Is Kissing a Sin?

Is Kissing a Sin?

Kissing is an act of tenderness with a long-standing history across the world’s myriad cultures and faiths. From its presentation in cinema, literature and music as a representation of love and romance, it has sparked much contention, particularly amongst religious groups, about whether this gesture should be considered a sin or not.

Let’s delve into the concept of kissing from varying viewpoints to uncover if there are any underlying sins associated with it.

Is Kissing a Sin?

The Bible does not explicitly condone pre-marital kissing, but it does caution us to stay away from any behavior that could potentially lead to sexual immorality.

Across the scriptures – from Genesis to 1 Peter – different kinds of kisses are described as expressions of love (1 Peter 5:14), holiness (Romans 16:16) and fraternity (2 Samuel 20:9). The kiss of Christ on his disciples also serves as a symbol of affection and welcome.

Although kissing by itself is not necessarily sinful, certain instances should be considered wrong if they stir up lust or cause one to veer into immoral territory. Bearing this in mind, unmarried couples should refrain from engaging in such activities.

Kissing in and of Itself is Not a Sin

Kissing doesn’t have to be a sin – the Bible doesn’t say it is, and Jesus even embraced his disciples with an affectionate kiss.

In Christianity, expressing love through kisses between amorous partners isn’t normally forbidden – but that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t tread carefully. We should make sure our actions are guided by restraint, so any misplaced carnal desires are avoided while expressing our fondness.

What Does the Bible Say About Kissing Before Marriage?

Kissing prior to marriage can be a slippery slope, much like flavorsome hors d’oeuvres ahead of the feast that is matrimony. Many opt to stay away from any form of kissing or French kissing, as it can easily shift the courtship’s gears into high speed.

To help avoid carnal desires and aid others in doing the same, abstinence is prudent for those not wed. In the days when Jesus was still around, it was common for churchgoers to exchange a holy kiss of greeting — though this wasn’t a mark of any relationship beyond the hallowed walls.

The Scripture doesn’t actually forbid passionate kisses between two unmarried individuals, but we’d do well to remember that affectionate displays in these circumstances are not labeled sinful by most branches of Christianity. At any rate, we must exercise caution if considering such physical displays before tying the knot, as engaging in intimate behavior will result in a bond too precious to undo.

Jesus Christ Kissed His Disciples

Jesus Christ demonstrated his deep affection and adoration for his disciples in the Bible — kissing them as a sign of love. Though the Bible doesn’t explicitly forbid unmarried couples from doing the same, it is important to exercise caution when engaging in such acts that could lead to temptation. In this instance, Jesus leads us by example: his kiss was pure and honorable, symbolizing the brotherly love and respect between them. We can take this crucial lesson to heart — expressing our love without letting it erode our faith.

What Do Other Religions and Cultures Say About Kissing?

Religion exercises a potent control over the manner people perceive kissing, with numerous faiths harboring divergent attitudes toward it:


In Islam, kissing outside of marriage is considered a taboo. Muslims believe that engaging in such an intimate activity prior to being married could lead to temptations that could erode the sanctity of wedlock. To protect against this, they view a kiss as something to be shared only between spouses.


In Hinduism, embracing through physical contact such as kissing is not viewed as taboo, though the implications vary depending on circumstance. For married couples, a kiss can be symbolic of endearment and enduring devotion. On the other hand, kissing in public is frowned upon and disapproved of by society.


Buddhism may not have any explicit rules about kissing, but it pushes the notion of being present and aware in every moment. In other words, it urges us to make moral choices with good intentions and to stay away from any action that could cause harm.

What Do Cultural Perspectives Tell Us About Kissing?Take a look across the globe and cultural perspectives on kissing vary greatly.

Let’s take a closer look at particularly notable cultural outlooks:

Western Culture: Kissing in Western cultures is usually synonymous with romance and is deemed an intimate way to show affection towards another person. It’s seen as a tender declaration of love.

Eastern Culture: In Eastern nations, for example Japan, kissing has not historically been used as an expression and can even be considered disrespectful when done in public.

African Culture: In African cultures, expressions of affection are typically expressed through handshakes, hugs and other gestures, making kissing rare.