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Does Scripture Condemn Cohabitation?

Q. Where does Scripture say that people should not live together before marriage?

A. The Greek New Testament word translated into English as “fornication” or “sexual immorality” or sometimes just “immorality” (porneia — from which we get the word “pornography”) refers sometimes to sexual relations between unmarried persons, and sometimes to that kind of sexual activity as well as adultery. In either case, the term always includes the meaning of sexual relations between unmarried persons.

Given that definition, we can find cohabitation prohibited or condemned in a number of biblical passages, such as Matthew 15:19; Mark 7:21; Acts 15:20, 29; 1 Corinthians 5:11; 6:9-10, 18-20; 7:1-2; 10:8; 2 Corinthians 12:21; Galatians 5:19; Ephesians 5:3; Colossians 3:5-6; 1 Thessalonians 4:3-8; and Revelation 21:8, 22:15.

How Did the Four Evangelists Die?

Q. How did the Evangelists (Gospel writers)—Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John—die?

A. St. Matthew was of course one of the twelve Apostles. According to ancient tradition, he preached in the East and died as a martyr for the Faith. One tradition says he died in Ethiopia; another says it was in Persia (present-day Iran).

St. Mark was, according to ancient tradition, a companion of St. Peter in Rome and wrote his Gospel from that apostle’s perspective. One tradition also reports that he died a martyr’s death in Alexandria, Egypt, after having preached the Gospel there.

St. Luke was one of St. Paul’s traveling companions and wrote his Gospel under the influence of that Apostle. (The Gospel of Luke is actually the first part of a longer book whose second part is the biblical Book of Acts.) He is believed to have died at Boeotia, a region of Greece, at the age of eighty-four.

St. John was the only one of the twelve apostles who did not die a martyr’s death. He had the responsibility (given to him by Jesus) of caring for Our Lady after her Son’s death. According to ancient tradition, he spent his latter years in Asia Minor in the city of Ephesus (in what is now Turkey) and died there at an advanced age.

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