Are "Shared Accommodations" Immoral?

Yesterday's story on MH was bound to stir up controversy. Among our readers, there are those who believe that nudity or seeing sexual activity between a married couple is sinful. Others feel that only making a move to have sex with the spouse of another person without their permission would constitute adultery. A continuum exists between those viewpoints and each of us will probably find ourselves somewhere along it.

MarriageHeat's stance is that stories of planned encounters of this nature won't be published. "Shared Accommodations" didn't meet this definition, so we allowed it. But we knew that it would also open a door to deeper discussion of our different understandings of what the Bible actually says no to and where we personally draw our own lines. Consideration of other people's understanding can be instrumental to developing our own judgement.

That said, we remind you to repond to posts and comments with love and kindness, without assuming that your reasoning or what you've been taught is the only way of looking at an issue. Say what you believe, but don't condemn others who may disagree. Instead, we ask that you lovingly offer them your insights and pray that the Holy Spirit will lead each of us into all truth.

0189lvr posted this comment to the NoahZark's story. We decided to use it to open the discussion on this topic.


I believe this scenario is straight up immoral.

Sex is a wonderful gift that God gave to a married couple. Watching a blowjob on the internet is pornography and watching another couple and having them watch you WHILE in the same room is immoral.

To be blunt, I’m am quite simply appalled at how flippant this world has become in not calling sin what it is. And it is even more shocking to me how many “Christians” have begun degrading sex.

Psalm 101:3 I will set nothing wicked before my eyes (even some of the pictures used on this website ought to be seen as porn, but obviously watching another couple. Get a mirror and put it in your room)

Hebrews 13:4 “Marriage is to be held in honor among all, and the marriage bed is to be undefiled; for fornicators and adulterers, God will judge”

Why is it that so many “so-called Christians” have no problem with writing off or trying to change the meaning of the inerrant Scriptures? I believe the reason is because sin brings guilt. And when I love an activity so much, I’m willing to sin to get it, then I have to somehow justify it.

I’m sure there’s going to be some that disagree or get after me for this. I’m fine with that, for the more one distorts the truth, the more one hates those who speak it.

Song of Solomon 2:15 says “Catch the foxes for us, the little foxes that are ruining the vineyards...”

This verse clarifies for us one simple truth: there are such individuals as swindlers, sex swindlers that distort what God has called good.

4.64 avg. rating (92% score) - 14 votes
32 replies
  1. southernmost says:

    Hi there 0189lvr,

    I greet you in peace and love.

    I am in agreement that sex is a beautiful gift from God, intended for a married couple. But of the rest what you've mentioned, it is not so straight forward.

    A big thing for me, a very big thing, is defining what sin is, and what it not - but not from our own understanding, but from God's. He is the One who has told us what sin is, because that is not for us to decide. And if you study God's Word, and I mean as it was originally written in the Hebrew, Greek, and Aramaic, you will see the points you've made and what you've called sin is not so straightforward.

    There is not one command against pornography in the Bible. Yes it's true, much of the porn industry is bad and evil, much of it shows things that break God's sexual laws, like incest for example. But to say that all porn is evil, or watching a blowjob is evil, that is unbiblical. Ask yourself, why did God put an erotic book in the Bible? The Song of Songs which I see you quoted from? That book is filled with sexual references that downright turn you on. And if you don't believe me, put yourself in the mind of an ancient Hebrew and follow the euphemisms in that book. Anecdotal to this, the couple in Song of Songs has some sexual activity before they marry.

    With regards to watching another couple, even being in the same room as you've said - while I think this is unwise, it's not actually sinful. If adultery is a sin you're prone to commit, then watching a couple, especially in person is a big temptation that you should avoid lest you sin. This is because adultery, as defined by Jesus, is when you in your heart have decided you're going to take someone else's wife for your own needs and wants; go look, it's in the Greek Bible. But, if you simply look at people having sex in a room, that doesn't mean you're desiring those people for yourself, and the same with porn. I've never really looked at porn thinking, "Gosh, how am I going to get this person in bed with me?". No, I've done it just because I want to get off to it. So, if you can watch married people having sex without lusting - that is, wanting them for yourself so that you desire in your heart to take them, then it's not sin. But I think it very unwise to practice, as God has told us to avoid activities that lead to sin. But, lust is definitely not looking at sex or porn; the Greek doesn't say this.

    Hebrews 13:4 deals with marriage purity. Basically, look at who's being judged there, "fornicators and adulterers". I've already explained that adultery is defined as taking someone's spouse for yourself, even if just in your heart, once you've decided to do it in some way. But what is a fornicator? The Greek will tell you it's a prostitute. Now how does a prostitute lead to defiling a marriage? Well, many prostitutes were married and were targeting married men on street corners - this is adultery! But this verse has nothing to do with porn, or unmarried people having sex either.

    This verse is dealing with marriage and telling all to respect it and not to try break it up by defiling it. You can also defile it through idolatry, by having sex unto another god, which many prostitutes did back then as service to another god. And also, anecdotal to this, Sampson slept with a prostitute, and it was not held against him.

    I suggest you do more study in this area and pray - and don't take my word for it but go find out for yourself. I am not saying all Christians should be voyeurs or visit prostitutes, no, I am simply saying that we should be careful calling a sin what God has not - that's self-righteousness. I fully believe we must strive for God's ideal which is one man with one woman. I fully believe we should try keep sex in marriage and not before. But I also believe we must not twist scripture. There are nude pics on this site which you think of as porn, and this bad in your eyes. But the Bible doesn't call such things bad. Be careful that you don't become like a Pharisee who sees everything as sinful, I do not think God intended us to live like that, because Jesus said "My yoke is easy and my burden is light".

    I hope this helps, and please pray about it. I have only tried to offer what the Bible says in as unbiased a way as I can. The Bible says very clearly that it's not open to individual interpretation. Thus, we must seek God's mind on these topics, and to do this, we need to study the original.

    Kind regards,
    Southernmost

    • A Better Pastime says:

      For me, this sentence in the response by "Southernmost" is inflammatory:

      =======================
      I suggest you do more study in this area and pray - and don't take my word for it but go find out for yourself. I am not saying all Christians should be voyeurs or visit prostitutes, no, I am simply saying that we should be careful calling a sin what God has not - that's self-righteousness
      =======================

      When someone suggests to another person that they "do more study and pray" and in the more passive form "don't take my word for it but go find out for yourself", it implies here that one is master and one is still student.

      I am even more particularly inflamed when Christians levy these same terms and phrases toward other Christians.

      These kind of terms and phrases always sound to me like commentary that is found in any conspiracy theory, or a vitamin supplement infomercial.

      These two comments, that I've highlighted, come off as "so said the sanctified to the unsanctified".

      I've seen these type of phrases repeated here in MH comment sections on repeated occasion, ,and I think that MH would do well to adhere to their very own request put forth in this "story":

      MH Quote:
      ============================
      we remind you to respond to posts and comments with love and kindness, without assuming that your reasoning or what you've been taught is the only way of looking at an issue. Say what you believe, but don't condemn others who may disagree. Instead, we ask that you lovingly offer them your insights and pray that the Holy Spirit will lead each of us into all truth.
      =============================

      I agree with you MH: "offer your insights and pray" versus one commentator telling another commentator that they need to do more Bible study and check themselves by praying more.

    • Roaring Sheep says:

      Can you elaborate on your understanding that Song of Solomon "has some sexual activity before they marry." I read it recently and at the moment I have no reason to agree with that understanding.

    • southernmost says:

      Hi there Roaring Sheep,

      I don't want to go too much off topic as I feel this is a discussion for a separate post, but upon reading Song of Songs you will find metaphors for the lovers' sexual acts, like in chapter 2:4-6. Here in the English, one could argue that the acts are merely being longed for, but in the Hebrew, the sentence and tense construction denote that something is happening in the present. And in verses 4-6, the couple are not married yet.

      Hope this small example helps, but I would recommend looking up the debates on SOS for more information.

      Kind regards,
      Southernmost

    • HeSaid-SheSaid says:

      @Southernmost
      I read a book once on the SOS and it was the authors belief that the book is not written in chronological order. In fact, I think it is the last chapter that has a flashback to when the woman is a girl and not yet developed sexually and her brothers are talking about protecting her. I think this is proof enough that we can't be sure of timelines in the Song. The Bible itself is not compiled chronologically either. I think westerners have difficulty reading literature from a different culture that displays different rules in their writing style and the westerners become confused at best.

  2. NoahZark says:

    Interesting that the comment included reference to Hebrews 13:4. Where I fail to make the connection is this; how is it that two undefiled marriage beds are sinful, but one is not? Is witnessing something that is undefiled a sin? Just doesn’t seem logical.
    Humans seem to have an inner need to invent things. Unfortunately, this sometimes carries over into our practical theology, as we invent new rules in addition to what God has revealed and then assume they are also binding. This is easy to do, but we need to guard against it, especially since in this case there is a God-breathed book of erotic poetry in the Word!
    Blessings,
    Noah

  3. Soulman says:

    Some principles to apply here:
    And this I pray, that your love may abound still more and more in real knowledge and all discernment, so that you may approve the things that are excellent, in order to be sincere and blameless until the day of Christ; Philippians 1:9-10.

    As Christians grow in spiritual maturity we should be transitioning from a life of discerning good from bad to a life at a level where we are discerning between good and excellent.

    The battle of the two natures in Romans 7: if we simply define sin as something we “do,” we’ve blinded ourselves to the temptations around us. We have a sin nature within us that craves the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the boastful pride of life. Here in Romans 7, Paul—our spiritual big brother—at the height of his ministry, acknowledged his wretchedness because the very thing he did not want to do, he found himself doing.

    When we draw lines in the sand so we can see how close we can get to sin without sinning, we play a dangerous game.

    There is much freedom in Christ, Amen! I’m so thankful for that freedom. We are free to explore the endless possibilities of sexually connecting within God’s design. And I enjoy every minute of that.

    In my journey, I find the the journey to the most erotic, deepest intimacy is not to define the line and make sure I don’t cross it (while satan sits back and grins at my naivety), but to rather move away from the line and use my freedom to serve my wife, in love. We are such complex beings, and our genderness stretches across every dimension of our being. My bride is a sexual being physically, emotionally, intellectually, and spiritually....and those dimensions are all connected. That is the journey into erotic intimacy. That is an adventure of which I will only scratch the surface in this life. I suspect that if I could commit multiple lifetimes to connect with my wife, sexually, across the dimensions of her being, the sex would likely take on the appearance of the supernatural.

    ........and the things on earth will grow strangely dim.....

    • HappyHubby says:

      "I find the the journey to the most erotic, deepest intimacy is not to define the line and make sure I don’t cross it (while satan sits back and grins at my naivety), but to rather move away from the line and use my freedom to serve my wife."

      Amen and Amen.

  4. 0189lvr says:

    Sin (hamartia) literally means missing the mark. What mark? Romans 3:23 says, “for all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God”, so sin is literally anything that violates God’s righteous and holy character.

    Pay attention to this: I’ve looked in the Bible, study it for a living even. Jesus defines adultery, not as committing an act, but even looking upon a woman with lust (Matthew 5:27-28), for when you lust after a woman you’ve already committed adultery with her in your heart. I think that explains away Southern’s view of what is an unbiblical view of adultery. Incredibly enough, the Greek word for lust in this verse is where we get our English word for porn. Look it up.

    So looking at a picture, and finding a longing for it in your heart is sin. Paul instructs us to not engage with lust hoping to come out the stronger for it... Paul says “Flee youthful passions and pursue righteousness...” 2 Timothy 2:22.

    Yes Hebrews 13:4 is talking about the sanctity of marriage, the marriage bed. That’s why it’s so important to protect it. Not just from the outward acts, but also the inward thoughts.

    1 Corinthians 7 is another passage that is really good on sex in marriage. The Bible uses language like do your “duty” for your spouse. I think that’s kind of funny because I’ve never considered it a duty. But in this passage, Paul is seeking to communicate the need for spouses to engage regularly because if we don’t, then (interesting language here) “Satan will tempt us because of our lack of self-control”.
    It’s interesting to me because it says “because of our lack” of self control. This would imply (and I think any married couple would agree) that there going to come a time when sex isn’t possible and the man or the woman or both get a little extra horngry (yes I intentionally misspelled it). The point is that the lack of self control is as a result of the other not fulfilling it. All that to say, full satisfaction ought to be found in my spouse.

    And this is for everyone. Not specific individuals who are too weak and can’t stand up against temptation, it’s for everyone. There is no one that is exempt from the need to be held in check. There is a line that cannot be crossed.

    This is my point. I apologize if I have offended. It wasn’t my intention. Simply stated, I see this as an area that our weak flesh has allowed the devil to twist and pervert what God has called holy. And Jesus (God, the living Word) set His standard for what is immoral.

    As for Samson, I fully accept that he is recorded of in Hebrews 11 as one who acted in faith. But I have read it, many times. That mans life is one failure after another. He violated every point of the Nazarite vow and at the end of his life, he committed suicide out of anger and not to deliver God's people. At the end of Samson’s life, I never find myself saying, "Wow, what a great guy," but always, what could it have been... if only he hadn’t had his eyes set on chasing women.

    One more passage, James 1:14-15
    “But each one is tempted when he is carried away and enticed by his own lust. Then when lust has conceived it gives birth to sin, and sin when it is accomplished brings forth death”.
    This isn’t the only passage that speaks to a downward spiral, but it is a good one. It seems that we don’t necessarily have to go looking for destruction. It can come looking for us. And as we become more and more accommodating to it, we slip further and further into it.

    Sex is wonderful. It is a gift. But it’s only a gift if it’s done God’s way. I believe (contrary to what many seem to think) that God has in fact given us enough of a picture of what it should look like within the framework of marriage.

    Sorry this is so long.

    • PatientPassion says:

      I haven't had time to read through all of the comments just yet, but I did want to reply to this and ask a question.

      Is the Greek word for "lust" truly where we get the English word "porn" or "pornography?" I've learned from previous study and confirmed through another search just now that the Greek word used in Matthew 5:28 is actually a form of the Greek word "epithumia," which means to lust or strongly desire. The English word "pornography" comes from two different Greek words, "pornea" and "graphos," which blend to mean "writing (or drawing, depiction) of sexual immorality." Do you maybe have some different, special resources you use, since you said you study the Bible for a living? Because those don't seem to be the same words to me.

  5. Prince of Denmark says:

    I don't see how it's immoral. It's important for couples to exercise judgment and not make choices that will destroy the marriage, but it seems like this encounter was a shared experience that strengthened both marriages. It sounds like a once in a lifetime opportunity between friends exercising discernment and enjoying life. I'm glad that both couples got to experience this.

  6. Mercury7 says:

    We had a similar experience, although without any nudity or sexual activity. We were young, and went to a Christian conference with good friends of ours. We had been in each other's weddings, and had both been married less than a month. We all were in college and had very limited funds, so we shared a motel room. Our scruples at the time kept us from any nudity or any sexual activity (not even under the covers). My views have changed over the years (many years!) and I now think it would have been okay for us to watch each other having sex. It is a beautiful act of love designed by God. Most of the skills I have learned in life, I have learned (or improved) by watching others. If my wife and I had been able to watch our friends, it probably would have allowed us (in one night) to move forward in our sexual relationship to an extent that took us years to attain on our own. When we first got married we had little information and no guidance about how to have a fulfilling sexual relationship.

    • Liverr says:

      Agree and well stated and thought out. How many years have we over time tried to develop of married sexuality - having the opportunity to learn from others could have saved yrs

  7. Hotnorthern says:

    I was a bit taken aback by the story. It bordered way to close on group sex for my taste. Even if they are only have sex with their respective spouses, doing it in front of each other just seems like crossing a boundary of privacy to me.
    I also feel that being open to having others in the room degrades the intimate part of sex and also opens the door to falling into sin.

    Could also bring about feelings of covetousness, wishing your spouse’s body was like the other persons (could happen anyway but this has escalated it). I just think it’s a can of worms better left closed. Christians should not be putting themselves in compromising situations or situations that appear evil. “Avoid any appearance of evil.”

    I strongly feel that this is or has a high capacity to be compromising to the relationship and to our own hearts.

  8. undeservinggrace says:

    Thank you for bringing this up, and for all of the discussion around it. I realize I may be in a different place from many people, and that we are all on our own separate journeys. Saying that, I think we are all trying to head towards the same place in the end, and helping one another is what we are all called to do. Thank you, MH, for providing this platform, and for being brave enough to encourage discussion of potentially controversial issues like this.

    The first thing I thought of when I read "Shared Accommodations" was along the lines of "this is just wrong." However, the Holy Spirit immediately reminded me that He actually created us to live this way. If man had passed the test in the Garden, what would life be like? Would we be wearing clothes? Would we be ashamed? Would the things we consider to be wrong really be wrong?

    Does our reaction to this story give us each some personal insight into where we are spiritually and what we have been taught? More specifically, does it perhaps show us which Covenant we are personally living under, the Old or the New? Does the New Covenant not free us from the Law? Does baptism in water not free us from our slavery to sin? Does the indwelling Holy Spirit not intimately guide us moment-by-moment to live a holy life?

    If we are afraid of sinning when we find ourselves in a situation like this, is that an indication that we may not actually be as free as we might think? Are we really where we think we are, and do we need to ask for more understanding?

    I am fascinated by what God said to the man and the woman when he found them hiding in the Garden. He asked them who told them that they were naked. Who? Who was this 'who'? I discuss this question in my blog post, 'Shulamite'. I have shared its location here before, and encourage folks to consider those musings. The Holy Spirit has provided me much personal insight into what I have personally needed, and I encourage everyone to ask Him to do the same for them.

    Blessings

  9. PatientPassion says:

    I'm mostly in agreement with southernmost, though I must admit I'm torn on this issue. I would probably feel pretty uncomfortable in a mutually-voyeuristic situation as described in the story. I feel like that kind of intimacy is a special thing that should certainly be physically protected, but perhaps visually protected as well.

    However, I struggle to biblically condemn the act of simply seeing a married couple having sex as sinful. I think there could be a biblical case against it based on the extraordinary oneness and intimacy of marriage as a reflection of our exclusive intimacy with Christ, but I don't see a very clear case. Since I'm uncomfortable with this idea and it does FEEL wrong, I do actually more or less want to find a biblical case against it, but I'm not aware of a clear and convincing one.

    In response to the scriptures referenced, (Psalm 101:3, Hebrews 13:4, SoS 2:15) they only condemn this behavior if it is elsewhere defined as sinful, and it's not clear to me that it is. Hebrews 13:4 does point out specific sins, but the others only reference an underlying, unsubstantiated assumption that this behavior is inherently sinful. It may seem obvious to others that watching another couple have sex is wrong, and my own upbringing makes me lean in that direction, but I don't know of a clear, convincing biblical case that can be made that shows it's sinful. Other sexual sins are clearly defined, like adultery, incest, or homosexuality, but this one isn't.

    Since it's related, I'll briefly restate a point about pornography that I've made in the past. I don't think that watching sex happen is the sin of pornography, or even necessarily lust (though that's possible). I think the sin is intentionally deriving pleasure from something that deeply offends God: the commission of a sin such as fornication or adultery.

    • Oldersingle says:

      "I've learned from previous study and confirmed through another search just now that the Greek word used in Matthew 5:28 is actually a form of the Greek word "epithumia," which means to lust or strongly desire."
      There was no "reply" link to your earlier reply, so I will post here and also address your comment here. You are correct - "lust" is simply a strong desire. Even Jesus lusted (expressing his desire to eat the Last Supper with his disciples.) From my study, I have found that "looking upon a woman to lust after her" means to take some action toward having her, not simply admiring her. I believe that there is a difference between simply admiring the God-given beauty of a woman and the attempt to actually have her. Many men have suffered under a false sense of condemnation by believing that simply looking at a beautiful woman is sin. I see nowhere in Scripture where God commands a man to "bounce his eyes" from a woman, as some anti-porn ministers seem to think is the answer to a man' "lust."

  10. Happy Husband says:

    To be logically consistent, I would have to say that IF watching another married couple have sex in person is a sin, then how is reading the intimate and carefully described intimate details of married people having sex in an on line web site not equally sinful? I think the Bible is clear that married sex is beautiful and blessed. The Song of Songs describes oral sex and lovemaking in metaphorical but obvious terms; how could this beautiful act be sinful because it is seen rather than read? Should married sex be put on display to the general public in a manner that causes persons to stumble? I would say no. But for someone to say that it should be hidden between married couples without any intention of non-partner interaction because we should have nothing "wicked" before our eyes is to plainly suggest that married sex can be made wicked, not sacred. We have been taught that sex of any kind should be concealed and hidden, but there is nothing in the Bible that defines married sex as "wicked,&quot, as adultery, or as fornication that will result in judgment from God. Finally, I would even suggest that the "foxes" who are ruining the vineyards in the context of sex are those that defile the marriage bed by fornication, adultery, or even by the assertion that married sex can become "wicked" merely because it is witnessed in person. Everyone has their own level of modesty, and there is no sin for those who who reserve their sex to the privacy of their homes and bedrooms. For most, I suspect that witnessing another couple having sex would be far too great a temptation. But if the heart is pure and the desires remain for one's own spouse, I do not think that God would condemn married persons from expressing themselves sexually in front of other married persons.

  11. Cuddles says:

    I have a viewpoint on this discussion which I think is interesting enough to share with the community.

    I often see pictures or "videos" in my imagination which the Holy Spirit gives to me. They can be just for me or for the body (mostly my fellowship which is a local church, or part thereof). My pastors and elders have recognised this gifting of the Holy Spirit for decades.

    I have received a picture of the concept under discussion. It's definitely for me personally, and it could also be for others as well.

    When I first read Shared Accommodation I was surprised, felt uncomfortable, but really had no opinion about it.

    My picture is of a large expanse of light grey area with minuscule me in the middle of it. I'm aware that the concept is also there. The expanse is full of light and enjoyable to be in.

    I get the sense that the expanse is what God knows and approves of but is yet for me to discover and become familiar with. There's controversial stuff in there, lots of it.

    My discomfort was because I was being challenged in my beliefs. I knew that I was going to have to make up my mind about it. I've been following the various discussions on MH for a while now so I've been in touch with all of the arguments and opinions about them. There was now enough material with which to form an opinion.

    Here's what I think...
    I personally believe the concept is good and approved by God, but He is leaving it up to me how I go with it. If I was turned on by the idea of watching or being watched I would now be free to explore it, most likely through fantasy. If I found myself in a scenario of the concept, I would enjoy it all!

    ATM, my focus is on my man who's on his way to me. I desire him, I want to get to know him, to know him intimately, to enjoy him. There may be a time down the track where we will want to spice things up and my current take on it will change.

    I think the situation could be very different for most of you, simply because you are married. There's been a lot of talk about exhibitionism and voyeurism of late. It looks to me like it's in that light grey expanse too.

    Well, there you have it! I'm hoping that this may be of some help to others to sort things out. Please let me know if it has.

    God's blessings on this discussion.

    Cuddles xxxx

  12. southernmost says:

    Dear 0189lvr,

    Thank you for your reply.

    In kindness I speak: you say you study the Bible but I am unsure if you know these verses you use, and it seems you have only studied the English. The Greek word for lust in Matthew 5:28 is definitely not "porneia" as you're thinking it is, as you said that's where we our modern word "porn" comes from. No, the word used for lust in that passage is "epithymesai". This Greek word simply means "to set your heart upon" or "to desire". And furthermore, Jesus is not saying that looking at any woman with lust is sinful, but He specifically speaks about married women. How do we know this? Look - Jesus paraphrases the 10th commandment into the commandment against adultery. The tenth commandment speaks against coveting one's neighbour's property. In ancient Israel, women were the property of their husbands. So Jesus is saying "Don't steal someone's wife!" And what's more, He says that if you set your heart upon someone else's wife, (you've made the decision to steal her in some way), then that's adultery.

    God is the same yesterday, today, and tomorrow. This means the New Testament will not have new laws in it and will not define new things as sinful (remember, Jesus came to fulfill the already existing law). So, if we want to know what God's laws are, let's look at the Old Testament. And let's use Jesus' teachings to explain them; Jesus taught from the Old Testament.

    The fact of the matter is, in all of God's sexual laws, you don't see anywhere that looking at naked people is sinful. You don't see anywhere that watching people have sex is sinful. Sexual sins are very narrowly defined, as we can read in Leviticus. Of course, there are tempting situations such as watching others, but this doesn't equal sin and not everyone is equally tempted. Song of Songs should be our best guide for erotica. God made us sexual, and I'm sure He didn't put thousands of rules on it just to make it tough for us (My burden is light, He says). Can you not see that the Devil has us so worked up in this age about all things sex being evil that we've forgotten what is sinful? Take idolatry for instance; how many people practice idolatry without even realizing it? Chasing money? Doing a martial art that was instituted to worship the creation, instead of the Creator? Fellowship gatherings with other faiths? Are those not clear sins which we are so blind to because we're hung up on sex? I'm not saying all goes for sex now, but we should be careful what we call a sin from our own understanding.

    By the way, porneia has to do with prostitution, but more so, temple prostitution - thus, idolatry. But it also has to do with breaking the sexual laws as outlined in Leviticus.

    In all things, pray and please do study. I recommend that you do not use secular definitions or rely only on the English.

    Kind regards,
    Southernmost

    • PatientPassion says:

      southernmost, I think you have a good point about idolatry, but I'm not sure about some of the examples you use. When it comes to things like martial arts or exercise practices like yoga that had more religious origins, if we do them for health with a heart of good bodily stewardship, I don't think it matters if the original intended purpose was incompatible with Christianity, because that's not the meaning or use now. We might do the same movements, but it's with an entirely different purpose, and that makes all the difference. A bit off-topic, but I thought it should be addressed.

    • ILoveMarriage says:

      And the Greek word for lust (epithymeo) isn't necessarily bad. It can be positive:

      And he said unto them, With desire I have DESIRED to eat this passover with you before I suffer: (Luk 22:15)

      This is a true saying, If a man desire the office of a bishop, he DESIRETH a good work. (1 Tim 3:1)

      And we DESIRE that every one of you do shew the same diligence to the full assurance of hope unto the end: (Heb 6:11)

    • southernmost says:

      Hi PatientPassion,

      I tried replying to your post but it was not posted, as I had guessed it wouldn't be because it was too much off topic, but I want to thank you for your reply nonetheless. But because there is much gray area with what we have both mentioned, I will say it needs a lot of prayer. I personally though tend to be more cautious when it comes to something I'm not 100% on.

      Dear ILoveMarriage,

      Yes indeed. There is such a thing as good lust and you've given brilliant examples! I think it's good to put this specific word into the light to highlight both its meanings, because I believe that, sadly, it's mainly got a negative, misunderstood history.

      Kind regards to all,
      Southernmost

  13. pnwwoodsman says:

    First off, a tip of the fedora to southernmost - really enjoy your Biblical perspectives!

    Secondly, I think it's a concern that we read things accurately and I'm not in agreement with using Psalm 101:3 "I will set nothing wicked before my eyes" as an argument against seeing (or reading) depictions of married believers having sexual relations. Because there is nothing wicked about marital intimacy. It's how we were designed and clearly Biblical, to the point where it's depicted in Song of Solomon.

    That's a separate issue from if it represents a temptation to some but to start from a basis that seeing sex is in and of itself wickedness seems to be a problematic reading of that text. Now, to a weaker brother it may represent a temptation to lust for someone - but to others, it may well simply be a beautiful thing, because at the core that's what it is. Married people having sex isn't wicked - in fact, it's very moral.

    Also, Cuddles, that's a very thought provoking and interesting vision you've shared, and I found it heartwarming. As one of the other singles here, I'm often concerned because as much as my mind and hopes have been open, I realize that a lot of the church including my sisters in Christ and potential mates aren't "there" when it comes to thinking about sexual matters, and are still in guilt, shame or legalism, and it's wonderful when you share your journey with us and provide that perspective. I hope she comes along soon so we can begin exploring!

    • Cuddles says:

      Thanks for the feedback pnww. I would love to see more women become sex positive. Would you believe that my "awakening" came at age 68! So there's always possibilities, where there's life there's hope!

      Go well on your journey and may the both of us, and all the other singles in the MH community, find and enjoy our destiny mates who have been journeying to us.

      Cuddles xxxx

    • southernmost says:

      Hi pnwwoodsman,

      Thank you very much for your reply.

      I agree indeed that we as Christians aught to read and study scripture correctly, because it is one of the most powerful ways to get to know the heart of God.

      And regarding marital sex - yes, it is a moral thing, because God commanded it in Genesis! In fact, it's a duty to have sex with one's spouse.
      An interesting tid-bit: in the Garden, when Adam and Eve sewed leaves to cover their genitals, they covered the one place that they would have needed to fulfill God's command to have sex. This is just my opinion here - but perhaps this is one of the reasons God was angered by their covering.

      Kind regards,
      Southernmost

  14. Megiddon says:

    As a minor tangent, I would like to point out that there was precious little privacy in common Hebrew homes. There were no private bedrooms: kids slept in the same room as parents, grandparents, aunts and uncles. Many times the entire family slept on the roof. Were couples celibate unless they could arrange a date night? Did they rigorously stay under covers? Did they gag each other so others would not hear?

    Or do you suppose everyone stopped their ears, averted their eyes, and hummed nursery rhymes when another couple made love? Yet these were the people living under the law for centuries! Surely a prophet would have mentioned it if such acts offended God?

    Let me put this another way: Jesus was likely in the room when His siblings were conceived. It was a natural, normal part of life, like eating or going to the rest room. He knew all about sex by age 12, just like every child in Judea.

    I am not supporting either argument here: simply pointing out that NOT being in the same room with a couple making love would have been unusual. If it bothers your conscience, it is sin for you. We all have freedoms others do not, as we are in different phases of our journey with the Lord.

    • MiSWRAPP says:

      Megiddon,

      Well said! I agree that everyone’s conscience is not the same and that is not a bad or good thing, but simply a fact.

      Also, I am currently taking a Human Sexuality course and it is amazing how older eras in history were more liberal and open about sexuality then we are today! To them, it was natural and just a part of life. Thanks for bringing up history about Hebrew homes because historical content is always important!

  15. Headswell says:

    I am new here but have read all the comments and study the Bible for a living too. When the friends speak in SofS 5:1 they are apparently observing the consummation of the marriage. This was common in the Ancient Near East. Interestingly I read that Martin Luther and friends watched each other lose their virginity in order to verify they no longer held Catholic celibacy vows. On a personal note I have learned a lot from watching videos of others having sex and have sinned in my heart for which I repent. Keep up the good theological discussions.

  16. unashamed God sex says:

    Probably my only post, since I have asked MH to delete my account.

    Very blessed man you are, to have had an experience as this. I am of the camp that sexual sin is only the act to going into (a prostitute as the Bible says) someone you are not married to. Then, lusting, as a sin, is only a strong desire (intent, planning) to do that sin when you get the chance. Or you’re going to make it happen or manipulate to get someone to do it. So, I don’t see any sin, in this story.

    I do understand that not everyone is willing to define sexual sin like this, though. What is a sin to you is a sin to you, THAT I HAVE TO RESPECT. If I don’t respect that, I sin. Paul would rather not eat meat than compromise a brothers faith. Same goes for sex.

    Some think the shower scene is too far to go. As you have wrote all stayed within the marriage. I’m not judging. I see no sin as long as you are honest & I have no reason to think you lied. I can see the anxiety though. A shower is different. People think close proximity. You wrote that it is a large shower, apparently large enough that four people could play without touching other marriage private parts. Not much difference from seeing things close enough to teach how to give a blow job.

    Also, fear of temptation is there for many Christians even though they would never do what happened. Church is so saturated with the POSSIBILITY of sin, that many people miss out because they are afraid they will go too far, when the wouldn’t. But, truly, some would. So, I respect that.

    Another caution, is arousal. Some think getting aroused by seeing another couple go at it is wrong. A sin. If that were true then no Christian should own a TV, nor read anything in print or the internet. Because, sex appeal sells. No it’s not arousal that causes you to take your clothes off right there, but it is arousal that creates good warm feelings to get that product in your good graces. God made us to notice attractive things. This ability is to be controlled, but doesn’t disappear when we get married. Appreciating isn’t a sin.

    The act & the intent to do the act is the only sin.

    Thanks for your time.

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