The Boys' Growing Up in the Lord

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Question

A couple days ago I was masturbating (without lusting or anything) and looked up techniques on-line. At first I didn't know that it was wrong, but I can say it got out of hand. On one of the sites I was on, it wasn't intentional, but I saw a site where it showed pornographic images. I immediately turn the screen and kept looked for something else, but I ended up reading pornographic stories. I didn't even realize it until I gave real thought to what I was doing. Usually when I masturbate I read books (not pornographic to keep me from lusting). But I realized what I was doing and felt so bad, like I did something terrible and just looked up real pornography. I knew what I did was wrong, but I felt like since I been doing for the past couple minutes that it didn't even matter. I gave up because of how awful I felt.

Afterward I stopped and prayed for forgiveness, but I was reading one of your articles about blasphemy. I never really knew the real definition until now. Now I know I committed something terrible and feel like I won't be forgiven based on Matthew 12:31. Did I really commit blasphemy and won't be forgiven?

I been having trouble with pornography and your article saved me. It has been three months. I haven't looked it up and ignored it, but just recently I started to look up techniques. I think that if I hadn't, I wouldn't be in this situation.


Answer

I don't know what article you were reading, but it seems you came away with two wrong impressions. First, blasphemy is an older word which means to slander another person's reputation. It particular, it refers to a person who knows he is lying, but he is determined to ruin another person, so he sets out purposely to make other people hate this person by spreading lies.

I've noticed that people have this strong tendency to label everything as "blasphemy" because Jesus said that blasphemy of the Holy Spirit would not be forgiven in Matthew 12:31. Somehow people want to assume the worse: "I've committed a sin God won't forgive me of!" It is very much like people who assume every health problem means they have cancer. However, the passage is being misunderstood. Is the reason a person is not forgiven a fault of God or a fault of man? God says He wants everyone to repents (II Peter 3:9), so God is not preventing any person from gaining forgiveness. Therefore, the problem is that in some sins, the person never turns away from it and repents. Blasphemy of the Holy Spirit -- purposely setting out to tell people lies about the Holy Spirit in order to ruin the Spirit's reputation -- is a crime that comes a person's stubborn refusal to believe the Holy Spirit's work. Such a person refuse to accept miracles (even though he knows they had happened), he refuses to believe the Bible (even though he knows that it is a book that had to have come from God). There is no convincing such a person of the truth because he has rejected all the evidence. He won't get forgiveness because he won't change.

What you did was give into temptation. You stayed away from pornography for three months, but you were tempted to see if you could get close without going over the edge. The problem is that when you are sexually aroused you don't think clearly. Thus, you got lured back into pornography and then you fell for a second trap. "Well, I've already sinned, so I might as well stay."

Sin does sneak up and trap us. That is why we are told to avoid getting close to sin. Speaking of the seductress, Solomon said, "Therefore hear me now, my children, and do not depart from the words of my mouth. Remove your way far from her, and do not go near the door of her house" (Proverbs 5:7-8). Christians understand the power of temptation and sin, so the best thing to do is stay as far away from it as you can get. It won't stop all temptation, but why make it convenient for Satan?

And sometimes, despite our efforts, we give into sin. "This is the message which we have heard from Him and declare to you, that God is light and in Him is no darkness at all. If we say that we have fellowship with Him, and walk in darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth. But if we walk in the light as He is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanses us from all sin. If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say that we have not sinned, we make Him a liar, and His word is not in us. My little children, these things I write to you, so that you may not sin. And if anyone sins, we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous" (I John 1:5-2:1). The Christian's response is to get back out of sin as fast as possible and give stronger effort to stay away from sin.

You don't need fancy techniques to relieve yourself. If you use masturbation, do so because you need to ejaculate and when that task is done, go on with doing other things.

Thank you for your answer. That truly relieved a lot of stress. To be honest the answer you gave me was worth the wait, and I'll try my best not to be misguided. Thank you for your support.