Struggling with lust

Discussions amongst Christians about life issues, walking with Christ, and general Christian topics that don't fit under any other area.
timboo
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#16

Post by timboo » Mon Aug 21, 2006 10:45 am

I am definitely addicted to porn and sexual imagery online. Its just too easy- I loaded on a blocking programme but it was easy to override when the temptation became too much.

We are basically designed to want to have sex with every attractive female we meet- its in our genes. so its not surprising. it can be very depressing and degrading though. the only answer is to cut yourself off from mainstream society.

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#17

Post by FFC » Mon Aug 21, 2006 1:11 pm

timboo wrote:I am definitely addicted to porn and sexual imagery online. Its just too easy- I loaded on a blocking programme but it was easy to override when the temptation became too much.

We are basically designed to want to have sex with every attractive female we meet- its in our genes. so its not surprising. it can be very depressing and degrading though. the only answer is to cut yourself off from mainstream society.
There is a technique in the Stephen Arterburn and Fred Stoeker book "Every Man's battle" called bouncing the eyes. When a sensual image or a sexually desirable woman crosses you path of vision you simply bounce your eyes away from them. That second look is what always gets you. It's hard to do because everything in me wants to keep looking. God has already won the victory for us at Calvary though, it's just a matter of taking our every thought captive and giving them to Christ. No matter how we slice it it is still a struggle.

As far as the internet blocking programs go they are said to be beneficial, but as you found, out as long as you have control of it it still comes down to you. I have read of another program that sounds more promising. It keeps a record of every site you visit and sends the report to your accountability partner(s).
"Faith sees the invisible, believes the unbelievable, and receives the impossible." - Corrie Ten Boom

Act 9:6
And he trembling and astonished said, Lord, what wilt thou have me to do?

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#18

Post by Turgonian » Tue Aug 22, 2006 7:00 am

Now, isn't this an amazing thing? I happened to come across this thread yesterday, and today I encountered a site I wasn't looking for and had never heard of: Blazing Grace. The homepage starts by saying,
Blazing Grace wrote:Today porn use is an epidemic in the church, yet there are few who discuss the problem, let alone offer hope for those who struggle with porn or sexual addiction. This website provides straight answers for those weary travelers of life who want to live free from the shaming bondage of lust. Follow the links on the left to begin the road to grace. New content is added often.
Personally, when dealing with sin, I sometimes find it helpful to remind myself that Christ liberated us from the domination of sin (Luke 4:18-21; John 8:34-36; Romans 6:14, 18, 22; 8:2; I Corinthians 10:13; Galatians 5:16, 24).

And sometimes it is helpful as well as satisfying to visualize doing to sin what sin would like to do to you...
For instance, like this:
Months ago, Turgonian wrote:With care, he issues from his hiding,
But he is noticed right away;
With studded mace, the foe comes striding,
And beats from him the living day;
He draws his sword and hacks in fury
(A lesser one would long be dead),
And finally, as to make sure, he
Unloads a gun into his head.
The body, bloody, soiled, wound-bitten,
Is kicked into a gaping pit.
He lies there senseless, not yet smitten:
This will not be the end of it.

What person can arouse such hate
And who can be the hater?
To me these evil acts are done;
I am the perpetrator.
My mind is totalitarian
And I am the dictator...

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Lust etc...

#19

Post by madscientist » Sat Sep 02, 2006 7:11 am

Well are all images to do with attractive people lustful? What exactly is lust? It has to be sexual (when talking about this stuff with looking at attractive ppl), so what is wrong if there is an attractive woman and you think she's attractive? If you are married then you should turn your eyes away, but she shouldnt lead others to sin. But I dont think if you look at her because she's pretty thats lust. I mean if you accept shes pretty but you absolutely want to stay away from sex then I'd say theres no lust. Obviously and naturally, it is absolutely logical that if someone is pretty we like to look at him/her and be with them. Nothing wring with that, we need to have nice moments in life! Thats why life was created - to have relationship with God and some nice moments. However I dont think it has to lead to sexual lust. There is lust after other, non-sexual things, eg property thats also sin. And of course staring at a thing you'd like to have isnt sin, so why cant it be the same with sexual lust? So I dont know whether I am correct but I think there are limits to what is and isnt lust. If you'd never find your own wife/husband attractive (and maybe lusted after him/her before marriage) then marriage would never had happened.

Ad another question - if you are married, you can "lust" after your wife/husband. But if you are not married yet, cant you "lust" after others?If you never lusted in this way then probably you wouldnt like your wife/husband because you didnt lust after him/her before marriage. SO how are people who are not married supposed to overcome lust? Even harder for them than when theyre married.
So how are we then supposed to love our life if we cant look at nice things? If you find someone attractive and want to be his/her friend etc but not sexual then thats not lust, right? COz if it is then either something's wrong or the lust isnt waht ppl think it is.

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#20

Post by Canuckster1127 » Sat Sep 02, 2006 7:49 am

Lust has some different meanings and connotations.

What we're talking about here, I believe, is an unrestrained desire to possess someone sexually where the person is seen as an object for our own selfish gratification.

Speaking as a man, (although woman can experience a form of lust, I think there's usually a pretty clear difference in how woman are wired in this regard) I am designed to respond visually to a woman. That is attraction. Attraction is not lust. Lust is what I do with that initial attraction.

Sin often is the taking of something good that is then twisted or marred into something that it was not originally meant to be. Sex is good. It is designed for a man and a woman in the context of a commited relation; marriage.

In men, that healthy sex drive is designed to attract us toward women (not the sole basis but crtainly a powerful one) and it designed in that regard to incline us toward procreation and marriage. All good.

Sin enters the picture when we allow that good and healthy desire to raise out of that context and draw us toward fornication or adultery.

So, is attraction wrong or sinful? No, it is not.

When does it become lust? When it is nursed into an unhealthy desire that makes another person an object for my sexual gratification outside the purposes that God designed a healthy sexual relationship.

Note, this can apply within a marriage as well. A wife is an appropriate object of sexual desire. Even in that context, a man can make her an object and fail to give her the love and respect that keeps such a relationship healthy. That is part of the reason why God adminished men to love their wives and respect them as their own bodies.

There is not a clear legalistic standard for always figuring this out. For me, becuase I've struggled with this for many years, I've determined to fight for discipline that draws that line by keeping my eyes from camping on images or women in a manner that allows lust a foothold. It is not easy in our sex-crazed western culture. We are so far off healthy in this regard that many Christians don't even know what healthy is.

Pornography is rampant. In the US the pornography industry exceeds the NBA, NFL. MLB and NHL COMBINED, in terms of dollars. It is BILLIONS of dollars. The internet pipes it into homes and offices now where it is easy to access and avoids the shame and barriers that used to exist to get this kind of material.

Christians are susceptable to this. Sadly, much of the Church is not addressing this in any organized or direct manner. Many churches are just now beginning to awake to the fact that men need to be discipled and equipped in this area and men trained on how to manage and protect their children in this context as well.

Organizations such as Everyman's Battle (which is a part of New Life) are raising up with materials and seminars. Other organizations exist which are beginning to see this a the crisis that it is and promoting revival and discipleship to resist society's general morass of permissiveness.

Lust is deadly. It is sin. It is rampant. Christians and the Church must recognize it for what it is and face it head on. In doing so, it's not enough to simply negatively address sin. God's plan and healthy outlet for this God created drive must be acknowleged and honored as well.

My thoughts anyway.
Dogmatism is the comfortable intellectual framework of self-righteousness. Self-righteousness is more decadent than the worst sexual sin. ~ Dan Allender

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Re: Lust etc...

#21

Post by FFC » Sat Sep 02, 2006 7:52 am

madscientist wrote:Well are all images to do with attractive people lustful? What exactly is lust? It has to be sexual (when talking about this stuff with looking at attractive ppl), so what is wrong if there is an attractive woman and you think she's attractive? If you are married then you should turn your eyes away, but she shouldnt lead others to sin. But I dont think if you look at her because she's pretty thats lust. I mean if you accept shes pretty but you absolutely want to stay away from sex then I'd say theres no lust. Obviously and naturally, it is absolutely logical that if someone is pretty we like to look at him/her and be with them. Nothing wring with that, we need to have nice moments in life! Thats why life was created - to have relationship with God and some nice moments. However I dont think it has to lead to sexual lust. There is lust after other, non-sexual things, eg property thats also sin. And of course staring at a thing you'd like to have isnt sin, so why cant it be the same with sexual lust? So I dont know whether I am correct but I think there are limits to what is and isnt lust. If you'd never find your own wife/husband attractive (and maybe lusted after him/her before marriage) then marriage would never had happened.

Ad another question - if you are married, you can "lust" after your wife/husband. But if you are not married yet, cant you "lust" after others?If you never lusted in this way then probably you wouldnt like your wife/husband because you didnt lust after him/her before marriage. SO how are people who are not married supposed to overcome lust? Even harder for them than when theyre married.
So how are we then supposed to love our life if we cant look at nice things? If you find someone attractive and want to be his/her friend etc but not sexual then thats not lust, right? COz if it is then either something's wrong or the lust isnt waht ppl think it is.
You're right, mad, looking at a women and admiring her beauty is not lust and is not a sin. God gave us a sex drive and it is a wonderful thing, but like any of God's gifts they can be misused. If a person looks at a woman or man and begin to stare and think about having some sexual relation with her or him it is lust. I can't back this up with scripture but I think that even lusting after a spouse is sin because you've made the person a sexual object instead of someone you desire to share a loving sexual relationship with. Lust is always sin no matter how you slice it. I think the best barometer is to check the motive of your heart. If what you are doing or thinking is to gratify only you without regard to the other person than it is sin.

Jam 4:1 ¶ From whence [come] wars and fightings among you? [come they] not hence, [even] of your lusts that war in your members?


Jam 4:2 Ye lust, and have not: ye kill, and desire to have, and cannot obtain: ye fight and war, yet ye have not, because ye ask not.


Jam 4:3 Ye ask, and receive not, because ye ask amiss, that ye may consume [it] upon your lusts.
"Faith sees the invisible, believes the unbelievable, and receives the impossible." - Corrie Ten Boom

Act 9:6
And he trembling and astonished said, Lord, what wilt thou have me to do?

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Re: Lust etc...

#22

Post by madscientist » Sun Sep 03, 2006 3:38 am

FFC wrote:If what you are doing or thinking is to gratify only you without regard to the other person than it is sin.
OK so lust is also a sin because it is selfish, right? Well what if it is used to gratify both of you? Ya like marriage should be so that both people should benefit. But its still lust even if both of you benefit outside of marriage (if it is NOT sex. interxcousye then it is a horrible sin)? Eg having a girlfriend/boyfriend isnt a sin, right?

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#23

Post by FFC » Sun Sep 03, 2006 5:24 pm

Eg having a girlfriend/boyfriend isnt a sin, right?
Of course not. Neither is sexual attraction. It's what you do with it that determines whether it is sin or not. Are you struggling in this area, Mad?
"Faith sees the invisible, believes the unbelievable, and receives the impossible." - Corrie Ten Boom

Act 9:6
And he trembling and astonished said, Lord, what wilt thou have me to do?

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#24

Post by Turgonian » Wed Sep 06, 2006 7:54 am

When you're married, it's unhealthy to cut off all other relationships with people of the other gender. We were created for a community... If a man marries, he can still have good relations with other women. However, like FFC said, that shouldn't lead to lustful thoughts about those women (desiring more than just friendship).

As has been said -- the root of lust is disrespect. Looking at the world from an egoistical point of view. Desiring others for yourself rather than loving them for what they are.
The Bible says they were "willingly ignorant". In the Greek, this means "be dumb on purpose". (Kent Hovind)

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Re: Quote

#25

Post by madscientist » Wed Sep 06, 2006 8:39 am

FFC wrote:
Eg having a girlfriend/boyfriend isnt a sin, right?
Of course not. Neither is sexual attraction. It's what you do with it that determines whether it is sin or not. Are you struggling in this area, Mad?
Well good quest FFC hopefully I am not and thanks to God for that but I am just asking whether it is a sin or not since I dont like when something doesnt make sense. Eg looking at porn is a sin but kissing ur girlfriend when not married to her is not? It's for pleasure and one is sin and otehr isnt? It makes sense because porn and stuff like that (not that i watch it! I m trying to stay away from such stuff) are selfish? Because sex before marriage is not allowed of course but kissing etc is? Does it make any sense? Arent these 2 things closely connected?

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Re: Quote

#26

Post by FFC » Wed Sep 06, 2006 9:45 am

madscientist wrote:
FFC wrote:
Eg having a girlfriend/boyfriend isnt a sin, right?
Of course not. Neither is sexual attraction. It's what you do with it that determines whether it is sin or not. Are you struggling in this area, Mad?
Well good quest FFC hopefully I am not and thanks to God for that but I am just asking whether it is a sin or not since I dont like when something doesnt make sense. Eg looking at porn is a sin but kissing ur girlfriend when not married to her is not? It's for pleasure and one is sin and otehr isnt? It makes sense because porn and stuff like that (not that i watch it! I m trying to stay away from such stuff) are selfish? Because sex before marriage is not allowed of course but kissing etc is? Does it make any sense? Arent these 2 things closely connected?
I think there is the potential for a connection there, but kissing your girlfriend is not lust in itself...although it certainly can open the door to it. Only you can be the judge as to whether it has turned into lust or not.
"Faith sees the invisible, believes the unbelievable, and receives the impossible." - Corrie Ten Boom

Act 9:6
And he trembling and astonished said, Lord, what wilt thou have me to do?

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Re: Quote

#27

Post by madscientist » Wed Sep 06, 2006 10:13 am

FFC wrote:
madscientist wrote:
FFC wrote:
Eg having a girlfriend/boyfriend isnt a sin, right?
Of course not. Neither is sexual attraction. It's what you do with it that determines whether it is sin or not. Are you struggling in this area, Mad?
Well good quest FFC hopefully I am not and thanks to God for that but I am just asking whether it is a sin or not since I dont like when something doesnt make sense. Eg looking at porn is a sin but kissing ur girlfriend when not married to her is not? It's for pleasure and one is sin and otehr isnt? It makes sense because porn and stuff like that (not that i watch it! I m trying to stay away from such stuff) are selfish? Because sex before marriage is not allowed of course but kissing etc is? Does it make any sense? Arent these 2 things closely connected?
I think there is the potential for a connection there, but kissing your girlfriend is not lust in itself...although it certainly can open the door to it. Only you can be the judge as to whether it has turned into lust or not.
OK... so but then if it is not then sexual pleasure is not sin outside of marriage? Isnt it lust?? I think it is coz it has to do with lust and all those things... (It may look like I am struggling with this which I AM NOT!! just so you know... :) ). But im jus asking to make things clear.. coz it somehow doenst make sense i think.

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Re: Quote

#28

Post by Canuckster1127 » Wed Sep 06, 2006 10:19 am

madscientist wrote:
FFC wrote:
madscientist wrote:
FFC wrote:
Eg having a girlfriend/boyfriend isnt a sin, right?
Of course not. Neither is sexual attraction. It's what you do with it that determines whether it is sin or not. Are you struggling in this area, Mad?
Well good quest FFC hopefully I am not and thanks to God for that but I am just asking whether it is a sin or not since I dont like when something doesnt make sense. Eg looking at porn is a sin but kissing ur girlfriend when not married to her is not? It's for pleasure and one is sin and otehr isnt? It makes sense because porn and stuff like that (not that i watch it! I m trying to stay away from such stuff) are selfish? Because sex before marriage is not allowed of course but kissing etc is? Does it make any sense? Arent these 2 things closely connected?
I think there is the potential for a connection there, but kissing your girlfriend is not lust in itself...although it certainly can open the door to it. Only you can be the judge as to whether it has turned into lust or not.
OK... so but then if it is not then sexual pleasure is not sin outside of marriage? Isnt it lust?? I think it is coz it has to do with lust and all those things... (It may look like I am struggling with this which I AM NOT!! just so you know... :) ). But im jus asking to make things clear.. coz it somehow doenst make sense i think.
Well, to coin a phrase from my old youth pastor, what's the point of starting the engine if you aren't going to take a drive? ;)

There's not a legalistic answer that can be defined scripturally.

There's probably a lot to be said for restraint, however. These bodies have powerful emotions and reactions and starting them up in that direction when you cannot honorably act on those strong impulses is a disservice to both parties and an invitation to fornication which is, clearly, sin.
Dogmatism is the comfortable intellectual framework of self-righteousness. Self-righteousness is more decadent than the worst sexual sin. ~ Dan Allender

//bartsbarometer.com/

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Re: Quote

#29

Post by FFC » Wed Sep 06, 2006 12:34 pm

Mad wrote:OK... so but then if it is not then sexual pleasure is not sin outside of marriage? Isnt it lust?? I think it is coz it has to do with lust and all those things... (It may look like I am struggling with this which I AM NOT!! just so you know... ). But im jus asking to make things clear.. coz it somehow doenst make sense i think.
Mad, I apologize because I'm not comprehending exactly what you are saying. I think the main thing is for you to know that there is a difference between healthy Sexual attraction and lust. The former is of God and the latter is a twisting and corrupting of the former. How's that for confusing? :lol:

Example:
Healthy sexual attraction sees a woman and says "Wow, there is a very beautiful and attractive woman."

Lust says " Wow, there is a very beautiful and attractive woman and I'd love to take her and use her sexually for my own selfish satisfaction "
"Faith sees the invisible, believes the unbelievable, and receives the impossible." - Corrie Ten Boom

Act 9:6
And he trembling and astonished said, Lord, what wilt thou have me to do?

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Re: Quote

#30

Post by Turgonian » Wed Sep 06, 2006 1:00 pm

madscientist wrote:
FFC wrote:I think there is the potential for a connection there, but kissing your girlfriend is not lust in itself...although it certainly can open the door to it. Only you can be the judge as to whether it has turned into lust or not.
OK... so but then if it is not then sexual pleasure is not sin outside of marriage? Isnt it lust?? I think it is coz it has to do with lust and all those things... (It may look like I am struggling with this which I AM NOT!! just so you know... :) ). But im jus asking to make things clear.. coz it somehow doenst make sense i think.
Kissing is definitely something different from sex!
On a birthday, kisses are often exchanged. In Eastern European countries, men kiss each other in the way of greeting, and so did the early Christians.
Kissing is a way of showing that you have affection for the other, not necessarily love. (Or that you honour him; e.g. Judas and Jesus, who were in a teacher-disciple relationship.)
The act of sex itself is something sacred that God destined for marriage only. It is a total surrender of one's body to another. Man and woman become 'one flesh'. This is very different from a kiss!
I haven't heard any modern Christian defend that boys and girls aren't allowed to have premarital kisses. :lol: It's because kisses may be very special, but only sex is the mystical union of becoming 'one flesh'. (And I think it is mystical and forges a deep connection. That is why casual sex, the denial of this connection, is so destructive.)
The Bible says they were "willingly ignorant". In the Greek, this means "be dumb on purpose". (Kent Hovind)

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