Question:

I am twenty-two years old, almost twenty-three. I did something a few days ago that has damaged my heart deeply and left a big emptiness. I have been dating a guy who is not a Christian. He started going to church when we started dating. I was baptized two years ago and had been in good communication with God. My boyfriend and I started getting too close physically until it got to a point that he started fingering me. I tried to resist many times, explaining to him the reasons but he never did understand. I broke up with him many times for this cause, but he would always came back begging me to take him backsaying thathe would not touch me again. But all the time he would end up pressuring me and saying that I was the one with the problem.

In the end I gave in and let things go too far! When we were in the middle of sexual intercourse, I told him to stop and was angry toward myself mainly. I felt like the worst human in the world.I admit that we fornicated, and I regret it badly. I have failed God in one ofthe worst possible ways. I have repented and asked God to forgive me because the Bible says that if you confess to God and repent sincerely He forgives us. I also told my mother about it (Idisappointed her badly)and asked her to pray with me.

I don't know what to do or how to go on. I was in communion but after this I should stayout of it right? My church has rules that if someone falls into one of the deadly sins they must stay out of communion,confess to the priests (our church believes that a church must have more than two male priests), and the priests must get together the whole congregation and let them know that one has committed a sin and what sinone hascommitted. I have seen cases like this, and the person who committed the sin is judged by everyone. Most of the times in that case the person never has the courage toget back up because of what everyone else talks about them. This would damage my family in the most terrible way because everyone would talk bad about them.

It pains my heart that I have destroyed the most precious things I had in life: my communication with God and the trust of my family. This pain that I feel right now is one of the greatest I've ever felt, and I would never ever dare to fail God this way again. I've asked Him to forgive me and am truly repented! I talked to two other Christian friends and I know they are praying for me too. Please guide me because I don't know what to do. All I know is that I do not want to lose God's grace, I do not want to go back, I want to keep serving God! Thank you.


Answer:

The problem is that the church you are attending is making up things. There is no separate class of priests in Christianity. All Christians serve as priests. "But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special people, that you may proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light; who once were not a people but are now the people of God, who had not obtained mercy but now have obtained mercy" (I Peter 2:9-10). It is because all Christians are priests that we have the right to approach God directly without any man between us and God.

Nor does the Scriptures teach that a person who has turned from sin is to have their sins announced to all members. Actually the opposite is taught. "Brethren, if anyone among you wanders from the truth, and someone turns him back, let him know that he who turns a sinner from the error of his way will save a soul from death and cover a multitude of sins" (James 5:19-20). Covering sin means to bury or hide the sins of the past because they are over and done with.

Another falsehood is to say that some sins are worse than others. It is true that some sins cause a bigger impact because they harm more people, but all sins carry the same punishment -- death (Romans 6:23) -- and all sins are resolved in the same way -- through the blood of Christ (I John 1:9).

Yes, you sinned. Not only in what you did, but also in ignoring the danger signs. "Test all things; hold fast what is good. Abstain from every form of evil" (I Thessalonians 5:21-22). Your boyfriend clearly had one goal on his mind, which he just about achieved. You have move credence to his words than his actions. Though talking about false prophets, the principle remains the same: "Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravenous wolves. You will know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes from thornbushes or figs from thistles? Even so, every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit. A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a bad tree bear good fruit. Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. Therefore by their fruits you will know them" (Matthew 7:15-20). What a person does tells you more about the person than what he says because people do lie with their words. But he even told you that he thought having sex without marriage was proper when he said you were the one with the problem for refusing him. I hope this means he is permanently gone from your life.

But sins can be forgiven by God when you repent and confess them to Him. You keep wanting to trust your feelings instead of trusting God's truth. You want to "feel" forgiven and by that you want to stop feeling guilty over your past sins. That won't happen. Guilt is there to remind us not to repeat sins. The feeling of guilt ought to be there even when we know we have been forgiven.

My suggestion is that you also start looking for a true church, one that follows God completely and doesn't add in the teachings of men. It is time to enter into a proper relationship with God. See: We Are Simply Christians Without Being Members of Any Denomination, You Can be Too!

Can a person partake from the holy sacrament after fallen into sexual sin with a future spouse? The church rule requires that public confession be made through letters for committing sex before marriage. This will be followed by a suspension during which you are not allowed to partake the Lord's Table. You have to wait minimum of three months for reinstitution to the church. Is this biblically right? Is it a sin to partake the Lord's Table during the suspended time time after personal confession?

There is no requirement that a repentant sinner must not partake of the Lord's Supper for any period of time. It does not appear in the Bible. Nor can you find a requirement of a written confession of sin in the Bible. What is required is a confession of sin to God through prayer. "If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness" (I John 1:9).

God warned, "Do not add to His words, Lest He rebuke you, and you be found a liar" (Proverbs 30:6). You are worshiping with a group that is putting words in God's mouth and then binding these made up rules on others. "And in vain they worship Me, teaching as doctrines the commandments of men" (Matthew 15:9). What has you concerned are man-made nonsense. You need to learn to follow God, not man.

But one last thing I want to point out. You said you committed fornication with your future spouse. How do you know that? This is one of the reasons fornication is a sin. You may have intentions of marrying this boy, but the future is not in your control. "Come now, you who say, "Today or tomorrow we will go to such and such a city, spend a year there, buy and sell, and make a profit"; whereas you do not know what will happen tomorrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapor that appears for a little time and then vanishes away. Instead you ought to say, "If the Lord wills, we shall live and do this or that." But now you boast in your arrogance. All such boasting is evil" (James 4:13-16). Something might happen so you two don't marry, and you have been having sex with a man who may become another woman's husband.