Lu 1:1 Forasmuch as many have taken in hand to set forth in order a declaration of those things which are most surely believedamong us,
To listen to the sermons and read the web pages of the modern evangelical church, you would think that the principles of the gospel are freedom from “addictions” and helping people overcome their “hurts”.
Not long ago I passed a small church with a sign out front that said, “We help hurt people.” I thought, yeah, you probably do. People come to you for help and you help to hurt them.
I once attended a church in the Texas panhandle who thought that the principles of the gospel were to keep the women in “modest” apparel – long baggy dresses with long sleeves. To keep their hair long and uncut. To keep them from wearing jewelry which might gain attention. In short, to keep women as uglified as possible in order to keep the men of the church from lusting after them.
This worked as well as you might imagine. The pastor snuck off to Lubbock to look at porn and purchase prostitutes. He slavered after the young wives of the church, committed adultery with them, and broke up their marriages. He felt guilty about these things, of course. He went to other pastors in towns to confess his sins in order to attempt to use “accountability” to recover from his “addiction.” It didn’t work. – Of course, it didn’t work. Making up your own gospel never does.
The principles of the gospel – those things “most surely believed” are not the things MOST IMPORTANT TO US. Just because we have been raised in the prudish Victorian principles of anti-erotica, and just because our God-given biology forces us to behave in opposition to these unscriptural principles, does not mean that these are the things MOST IMPORTANT TO GOD.
God cares about the gospel. Jesus came to tell us God’s word. He didn’t come to back up the Pharisees in their traditions. The Gospel of Jesus is about dying for our sins, being resurrected for our regeneration, promising us that he will return for our hope of the resurrection. The sins that he wishes to deliver us from are Adultery, Fornication, Hatred, Murder, Rioting, Drunkeness (Galations 5:19-20) not “addictions.” He came to give us the source of the fruits of the Spirit – Love, Joy, Peace, etc. We help people overcome their addictions (the true addictions, I mean) because they prevent the fruits of the spirit from being expressed in their lives. But the centrality of the Gospel is not MEN but GOD. It is about Jesus and our relationship to him.
The Church must return to preaching the gospel instead of being a self-help group guided only by Pop Psychology that has no source in either the gospel or science.
Erotica – or what today we inaccurately call porn – is, as God showed us in the Song of Solomon, part of a healthy lifestyle. If we are guided by Scripture, the we would be promoting Holy Erotica (as I do in my website HolyErotica.com)
Today’s church is being seduced, like the foolish Galations so long ago, into believing a gospel of works. That living a Christian life means living and talking about Jesus, not running around talking about the most current fad to preach against.
One of the most arguments against christian married couples enjoying porn together is that the artificial perfection of the women and couples in porn will make the couple unsatisfied with the imperfections in each other.
This argument does not stand up to examination. Firstly, that is not the experience of couples who watch porn. Secondly, this argument isn’t used in any other situation. Thirdly, imagining the ideal is precisely what Christians and Jews have taught as the proper behavior for thousands of years.
Let’s take these one at a time.
Couples who watch porn do not experience decreased desire for each other.
The anti-porn advocate selectively quotes from the “question” part of the study that asks whether erotica-viewing will reduce marital desire. He then leaves out the results of the study – which contradicts his pre-determined conclusion. After studying 34 couples who were tested after viewing erotic and non-erotic stimuli. Here is what the authors wrote.
Participants viewing both the erotic and exciting films reported equivalent increases in excitement; however, the erotic film was rated as slightly more generally arousing and increased participant's desire to be close to their partner...viewing erotic films led to more positive evaluations of one's own sexual behaviors.
In short, the study states that couples who watched erotica – whether singly or alone – desired each other more. Of course they did. They got turned on by the fantasy and wanted some of the real thing from each other.
But why is this. Shouldn’t the fantasy make the reality less desirable? No
We use fantasy models all the time
Remember the wax fruit craze of the ’70’s. My mother put out a bowl of wax fruit as decoration. Did you ever try to bite into it? Well, I did. Mom was not happy. I discovered that models rarely taste as good as they look. Nevertheless, those perfect-looking waxed fruits did whet my desire for real fruit. If something can LOOK that good, surely somewhere there is something that TASTES that good.
When I go to the department store to buy clothes, I am surrounded by mannequins modelling those clothes. I know perfectly well that there are no male bodies with perfect abs like that outside of Hollywood (I’ll give you Chris Hemsworth). I certainly don’t look that nice. Yet I buy those polo shirts anyway. The store knows that showing me the ideal will increase my desire for the everyday.
When I watch Grey’s Anatomy with my wife, she knows perfectly well that I will never approach the manly perfection displayed
But I have gotten my bones jumped a few times after the episode!
Christians believe in Platonic Ideals
My point is that healthy brains are perfectly capable of distinguishing between the ideal and the prosaic. In fact, that is the way our brain works. We name things by the ideal. When Adam named the animals, he didn’t name them for ranges of attributes. (Four legged animal that eats grass, chews cud, and gives milk – coming in a range of colors and sizes) but rather for an ideal (this cow is larger than usual, with black and white spots instead of uniform brown).
As Judea-Christian philosophers, we believe that heaven contains the models of things that exist on earth. The perfect marriage is Christ and the Church. Contemplating this perfect love does not cause me to love my wife less, but more.
Ephesians 5:25 Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it;
So also, contemplating the perfect sex causes me to love sex with my wife more
I know that the sex models aren’t actually that perfect. That a guy cannot maintain an erection that long, that my wife isn’t going to moan that excitedly. That we aren’t both going to have simultaneous orgasms very often. I certainly know that I am not endowed with that many inches.
But that doesn’t keep me from using the inches that God endowed me with to please her and make her as happy as any porn star ever thought of being.
I grew up with the typical Christian upbringing. Which means that as a young teen, I sometimes went to the supermarket, hung around the magazine wrack, hid the playboy in a Sports magazine and looked at naked girls. I felt horribly guilty after I had done this, of course. Because I knew that I had “sinned.”
The Bible says that all have sinned, but does it say that all have sinned in exactly the same way? So what Christian American boy will tell you that he didn’t do this? The liars.
I spent much of my Christian teenage years feeling guilty about sex. About 19 years old or so I managed to stop feeling guilty about masturbation. But my guilt about my eyes accidentally straying to those girls in tight jeans continued until marriage. Even after that, I managed to keep myself in a constant state of weepy repentance by picking up a “dirty” magazine from the convenience store every year or so. Eventually my wife caught me, of course (they always do). And then my guilt was exacerbated by seeing how badly she was hurt. Then I was shamed because she took this “sin” to the pastor so that I could get “help” with my “addiction.”
So, all in all, I have had as good of a life as any sincere American Christian male. Others who were not blessed with a wife like mine, had to deal with their spouse using their “sin” to win arguments. “Well, I may have wrecked your car, but you looked at porn!” Some had wives who used this as an excuse to accomplish the wrecking of the marriage that the wife intended to do all along.
Of course, there may be a few Christian men whose wives haven’t caught them yet.
Then there are those sincere Christian men who have never looked at…. hahahahaha. Sorry, I couldn’t finish that sentence without laughing. No there are a few boys who don’t jack off – but they can be cured with a testosterone shot.
I finally realized that I and every other Christian male were losing this battle because God didn’t intend for us to go without erotica. In fact, God created erotica. This was his intent all along. God likes love and sex. He intends his people to be aroused by thinking about naked people. He created boys to think about bobbies and butts. He knows we think about having sex. He also knows that the more we think about sex, the more we have sex. He knows that boys are rubbing one out and he approves.
Contrary to what you see in the Christian literature out there, a husband and wife who view porn do not cease to have sex with each other, and they do not start having sex with other people. There are no longitudinal histories which show such a finding. The studies that are published with the intention of “proving” porn causes sin are all “cross-sectional.” These studies only prove correlation and not causation. People with higher sex drives watch more porn and have more sex. This is a “duh” finding.
God wants young men to watch porn and masturbate. In so doing, they learn about sex without committing fornication. If they are taught to respect girls and love them, then they will treat the porn as a promise of what they will get when they get married. This is how I used porn before I was married, even though I felt guilty about it. If we produced holy porn, then they would learn how to love women. This sort of erotica exists, although it is outnumbered by the porn that humiliates women.
God wants young girls to watch “chick flix” and learn how good men romance good women. They can watch sweet porn and see how they will one day make love with their husband.
Couples who watch porn either singly and together become erotically excited and have more sex. Despite what the preachers tell you, they do not become estranged from each other.
Now, there is one way in which porn will estrange a couple – if the wife is counseled by the church to fight her husband’s “addiction.” He will rightly resent her holier-than-thou attitude. He will continue to act according to the biological mandates that God created him with, and the result is, eventually, a church-caused divorce.
But God’s ideal is a couple who enjoy erotica both together and separately. A couple who can laugh a sex jokes together and jump in bed and make wild love – or tender love – or just have maintenance sex, preferably 10 to 20 times a week.
Now, there are some people who claim that this doesn’t happen. They have told and listened to horror stories (that the church created) about the “dangers” of porn that they simply don’t believe that a Solomon-like erotic love like this can exist. But I can tell you that it can and does. Once my wife and I surrendered the false traditions that we were raised with, we began living it. I once estimated that we have had sex between 10 and 20 thousand times in our lives. Both of us were virgins when we married and have never had sex with anyone else.
God’s plan is erotic love, erotic art, erotic speech, erotic masturbation, and erotic sex between two people who love one another.
So you want your wife to understand and (fantasy) maybe even join you.
There are lots of websites telling you how to confess to your wife but you didn’t come here to find that out.
I’m a psychiatrist and the art of psychiatry is the skill of getting people to act in their own best interest even when they don’t want to. We do this by realizing their perceptual distortions and helping them overcome them.
Everyone, not just schizophrenics, have perceptual distortions. Remember when we used to read comic strips (I know, dinosaur age) Cathy had a perceptual distortion about her weight. Much like an anorexic
Now you think that only sick people think that way, but you are wrong. Everyone does this. I recently got a hair cut and the hair falling in my lap was grey. This is strange, because the hair I see in the mirror is brown. I have to actually cut off a piece and look at it separately before I can perceive it’s true color. I once dyed it and was confused because it didn’t change color (in my mirror) while everyone else laughed at my attempt to look younger.
So your wife thinks that she is fat and ugly. When she looks in the mirror her baby stretch marks stand out like beacons. Her breasts sag like a tribal woman in National Geographic. Her hair is a straggly mess of grey that should belongs in the Salem Witch Trials and her butt is a dimpled mess.
Now you don’t see her that way (or you shouldn’t – if you do, then some family counseling is in order – more in a later post). You see her through eyes of love. Those stretch marks are from your babies that nursed at those lovely breasts. You have mounted that butt with joy uncountable times.
This is why your wife has such a violent (literally sometimes) reaction to the thought of you viewing porn. She thinks that you are wishing to be out of your marriage, to be able to “hit that.” She thinks that you are “lusting in your heart” that you want to sneak off and “get a piece” of that pretty young thing.
Your job is to get her to see it through another lens – through the lens of romantic chick flicks on the Hallmark channel. When Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman and Sully make out, is she thinking – “Oh, I wish I could kiss that manly tomahawk-wielding hunter in buckskins with long wavy hair”.
No, of course not, she is seeing herself as Dr. Quinn and you are her Sully. That’s why you take her to the theater and sit through chick flix right? For the sex afterwards. Yeah, I know you do and YOU know you do.
Don’t try to argue your side. That will only lead to many long arguments which you may or may not win, depending on your marriage dynamics. You need to tell her how you see her while not giving up your masculinity.
For example. Let’s say that your wife has watched Game of Thrones with you (even though she makes you fast forward through the good parts). Someday, when she is naked, stare at her breasts for a long time, lick your lips, play with a nipple and say, “You know, you look like Daenarys Stormborn but with LOTS bigger boobies.”
Now, you are going to get a rise out of her. She is going to ask what you are doing looking at Danni’s tits. You reply, “Hey, I’m a guy, I like titties. Wanna make love?” She’ll continue to argue, you just keep touching her and telling her how turned on she makes you and asking for immediate sex. Tell her that you are a man, show her your erection and prove it. Even if this ends with, “I’m not have sex with you if you are thinking about other women” You have begun to make your point.
Then, a few days later, after you have had great sex and are cuddling together, you say,
“God, that was hot, I just feel like I fucked <famous pornstar>”
“Who is that”
Yes, she is going to hit you. Be prepared. You’re playing the long game here. She is going to be angry that you just confessed to watching porn. Make sure that you are prepared; don’t lose your temper; don’t raise your voice; just don’t. Your line is “I’m a guy, aren’t you glad that I’m a man and like girls. I sure like you. You turn me on and I love having great sex with you. You’re the only porn star that I have ever made love to. Let’s have sex again.”
You might even ask her, “You’re so hot, can I take some pictures of you to beat-off to when I’m at work.” If she lets you do this, then make sure and call her from work and tell her that you are jacking-off to her pictures.
Her line of attack will be to try to get you to promise to stop it. Tell her, “Ok, if that’s what you want.” But then say that she knows and you know that you will just do it again – no matter how hard you try. Ask her if she wants to know when you look at porn the next time. Then say, “I need you to drain my balls, right now, let’s have sex.”
She will try to get you to get “help” from “mindfulness” or “porn addiction” snake oil “experts” like Gary Wilson. This is your line in the sand. Tell her these guys are doing just as much porn as anyone else and they are not experts and do not have a cure. And then drop it and return to telling her how sexy she is. “Let’s have sex.”
Now, you used a porn actresses name on purpose. That name is going to drive her nuts. SHE IS GOING TO LOOK THAT NAME UP AND WATCH IT. I hope that you didn’t use a name of someone you actually liked, because even after you win the day THAT actress is going to be off the table. You won’t be able to watch anything with her in it ever again. Ok, yes, I may have made that mistake.
So this argument is going to go on for weeks and months. Hold the line without getting mad. Your line is that God made you like this. You like looking at naked women. You are a man and isn’t she glad of that. And (the ultimate argument terminator) she is turning you on by talking about sex this way, “Let’s have sex.”
The greek word “pornio” is interpreted as fornication and can be more loosely translated as simply “sinful sex”. The greek word “eros” refers to sexual arousal. “-graphy” is, simply, writing or printing. So, technically, the difference between erotica is anything that increases sexual desire and pornography is the writing or printing of representations of sinful sex. Pornography, then, is erotica that is about sinful sex. So, by a strict Bible interpretation, pornography would include any depiction of a sex act with 2 or more people that were not married, but any act between married persons would NOT be pornography and would simply be erotica. Meanwhile, depictions of masturbation (which everyone agrees – I hope – is not sinful and does not cause hairy palms or blindness) would also not be porn.
This, of course, is not the definition that anyone in the rest of the world would agree with. Supreme Court Justice Potter Stewart famously proclaimed that he didn’t know what porn as opposed to erotica was but, “I know it when I see it.” In popular use, erotica is considered sexual depictions that can proclaim to be art, while porn is low-budget erotica. So, Andres Serrano’s “Piss Christ” is erotica, but Playboy TV’s “Adult Film School” in which (most often) married couples make a sex tape is considered porn.
The false dichotomy is silly. The artsy world of elitist high art is not known for being particularly less sinful than Hugh Hefner. Therefore, for the purposes of this facebook group, I will use the words interchangeably. We will probably want to have a discussion about whether depictions of sex between unmarried persons is sinful while depictions sex between married couples is allowed. In that case I will simply use the term married couple porn and porn with unmarried people.