Bible Study Discussions with Gary Panell
Question: Is oral sex between married couples permitted by God?
Answer: This is not an easy question to answer, since there isn't a verse that says "thou shalt not have oral sex." However, upon a deeper study of Scripture, I do believe that the Bible does address the issue of oral sex.
I do believe that according to this passage in Hebrews, that God is sanctioning sex in marriage, and that it is honorable and right for a husband and wife to enjoy sex with each other. I also believe that God tells married people that they should not deny sex to their spouse except for a short time when one or both of them have devoted themselves to a time of fasting and prayer.
“Nevertheless, because of sexual immorality, let each man have his own wife, and let each woman have her own husband. Let the husband render to his wife the affection due her, and likewise also the wife to her husband. The wife does not have authority over her own body, but the husband does. And likewise the husband does not have authority over his own body, but the wife does. Do not deprive one another except with consent for a time, that you may give yourselves to fasting and prayer; and come together again so that Satan does not tempt you because of your lack of self-control.” (1 Corinthians 7:2-5)
Since God sanctions marriage and sex within marriage, then would that make oral sex right between spouses? Again, God does not come right out and say “Thou shalt not…” We are not under the law, but I believe that the Bible gives some clear guidelines as to what our conduct should be both when we can be seen by others, and when we are behind closed doors.
“All things are lawful for me, but all things are not helpful. All things are lawful for me, but I will not be brought under the power of any. Foods for the stomach and the stomach for foods, but God will destroy both it and them. Now the body is not for sexual immorality but for the Lord, and the Lord for the body.” (1 Corinthians 6:12, 13)
“All things are lawful for me was a slogan the Corinthians had coined to justify their immoral behavior. Paul reminded the Corinthians that freedom from the ceremonial laws of Moses did not give them license to sin or indulge their own selfishness. This would only enslave them in the sin from which Jesus had freed them. under the power of any: The only power that should control us is the Holy Spirit. Sin should never dominate our lives because the Spirit empowers us to fight temptation.” (Nelson's NKJV Study Bible)
The first thing you need to do is discuss with your spouse, at a time when you are not being intimate, as to how you feel about oral sex. This is something you should be able to pray about. God wants us to be righteous in every aspect of our lives. This includes the intimacy shared between a married couple.
Now, what does Scripture say about oral sex? I believe that (1 Corinthians 6:9) addresses this issue. “Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived. Neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor homosexuals, nor sodomites…In the New King James Version, the verse mentions ‘sodomites.' The word sodomy has a 3-part definition. The definition is: 1) Anal copulation of one male with another (homosexuality) 2) anal or oral copulation with a member of the opposite sex (oral sex) and 3) copulation with an animal (bestiality). (The American Heritage Dictionary, Second College Edition)
“do not be deceived: Tragically, Christians sometimes deceive themselves into thinking that God does not require them to live righteously. Paul emphasizes that the kinds of people listed in these verses will not inherit or possess the kingdom of God.” (Nelson's NKJV Study Bible)
I believe this passage (1 Cor. 6:9) makes it clear that sodomy is not acceptable to God. Now, should you feel guilty if you have participated in this type of activity [not knowing this information]? If you have recognized that this behavior is sin, have confessed this sin to God, and asked for His forgiveness—then this sin has been forgiven (1 John 1:9) “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”
God has wiped the slate clean. It is as if the sin had not happened. Now you can go on and live your life the way you know God wants you to live. This is how we grow in Christ, as we read and begin to understand Scripture, God, through the Holy Spirit will reveal sin to us. As we confess our sin and give it up, then we become more Christ like. We won't be perfect here on earth, but that is still the goal!
You need to start the journey now with an open and honest discussion with your husband. Pray before you approach him, and pray together about this as you study Scripture together.
There is a little more on this topic on the literature page in the commentary on 1 Corinthians, part 2, where it covers chapter 6.
In Christian love,
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Gary Tomás Panell
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Keywords: marriage, sex, oral sex, righteousness