11 March 2022
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sex and pornography in the life of a Christian

Speaker: Apostle Ernie

In Matt 5:28, we read; but I tell you that everyone who gazes at a. woman to lust after her has committed adultery with her already in his heart.

The Bible defines legalism as obedience to man-made laws and traditions instead of God’s law, the written law of Moses. Paul’s letter to the Galatians says being legalistic will enslave us and make Christ of no effect. The opposite of legalism, according to Paul, is freedom found in obedience to the teachings of Christ. Christ taught us, in Matt 23:2-4, to obey the written law of Moses. So if we dont want to be legalistic, Paul admonishes us to follow the written law of Moses.

One example of legalism is our wrong understanding of Matt 5:28. It is not uncommon for Christians to say sexual desire and sexual lust are sinful, so we should never look at a person of the opposite sex with lust in our hearts because then we would be guilty of adultery.

The definition of adultery is voluntary sexual intercourse between a married person and a person who is not their spouse.
The definition of fornication is voluntary sexual intercourse between an unmarried man and an unmarried woman.
An unmarried person can not be guilty of adultery; they can only be guilty of fornication.

In Matt 5:28, Jesus is not telling us not to look with lust at a person of the opposite sex. He says that if we contemplate having an affair and cheating on our spouse, God sees it as if we have already done the act. So if you are not married, Matt 5:28 does not apply to you.

Nowhere in the Bible does it say we become guilty of fornication if we look with lust on a person of the opposite sex. Nowhere in the Bible does it say we become guilty of adultery if we look with lust on a person of the opposite sex. Nowhere in the Bible does it say we become guilty of adultery or fornication if we have sexual fantasies of someone who is not our spouse.

Matt 5:28 says; if you contemplate having an affair and cheating on your spouse, God sees it as if you have already done the act. Looking with lust and having sexual fantasies of someone you are not married to is not the same as contemplating an affair.

When we say; all sexual desire is a sin, and we should never look with lust, we are legalistic. If we are being legalistic, we have become enslaved, and we are in danger of making Christ of no effect. On the other hand, if we obey what Christ taught us, which is not even to contemplate having an affair, we have been set free by the Son. Then we are free to enjoy our sexuality within the boundaries set by the law of Moses.

The law of Moses permits us to look at a person of the opposite sex with lust.

I know some of you might think: But even so, I dare not look with lust because I am afraid I might be tempted to sin.

The desire for food, sex, and comfort are righteous desires and how God made us. You are not sinning when you are hungry, you are not sinning when you need safety and comfort, and you are not sinning when you desire sex or find someone of the opposite sex sexually attractive. Even so, the desire for food, comfort, and sex can become sinful if acted upon in the wrong way. And the desire for food, comfort, and sex can even end up destroying families and marriages if acted upon in the wrong way.

One such example is compulsory eating. People who are compulsory eaters know how to avoid triggers, but people who are not suffering these conditions dont have to worry about this. So if you are addicted to sex or porn, I understand why you would choose never to look with lust at a person of the opposite sex because it might trigger you, and you might end up committing the act of adultery or fornication. But people who are not suffering from addiction to sex and porn dont have to worry about this. We know where to draw the line, so we dont fall into the sin of adultery and fornication.

If you know for sure you are not addicted to sex or porn; you should feel free to indulge in sexual fantasies and even look at a person of the opposite sex with lust in your heart. You are not sinning by doing so; in fact, you would be sinning if you chose not to do so because then you would be legalistic.

This brings us to the question about pornography.

If you are not sinning by looking with lust at someone of the opposite sex, is it then okay to use pornography? Let me ask you an all honest question:

Would you find pleasure in watching someone being murdered?
Would you find pleasure in watching someone worship a false idol?

Of course not; you would never want to watch someone being murdered as entertainment or to watch someone worshiping a false idol as entertainment. Why then would you like to watch someone committing the act of adultery or fornication as entertainment? So it is self-evident: pornography depicting voluntary sex between a man or a woman is choosing to watch someone committing the act of adultery or fornication as entertainment.

Nowhere in the Bible does it say it is a sin to watch pornography. But why would you want to watch a couple sinning by committing the act of adultery or fornication when you would never want to watch someone being murdered?

There are, of course, different types of pornography, ranging from couples having sex on camera to individuals taking their clothes off on camera and masturbating. There is nothing wrong with being turned on by a stranger getting naked in front of a camera and pleasuring themself. Getting naked in front of a camera and pleasuring themself is not an act of adultery or an act of fornication. Therefore, you are not sinning by taking pleasure in watching a stranger getting naked in front of a camera and pleasuring themselves.

This, of course, brings up the question of masturbation.

In the law of Moses, there is a commandment that says if your brother dies without an heir, you have to marry his widow and make sure she gets pregnant. The child would then legally be your deceased brother. This is the backstory of Onan, Onan refused to obey this, and he spilled his seed on the ground. God did not kill him because he spilled his seed on the ground; he killed him because he refused to give his deceased brother an heir.

The Bible does not mention female masturbation, only male masturbation. If a man has a discharge of sperm, he is ritually unclean for a time. So there is nothing wrong with masturbation; it only makes you ritually unclean for a time. Therefore there is nothing wrong with watching someone masturbating on camera, someone, you dont know. And because you dont know them, you would not be sinning if you chose to fantasize about them.

So when does a sexual fantasy become sinful?

Matt 5:28 says only if you are married, and only if your fantasy would lead to contemplating having an affair.