Is mutual masturbation wrong?

Last updated on November 2, 2020



How are you? To start off, I’m a teenager between 16-18 and I have a boyfriend. We’ve been together for two years now. We try to be based on God and honoring Him. The thing is that every day it gets harder not to masturbate each other or dry hump because at our age the hormones are changing. We want to save ourselves for marriage, both of us are virgins and won’t have sex. It’s frustrating because we try not to fall into temptation because since we don’t masturbate alone. We try to help each other when we get the chance.

Our goal is to get married. We are not together just to have a typical teenage relationship. We really want to go farther. The inconvenience is that we have 6-8 years ahead before we marry, and it’s really difficult.

I really need help on how can we get out of this toxic cycle. How can we release hormones without being sinful? How can we be obedient for so many years? It’s really difficult to even not sin in your thoughts.

Also, my boyfriend has been far from God because he does not understand if masturbating each other is bad or not, and he can’t find an answer in the Bible. It’s very confusing for both of us.

Can you please please help us?


I can help, but you will probably not enjoy the answers.

From what I gather from your note, you and your boyfriend have been giving each other hand jobs and dry humping each other for a while. You’ve been telling yourself that this is acceptable because you don’t see it as actual sex. You excuse it as “helping” the other person. You also excuse it because you believe that in six to eight years you’ll get around to marrying. Yet, you also strongly suspect that it is wrong, but you don’t know how to stop after doing it for so long.

Many people don’t appreciate the serious way sex affects their relationship with God. “For this you know, that no fornicator, unclean person, nor covetous man, who is an idolater, has any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and God” (Ephesians 5:5). You cannot continue in sin and truly be a child of God.

Marriage is honorable among all, and the bed undefiled; but fornicators and adulterers God will judge” (Hebrews 13:4).

The word “bed” in Hebrews 13:4 is translating the Greek word koite. It literally means “bed” and it is where we get our English word “cot” from, but the Greeks used the word the same we say “Jack was sleeping was Jane.” You know that Jack and Jane were having sex. By the way, we get our word “coitus” from this same word. “Coitus” is the act of intercourse. The word “fornicators” translates the Greek word porneia. This word means sexual intercourse when the two people involved are not married to each other.

Most people focus on the end instead of the beginning of sin. Most understand that sexual intercourse is wrong when you are not married, so they focus on not having the guy enter the vagina with his penis. But the problem is that other sins have been taking place long before that point. Related to this is something you are noticing: it gets increasingly difficult not to go further each time you play around with each other. Most young people discount too heavily the strength of their sexual instinct. This is why I constantly get notes from people saying, “I didn’t mean for it to go this far,” or “I don’t know what happened,” or “It was an accident.” Such statements aren’t lame excuses. They are the responses of someone who didn’t have a healthy respect for the strength of her sexual instinct.

Solomon points out the problem when he asked, “Can a man take fire to his bosom, and his clothes not be burned?” (Proverbs 6:27). You can show a hot coal all the affection you want. You can cuddle it and dote on it and it will still burn you. Your kindness to it doesn’t change its nature. How often do you hear someone say, “But I love him!” Solomon’s point is that your feelings toward your boyfriend won’t change the fact that both of you have built-in desires and capabilities for sex. Trigger them and they follow the instincts built into you.

Solomon also asked, “Can one walk on hot coals, and his feet not be seared?” (Proverbs 6:28). Using the same example of hot coal, if you walk on it, it will burn you. You can apologize and say you didn’t mean to step on it, but you’ll still be hurt because your intentions don’t change what it is. Thus, the excuse, “But I didn’t mean for it to go this far!” becomes an empty one because your intentions don’t change your body’s drive.

That is why Solomon concludes, “So is he who goes in to his neighbor’s wife; whoever touches her shall not be innocent” (Proverbs 6:29). Though he is talking directly about adultery, the same point is true about fornication. When you start stirring up sexual feelings, you are never innocent when things go further than you wanted.

Let us walk properly, as in the day, not in revelry and drunkenness, not in lewdness and lust, not in strife and envy. But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh, to fulfill its lusts” (Romans 13:13-14).

Lust is those thoughts and desires you keep battling that want you to take things further than they have gone already.

Lewdness is engaging in sexual foreplay that gets the body ready for intercourse. It literally means to behave like an animal. The Christian must recognize the danger and not start a sequence of events that can’t be legitimately completed. Polite kissing or holding hands would not be lewd behavior, but making out is getting each other’s bodies sexually aroused where it begins to get hard to think would be wrong.

Now concerning the things about which you wrote, it is good for a man not to touch a woman” (I Corinthians 7:1).

By “touch” Paul is referring to touches that sexually arouse the other person. Such touches cause people to lust and to act in a lewd manner with each other. This means no stroking skin to get him or you sexually aroused. No long passionate kisses that leave you out of your mind. You have to treat each other with respect and not as sexual objects.

But fornication and all uncleanness or covetousness, let it not even be named among you, as is fitting for saints; neither filthiness, nor foolish talking, nor coarse jesting, which are not fitting, but rather giving of thanks. For this you know, that no fornicator, unclean person, nor covetous man, who is an idolater, has any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and God. Let no one deceive you with empty words, for because of these things the wrath of God comes upon the sons of disobedience. Therefore do not be partakers with them” (Ephesians 5:3-7).

You don’t stay pure by sexually arousing the other person. When you understand that fornication is wrong, then all the sins that lead up to a guy putting his penis in a girl’s vagina are also wrong. It even means that exposing your genitals, talking dirty, or showing nude or semi-nude pictures to each other is wrong. Even if you are not touching the other person, you are stirring up lust.

I hope by this point you realize that there is no way a boy and girl can give each other hand jobs or dry hump each other. It violates the laws against lust, sexual touching, and lewdness. You are not his wife and he is not your husband. Your intention of getting married does not change the fact that at the present you are in sin. You are not responsible for relieving each other’s sexual urges. If he needs to ejaculate, he has to either relieve himself or allow himself to have wet dreams. He has been doing that on his own for years before he met you. Any claim that he has to have you do it is a lie.