What We Teach: Morality
The Bible Teaching on Sexual Morality and Immorality (Sexual Immorality Defined)
This ministry believes and teaches that marriage is a God-ordained institution between one man and one woman and that all biblical sexual relations are exercised solely within marriage.
Believing in the historical, grammatical, and literal interpretation of the Scriptures, this ministry affirms its position that marriage has been ordained of God (Genesis 2:21–25), endorsed by Jesus Christ (Matthew 19:4–6), and in John 2:1–11 Jesus endorsed marriage by His attendance at the wedding in Cana of Galilee. Marriage is further endorsed by the Apostle Paul in 1 Corinthians 7:2–5 and Ephesians 5:21–33, and in all cases marriage was instituted to be a union between one man and one woman. We further affirm that all proper and moral sexual relationships are exercised solely within the marriage union.
Our Code of Conduct, which is agreed to and signed each year by our staff and board, includes a phrase that says our staff will abstain from sexual immorality. To be clear concerning what that means, we offer the following elaboration and explanation.
The Scriptures say in 1 Thessalonians 4:1–8, Furthermore then we beseech you, brethren, and exhort you by the Lord Jesus, that as ye have received of us how ye ought to walk and to please God, so ye would abound more and more. For ye know what commandments we gave you by the Lord Jesus. For this is the will of God, even your sanctification, that ye should abstain from fornication: That every one of you should know how to possess his vessel in sanctification and honour; Not in the lust of concupiscence, even as the Gentiles which know not God: that no man go beyond and defraud his brother in any matter: because that the Lord is the avenger of all such, as we also have forewarned you and testified. For God hath not called us unto uncleanness, but unto holiness. He therefore that despiseth, despiseth not man, but God, who hath also given unto us his holy Spirit.
This passage indicates that the behavior standards for believers is to be different from the behavior standards for unbelievers (Gentiles who know not God), and that for believers the matter of obedience to the commands of Scripture, the Word of God, takes precedence over what may be legally and culturally permissible. This is a standard of behavior, based upon belief, which our staff team willingly adheres to. Other passages to consider are 1 Corinthians 6:9, 18; Galatians 5:19; Acts 15:20, 29; Matthew 15:19; and Romans 1:29. Furthermore, in 1 Corinthians 10:8 the Apostle Paul, writing under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, indicated that the examples of what happened to the Israelites when they committed fornication should be taken to heart and be instructive to New Testament believers in the dispensation of grace. Thus, we include the principles of the Old Testament prohibitions, but without the harshness of the judgments (immediate stoning) imposed in those days.
According to the Scriptures, proper and moral sexual relations are exercised solely within marriage (Hebrews 13:4; Ecclesiastes 9:9). Sexual activities outside of marriage, referred to in the New Testament as “porneia” and usually translated as “fornication,” are listed 26 times in the New Testament as a prohibition for believers. These sexual activities include but are not limited to adultery (Deuteronomy 22:21–29), premarital sex, homosexuality, bi-sexuality (Romans 1:26–27), incest (Leviticus 18:6–16; 1 Corinthians 5:1), bestiality (Deuteronomy 27:21), and pedophilia; and are inconsistent with the teachings of the Bible, this ministry, and the churches we serve. Furthermore, lascivious conduct, transgender behavior, and the creation, distribution, and/or viewing of pornography (Psalm 101:3) are incompatible with the biblical standards of behavior for believers.
In the Scriptures God withheld His blessing from His people because of their immorality (Jeremiah 3:1–5; Proverbs 5:18–23), and since we do not want God’s judgment upon us, anyone who habitually continues sexual immorality without repentance may not be a member of our resident staff team.