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Carol Smithson wrote:

Hi, guys —

I have a question. My boyfriend, who is working in another country, is visiting me for one month. I live alone and both the families know about his visit and are OK with him staying with me.
We have been in a serious relationship for close to three years and are planning to get married in two years as we need to get jobs in one place and settle down. I wanted to know if the following is wrong:

  • sleeping with him on the same bed (not having sex — I have just one bed at my house.)
  • french kissing
  • cuddling, and
  • hugging

I need to know this before he arrives so I don't do anything against my faith.

Thank you,

God bless you for trying to help me.

Carol

  { Can you tell me whether these behaviors are permissible with my enduring, visiting boyfriend? }

Paul replied:

Dear Carol,

There are three moral principles involved here, which you would have to apply to your situation.

They are:

  1. One should never intentionally do anything that would sexually arouse yourself or your partner.
  2. One should never place one's self (or the other person) in a situation where it would be difficult to resist falling into sexual arousal.
  3. One should not cause scandal to others (neighbors, family, friends). Everything we do communicates something to others, even if their interpretation is incorrect.
  • #1 relates to your question about physical displays of affection
  • #2 to your question about sleeping in the same bed, and
  • #3 to sharing your home with him.

The ideal answer would seem to be — no french kissing, no bed sharing, and no house sharing. Under normal circumstances, these things can cause both sin and scandal.

You would have to discern how these moral principles apply to your situation. One important question you might ask is:

  • Despite what the world says is okay, what would Jesus say?

Paul

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