Tag Archives: adultery

Chasing Pleasure? Wake up and Smell the Smoke!

Now the deeds of the flesh are evident, which are: immorality, impurity, sensuality, idolatry, sorcery, enmities, strife, jealousy, outbursts of anger, disputes, dissensions, factions, envying, drunkenness, carousing, and things like these, of which I forewarn you, just as I have forewarned you, that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God. —Galatians 5:19-21.

Sensuality by its definition is licentiousness – filthy behavior, lasciviousness, and wantonness – according to Strong’s concordance (from the Greek aselgeia). In biblical context, it’s generally associated with immorality and sometimes with sexual feelings or behavior.

Chasing pleasure of the senses in pursuit of immorality is distasteful to God and will certainly invoke God’s judgment and hell in the last days! It also leaves little or no time for actually pleasing God . . .

But refuse to put younger widows on the list, for when they feel sensual desires in disregard of Christ, they want to get married. — 1Timothy 5:11.

and if He rescued righteous Lot, oppressed by the sensual conduct of [Sodom and Gomorrah’s] unprincipled men . . . — 2Peter 2:7.

. . .  excluded from the life of God because of the ignorance that is in them, because of the hardness of their heart; and they, having become callous, have given themselves over to sensuality for the practice of every kind of impurity with greediness. —Ephesians 4:17-19.

. . .  having pursued a course of sensuality, lusts, drunkenness, carousing, drinking parties and abominable idolatries. . . .  but they will give account to Him who is ready to judge the living and the dead. —1Peter 4:3-5.

Engaging in sensual activities like viewing pornography (including publically-acceptable media with erotic images) or entering into ‘racy’ discussions or crude joking epitomizes what the Bible reveals about sensuality, immorality, and fornication and related consequences. Dabbling by viewing sensual images or verbalizing sensual topics can produce unnecessary sexual arousal that will most likely need to be satisfied.

So, why do I associate sensuality and pornography? Because pornography reflects filthy and immoral behavior that appeals to the senses. It can be a trigger for the commission of sexual sin since it certainly causes physical and perhaps emotional arousal that must be satisfied in the end. There’s no disguising the purpose of pornography: it’s meant to stimulate the senses and cause arousal for the ultimate goal of sexual satisfaction.

Indulging in pornography is certainly sinful and dangerous. While Scripture doesn’t directly reference the word ‘pornography’ it does address fornication and the pursuit of sensuality – all of which are pervasive in pornographic material and behavior that will bring judgment from God. Do we really want to be guilty by association?

It’s important to point out that pornography or sensual stimulants don’t have to be visual in the form of pictures or video: they can be present in sound and word.  Erotic speech and noises can stimulate sexual desire in the same way viewing an erotic picture or film can. And sensual stories such as stereotypical romance novels or the recent 50 Shades of Grey book can evoke emotions and sexual desire no less driving than pictures or sound. This is why women can also be ensnared by pornography or sensuality even though they’re not normally driven in the same way men typically are.

Our choices: Animalistic, immoral sensual pleasure now with its judgment and hell later, or balance in accordance with God’s ways now and unimaginable reward and eternal life later. Choose wisely!

Let us behave properly as in the day, not in carousing and drunkenness, not in sexual promiscuity and sensuality, not in strife and jealousy. —Romans 13:13.

Keep an eye out for “Finding Answers to Stuff Churches Don’t Discuss!” scheduled for a mid-2015 publication. There, you’ll find roughly 60 topics related to daily life (such as sex, religion, finances, tattooing, and everything in between!) along with practical application of God’s guidance for navigating those difficult waters!

And, for a very comprehensive and detailed study of the very important topic of God’s judgment to come and being rescued from it, feel free to read my 2011 guide titled, “Finding the End of the World” available at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and from www.ronbraley.com in paper and e-book formats. In the guide, you’ll find roughly 500 pages of building blocks to help you do your own complete and unbiased study based on Scripture and history!

Intent Matters!

Jesus taught that our reason for doing a particular act matters a great deal. For instance, He said there wouldn’t necessarily be a reward, other than perhaps a feeling of personal satisfaction, for being kind to someone just because they’re kind to you (Matthew 5:46). The flip side – showing kindness to those who mistreat you – will yield heavenly reward. On a related note, Jesus also taught as read in Matthew 6:1-18 that doing religious things (e.g. fasting, praying, or giving) for the purpose of being spiritually elevated in the eyes of others’ is equally pointless. So, intent will determine whether an action will be fruitless or rewarded.

Intent – the reason for doing a particular deed – can be as important as the act itself and is a key ingredient to sin! In fact, Jesus reported that the intent to do something can be as bad as the intended action – even if it isn’t carried out. In the following passage, He informs us that if we intend to commit adultery, we’ve done it even if the act wasn’t completed. I know that some people have exclaimed that the passage implies we’ve committed adultery if we privately acknowledge that a woman is ‘hot’ in a fleeting thought, but that wasn’t Jesus’ point.

“You have heard that it was said, ‘YOU SHALL NOT COMMIT ADULTERY’; but I say to you that everyone who looks at a woman with lust for her [desires to have her] has already committed adultery with her in his heart.” —Matthew 5:27-28.  (The comment in brackets was inserted by me and is based on the Strong’s definition of ‘lust’)

Again, Jesus’ point was to teach that once we intend do take sinful action, it’s as good as done.  Understand that a thought in itself isn’t wicked as long as it doesn’t give way to an intention to take action.

How do we ensure a thought doesn’t mature into lustful intent? Internalize God’s ways through study, prayer, meditation, and fellowship so that they become a force greater than physical desire.

Jesus also taught that the heart (mind) gives birth to all kinds of sinful things; this serves as a reminder that rebellion/sin is intentional and begins the mind.

“But the things that proceed out of the mouth come from the heart, and those defile the man. For out of the heart come evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, slanders.” —Matthew 15:18-19.

We must always be aware of our intentions and how what we’re going to say or do will affect others. Having a good understanding of God’s ways will help us to know whether something we intend to do or say can result in sinful behavior. That understanding is gained through physical exposure to God’s instructions and spiritual communication through His Spirit.

How do you maintain righteousness and a pure intent?