The Virgin Porn Addict -- Why Do We Differentiate So Much Between Sins of the Heart and the Body?

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seoulsearch

OutWrite Trouble
May 23, 2009
15,469
4,761
113
#1
Hey Everyone,

Over the years on CC, there have been times when someone will post a thread that says something like this: "I'm a virgin, and I'm looking for a virgin, and only a virgin to marry, but unfortunately, the rest of you weak, sinful people have all given into temptation and are making it impossible for me to find my special someone!"

I want to add a disclaimer right of the bat that I am NOT in any way, shape, or form, criticizing anyone from EITHER camp (whether virgin or non-virgin, and for whatever reason.) I do understand that some people have a very valid point in that they are working diligently to save themselves for marriage, only to be discouraged that no one else seems to have done the same thing.

I am not saying that these feelings are wrong at all.

But a few times over the years when I've been able to talk with someone who is a virgin and upset that no one else seems to be living by the same moral standard as they do, it will be disclosed that the person actually IS experimenting with and expressing their sexuality through pornography (and I'm not condemning anyone because we are almost all exposed to porn in one way or the other, seeing as today's ads and television shows would have been considered pornographic in the past.)

Rather, my interest in this thread is when a person is a virgin and is angry that they can't find another virgin to marry, and thinks it's terrible that "everyone else is out there doing it", but fulfills their own desires and curiosities through various "at home" medias.

In other words, there seems to be clear distinction between those who are sinning physically, maybe with several people, and those who are sinning spiritually, maybe with thousands of other people (via imagination) through the various things they have read/seen/been exposed to, purposely or not. (And of course, I realize that non-virgins fight this battle just as much.)

The questions I had in mind for this discussion are:

* Why is there a clear distinction between a physical sin and a sin of the heart, when Jesus said that looking at someone lustfully is all-out sin, because as a matter of the heart, the deed is already done? (Matthew 5:28.)

* I understand that the person who sins physically is putting themselves in a different situation with additional dangers, such as STD's and an unplanned pregnancy, but if sin is truly sin, why do those who sin in the flesh seem to be seen as "more guilty" than those who have sinned via print, computer, or any other media?

* Is it because the person who sins both in mind and body has fallen on two different fronts (mental and physical), and the person who fails "alone" has "only" sinned in mind, but not with another physical person?

Again, this thread is NOT meant to condemn anyone in any way, but rather to explore our own biases in how we categorize sin and why we see some people as being "worse" sinners or committing "worse" sins than others.

I'm guessing there is a wide variety of answers that could be given here, and I want to invite people to discuss them in an honest way that helps us both learn and empathize with each other instead of putting others down.

God bless, and thank you for your thoughts! :)
 

Lynx

Folksy yet erudite
Aug 13, 2014
25,529
8,423
113
#2
I only have two thoughts about this.

1. The Bible is pretty clear about keeping your heart right. Sex was even the illustration that was used, if you lust after a woman in your heart, in your heart you have already comitted adultery. Of course the same goes for wishing you could kill somebody, or wishing you could steal that car, or anything you wish you could do but you don't because you would get caught: If you would do it if you could, but you don't only because you don't want to get caught, that's a sin you need to get taken care of. (Personally I would slap the daylights out of certain people at w*rk if it were legal... but that's another story for another time.)

2. People are going to justify what they want to do. There is no way to argue with them. I will talk to those who hear and I will listen to those who have something to say, but I have given up trying to reason with people who justify stuff they want to do that goes against what they know is right. It's a waste of breath, energy, time and high blood pressure tolerance.
 

zeroturbulence

Senior Member
Aug 2, 2009
24,601
4,272
113
#3
Hey Everyone,

Over the years on CC, there have been times when someone will post a thread that says something like this: "I'm a virgin, and I'm looking for a virgin, and only a virgin to marry, but unfortunately, the rest of you weak, sinful people have all given into temptation and are making it impossible for me to find my special someone!"

I want to add a disclaimer right of the bat that I am NOT in any way, shape, or form, criticizing anyone from EITHER camp (whether virgin or non-virgin, and for whatever reason.) I do understand that some people have a very valid point in that they are working diligently to save themselves for marriage, only to be discouraged that no one else seems to have done the same thing.

I am not saying that these feelings are wrong at all.

But a few times over the years when I've been able to talk with someone who is a virgin and upset that no one else seems to be living by the same moral standard as they do, it will be disclosed that the person actually IS experimenting with and expressing their sexuality through pornography (and I'm not condemning anyone because we are almost all exposed to porn in one way or the other, seeing as today's ads and television shows would have been considered pornographic in the past.)

Rather, my interest in this thread is when a person is a virgin and is angry that they can't find another virgin to marry, and thinks it's terrible that "everyone else is out there doing it", but fulfills their own desires and curiosities through various "at home" medias.

In other words, there seems to be clear distinction between those who are sinning physically, maybe with several people, and those who are sinning spiritually, maybe with thousands of other people (via imagination) through the various things they have read/seen/been exposed to, purposely or not. (And of course, I realize that non-virgins fight this battle just as much.)

The questions I had in mind for this discussion are:

* Why is there a clear distinction between a physical sin and a sin of the heart, when Jesus said that looking at someone lustfully is all-out sin, because as a matter of the heart, the deed is already done? (Matthew 5:28.)

* I understand that the person who sins physically is putting themselves in a different situation with additional dangers, such as STD's and an unplanned pregnancy, but if sin is truly sin, why do those who sin in the flesh seem to be seen as "more guilty" than those who have sinned via print, computer, or any other media?

* Is it because the person who sins both in mind and body has fallen on two different fronts (mental and physical), and the person who fails "alone" has "only" sinned in mind, but not with another physical person?

Again, this thread is NOT meant to condemn anyone in any way, but rather to explore our own biases in how we categorize sin and why we see some people as being "worse" sinners or committing "worse" sins than others.

I'm guessing there is a wide variety of answers that could be given here, and I want to invite people to discuss them in an honest way that helps us both learn and empathize with each other instead of putting others down.

God bless, and thank you for your thoughts! :)
It's like the difference between wanting to kill someone and actually killing someone.
 

BrotherMike

Be Still and Know
Jan 8, 2018
1,617
1,671
113
#4
We are suppose to love the sinner, hate the sin, not point fingers to say they are weak, sinful people and are the reason that person has not found anyone yet lol. We all fall short of His glory. The person who wants to find a virgin has all right to seek that. If that is what God wants him or her to look for, then they should follow Him. There are excuses in the Bible for divorce and there is forgiveness for pre-marital sex and unbiblical divorce. God knows the heart, that person will be accountable to Him. God's grace is huge! God did all the work on the cross so we can be saved.

To me sin is sin and all needs forgiveness to be saved. We are taking a risk when we sin and don't ask for forgiveness. Jesus does not live in sin.

I will say Seoulsearch creates some of the best well thought out discussions. Thank you for this! You are appreciated in Christian Chat. I agree we can be mature about things and discuss in a healthy manner without putting people in chat down.

This verse comes to mind...

2 Timothy 3:16-17 New International Version (NIV)
16 All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, 17 so that the servant of God[a] may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.
 

BrotherMike

Be Still and Know
Jan 8, 2018
1,617
1,671
113
#5
I only have two thoughts about this.
2. People are going to justify what they want to do. There is no way to argue with them. I will talk to those who hear and I will listen to those who have something to say, but I have given up trying to reason with people who justify stuff they want to do that goes against what they know is right. It's a waste of breath, energy, time and high blood pressure tolerance.
We have a right to speak what we believe out of agape love, if they disagree that's on them, not on you. If a discussion becomes heated or anger, it's best to back off. Bible says to be slow to speak, slow to anger. I love everyone, even those that hate me, but I do choose who to be with, and will listen even though I might not agree. My uncle thought we didn't love him because we disagreed with a choice. That's not true, however the choices we make determine the future we experience including Jesus :)
 
Sep 13, 2018
2,587
885
113
#6
I only have two thoughts about this.

1. The Bible is pretty clear about keeping your heart right. Sex was even the illustration that was used, if you lust after a woman in your heart, in your heart you have already comitted adultery. Of course the same goes for wishing you could kill somebody, or wishing you could steal that car, or anything you wish you could do but you don't because you would get caught: If you would do it if you could, but you don't only because you don't want to get caught, that's a sin you need to get taken care of. (Personally I would slap the daylights out of certain people at w*rk if it were legal... but that's another story for another time.)

2. People are going to justify what they want to do. There is no way to argue with them. I will talk to those who hear and I will listen to those who have something to say, but I have given up trying to reason with people who justify stuff they want to do that goes against what they know is right. It's a waste of breath, energy, time and high blood pressure tolerance.
I agree, but all though the above are sins. I would not agree that making love with your partner is equal to murder. In fact, quite the opposite...
 

cinder

Senior Member
Mar 26, 2014
4,394
2,394
113
#7
It's like the difference between wanting to kill someone and actually killing someone.
I like what zero said, but I think reality is more nuanced than that. And somehow as society and dating practices have changed the church has changed right along with them, but needing some distinctive they've replaced a much more wholistic understanding of sexual purity with physical virginity. And while viriginity has been viewed in multiple cultures as a sign of purity, most of those cultures also had all kinds of rules about men and women spending unchaperoned time alone together in private.

While I think the practical difference between someone who's just seen something on TV or just read it in a book and someone who's experienced it in real life is pretty big. We do ourselves no favors by splitting hairs about who's done worse or the corollary of well at least I'm not as bad as..... . But generally in modern society (and espcially the church) we also don't have good and clear standards about what is normal and healthy sexuality and where lust and addiction begin and that results in plenty of christian singles feeling confused about or ashamed of having any sexual desire for someone at all.

And of course good old human nature always wants to give us someone to feel superior to, so if I've never been tempted by porn I can look down on all those porn users; if I'm in the grip of porn, I'll look down on those who have crossed over into doing what I'm only imagining; if I'm only sleeping with people I'm in a "committed relationship" with, then I'll look down on those who go out and party and have one night stands. It's really not hard to find someone who is in some way sinning "worse" than you; it also does absolutely nothing to make you any holier.

One other thought would be that we seek commonality so someone who lacks experience may well want to be with someone else who lacks experience, where as someone who'd been around a bunch before they got saved may want someone else with a bit of a past just because it will be easier for that person to understand and identify with their partner's struggles and weaknesses.
 
H

Hamarr

Guest
#9
I agree with a lot of what Cinder said. A lot of this does seem to be finding reasons to look down on something others struggle with that you don’t.

I don’t know if there is too much out there on this, but I have read some things on the number of partners and the types of sexual encounters affecting pair bonding. So there might be valid reasons for choosing someone without so much experience, but the person making that choice likely doesn’t have a lot of experience either. Peon addiction comes with all sorts of issues itself, including this relatively new phenomenon of impotence when with a sexual partner due to needing porn to get off. And having lots of unrealistic ideas of what sex is, etc.

It does seem like virginity can be shamed in others ways, even amongst the church. I have seen a number of folks in other places that see it as a bad option for men once they reach a certain age. You’re not keeping yourself pure anymore as much as you are a social weirdo and lacking in experience. I can see there where someone would want to match their own experience level.

i think there is also another element where in an overreaction to the idea of “slut shaming”, there is a push to act like choices being made don’t matter. A lot of this would be helped with not framing purity around the physical only like Cinder was saying.
 

Subhumanoidal

Well-known member
Sep 17, 2018
3,748
2,915
113
#10
I have often tried to show that there are times when what goes on in the heart is more meaningful than the body. And this is a perfect example.
Really sin is condemned by others by which sin is most visible. Since porn is an "invisible sin" it's easy to let it slide, or convince yourself it's not so bad. But seeing that married person walk arm in arm with someone other than their spouse is easy to criticize as worse than your porn sin. Because it's seen by others. Or that's what we tell ourselves.
 

love_comes_softly

Well-known member
Feb 13, 2019
768
822
93
#11
I’ve often thought that virgins that desire to be married to another virgin, see that as a way to be equally yoked. They are somehow at the same level spiritually.

I do see that that train of thought could be flawed, however I could also be convinced that it makes sense.

Arguably one of the biggest things that the Lord has given us is His grace and forgiveness. We are then called, clearly, to forgive others. I feel like to determine someone’s worth based on their virginity or lack of, is not having the ability to forgive that person.

Sin is sin. We judge it. We judge people, rightfully or not, it happens.

Your question makes me think lots.

Maybe we’re ok with certain sins because we level them on “severity”based on what society would think of the act.

For example, many people marry people that have porn addictions (society promotes porn), but a majority won’t knowingly marry a murderer (this looks terrible in the eyes of society).
 

Solemateleft

Honor, Courage, Commitment
Jun 25, 2017
12,614
3,682
113
#12
Interesting topic Seoul - I commend you for pushing the envelop here in the CC...
You are essentially to this CC forum what Mark Twain was to American literature and Richard Prior was to the American Society... In 1998 Pryor won the first Mark Twain Prize for American Humor
"as a stand-up comic, writer, and actor, he struck a chord, and a nerve, with America, forcing it to look at large social questions of race and the more tragicomic aspects of the human condition. Though uncompromising in his wit, Pryor, like Twain projects a generosity of spirit that unites us. They were both trenchant social critics who spoke the truth, however outrageous."

We are all sinners of varying ilks. As a student of judo I liken our struggles with varying sins as our varying degrees of struggles to maintain our balance when faced with resistance to our own intentions.
I suspect that those well meaning people who are determined to save themselves for their future partner - are merely struggling to find the right balance in their life to achieve their greater goal - whilst unknowingly aware that their perceived lesser sin is in fact neither helping them to strike the right balance in HIS eyes to warrant the full blessings of their desires... Instead, they will likely continue to cycle off balanced in life and in happiness - until they learn to genuinely adjust their ways.

Galatians 6:7: “Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, this he will also reap.”

In my personal quest to become the best version of myself - I am striving to both save myself and refrain from such temptations... Keeping myself busy, keeping active, working hard, working out and burning lots of calories with my pup along with new service, and lots of prayer - seems to be effective.
Honestly, these struggles are real as the desires are wired within the fiber of my being (touch is my love language - lots of hugs and wrestling with pup)... Luckily, my faith and strong minded convictions and regiment remain stubbornly victorious...

My favorite fun-filled analogy is Buz Lightyear... I'm beginning to realize that I actually may never be able to Fly (be all alone for the rest of time)... I feel like I'm just falling with style (knowing my imperfect limitations)... My hope is that HE will bless me mid-flight before I actually crash and burn... and then I channel my inner Capt America as I remind myself routinely that 'I can do this all day'... taking it one day at a time... and winning these little moral victories every day...
 

JustEli

Well-known member
Dec 23, 2018
1,374
983
113
49
#13
I smoke cigs, but would NEVER CHEW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
 

seoulsearch

OutWrite Trouble
May 23, 2009
15,469
4,761
113
#14
Interesting topic Seoul - I commend you for pushing the envelop here in the CC...
Hey Sole, I always admire your dedication to being the best you can be, so I really appreciate this. I always find your posts to be like mini self-help books, because reading them always makes me want to be a better person.

I should also mention for any new posters here that I don't start "controversial" threads just for the sake of controversy -- I just like peeling back the layers of real life to see what's really there. Most of us wear masks in our every day life for a myriad of reasons, and I have always been interested in seeing who people are behind the mask.

Does anyone out there ever get frustrated because you are trying to do something on your computer or phone, and when you Google up the instructions, it pulls up a menu and list of instructions that should be easy as pie to follow, right?

Except that 9 times out of 10, the menu that comes up on my device doesn't seem to match the menu that's being shown as the "solution."

I think life is a lot like that. I grew up in a conservative Christian atmosphere that always gave out the same menus as an example for any and every situation in life. The problem is, if you pull up the "menu" of each individual's life, they are all very different.

While the "spiritual tech advice" is sound and always the same: "Read your Bible. Pray. Get closer to God;" I think it's important to realize that the manner and method of how those basic principles will be carried out might be very different from person to person.

The person who is married with a family is going to follow a much different menu for "getting closer to God" than the person who is single and comes home to no one.

And this is why I ask the questions I do, because I'm always interested in what the "menu" of people's lives look like -- and what individual differences people might need (and have to accept) in order to find their own walk with God.
 

Lynx

Folksy yet erudite
Aug 13, 2014
25,529
8,423
113
#15
I smoke cigs, but would NEVER CHEW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
That's good brother, because we all know chewing is nasty. Smoking is okay as long as you are not too blatant about it and do something about the smoker's breath, but chewing generates lots of nasty tobacco spit.

Keep the faith brother! :cool:
 

Lynx

Folksy yet erudite
Aug 13, 2014
25,529
8,423
113
#16
seoulsearch when they say "read your Bible" ask them which part. If they can't answer that, they haven't read theirs. If they have read theirs they can tell you which part pertains to your problem.
 

Mel85

Daughter of the True King
Mar 28, 2018
10,910
6,895
113
#18
Hey Everyone,

Over the years on CC, there have been times when someone will post a thread that says something like this: "I'm a virgin, and I'm looking for a virgin, and only a virgin to marry, but unfortunately, the rest of you weak, sinful people have all given into temptation and are making it impossible for me to find my special someone!"

I want to add a disclaimer right of the bat that I am NOT in any way, shape, or form, criticizing anyone from EITHER camp (whether virgin or non-virgin, and for whatever reason.) I do understand that some people have a very valid point in that they are working diligently to save themselves for marriage, only to be discouraged that no one else seems to have done the same thing.

I am not saying that these feelings are wrong at all.

But a few times over the years when I've been able to talk with someone who is a virgin and upset that no one else seems to be living by the same moral standard as they do, it will be disclosed that the person actually IS experimenting with and expressing their sexuality through pornography (and I'm not condemning anyone because we are almost all exposed to porn in one way or the other, seeing as today's ads and television shows would have been considered pornographic in the past.)

Rather, my interest in this thread is when a person is a virgin and is angry that they can't find another virgin to marry, and thinks it's terrible that "everyone else is out there doing it", but fulfills their own desires and curiosities through various "at home" medias.

In other words, there seems to be clear distinction between those who are sinning physically, maybe with several people, and those who are sinning spiritually, maybe with thousands of other people (via imagination) through the various things they have read/seen/been exposed to, purposely or not. (And of course, I realize that non-virgins fight this battle just as much.)

The questions I had in mind for this discussion are:

* Why is there a clear distinction between a physical sin and a sin of the heart, when Jesus said that looking at someone lustfully is all-out sin, because as a matter of the heart, the deed is already done? (Matthew 5:28.)

* I understand that the person who sins physically is putting themselves in a different situation with additional dangers, such as STD's and an unplanned pregnancy, but if sin is truly sin, why do those who sin in the flesh seem to be seen as "more guilty" than those who have sinned via print, computer, or any other media?

* Is it because the person who sins both in mind and body has fallen on two different fronts (mental and physical), and the person who fails "alone" has "only" sinned in mind, but not with another physical person?

Again, this thread is NOT meant to condemn anyone in any way, but rather to explore our own biases in how we categorize sin and why we see some people as being "worse" sinners or committing "worse" sins than others.

I'm guessing there is a wide variety of answers that could be given here, and I want to invite people to discuss them in an honest way that helps us both learn and empathize with each other instead of putting others down.

God bless, and thank you for your thoughts! :)
Gee Kim, you always bring up great threads that make me think hard :) Thanks for this, it reminds me that I am but a spec on this earth and that God is the Almighty who really loves us despite our flaws :)

I want to address the whole virgin part - although I am a virgin, I certainly don’t expect to find a future spouse who is a virgin as well - even though it would be lovely to have if he were, but if I am being honest and truly desired a man of God who pursued God first in the spirit, heart then him being a virgin or not would not matter to me as I know that he is pure in mind and spirit.

That being said, I am not perfect and have sinned physically in the past and would always have that guilt or shame hanging over me when it’s happened, which then reminds me of that scripture in Ephesians 6:12 “For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of [a]the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places.”

This scripture tells me that there is always more to the physical that we encounter or experience. It gives me clear conviction of my sins in the flesh, and that these sins manifest into the spiritual realm which is more concerning. Paul the Apostle talks about how important spiritual training is in 1 Timothy 4:8 “Physical training is good, but training for godliness is much better, promising benefits in this life and in the life to come.”

That scripture alone always speaks volumes to me; that even though training in flesh is good for your body/health, training in the spirit is even better for it promises benefits in the present and in the after life.

Sin is a sin both in flesh and spiritual. When I sin in the flesh, this automatically eats away in the spiritual because of conviction through the Holy Spirit.

Hope I make sense lol.
 

Butterflyyy

Well-known member
Oct 31, 2019
1,597
1,309
113
#19
Hey Everyone,

Over the years on CC, there have been times when someone will post a thread that says something like this: "I'm a virgin, and I'm looking for a virgin, and only a virgin to marry, but unfortunately, the rest of you weak, sinful people have all given into temptation and are making it impossible for me to find my special someone!"

I want to add a disclaimer right of the bat that I am NOT in any way, shape, or form, criticizing anyone from EITHER camp (whether virgin or non-virgin, and for whatever reason.) I do understand that some people have a very valid point in that they are working diligently to save themselves for marriage, only to be discouraged that no one else seems to have done the same thing.

I am not saying that these feelings are wrong at all.

But a few times over the years when I've been able to talk with someone who is a virgin and upset that no one else seems to be living by the same moral standard as they do, it will be disclosed that the person actually IS experimenting with and expressing their sexuality through pornography (and I'm not condemning anyone because we are almost all exposed to porn in one way or the other, seeing as today's ads and television shows would have been considered pornographic in the past.)

Rather, my interest in this thread is when a person is a virgin and is angry that they can't find another virgin to marry, and thinks it's terrible that "everyone else is out there doing it", but fulfills their own desires and curiosities through various "at home" medias.

In other words, there seems to be clear distinction between those who are sinning physically, maybe with several people, and those who are sinning spiritually, maybe with thousands of other people (via imagination) through the various things they have read/seen/been exposed to, purposely or not. (And of course, I realize that non-virgins fight this battle just as much.)

The questions I had in mind for this discussion are:

* Why is there a clear distinction between a physical sin and a sin of the heart, when Jesus said that looking at someone lustfully is all-out sin, because as a matter of the heart, the deed is already done? (Matthew 5:28.)

* I understand that the person who sins physically is putting themselves in a different situation with additional dangers, such as STD's and an unplanned pregnancy, but if sin is truly sin, why do those who sin in the flesh seem to be seen as "more guilty" than those who have sinned via print, computer, or any other media?

* Is it because the person who sins both in mind and body has fallen on two different fronts (mental and physical), and the person who fails "alone" has "only" sinned in mind, but not with another physical person?

Again, this thread is NOT meant to condemn anyone in any way, but rather to explore our own biases in how we categorize sin and why we see some people as being "worse" sinners or committing "worse" sins than others.

I'm guessing there is a wide variety of answers that could be given here, and I want to invite people to discuss them in an honest way that helps us both learn and empathize with each other instead of putting others down.

God bless, and thank you for your thoughts! :)
With regard to this topic in particular I don't think there is a distinction between physical sin and sin of the heart; Jesus said that, as you quoted.
I know that the pain in my heart and sense of betrayal if my spouse had watched porn is the same feeling as if he had sinned physically. It's all about the heart really isn't it?
 

Butterflyyy

Well-known member
Oct 31, 2019
1,597
1,309
113
#20
So you're saying that looking at porn is the same as losing your virginity? That it's the same as actually having sex?
In the heart it's the same... I'm saying if I was married to someone who watched it then I would feel hurt and betrayed, because like Jesus said, it is committing adultery in the heart. I literally could not be with someone because of it, it's just the same as if he had committed adultery.