Dear Mr. Clark, what’s the difference between fornication and adultery.
It’s really simple, fornication is illegal sex or sex outside of marriage; same sex relations, opposite sex relations , sex with animals and even sex with oneself. Fornication is also sex in the fashion of one’s mind, porn, dolls and all form of sex outside of the will of God.
Adultery is sex with someone outside of an existing marriage covenant; it’s the actual act of sexually breaking the marriage covenant by one of the partners in the covenant of marriage.
Fornication and Adultery will often overlap. How so? If a married person leaves the holy relationship of marriage and have sex with someone else, the act is both fornication and adultery. It’s fornication because the sex act is illegal because there is no marriage covenant between the couple engaging in the sexual act, and it’s adultery because the existing marriage covenant has been broken by the unfaithful spouse.
Many minsters hold the doctrine that fornication can only be committed by single people, but we must remember fornication is much broader. Fornication is defined as illegal sex of all kinds. In Paul’s writing to the Corinthian church he wrote; “It is reported commonly that there is fornication among you, and such fornication as is not so much as named among the Gentiles, that one should have his father’s wife.”
Note: The relationship between a son and his father wife is considered to be fornication.
The relationship is called fornication because it’s illegal sex outside of marriage. This will help us to understand Jesus teaching on the subject as he mentions the overlapping of fornication and adultery. “But I say unto you, that whosoever shall put away his wife, saving for the cause of fornication, causes her to commit adultery: and whosoever shall marry her that is divorced commit adultery.”
In this chapter fornication means illegal sexual intercourse demonstrating that a married person can commit fornication. He also proves that a single person can commit adultery by saying “Whosoever shall marry her that is divorced commit adultery.”
In ending fornication is illegal sex of all sorts and adultery is sex with someone outside of an existing marriage covenant and although fornication and adultery overlaps at times, when clearly understood the confusion is erased.