Can Fornicators Go to Heaven? (What Does the Bible Say?)

I’ve heard many misconceptions about sin in my time. However, none hit me as hard as the argument that God approves fornication. I first encountered this as a theology student. It was an innocuous conversation that took a very dark turn. Someone suggested that if a couple ends up married, what’s the harm in them sleeping together before the union? Won’t God judge them based on their love for each other and not their sin? I was surprised, but I did my best to address this issue. Later, I met one of my professors for a biblical explanation on fornication. This experience prepared me for a similar conversation with teenagers at a summer camp. During the Q&A, someone asked if fornicators go to Heaven. I addressed this question using the information I gained. So, Can fornicators go to Heaven?

No. The Bible is clear in 1 Corinthians 6:9. Unrepentant fornicators attract God’s wrath and judgment. God loves us, but he hates sin. As such, He cannot allow unrepentant sinners to go unpunished. However, God is gracious and will forgive fornicators who repent.

In this article, I’ll delve into what the Bible says about fornication and the fate of those who repent. Read on to find out more.

What does the Bible say about fornication?

The Bible prohibits fornication. In the New Testament, the Greek word used is Porneia, from which we get the word pornography. Fornication, therefore, includes all sexual sin outside the confines of marriage. The Bible disapproves of fornication, terming it a sin against your body. Paul teaches that fornication defiles our bodies, the temples of the Holy Spirit. We are warned against engaging in this sin as those who do will not inherit the kingdom of God.

The Bible also uses fornication to refer to idolatry among the Israelites. God compares idolatry to fornication in the Old and New Testaments. We see this in Isaiah 23:17 and Revelation 17:2.

Where in the Bible does it say fornicators don’t go to Heaven?

Can Fornicators Go to Heaven? 
Where in the Bible does it say fornicators don’t go to Heaven? Image source: Pixabay

The Bible in 1 Corinthians 6:9 warns that fornicators will not go to Heaven. However, this applies to the unrepentant fornicators. Ephesians 5:5, Revelation 21:8, and Hebrews 13:4 echo this warning.

Can fornicators repent their sins and be forgiven?

Yes. James teaches that if we confess our sins, God will forgive us. Repentance in the Bible means to change our attitude about sin. Paul, in 1 Corinthians 6:10-11, points out that some of the Corinthians who repented of that sin have been justified. Evidently, God will forgive fornicators who repent.

Can redeemed fornicators go to Heaven?

Yes. Romans 8:30 tells us that God justifies and glorifies repentant sinners. God isn’t happy with the death of the unrighteous. He desires that they repent and live (Ezekiel 33:11). We can therefore infer that if fornicators repent, God will forgive them and admit them into Heaven. This aligns with Isaiah 1:18, where God promises forgiveness for the worst sins.

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