicious and wrong when it is used as a means to exploit or harass someone sexually. Therefore, premarital kissing can be considered good or bad, depending on the circumstances.
When Is It Okay To Kiss Someone Out of Marriage?
Most people in the West have been taught that there are no taboos in kissing, and that there is no right or wrong way to kiss someone. That’s why we see couples locking lips on TV, in movies, and even out in public. For this reason, it’s no wonder that many people grow up thinking that premarital kissing is normal and healthy.
God has ordained marriage to be the time for intimate relationships between a man and a woman. Thus, in this case, kissing is good and is acceptable. Proverbs 24:26 says that such kisses are given in purity, sincerity, and truth. It is selfless, not selfish. It also honors God and shows respect for His design.
On the other hand, a bad kiss exists when it is outside of marriage. This is because it is given with ulterior motives, filled with insincerity, impurity, and manipulation for corporate gain or personal pleasure. Lastly, it is an act of lust, rather than love. The Bible further talks about kissing someone properly, let us explore it through the verses below.
1. “And as soon as the boy had gone, David rose from beside the stone heap and fell on his face to the ground, and bowed three times. And they kissed one another and wept with one another, David weeping the most.” – 1 Samuel 20:41 ESV
This verse tells the friendship of David and Jonathan. As they part ways,they expressed their love for each other with kisses and tears. This shows a selfless act of love, not of lust or manipulation. Thus, such kind of kissing is acceptable, as no sexual desire was involved..
2. “Then they lifted up their voices and wept again. And Orpah kissed her mother-in-law, but Ruth clung to her.” – Ruth 1:14 ESV
The story of Ruth and Orpah, two widowed women, encompasses this verse. Orpah kissed her mother-in-law goodbye, but Ruth refused to leave her. This shows us that a kiss can be an act of love or selfishness. In this case, Orpah’s kiss was motivated by her desire to return home. On the other hand, Ruth’s kiss was motivated by her love and loyalty to her mother-in-law. There is no trace of lust or manipulation in Ruth’s kiss. Therefore, this is an acceptable kiss.
3. “Then his father, Isaac, said to him, “Come near and kiss me, my son.” So he came near and kissed him.” – Genesis 27:26-27 ESV
This verse tells the story of Isaac and Jacob. After years of separation, Isaac and Jacob were finally reunited and kissed each other. This kiss expressed their love and joy at being together again. They shared a kiss out of pure happiness, not out of any ulterior motive. Therefore, this is considered an ethical kiss.
4. “Then he fell upon his brother Benjamin’s neck and wept, and Benjamin wept upon his neck. 15And he kissed all his brothers and wept upon them. After that his brothers talked with him.” – Genesis 45:14-15
The emotional power of kissing bounds this verse as a sign of affection, forgiveness, and reconciliation. In this instance, Joseph had been separated from his brothers for many years. But he kissed them all when they finally met again. Despite what his brothers had done to him, he still loved them and was glad to be reunited with them. In this case, kissing signifies Joseph’s forgiveness and reconciliation with his brothers; thus, deemed moral.
5. “Let him kiss me with the kisses of his mouth! For your love is better than wine;” – Song of Solomon 1:2 ESV
This verse says that the love shared between a husband and wife is more joyful and happier than of impure desire motives . This shows that kissing is a compelling expression of love that pleases God..
6. “Jacob was still talking with them when Rachel arrived with her father’s flock, for she was a shepherd. And because Rachel was his cousin—the daughter of Laban, his mother’s brother—and because the sheep and goats belonged to his uncle Laban, Jacob went over to the well and moved the stone from its mouth, and watered his uncle’s flock. Then Jacob kissed Rachel, and he wept aloud.” – Genesis 29:9-11 NLT
In this verse, Jacob and Rachel were not yet married, but they were soon to be betrothed. Yet, it was common for their culture that a man and a woman would share a kiss at their betrothal ceremony. So, Jacob kissed Rachel, prior to their engagement. In that kiss, they pledged their undying love and devotion to one another. Is this ethical or not?
Based on these examples, we can say that kissing is not always wrong and prohibited in the Bible if it’s an expression of love. It only makes it the opposite when it is misused or abused. So, we need to be careful about how and when we kiss someone. As much as possible, always do it in ways that honors and glorifies God.
How Can We Determine If Our Kissing Falls in Accordance With What Honors God’s Commandments?
The first thing to do in knowing if a kiss pleases God is by exercising discernment. This means we need to have wise counsel and clear judgment about it. We can do this by asking ourselves the following:”
- What is the purpose of kissing?
- What would a God-honoring relationship look like?
- What are the possible consequences of premarital kissing?
- What does God say about sexual purity?
Although the Bible doesn’t explicitly mention premarital kissing as a sin, answering these questions can help us understand God’s will for our lives. This is to say, if a kiss’ purpose is only about pure love and care, not for sensual pleasure, then it’s morally accepted.
Secondly, we need to be honest about our intentions. What is our motivation for wanting to kiss before marriage? Is it simply physical attraction? Is it a deeper emotional and spiritual connection with this person?
If our motivation is purely physical, then we need to reconsider it seriously. God’s Word is clear that our bodies are not to be used for sexual immorality. This is because our bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit.
However, if we feel a deep emotional and spiritual connection with someone, then kissing can be a beautiful way to express that. But keep in mind that just because we’re in a relationship doesn’t mean that we are free to do whatever we want physically. So, still, we must apply consent and respect boundaries in any way possible.
Lastly, we must remember that kissing is not just a physical but an emotional and spiritual act. When we kiss someone, we are letting him into our hearts. This is not to say that kissing is bad or that you should never kiss before marriage. We just need to ensure that our motivation is to honor God by filling in our actions with love and respect toward our neighbors and friends.
Why Should We Guard Our Hearts and Thoughts?
What we think controls our attitudes and our way of living. As the Bible says, “As a man thinketh in his heart, so is he” (Proverbs 23:7). This is why Solomon told his son to guard his heart because what we allow into our minds will shape who we are and how we live.
If we allow ourselves to think about impure things, it will lead to sinful behavior. Premarital kissing is a perfect example of this principle. When we think about kissing someone who is not our spouse, it results in lustful thoughts and eventually to sexual immorality. So, taking care of our hearts and thoughts leads to living a life in good, noble, and pure intentions.
How Do Our Thoughts Control Our Actions?
Our thoughts are powerful. Managing or controlling it creates a sense of reality. If we have negative thoughts, they will lead to dismissive actions and a cynical reality. On the other hand, having positive ones leads to practical actions and an optimistic truth.
For example, if you have noticed that you have been thinking a lot about premarital kissing. What is it about kissing that you are thinking about? What are the thoughts that come to mind when you think about kissing someone who is not your spouse? Are the thoughts pure or impure? If they are impure, then it is likely that your actions will be impure as well. But if you take control of your thoughts and monitor them carefully, you can ensure that they are pure and that your actions will also be pure.
What Do Our Convictions About Premarital Kissing Have To Do With Our Actions?
Our convictions shape our behavior and always have an effect on our actions. In short, what we believe always affects how we behave. If we believe that premarital kissing is okay, we will act accordingly. But if we think premarital kissing is wrong, we’ll abstain from it.
What we’ve been through in life affects what we believe. Our experiences often form our convictions. If we’ve had bad experiences with premarital kissing, then we’re likely to develop negative convictions about it. But our convictions will be more positive if we’ve had good experiences with premarital kissing. While these things create mixed feelings about premarital kissing, the Bible is clear that kissing outside of marriage is considered a sexual activity if it has sexual intent pleasure.
Is Premarital Kissing Considered Temptation?
The Bible doesn’t mention premarital kissing as a form of temptation, but it does talk about all types of temptation in general, including kissing. Matthew 26:41 says that Jesus talked to His disciples, saying, “Watch and pray so that you will not fall into temptation. The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak.” This implies that temptations will always be present in our lives, which leads to wickedness. But keep in mind that we can always turn to God not to indulge in sexual immorality from kissing outside of marriage. You can do this by praying this one: “Dear God, I know that temptation is part of life, but I also know that You give us the strength to resist it. I ask for Your help in this situation. Give me self-control and wisdom so that I can avoid temptation and make wise choices.”
How Can We Establish Physical Boundaries While Dating?
Physical boundaries are essential in a dating relationship to withhold premarital kissing. The Bible doesn’t give specific narratives about these boundaries, but there are some principles that we can apply to establish them. Here are a few ideas:
- Kissing should be saved for marriage: This might be difficult for many people, but this is important to consider. What is our motivation for wanting to kiss our date? Is it because we are physically attracted to them and we want to express our allurement? Or is it because we love them and want to show them our affection in a physical way? The former denotes that kissing is something we should be saved for marriage. But if our motivation is the latter, it would be okay to kiss our date, as long as we do it in a way that is honoring God.
- We should avoid being alone in private places: This is another difficult thing, but it’s worth considering. What is our motivation for wanting to be alone with our date? Is it because we want to be able to talk and get to know each other better? Or is it because we want to be able to express our attraction for each other intimately? If our motivation is the former, it’s okay to be alone with our date. But if it’s the latter, it’s better to avoid being alone in private places.
- We should dress modestly: This is something that both men and women need to consider. What is our motivation for the way we are dressing? Are we dressing to attract the opposite sex? Or are we dressing to honor God with our bodies? If our motivation is the former, then we need to reconsider how we dress. But if our motivation is the latter, then we are on the right track to honor God with our bodies.
What Does It Mean To Honor God With Our Bodies?
Honoring God with our bodies is a general principle the Bible gives us. This means that we are to present our bodies as living sacrifices—holy and pleasing to God (Romans 12:l-21). This is how we worship God with our bodies.
To be more specific, we can honor God with our bodies by dressing modestly—not being controlled by our appetites, and by taking care of our bodies physically. Thus, we should not get attached into intimate kissing, as this could further develop to sexual arousal outside of marriage that dishonors God.
Although premarital kissing is not explicitly mentioned in the Bible, some biblical principles can help us to decide whether it is morally accepted or not. Just keep in mind that kissing is only allowed in God’s eyes if it has a pure intention of love and tenderness. Anything that goes beyond it is deemed condemned in the Scripture, especially if it is designed for sexual fulfillment.
Additionally, if you are unsure if you can control your inner desire, it would be best to avoid kissing altogether.
Instead, seek God’s counsel and wisdom regarding the matter. This way, you will exhibit wise and good judgment that is in accordance with the delight that God desires for you.