I have been living with a guy for three years, and we have a two-year-old daughter together…. About a year ago I reconciled with God, and I’ve been going to a church…. The problem is that, since I’m not married, I’m committing the sin of fornication and I don’t want to keep offending God by doing it. I have told my partner that we can’t continue living together…. He says that I’m a fanatic and that a psychologist told him that it’s wrong for me to want him to follow God. I would like for you to tell me if it’s wrong for me to take the stand to stop sinning.

Dear Friend,

You are in a very difficult situation, but there are hundreds of thousands of people who have the same problem. Of course, every case is a little different, and it is more complicated when there are children involved.

Your partner’s response is an interesting one. He doesn’t say that you are wrong in your interpretation of the Scriptures, but rather seems to agree with you about what the Bible teaches. However, he believes that those who actually make their decisions based on God’s Word are fanatics, and that there is something psychologically wrong with them and with you.

There are many people, like your partner, who believe in God and accept that the Scriptures are true, but they also believe that times have changed and that the teachings of the Bible are no longer relevant to our lives. They claim that God has updated His commandments to fit today’s culture because He understands that the original commandments don’t apply anymore.

A god who changes to meet the demands of man is a god that is created in the image of man. But we know that God, our Heavenly Father, the Creator of heaven and earth, created man in His image. When it is we who change in order to be more like Him, we become His true followers. Conversely, when we try to change God’s image to be like us, we create idols in our own image.

To follow God is to accept that He is love, but it is also to accept that He is holy. Holy means pure, but it also means that He is perfect now and always will be. God doesn’t change to fulfill our demands or to fit our image. It is we who must choose to change if we want to follow Him.

God has spoken to your conscience through His Word to let you know that having sexual relations with a man that you are not married to is fornication. It is God who has convicted you of the sin of fornication, and has shown you that you must marry your partner or terminate your romantic relationship.

In cases in which couples have a child together, we normally recommend marriage. But since your partner does not respect your relationship with God, marriage would be a mistake. On the other hand, continuing to live with him will also be a mistake. If you do, you cannot be the right example to your daughter.

Please consult an attorney to find out how to separate from your partner and set up an arrangement for financial support and regular visitation for your daughter. It is very important that she be allowed to have a healthy relationship with her father.

We wish you well,