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Scripture-Study List: Fornication and Adultery


The Old Testament describes how Joseph, the son of Jacob, fled adultery. God blessed him for his faithfulness.

Genesis 39:7-12:

  • And it came to pass after these things, that his master’s wife cast her eyes upon Joseph; and she said, Lie with me.
  • But he refused, and said unto his master’s wife, Behold, my master wotteth not what is with me in the house, and he hath committed all that he hath to my hand;
  • There is none greater in this house than I; neither hath he kept back any thing from me but thee, because thou art his wife: how then can I do this great wickedness, and sin against God?
  • And it came to pass, as she spake to Joseph day by day, that he hearkened not unto her, to lie by her, or to be with her.
  • And it came to pass about this time, that Joseph went into the house to do his business; and there was none of the men of the house there within.
  • And she caught him by his garment, saying, Lie with me: and he left his garment in her hand, and fled, and got him out.

God gave Moses the Ten Commandments, one of which specifically condemned adultery.

Exodus 20:14:

  • Thou shalt not commit adultery.

Jesus Christ Himself taught that fornication and adultery are not in harmony with God’s will.

Matthew 15:19-20:

  • For out of the heart proceed evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, blasphemies:
  • These are the things which defile a man: but to eat with unwashen hands defileth not a man.

The apostle Paul taught the Corinthians that fornicators and adulterers will not inherit the kingdom of God.

1 Corinthians 6:9-10, 13, 18:

  • Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind,
  • Nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God.
  • Meats for the belly, and the belly for meats: but God shall destroy both it and them. Now the body is not for fornication, but for the Lord; and the Lord for the body.
  • Flee fornication. Every sin that a man doeth is without the body; but he that committeth fornication sinneth against his own body.

Paul taught the same principle to the Galatians. Fornication and adultery run contrary to God’s will.

Galatians 5:19:

  • Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness,
  • Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies,
  • Envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God.

Again, Paul taught the same principle to the Thessalonians: fornication is a sin.

Thessalonians 4:2-5:

  • 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:

In the New-Testament book of Hebrews, adultery is specifically condemned, but marriage is considered honorable for all.

Hebrews 13:4:

  • Marriage is honourable in all, and the bed undefiled: but whoremongers and adulterers God will judge.

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