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How Can Christians Explore Physical Intimacy in Relationships?

Updated: Dec 16, 2020

Most people ask this question in another way: how far is too far when it comes to navigating physical intimacy in dating relationships as a Christian?

Yes, we are all humans, yes we have blood flowing through our veins, and as such, when we come in contact with someone of the opposite sex we are attracted to, things begin to happen within us. It is just biology. But as Christians, how do we successfully toe the line, without committing sin against our Creator?

This is a conversation that some Christians have a hard time navigating.

Some wonder—how far can I go with my partner while we are not yet married? Is kissing a sin? If hands migrate during a make-out session, should I feel guilty? Can we touch? After all, that isn’t sex and sex is a sin. But we are not having sex, so we are not committing sin. Hmmm, where do I begin?

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Although the Bible doesn’t have a long list of dos and don’ts for a dating relationship, however, God has called us to be holy (as Christians) and anything that causes us to deviate from holiness is a sin.

Now, intimacy in relationships and even marriages, does not have to do with sex alone. Sex is a result of the foundation that you and your partner have built over time and then when you get married, you have the opportunity to express that other facet that comes with love/intimacy.

Kissing isn’t a sin, but if things begin to go far while you guys are locking lips, then you may have to deny yourselves of that for a season. The goal in every situation or circumstance is to please God, whether married, single, or dating. I’ve heard some say as long as penetration isn’t involved then that should be fine, you will even be shocked to find out that some believers think oral sex is okay (while dating).

Why do we want to indulge in things that would bring about that high which comes with actually having sex, when we are not married as Christians? Yea I know say body no be wood, and me I no be superman (That was a line from a song by the way) but again the goal is to be holy just as He is holy (1 Peter 1:15-16)

I know some people might ask— Then how can we make our relationships fun or explore intimacy?

1) Getting to know each other deeply is an exciting process I know I look forward to. Humans are complex beings; you can never really know the depths of a person. They even say in marriage you keep learning a person over and over again. It is your duty to discover what you both like doing and explore that together.

2) Be open to embracing each other’s culture, discover new things together, serve together, read books, and discuss them, talk about your dreams, visions, and passions.

3) Hang out with other people; get to know each other’s friends and families. And most importantly learn about God together. Of course, there is no cookie-cutter process for fun or intimacy in relationships; that is up to each couple to discover for themselves what works best, as long as Christ, is not left out of the mix.

Being on the same page about pleasing God is also a plus when it comes to this issue. In fact, pleasing God starts with you as an individual, while you are still single. When you grow intimately in your walk with the Father, you know His heart. You know what He likes and what He doesn’t.

You know what grieves Him and what pleases Him. That way when you decide to join your life with someone else, you already have a clear expectation about the things you want out of a relationship.

Then you can communicate to the other person what your stance is when it comes to being physical in dating relationships. Some people falter because they are not so sure about what they should be doing either. So it is important that you spend enough time with God before you embark on a relationship journey.

I remember one time while I was talking to a guy who I really liked, he would always bring up topics of sex and how he wanted to sleep with me when we got together eventually. Now, because I thoroughly enjoyed other aspects of our relationship, I didn’t want to let go of him, even if I knew that he was going to expect sex if we started dating.

So I asked God repeatedly if this young man was for me and the response I got was very clear—I will not send you someone who doesn’t uphold godly standards.

1 Corinthians 7:1-2 (Nkjv) says—“now concerning the things you wrote to me: It is good for a man not to touch a woman. Nevertheless, because of sexual immorality, let each man have his own wife, and let each woman have her own husband.”

From this scripture, we can see that we are not the only ones who have questions concerning this type of matter. Believers in those days also wanted to know how to navigate sex outside of marriage. If you keep reading that passage in the Bible, Paul who was the author encouraged both husbands and wives to fulfill their partner’s sexual desires. So it is safe to say that sex and all its derivatives are to be preserved for marriage alone.

To answer the question about how far is too far, I would reiterate that if whatever you are doing is not pleasing to God (the Holy Spirit will convict you), then you shouldn’t continue in it. God has called us to be separate from the world; He wants us to uphold godly standards even in our relationships.

What do you think guys? Leave your comments below! Also remember to like, share and subscribe to Let’s Talk Nation.

Don’t stop here; click this link to explore more on our Relationships page.

About The Author: Evi Idoghor is a Christian, writer, and content creator on She is a chemical engineering graduate from the University of Louisiana at Lafayette. Consumed by her love for writing and desire to effect change, she launched her online platform––Let’s Talk Nation––to tap into her creativity and start meaningful conversations that would make a difference around the world.

Most of her writing has been influenced by her time spent in America, where she lived for about 11 years. Also, she lived in Nigeria and South Korea and currently loves traveling the world while learning about other fascinating cultures. You can find her on all social media platforms with @eviidoghor.

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I think this is a good article. Your three examples of how to grow intimacy besides the physical are very helpful. Physical intimacy should grow out of deepening emotional and spiritual intimacy. As a relationship progresses and deepens, the physical should reflect that. I think this is the careful and mature approach, rather than emphasizing the physical and getting too intimate too early.


I really appreciate you reframing the question from "how far is too far?" to "would this grieve the Spirit?" Yes, there is a point where things are technically too far. And that is anything involving sex acts, that is, anything involving bare genitals or inducing orgasm. But even things that are short of sex might also…

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