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Question to Christians: Masturbation - November 10th 2010, 09:53 AM

I was thinking about this a few days ago, is it considered a sin to masturbate if you're a Christian?


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Re: Question to Christians: Masturbation - November 10th 2010, 02:18 PM

I don't personally masturbate, but not for religious reasons. I simply don't.


In my opinion, it's usually not the act of masturbation that is the sin.

It's what comes along with it, whether it be lustful thoughts, pornography, etc.
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Re: Question to Christians: Masturbation - November 10th 2010, 02:49 PM

I think it's what you think about when you do it, not necessarily that you do. like lust is a sin, so if your lusting after somebody while you masterbate, then yes it's considered a sin. but if you can do it without lusting or being adulturous i don't see how it could be sin


   
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Re: Question to Christians: Masturbation - November 10th 2010, 03:44 PM

Please read all of this before you come to a conclusion...

Christ said: "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 lustful intent has already committed adultery with her in his heart" (Matthew 5:28).

Now, before we conclude: "Yes, it is a sin," let me explain something. First of all, in the Old Testament things such as premarital sex, masturbation, etc. was NEVER condemned. At specific times premarital sex was considered unlawful because you were defiling another man's property (a father's daughter). You would then be required to marry (if permitted), and/or pay (I believe) a fee. But it was never really deemed sinful.

In the book of Leviticus, we are described specifically what sexually immorality is and it usually involves A) Incest B) Bestiality and C) Adultery. NEVER premarital sex, and in fact, many biblical characters were not monogamous and had concubines. This does not mean that God prefers polygamy, in fact, it appears that God disciplined and looked down upon it, but that doesn't mean it didn't happen. You can read specifically what the Bible calls sexual immorality in Leviticus 18. It should also be noted that sexual sins, though considered grave, did not require a sacrifice, as did other sins. So the area seems to be rather gray.

In the verse I showed above, Matthew 5:28, Jesus says, "...everyone who looks at a woman with lustful intent has already committed adultery with her in his heart." Now, it is important to note that the word for woman in this verse is translated about 50% of the time as "wife." Therefore, it's plausible that Christ was saying (and it makes more sense), "everyone who looks at a wife with lustful intent has already committed adultery with her in his heart." Considering the context Christ was speaking of was on adultery, it would lead me to assume Christ was speaking of a wife, not any woman. For if it was every woman, then everyone married has sinned in this manner.

It is also worth noting that if we look at the ten commandments it is NEVER noted, "thou shalt not commit premarital sex." Christ always taught from the law. So, in Matthew 5:28, what does it look like Christ was teaching? Well, initially He is teaching the commandment of not committing adultery. And then He seems to take the commandment further, but does He? One of the commandments says, "You shall not covet your neighbor's wife." Therefore, it is apparent that this is what Christ was teaching. We are not to lust after another's wife. And every example of sexual immorality that I can think of involves an example in Leviticus 18, even in the new testament -- the only example we have is a man sleeping with his father's wife.

So, it still appears to be a gray area. However, Paul, when he is addressing this area on sexual immorality, he teaches that it is better to marry than to burn with passion. He does not say, "It is better to engage in premarital sex," nor does he say, "it is better to masturbate," but says, "It is better to marry than to burn with passion." Therefore, personally, I say, the Bible is not 100% clear in the literal Greek and Hebrew, but it is wise to avoid it because it is not taught as a safe ground either.

According to sacred tradition of the church fathers, sacred meaning past down from Christ through the church. In various passages in the Bible, Paul talks about things he preached to the Churches. That is, not everything Paul said is recorded in the Epistles. Therefore, by tradition of what was taught to the churches, anything sexual outside of marriage is considered a sin. So, according to tradition, yes, it is a sin. And according to 1 John 5 and various epistles from Paul, is possibly a "sin that leads to death (spiritual death)."

I'd also say, "Whatever does not come from faith is sin." Does your conscience condemn you? Then for you it is a sin. I would say, yes, it is a sin, to be sure. And I cannot recommend it, but rather recommend seeking a wife/husband if one cannot control themselves in a holy manner.

I would also say that it is not the act of masturbation that is inherently wrong, but the heart. If someone has an issue looking or lusting at a man/woman, they're just as sinful (perhaps) as the one who masturbates. In the same way that my anger at someone is the equivalent to the sin of a murderer on death row.


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Re: Question to Christians: Masturbation - November 10th 2010, 05:54 PM

Ah, you people can be so picky.
   
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Re: Question to Christians: Masturbation - November 10th 2010, 06:22 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by MostlyHarmless View Post
Ah, you people can be so picky.
It's not a matter of being picky, it's a matter of what is most loving in respect of God and others.


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Re: Question to Christians: Masturbation - November 11th 2010, 04:10 PM

I've heard it is, but it depends on what you're thinking, I used to do it when I was younger even though I didn't know what I was doing. I don't believe I was sinning because I wasn't thinking impure thoughts, which is a sin.


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Re: Question to Christians: Masturbation - November 11th 2010, 04:36 PM

Again...one of the issues i have with this is that when you ban something, it become more popular. (Just look at the Prohibition and just how splendid a job it did on eliminating alcohol; or a more recent example: marijuana.) Reverse psychology works so nicely and so predominately that it back lashes on every single law and bill we pass on the land

Another issue I have with calling a masturbation a sin is that it implies too much onto the act. You will have some 13 year old boy masturbating and then bawling his eyes out because he thinks that he just killed several thousand babies or that God hates him now (Yes, I know the theology...but most 13 year old boys don't). When in fact, God gave us a sex drive between 11-13...earlier in some. So when you are talking about people "burning with passion" most of those people are teenagers. Are you suggesting that 14 year olds get married because they can't control their passions? Because by definition, psychology, and just plain first hand (pun intended) experience, they can't :P . The Prefrontal Cortex is still cooking well after the Amygdala, which houses fun things like sex drive, are fully operational.

Also, studies have shown that when people under heavy religious teachings are condemned for masturbation, and they masturbate themselves, it is MORE psychologically damaging then if they have no qualms about it in the first place. If you have heavy guilt towards masturbation, it will cause you to have a more negative view of sex (even within marriage), a more negative body view (even in marriage), lower self-esteem (even in marriage), and less likely to feel in control of their own sexuality, bodies and sexual rights (even in the most holy, monogamous and bonded of marriages). It seems almost as if it is the GUILT part, NOT the act that is damaging.

So which is easier, telling a bunch of hormone drenched teenagers to stop wanking or God will cry? Telling kids to get married if they can't control themselves? Or encouraging them to explore their sexuality just as we tell them to explore careers, personalities, and even spirituality?


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Re: Question to Christians: Masturbation - November 11th 2010, 09:21 PM

1) People used to get married at younger ages.
2) God provides natural emissions without masturbating, that is our sex drive does not require us to masturbate, in fact, masturbating only increases desire to masturbate -- it does not decrease your sex drive.
3) Masturbation has actually shown to decrease sexual satisfaction, cause insatiable sex drives, increases depression, despondency, with various other psychological factors. Used along with porn it increases rape, sexual abuse, and unfaithful marriages because people want to live out their mental fantasies. Various sex offenders and pedophiles have admitted that their sexual crimes birthed from porn.


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Re: Question to Christians: Masturbation - November 11th 2010, 11:01 PM

1) So why did we change the median marriage age? Because soceity has changed in the past 2000 years. Or are you actually suggesting that horny Ninth Graders start marrying each other?

2)Masturbation was never designed to decrease sex drive anymore then taking a deep relaxing breathe decreases your need to breath. It's for the psychological pressure of having a sex drive and not being able to itch it.

3) The book "Sexual Health: Psychological Principles" references many psychological surveys and experiments done with masturbation, sexual health, and psychological health. In a study in 1991 young married women who reported masturbating also reproted higher marital satisfaction. Another study done with self esteem and masturbation shows that those who masturbate have higher self esteem more postive body self image, and less sexual anxiety (pg 26). This seems to contradict your evidence stating that masturbation INCREASES depression and despondancy. Unless it is for another demographic, such as old men or children or something. If this is the case, please clarify.

In an explorotory study of young woman's additudes towards masturbation in 2009, Harriet Hogarth and Roger Ingham found a common theme among woman that reported masturbating and having positive views about it. They concluded that if a young woman was raised in open communication homes (where they felt they could talk to their parents about anything, not only sex), They developed a more postive view of masturbation. Also, if they reported a more postive veiw of masturbation, they develop a sense of power over their own bodies, and a sense of their right to personal sexual pleasure (Hograth and Ingram 564). Again, this seems to contradict your evidence that masturbation leads to depression and despondancy.

This also lead to their willingness to discuss such issues with a romantic partner (Hograth and Ingram 565). Tepper and Owen state that intimate comminucation, that is, communication about sexual needs and desires, contributes to a healthy and satisfying sexual relationship. Good intimate relationships produces a laundry list of of postive side effects including emotional intergration, happiness, contentment, well-being, and a lasting marriage (Teper and Owen 55). They also state "...Accepting and embracing one's sexuality and desires may also enhance self-esteem" (Tepper and Owen 25). Again, all of this has roots in how a person preceives sex and masturbation. This contradicts the evidence presented that masturbation can destroy marriages.

And with the porn kick, it is not an issue being discussed. It is very possible for people to masturbate without porn and to watch porn without masturbation. The two are not linked and thereby should not be included in the discussion. However, since you brought it up, some of those are extreme examples and not representative of the main population. Pedophiles and sex offends have also addmited to various other reasons for their crimes including revenage for romantic advances spunned, their own histroy of child abuse, and even the outlayer reason of the voices in my head made me do it.

Unfaithful marriages may resault if the porn use is not muturally agreed upon, and if it starts to interfere with relationtional duties, such as actually having sex. However, some couples even use porn to spice up their sex lives by finding more fantasies to act out with each other. I'm not condoning porn use 100% but I also do not think it needs to be vilified as long as all parties agree and live by mutural terms.

Also...isn't masturbation causing both decreased sexual desire AND insatiable sex drive two contradicting symptoms? Does it go up for some and down for others? Is there some sort of demographic line between the two, or is the distrbution random? Please Explain.

Quote:
Works Cited

Harriet Hogarth; Roger, Ingham. "Masturbation among young women and associations with sexual health: an exploratory study.(Report)." The Journal of Sex Research 46.6 (n.d.): 558. Gale: Expanded Academic ASAP (PowerSearch). EBSCO. Web. 20 Oct. 2010.

Tepper, Mitchell S., and Annette F. Owens, eds. Sexual Health: Psychological Foundations. Vol. 1. Westport, CT: Praeger, 2007. Print.

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Re: Question to Christians: Masturbation - November 11th 2010, 11:26 PM

1) Because as time progressed we have grown more babied. That is, societies standard for teens has lowered due to longer age expectancies. However, this is only a normal for the minority of populations that are fortunate enough. I.E. Non-poverty stricken countries. In many cases "children" are treated as adults in various countries, though marriage restrictions have been placed likely because of more developed nations.

2) On the contrary, masturbation increases your sex drive. In other words, the more you masturbate the more you'll have that "itching" feeling.

3) As sexual satisfaction decreases in marriages (only 44% satisfied, leaving 66% unsatisfied) and divorce rates still at a startling high (40-50%), how can anyone conclude they are content with their sexual lives? When statistically the majority of those getting divorced are the ones who are not content in their sexual lives?

At any rate, this is off topic and in no way contributes to the OP. If you wish to discuss this there is a separate category for it.


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Re: Question to Christians: Masturbation - November 12th 2010, 01:38 AM

Excellent explanation. I definitely learn a lot from the Bible point of view on this matter.


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Re: Question to Christians: Masturbation - November 12th 2010, 02:29 AM

Also, in the Didache which is, "The Teaching [of the Apostles]," was basically a rule book of the early church it states this in chapter 3:

My child, do not be lustful, for lust leads to fornication, nor a filthy-talker nor a lewd-looker, for from all these adulteries ensue.


The Didache is not a canonized book, but it is believed to be used by Christians prior to AD 150. So, it's likely not what we call "inspired," but a guide nonetheless.


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Re: Question to Christians: Masturbation - November 25th 2010, 01:34 AM

I'm not christian. =P
But as said above I've heard it's more the thoughts.
So no fantasizing over someone specifically. =P
Unless you're married to them lol


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