Is kissing considered an adultery or a demonstration of love for the neighbor? What is your opinion on this gesture? Thank you for your response!
If you refer to the intimate, extramarital kiss, in my opinion YES, it can be considered adultery. But to better understand this topic, let’s see in the Scriptures when kissing is and when it is not sin.
Kiss as a form of greeting is not sin
More books of the Bible end with some good wishes from the authors and the recipients are urged to greet one another with a holy kiss.
All the brethren greet you. Greet one another with a holy kiss. (1 Corinthians 16:20)(NASB)
The holy kiss as a form of greeting is not a sin, but rather a manifestation of Christ’s love and a relationship of unity among believers. But this is just a form of greeting and nothing more.
As long as kissing is between a husband and his wife with whom he concluded the covenant of marriage, it is not immoral before God. Kiss is related to the intimate relationship between them and marriage is the legal framework where they can enjoy this full and unrestricted by God privacy. However, it is not the same about the kiss outside of marriage.
Kiss outside of marriage is sin
One can say that in the Bible we do not find a direct commandment that says “Kiss between an unmarried man and woman is forbidden.” If we follow this idea, then we neither have a direct command concerning drugs and smoking. But this does not mean that they are accepted by the Creator. God let principles and truths that we can follow to understand if extramarital kiss is something sinful or not.
Paul wrote to the Corinthian believers as follows:
Now concerning the things about which you wrote, it is good for a man not to touch a woman. But because of immoralities, each man is to have his own wife, and each woman is to have her own husband. (1 Corinthians 7:1-2)(NASB)
The touch that Paul refers to here is not the touch when you help a woman get off the car by offering your hand to her or when you greet a woman or a casual touch. This touch is used in the context of fornication. It is about an intentional touch aimed to make an interior fire with sexual desire. That is why the Bible forbids man to touch a woman who is not his wife (in order to light a fire in her). In this context, the kiss is part of these touches. I heard some young people saying, “But when we kiss each other we do not have bad thoughts, we just show our passion for each other.” Or others say “You can kiss, but you should not let your mind go further, i.e. to sexual desire.” Perhaps you read these statements and you nod your head thinking that you agree. But look at what God says:
Can a man take fire in his bosom and his clothes not be burned? Or can a man walk on hot coals and his feet not be scorched? So is the one who goes in to his neighbor’s wife; whoever touches her will not go unpunished. (Proverbs 6:27-29)(NASB)
Concluding the above verses, we understand that you can not play with fire of immorality without being burned by it. We also understand that you can not kiss a person with whom you are not in the covenant of marriage without sinning. God did not create us robots. He created us living beings with feelings, reflections and attractions. But we can enjoy them only within the borders established by Him. Therefore, as a person, you can not be programmed like a robot, saying: “I kiss, but I do not think about sex.” God knows this and that is why we are commanded:
Now flee from youthful lusts and pursue righteousness, faith, love and peace, with those who call on the Lord from a pure heart. (2 Timothy 2:22)(NASB)
The instruction is very clear and very concrete “flee from youthful lusts.” You are not allowed to play with lust to see how much you resist. Do not consider yourself “super holy”, thinking you could kiss a girl or a boy and control your mind, desires and feelings, and not sin. God also says:
How blessed is the man who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked, nor stand in the path of sinners, nor sit in the seat of scoffers! But his delight is in the law of the LORD, and in His law he meditates day and night. (Psalm 1:1-2)(NASB)
Why does God consider so important that you do not walk in the counsel of the wicked nor stand in the path of sinners? Because He knows that you can be attracted to their way of living, and you can be filled with so great sexual desires which would lead you to falling into sin. It is the same with the kiss. Do not try to play with it, saying that it is only a manifestation of pure love between you and your friend. This is a slippery slope and you can easily slip.
Let me go back to the statement made earlier in this article. Why do I think that kissing outside of marriage can be described as adultery (fornication)? Because Jesus said loud and clearly:
But I say to you that everyone who looks at a woman with lust for her has already committed adultery with her in his heart. (Matthew 5:28)(NASB)
Hence we understand that adultery is not simply the physical act, but it is related to the mind firstly. When you lust for one’s body, who is not your marriage partner, you commit adultery in your mind. Now, if this is true about looking, then we can be sure that touching is so serious, because they arouse stronger feelings than looking. And kissing is part of the category of touching with an intimate aspect.
Dear reader, if you want to really enjoy a healthy relationship in your marriage, then I advise you to keep your holiness not only the body, but your whole being. Do not hasten to “bite” of the things that you are not allowed, but wait patiently until marriage. The devil says, “Here and now you must taste the pleasures of this world”. But God looks at you and says to you,
The hope of the righteous is gladness, but the expectation of the wicked perishes. (Proverbs 10:28)(NASB)
Expect to give the kiss of your lips to just one person, who will know he/she is unique because you have kept yourself entirely for him/her!
Translated by Felicia Rotaru