10 Biblical Steps Towards Restoration After Sexual Sin

by Crystal McDowell · Print Print · Email Email

It is no secret—Hollywood glamorizes sex. As we watch our favorite characters move from one love interest to the other, it’s easy to forget how sexual sin confuses and complicates our spiritual, emotional, and physical lives.

God’s people are warned to: “Flee from sexual immorality. All other sins a person commits are outside the body, but whoever sins sexually, sins against their own body” (1 Corinthians 6:18).

Although the consequences of our sins (unplanned pregnancies, sexually transmitted diseases, emotional ties, etc.) may still linger, Jesus will forgive and give wisdom for each issue. It’s essential to take the necessary steps towards restoration to avoid being mastered by sexual immorality.

Step #1) Confess your sin to God

“If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:9, NIV).

Resist the urge to make excuses for your sin of sexual immorality. You speak truth to God and yourself as an agreement of your confession and repentance. God will forgive and cleanse you from this sin if you are willing to be made whole.

Step #2) Admit your weakness in this area

“In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness” (Romans 8:26, NIV).

There is a reason you’re drawn to sexual sin. It could be lust, filling an emotional void, wanting to please other people more than you want to please God, etc. You must seek out the source and deal with it so you can pray and prepare your heart when you’re tempted.

Step #3) Pray for a mentor or accountability partner

“Strive for full restoration, encourage one another, be of one mind, live in peace” (2 Corinthians 13:11, NIV).

Pray and ask God for direction in finding someone for godly advice. Make sure it’s someone you can trust, who will speak truth, and lives a righteous life.

Step #4) Get involved in a church

“Not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching” (Hebrews 10:25, NIV).

Don’t just show up for a service, but make efforts to get involved. Small group accountability is good. Pray diligently that the Lord direct you to the right church where you can serve and be served in your Christian walk.

Step #5) Keep your mind and body actively engaged in other activities

“Lazy hands make for poverty, but diligent hands bring wealth” (Proverbs 10:4, NIV).

Keep busy with meaningful projects so that your thoughts won’t consume you. Be involved with not only church activities, but try to engage in your community as a witness for Christ.

Step #6) Guard your heart and thoughts

“Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ” (2 Corinthians 10:4-5, KJV).

Use this scripture as a weapon by countering every impure thought.

Use this scripture as a weapon by countering every impure thought.

Your biggest battle in overcoming sexual immorality will be in the mind. You’ll be tempted to relive sexual experiences and if you do entertain them—it could lead down the path of sin and regret. Use this scripture as a weapon by countering every impure thought.

Step #7) Keep company with people who are living righteously

“Do not be misled: “Bad company corrupts good character” (1 Corinthians 15:33,NIV).

Be mindful of who you choose to keep company with. You can’t be an effective Christian alone; you need other believers to hold you up. Remember you aren’t the only one who struggles with this sin.

Step #8) Resist TV shows, movies, video games, or music that lures you back into sinful thinking or lusting from prior experiences

“I made a covenant with my eyes” (Job 31:1, NIV).

No one is going to change the channel for you or turn off the screen—you have to make the hard choice to turn away from seducing scenes. The more time you spend with God in sincere prayer and earnest Bible study, you will find yourself appalled and disgusted at distorted sexual imagery.

Step #9) Stay connected to God everyday in prayer and Bible study

“Pray continually” (1 Thessalonians 5:17, NIV) “Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth” (2 Timothy 2:15, KJV).

Have a certain time and place every single day in which you talk to God and read your Bible. Make it a habit for life and you will be richly rewarded by God for He loves you very much.

Step #10) Cut off any ties with the person or persons that you were sexually engaged with.

“But put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make not provision for the flesh, to fulfil the lusts thereof” (Romans 13:14, KJV).

Being in the presence or communicating with this person will most likely lull you back into sin—you must sever ties. The choice is choosing a relationship with God over a relationship with this person. You may need to seek their forgiveness, but still keep your distance.

Now what?

You can’t fulfill your destiny in God and stay in sexual sin. Your sin will cause a divided heart and remember James 1:8 “A double minded man is unstable in all his ways”. God cares about you so much that He won’t give you peace about your sexual sins instead He will love you back into the kingdom even if it takes severe discipline. (Hebrews 12:5-6)

You can overcome sexual sin by trusting in God to keep your body. It will take effort on your part, but it will be His loving grace that covers you in love to endure.

Take a look at this other helpful article:

Why Should I Trust God? I Feel Like Giving Up

Resources – New International Version Bible (NIV) THE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®, NIV® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.™ Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide. The Holy Bible, King James Version. YouTube “You Are More” by Tenth Avenue North

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{ 9 comments… read them below or add one }

Amaka June 24, 2020 at 5:42 am

After one has repented from sexual sin, What are the right words to use to apologise to a past female sex partner and to make her understand that you are a repented soul now, also to encourage her to repent too


Jack Wellman June 24, 2020 at 8:56 am

I think just be honest and tell them you are so sorry and repented of this because it was sin and sorry for using that person…


Ifeoma June 29, 2020 at 5:42 am

Good morning . My partner and I have been fight lust for some months now and in the beginning of the relationship we handed it over to God and told him to guide us through this journey. Our relationship is 2 years and some months . Few days ago we got carried away and we had sex online( it’s a long distance relationship but we are both virgins hoping to get married). On Sunday I got a revelation from God that I need to run away from sin and choose God over and human or human desire . Luckily for me my partner got the same revelation and we are filled with regrets so I came to this platform to help teach us how to avoid sin and become closer to God and after learning I will encourage my partner to do same because he is will to do anything to make sure God is not angry with us . In the guide the last step said we should cut of from our sexual partner , I am thinking it through do you suggest that we break up?


Jack Wellman June 30, 2020 at 11:35 am

Dear Ifeoma,

As someone who has struggled with lust, I want you to know that you are not alone. (Romans 3:23) Also, you need to know that God loves you and is not seeking to condemn you. (Romans 8:1) He wants you and your partner to walk in the freedom of the Spirit–this is why He sent Jesus to die on the cross–so we don’t have to live in the pits of lustful desires. (John 8:36) Every step in the process above will assist you if you want to be free–including the last step.

What is it you really want? You want to be married one day to the one who loves you unconditionally as Christ? Then you want what God wants–to present yourself as holy, pure, and godly to the one God wants for you (who is also living a holy, pure and godly life). I pray this prayer often: “God, I only want what You want for me.” God changes us from the inside out when it comes to lust. We make the step of obedience to His word and He enables us through the Holy Spirit to overcome our weaknesses. (Galatians 5:16)
I wish I could tell you it’s easy–it’s not–it’s a daily process of submitting to the Spirit and denying the flesh. (Matthew 26:41) However, if you do this–you will find yourself truly free and whole to be the person God is calling you to be for His purposes. This is most and more fulfilling than anything else you could desire.

God bless…Crystal


Chinwe July 21, 2020 at 1:34 am

Good morning sir sir, what do I do I met this guy in singles group organized by my church, we got dating and he was serious about settling down with me, but along the line we got carried away and sinned against God, we funicated…… What we do to restory relationship with God, as this is the second time it is happening in this relationship


Jack Wellman July 21, 2020 at 9:08 am

I would avoid being alone with this guy for now until you can date in public or with another couple. Please speak to your pastor or a godly woman in your church. This is sin, as you know. I would speak with this guy too that you cannot continue fornicating until you are married. If he shows no interest in marriage, avoid this man.


Lisha October 7, 2020 at 11:42 pm

I have been in a sinful relationship for over a year. I’ve made the decision to never look back recently. I also have been having alot of health problems and I feel so lost. I honestly would love to go back in time and do things differently, but I can’t. I know that I have disappointed God but I need Him and feel like He may not take me back.
I’m struggling so much with ending things with that person as well. I still think of him, it’s very irrational and I dislike it so much. Please pray for me. I am facing physical as well as spiritual despair. Will God ever forgive me and allow His favor to be upon me?


Jack Wellman October 8, 2020 at 10:02 am

I will pray for you but Lisha, call your pastor and speak with him. We need one another and especially in your case (Heb 10:24-25). Will God forgive you? Of course. If you have been born again and repented of your sins, yes.


Crystal McDowell October 17, 2020 at 9:01 am

Dearest Lisha…many of us believers have been where you are–the struggle of pulling out of a sinful relationship. God completely forgives and loves you. You have a everything you need in our Lord Jesus Christ. I’d encourage you to pray for a godly woman mentor to walk you through the difficult days. Also, hold your head up high…there is now therefore no condemnation to those in Christ Jesus (Romans 8:1) and if you confess your sins, God is faithful to forgive you and cleanse you of all unrighteousness (1 John 1:9). You are most certainly beloved of God–never ever ever forget this–nothing can separate you from the love of Your Heavenly Father sis (Romans 8:38-39). Hang tough…God’s got you. Plus I pray for your physical healing as well.


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