Consequences of Sexual Sin on a Marriage

When a woman is involved in sexual immorality it affects something in her thinking. God tells us in His Word that all our sin has consequences. While nothing will change the believer’s position in Christ before God, all sin carries the inescapable weight of consequences. Consequences are intended to be painful and we are to learn from them.

I have seen many women in my counseling ministry who were sexually immoral before their marriage. It does not matter that the man they were immoral with is now their husband; they are angry. In some cases, the fact that their partner in sin is now their husband makes matters worse than if it was a man they did not marry.

Many of these women have sexual difficulties in their marriages and the anger is aimed at themselves and at their husband.  It is not unusual for them to tell me they are angry at him for “talking me into it” and “not taking “No” for an answer” and for manipulating them with phrases like, “If you really loved me you would…” They are angry with themselves for agreeing to it.

Whether we realize it or not, women desire to be protected from harm by the men they love.  She wants to trust him and know the man she loves has her best interests at heart. She wants him to be strong and the leader in the relationship, and this means having enough self-control to put on the brakes when sexual desires run too hot outside of marriage.

If she consents to pre-marital sex it is a revelation of the contents of her own heart.
It reveals that she is more interested in pleasing herself or her boyfriend than she is in glorifying God. It also reveals she lives her life by her feelings rather than by obedience to Scripture.

The consequences are immediate and bring sorrow both immediate and in the future.
In her heart she comes to believe that in spite of his proclamations his love for God and desire to obey Him run fairly shallow.  She also concludes that despite his loving words he really cannot love and respect her as he proclaims; particularly if she has been pressured into a sexual relationship. 

After marriage, she may become resentful of her husband’s physical needs and of God’s commands not to deprive one another (1 Cor. 7). Women have told me they Think it is unfair that they have to submit and obey this Scripture.  I have had wives tell me their husband’s desire makes them piggish or insensitive, and very selfish.

To avoid sexual intimacy, they learn to manipulate circumstances to avoid sex.  She may start an argument at bed time, or fall asleep on the couch. Some women use the children as their buffer, sleeping in bed with them instead of with their husband.
She believes all her husband wants is sex. She believes she is being abused and used, and only wants to be left alone to live with her husband in a largely platonic relationship.

Her emotions largely run her life and because she has stopped thinking biblically she is miserable. Her focus is on herself and what she wants is more important to her than Scripture, God, or her husband’s wants and desires.

Her heart is full of guilt at her past, even if it is beneath her level of awareness. She knows her past actions (pre-marital sex) were sinful and she knows her present ones are also sinful but her wrong thinking leads her to continue to shut out anyone who would help her. She has guilt about depriving her husband, but her own wants are stronger

She is very fearful. She is fearful that her husband will force her to have sex by manipulations of his own, or that he will turn to pornography to deal with his sexual urges. She is afraid of the long term consequences of her actions on her marriage, but more afraid of being mastered by her husband. She is tormented by what she has allowed to happen and fearful that someone will find out; particularly if she had a strict Christian upbringing.  She is also sometimes afraid her sin will not be forgiven
All of this leads to isolation, an incredible sense of being alone. This feeds the anger and feelings of being disrespected by her husband who, from her perspective does not care about her feelings, but only cares about his needs.

All of this misery can be avoided by sexual purity before marriage.  Whatever stolen pleasures are enjoyed before the marriage often reaps a harvest of misery and sorrow after.

Contrary to our popular culture, sex does matter and God’s Word does contain much wisdom about this wonderful gift we have been given to enjoy within marriage. 

If you “found yourself” in today’s posting, the best counsel I can give you is to have a meeting with the Lord.  Confess your sin to Him and ask His help with the resulting consequences in your life. Then talk to your husband.  Speak biblically rather than emotionally, confess your sin and ask his forgiveness.  You may need the help of a good Biblical Counselor to untangle the knots.