Many people believe that the Bible condemns masturbation, and this is not the case. While some passages, such as Genesis, do talk about having sex between a husband and wife, the Bible has not specifically condemned masturbation. The Bible actually encourages sex between husband and wife. Whether or not masturbation is sinful is a different matter. There is conflicting evidence.
Transparency in masturbation
While the Bible does not specifically say masturbation is a sin, it does condemn all forms of sexual impurity and adulterous fantasies. Masturbation is especially problematic when it is motivated by narcissism. There are lyrics in Justin Beiber’s hit song to the effect that “if you like your looks, love yourself.” While this message may seem self-serving and egotistical, it does not reflect God’s view on lust. And while masturbation is often performed for pleasure, some believers find this a healthy expression of love.
In 1 Corinthians, Paul addressed issues of self-control, including masturbation, in relation to marriage. In the same letter, he also addressed the sin of adultery, which involves the arousing of a desire to have sex with someone outside of a spouse. However, Paul did not mention masturbation as a sin in the Bible, perhaps because he wanted to make clear that marriage is the only acceptable outlet for sexual burning.
Lust in masturbation
What is the relationship between lust and masturbation in the Bible? Is masturbation considered a sin? The answer is complicated and depends on a number of factors, including the person’s marital status. Nevertheless, lust is not always wrong, and there are biblical examples of masturbation that are both sinful and beneficial. Here are three examples of biblical passages addressing this topic:
There is no explicit reference in the Bible to masturbation as a sin, but it is a sin to think lustful thoughts about another person. Matthew 5:28 states that lusting after a woman is adultery. Masturbation, in essence, is sexual lust in the mind. It can stem from erotic imagery, viewing pornography, or even thinking of someone who isn’t your spouse. As Christians, we must learn to control our thoughts and feelings to avoid such sinful behavior.
Another example of the importance of marriage is found in the book of Hebrews, where Paul encourages men to respect their marriage. While marriage isn’t strictly forbidden, it does increase the lust that can lead to incredibly immoral actions. It’s impossible to honestly say you are masturbating for the glory of God if you are not married. Thankfully, there are biblical examples of Christian men who are caught with their pants down and engage in immoral sexual behavior.
Scripture calls selfishness a sin. The Bible urges believers to love their neighbor and care for those around them. Selfishness is contrary to the teachings of Jesus, who says that the way to happiness is to help others and be generous with what you have. Selfishness is a form of arrogance, which is contrary to God’s teaching on generosity. Therefore, self-indulgence is a sin, and it must be avoided at all costs.
The apostles James and John were very selfish. They coveted the power and prestigious positions in Jesus’ kingdom, and they did not care about other apostles. As a result, they alienated themselves from their brethren, and Jesus said that their selfishness characterized those who were worldly-minded. Today, ambition and self-absorption are still contrary to Jesus’ teachings.
Temptation to participate in masturbation as a way to explore your wants, desires, and urges
The first step toward a healthier and happier sexual life is acknowledging your God-given sexuality. Masturbation is a natural human activity. However, Catholics do not condone it. It violates God’s intent for human sexuality, as it is an act of self-indulgence. It’s also a sin because it demonstrates a lack of self-control.
If you regularly engage in masturbation as a way of exploring your wants, desires, and urges, it may be a good idea to limit your time alone. Do things with others, or do them in public. Avoid being locked in your room all day. Getting help is an important part of overcoming an addiction to masturbation.
Another way to prevent masturbation is to find other outlets for sexual urges. It may be a new hobby or a challenging task. Whatever you do, be sure to reward yourself with something that will distract you from the temptation. Keeping a log of how long you went without masturbating can help you avoid sex when it hits.