“Sexual Purity Blesses Our Lives,” Ensign, Jul 2010, 10–11
Chastity means being morally clean in our thoughts, words, and actions. This sexual purity is “pleasing unto God.”1 Our Heavenly Father has given us the sacred powers of procreation for the purpose of bringing forth children and for the expression of love within marriage between a man and a woman. He has also given us the law of chastity to protect us from the damage that comes from sharing physical intimacies outside of marriage.
Heavenly Father has set clear boundaries for chastity. He commands us not to have any sexual relations before we are married. After we are married, we are commanded to be completely faithful to our spouse.2 If we break the law of chastity, we have committed a grievous sin.3 The prophet Alma taught that sexual sins are more serious than any other sins except murder or denying the Holy Ghost.4
Satan makes a mockery of chastity and of the sanctity of marriage when he tempts us to believe that sexual intimacy outside of marriage is acceptable as long as a man and a woman are in love. This is not true. It is a serious sin that defiles the power God has given us to create life.5
Our Father in Heaven has commanded all of us to live the law of chastity. The blessings for obeying this commandment and the consequences for breaking it are the same for each of us, regardless of our impulses, desires, or sexual temptations.
As we keep ourselves sexually pure, we will become more sensitive to the Holy Ghost’s guidance and receive strength, comfort, and protection.8
1. You can decide now to be chaste and never waver. Some may feel that they can commit sexual sins with the idea that they will simply repent later. This attitude shows irreverence for the Lord’s commandments and a lack of understanding of repentance and righteousness.9
2. Through modesty in dress and appearance, you show God that you know your body is a sacred creation from Him. Modesty promotes chastity.10
3. Pornography is addictive and destructive. It will rob you of your self-respect and self-control and often leads to more serious sexual sins.11
4. If you find yourself struggling with sexual temptations, including feelings of same-gender attraction, you can choose to resist those temptations. The Lord will “make a way to escape” so that you will “be able to bear it.”12
5. If you have committed sexual transgressions, speak with your bishop or branch president. He will help you through the process of repentance.13
6. If you have been a victim of rape, incest, abuse, or other sexual crimes, you are not guilty of sin. Your bishop or branch president can help guide you through the process of emotional healing.14
7. If single and dating, treat your date with respect, plan constructive activities, and refrain from conversations or activities that arouse sexual feelings.
“We declare that God’s commandment for His children to multiply and replenish the earth remains in force. We further declare that God has commanded that the sacred powers of procreation are to be employed only between man and woman, lawfully wedded as husband and wife.”17
“Know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own?
“For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s” (1 Corinthians 6:19–20).
Photo illustrations by Welden C. Andersen; Lana Leishman; Robert Casey; Jan Friis, © Henrik Als; Matthew Reier; and John Luke
1. Jacob 2:7.
2. See D&C 42:22.
4. See Alma 39:5.
5. See 1 Corinthians 7:2–5.
6. See Isaiah 1:18.
7. See D&C 58:42–43.
8. For more information, see For the Strength of Youth (2001), 26–28; Gospel Principles (2009), 225–32; and True to the Faith (2004), “Chastity,” 29–33.
9. See Alma 42:30.
13. See Teachings of Presidents of the Church: Spencer W. Kimball (2006), 38, 41–42, 44; see Mosiah 26:29.
16. See 1 Thessalonians 5:22.