Hover over Romans 1:20-22 for proof of God's existence, and over Matthew 5:27-28 for Judgment Day’s perfect standard. Then hover over John 3:16-18 for what God did, and over Acts 17:30-31 for what to do.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Sexual Desires

“Why did God give us sexual desire if it's a bad thing? Even if you only lust over your spouse, you would most likely have felt lust for them before you married. After all, lust plays a big part in our choice of marriage partner. So why did God set us up to fail?”

You seem to be confusing lust and sexual desire. God did give us sexual desire and it’s not a bad thing. In fact it’s a good thing. How else would we be attracted to a prospective spouse, and why would we even procreate if there was no “desire”?

So, what then is the difference between sexual attraction and lust? One dictionary says that “lust” is “uncontrolled or illicit sexual desire or appetite; lecherousness.” Or to put it another way, lust is pornography of the mind.

How then do we know the difference between "looking" and lusting? The answer is to listen to your God-given conscience. It will tell you . . . if you have a mind to listen. There's nothing wrong with simply seeing someone and having the automatic thought that she's attractive. But that's different from then formulating sexual thoughts about that person to lust for her. In case you're having trouble hearing from your conscience, here's another clue to help you: How would you feel if your spouse were doing that behavior? Would you mind it if she was entertaining lustful thoughts for other men, having sexual fantasies about someone other than you? We often have a hard time seeing wrong behavior in ourselves, but have no trouble seeing it in others.

So God isn’t the one to blame for "setting us up to fail." To believe that would be like a criminal saying to a judge, “Judge, I raped that woman, but it really isn’t my fault. God made me with sexual desire so it's His fault.” If that won’t hold water in a court of law, it’s not going to be a valid defense on Judgment Day.

Look at how serious lust is in God’s sight:

“You have heard that it was said to those of old, ‘You shall not commit adultery.’ But I say to you that whoever looks at a woman to lust for her has already committed adultery with her in his heart. If your right eye causes you to sin, pluck it out and cast it from you; for it is more profitable for you that one of your members perish, than for your whole body to be cast into hell. And if your right hand causes you to sin, cut it off and cast it from you; for it is more profitable for you that one of your members perish, than for your whole body to be cast into hell” (Matthew 5:27-30).

However, our real problem isn’t lust. That’s just one large branch of the tree of our sinful nature. If we want to avoid the damnation of Hell, we have to (with the help of God) take an axe to the root of the tree, and that can be done only through repentance toward God and faith in Jesus Christ.

You may have skipped over the words “damnation of Hell,” but that is a good motivating factor to repent. Let me put it another way. If I said to you that you need to give up chocolate, you would probably be horrified. However, if I proved to you that if you ate any more chocolate, it would kill you, you would then have a strong motivation to give it up, despite it being so palatable to your taste. So give the issue some serious thought. It’s your choice…and it’s your eternity.