tuesday september 23, 2008
I’m single, and dating, and tempted to have sex. Is it wrong for me to masturbate to help me with my insatiable desire?
Thank you for asking this question. I want you to know I am asked this question a lot – and it is always expressed through tear-filled eyes and with much guilt and remorse. You might say that is because I am around young women who are pursuing Christ, but if I were talking to women outside that arena – there would be no tears or guilt – rather quite the opposite. You’re absolutely right. The closer we get to Christ – and learn who our Lord is – the more we love Him, the more we focus on Him, and the more we recognize the idols in our lives that do not satisfy. Turn. Embrace. Serve. “For they themselves report what happened when we visited you. They tell how you turned to God from idols to serve the living and true God.” How I love our Vintage theme verse!
I actually have to take us back to the beginning to get to the here and now of your question. Genesis, the first book of the Bible, tells the amazing story of creation. God made everything, and everything was good. Then man sinned. Because of that sin, all of us were separated from God. That separation included not only physical separation, as Adam and Eve were banned from the Garden of Eden, but also eternal separation in death. God loves us, and created us for relationship with Him. God’s plan for our rescue – for the restoration of the world -was always Christ. Because of Christ, his life, his death, his resurrection, we are no longer alienated from God, but we live with Him in close relationship to Him. Apart from Christ, we have no hope. In Christ – we are blessed with life – and brought to fullness. “He is before all things, and in him all things hold together. And he is the head of the body, the church. He is the beginning and the firstborn from among the dead, so that in everything he might have the supremacy. For God was pleased to have all his fullness dwell in him, and through to reconcile to himself all things whether things on earth or things in heaven, making peace through his blood, shed on the cross. Once you were alienated from God and were enemies in your minds because of your evil behavior. But now he has reconciled you by Christ’s physical body through death to present you holy in his sight, without blemish, and free from accusation…” Colossians 1:17-22. Check out Colossians 1. Seriously, please read it. Read your Bible, sweet girl, because getting God’s Word – God’s heart – knowing who He is, how he loves, what it is to love Him and love others through Him - is so critical in putting this issue – and all our futile thinking to death. Understanding what full life means every day as I now live in Him, no longer a part from my God, here on this earth and not in heaven yet, is for me, a constant learning and discovering. Read the book of John. Jesus talks about life in Him; what that means for us now until he comes again. In John 10 Jesus tells us how the enemy comes to steal and destroy, but Jesus has come that we – his sheep – may have life and have it to the full. The enemy wants to rob full life from us. Let’s press that truth up against your question about masturbation.
In the beginning God made everything. The world created by a holy, loving God, for His amazing purpose was good. The purpose of sex was only good. In the Garden of Eden, Genesis 2:22-25, God created woman out of man, and gave her to Adam, and the Bible says, “The man and his wife were both naked, and they felt no shame.” What a moment! God told Adam and Eve “Be fruitful and increase in number, fill the earth and subdue it.” The purpose of sex was for the man and the woman to fill the earth. It is through sex that God sealed the holy covenant of marriage. It is through the unity of that covenant that God designed procreation. It is through sex that a man and a woman bond to one another through an intimate physical expression of love, one flesh. Sex, like everything else has been touched by the fall of man. God designed it to be holy, pure and good. Apart from God – like everything else that was lost in the fall – there is need for a Savior. Only through Christ is purity – holiness – goodness – full life - redeemed and restored.
What do we do with that truth right now? Right now you are questioning masturbation. You are a believer, yes? If you believe, then this truth will encourage you. In marriage, touching one another sexually is good and pure. God made it so that you would like it. Isn’t that amazing? Touch will draw you to your spouse, and he to you. And in marriage, the Bible teaches us, that it is not good to withhold ourselves from one another in this manner. Now, if you’re like I used to be, I would have thought… “withhold myself, heck, we’ll be having sex all the time.” Ahhhh so, so funny what we think we know before we have ever lived! REMEMBER: the enemy wants to steal, rob, and destroy. He’s geared toward corrupting everything good –full life- that God has in store for you. Satan will do everything he can to get you to have sex before you are married and everything he can to keep you from having sex once you are married. Full life is what he wants to take from you. He is the father of lies, and he will lie to you about sex. Do not be deceived about this sexual act. Masturbation –touching to stimulate sexually - is a wonderful part of sex with your spouse (Song of Solomon). In your singleness, you may think you are avoiding sex by masturbating, but in truth – you are having sex – with yourself. Sex was not designed for one – but two. Only two – and only in marriage (I Cor6:12-20). You may think you are not harming anyone, but in truth you are hurting yourself. Sexual sin is a sin against your own body, and your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit. You are being deceived that self-gratification will not harm you – heart, mind and body. This habit will not only cause you, daughter of God, much guilt, but it will then carry over into your marriage and bring you much sorrow, and your spouse with you. If you practice self-gratification in marriage you will not seek your husband, but will be prone to reject his touch. Why would you seek him when you are already satisfied? You will not seek to please him, but to please yourself. Full life – once again is robbed from you. How amazing that God designed the pleasure in sex to be reciprocal, to require a sweet submission, one to another, an abandonment of shame. Do not be deceived that masturbation will make you better for sex with your husband; it will not. It will draw you deeper into the kingdom of you. The world proclaims that masturbation will make you self-aware – sexually. Bingo. Yes. It will. Masturbation draws you into yourself. ANYTHING that is self-focused is totally opposed to Christ. We have not been taught to seek ourselves – our gratification, but to seek God, love others, and let our Heavenly Father see to all our needs. He will meet them (II Cor. 9:8, Psalm 1). The beauty of sex is not self-awareness, precious girl. The beauty of sex is the oneness that God brought to it. The husband is focused on his wife, her life wrapped up in his, and the wife in her husband. She delights in him, not herself. And he delights in her, not himself. And in that oneness – our Creator, God, is glorified. Only God could design such a beautiful expression of love. Adding self-indulgence to marriage – to life – is not an ingredient you will hear our Savior teach us to employ. We’ve missed the beauty of what God has given to us in the gift of touch and arousal if we think it’s self-gratification. We’ve missed the mystery of full life in Christ when we seek ourselves.
Learning how to seek others above ourselves is a life-long lesson. We are born with a sin nature, and are taught that we must love others better than ourselves. Take a good look at the world around you. What does our society scream? YOU!!!! It is all about you! How you feel, what you’ve achieved, who makes you happy, what makes you happy, who sees you, knows you, your money, your time, your achievements, your good, you’re it. Why wouldn’t Satan craft such a message over time? He knows it works. Genesis 3:1-5 “Now the serpent was more crafty than any of the wild animals the Lord God had made. He said to the woman, ‘Did God really say, “You must not eat from any tree in the garden?’ The woman said to the serpent, ‘We may eat from the trees in the garden, but God did say, You must not eat fruit from the tree that is in the middle of the garden, and you must not touch it, or you will die.’ ‘You will not certainly die,’ the serpent said to the woman, ‘For God knows that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God knowing good and evil.’” Satan’s message proclaimed to Eve was that full-life was being robbed from her by God. That life for her was in her fingertips and God was withholding it by not allowing her to have what she might desire. OH MY SOUL!!!!! Is that not everything around us and what we are bombarded with all day long!!!!! Satan’s crafty ploys continue. BUT! Be encouraged. God’s Word is the only word that is eternal! And it is the only message of truth!
Here’s some encouraging truth, okay?
John 10:10 “I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.”
Galatians 5:16-26 “So I say, walk by the Spirit and you will not gratify the desires of the sinful nature. For the sinful nature desires what is contrary to the Spirit, and the Spirit what is contrary to the sinful nature. They are in conflict with each other, so that you are not to do whatever you want. But if you are led by the Spirit you are not under the law. The acts of the sinful nature are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery, idolatry and witchcraft, hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition; dissensions, factions, and envy, drunkenness, orgies, and the like. I warn you, as I did before, that those who live like this will not inherit the kingdom of God. But the fruit of the spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and SELF-CONTROL. Against such there is no law. Those who belong to Christ have crucified the sinful nature with its passions and desires. Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit.”
I Thessalonians 4:3-5 “It is God’s will that you should be sanctified; that you should avoid sexual immorality; that each of you should learn to control your own body in a way that is holy and honorable, not in passionate lust like the pagans, who do not know God.”
You know God, don't you? He loves you. He has full life for you right now (Please read Colossians -several times!). Nurture your desire for Him. He is the only one who will ever satisfy you - heart, soul, mind strength -satisfied. Only God.
posted by laura lewis