Recently an event happened to me and I've been looking everywhere to find a solution, including browsing the Internet. Then I landed on your website, which is very useful.
I had a girlfriend, and we were really close until recently. We meet each other last year, and I fell in love with her. A few months later I told her that I love her, and I wanted to marry her. At first, she didn't accept (and I was not expecting a quick answer anyway) but she also didn't say no. She gave me a chance to prove my love to her. Little by little, gesture by gesture, I showed her that I really loved her, until she finally accepted that I really do love her.
Since then, we became closer than ever. We were together almost all the time. As we lived near each other, I visited her most evenings after work. Along with that, we also started having sex often. Everyone knew we were best friends, but only one or two people knew we were having sex. As both of us were raised in Christian families, we sometimes told each other that having sex before marriage was not good, but we couldn't stop doing so.
Recently, she went to attend a service led by one famous preacher. The preacher told her that during his praying, he was given a message to address her that if she doesn't change her sexual behavior, she will never be blessed with a husband or a family. The preacher told her that she had to change, repent, and pray harder.
After that, she came to see me and asked that we break up. I told her that my initial plan was to marry her in a proper way and not push her into fornication. I apologized to her for that. I also told her that I really want to repent because what we did is not good and follow the right way. I proposed to her a plan of going together to the church, repent, and start praying regularly together. We would avoid being together for a long time at her home or mine to avoid fornication again and wait for our marriage. In other words, I asked her to replace every bad thing we were doing with good things.
Above all, I still loved her and wanted to marry her. I seriously meant everything I told her. She said that she doesn't want that. She prefers we repent and pray on our own. She wanted me to find another girl to marry. In her view, if God wants us to be married, He will make it happen, and if God does not, it will never happen even if we want it.
Since then, she started avoiding any contact with me. Even when I ask her to come with me to the church, she refuses. In the meantime, I moved to another area far from her but kept in contact with her. I tried to tell her that I still love her and that I want us to get married, but she seems not to have any desire for us to get back together. I asked her to pray together for our relationship to improve, but she refuses.
So my question is this: If we were together and have sinned (fornicated), does it mean that God will never bless our relationship and our planned marriage if we repent together?
I appreciate any help you can give.
There are so many things wrong, it is hard to know where to start.
Though you both claimed to be Christians and knew that fornication was wrong, neither of you had much inclination to stop it until you were forced to face your sins. I understand that you talked about stopping once in a while, but it was just talk. You knew it was wrong because you kept it hidden for the most part. Thus, you became hypocrites as well as fornicators. You told the world you were living the Christian life while you sinned when you thought no one was looking. "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, nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners will inherit the kingdom of God" (I Corinthians 6:9-10).
You excused your sin by claiming you could not stop. But did you notice that once she was accused of sin, there was no problem with stopping? You always could have stopped. You chose not to stop. In addition, God teaches us that any sin can be stopped. "No temptation has overtaken you but such as is common to man; and God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will provide the way of escape also, so that you will be able to endure it" (I Corinthians 10:13).
Either someone told the preacher their suspicion that you two were having sex, or he figured it was likely taking place. His claim to have gotten a personal message from God was a lie designed to make himself look like a prophet. Prophecy ended a long time ago (I Corinthians 13:8-10). While he was right that you two were sinning, he was wrong in claiming that your girlfriend could never have a blessed marriage. God never states that in His Holy Word. It is a popular belief, but this belief has no foundation in the Bible. This preacher made use of a worldly belief to scare your girlfriend. The problem with this is that these things tend to be self-fulfilling. Notice that your girlfriend broke up with you as a result. She is convinced that if you and she marry that the marriage will fail. Thus, she refuses to put any effort into repairing the problems she helped cause. She has decided that running away is easier.
In a way, your girlfriend believed the lie because it was mixed with some truth. She felt guilty over her fornication and what the preacher told her confirmed to her that she is a victim. Thus, she became a victim by punishing herself. The claim that if God wants you two to be married, He will make it happen, is false. God has given His people free will to make good and bad decisions. He doesn't force people into marriages, He tells people how to make good choices in a spouse. The rest is up to the person.
But free will also means that you need to realize that you can't force this marriage to happen either. Marriage is the result of a decision made by two people. She decided not to marry you and it illustrates one of the reasons why sex before marriage should not take place. Regardless of your intentions, a marriage may not take place for reasons you could not predict.
Could you marry this girl and have a happy marriage? The answer is "yes," but only if both of you threw yourselves into making this marriage work and repairing your relationship with God. She has made it clear she won't do this. Even if you convinced her to marry you, she would end up sabotaging the marriage because she believes marriage to you is bound to fail.
Though God warned that fornication is harmful, you did it anyway and suffered harm as a result. You've repented of your sins, so it is time to move on and rebuild your life the right way.
Dear Mr. Hamilton,
Thank you very much for your reply. It is now late at night. I received your e-mail after work earlier this evening, but I have kept reading it over and over and over again.
You taught me, through your message, many things I didn't know up to now, and I think they will help me in the future. I have made a decision that I will do my best to never have sex again before marriage (I hope I will be able to do so). I am not going to force her or convince her to marry me; maybe one day she will wake up and figure out that our love deserves another "RIGHT" chance. I was thinking that ... no, I was believing that God makes His own plans when it comes to marriages (who marries who); thank you for reminding me that we have the free will to choose to do good things or bad things and that we have all the guidance written in the Bible. Thank you also for reminding me that living a Christian life is not what you do when people see you, but also what you do when people don't see you. Most of all, thank you for the "No temptation has overtaken you but such as is common to man; and God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will provide the way of escape also, so that you will be able to endure it" (I Corinthians 10:13). We always have the strength and possibility to avoid temptation.
I can't promise you that I will keep much in contact; I suppose you are busy and there are other people out there who also need your help. But I promise you that the day I get married (and I hope I will get married one day, with or without her), I will send you an e-mail (probably with pictures) to tell you what happened in the meantime, and how your message helped me to make the right choices.
Thank you. Seriously.
I'm glad it was helpful to you and that you are willing to make changes for the better in your life.