Because sex is pleasurable, it isn't surprising that there are people who try to make money with it. People who sell themselves to other people for sex are called prostitutes. Other terms used in the Bible for these people are harlot and whore. While most prostitutes are selling sex for money, some prostitutes use sex to gain favors. Prostitutes can be male or female (see Deuteronomy 23:17-18), young or old.
Solomon wrote a lot about prostitutes in his book of Proverbs. We will study each passage in detail to get a better understanding of the things God would have us to know.
My son, pay attention to my wisdom; lend your ear to my understanding, that you may preserve discretion, and that your lips may keep knowledge. For the lips of an immoral woman drip honey, and her mouth is smoother than oil; but in the end she is bitter as wormwood, sharp as a two-edged sword. Her feet go down to death, her steps lay hold of hell. Lest you ponder her path of life - her ways are unstable; you do not know them.
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. Lest you give your honor to others, and your years to the cruel one; lest aliens be filled with your wealth, and you labors go to the house of a foreigner; and you mourn at last, when your flesh and your body are consumed, and say: "How I have hated instruction, and my hear despised reproof! I have not obeyed the voice of my teachers, nor inclined my ear to those who instructed me! I was on the verge of total ruin, in the midst of the congregation and assembly."
A woman who is selling herself for sexual pleasures looks good to a man (verse 3). After all, it would be hard to attract clients if she were not attractive. However, no matter how pretty she is on the outside, she is still full of sin within. Her good looks and pretty words will destroy a man's soul. Satan is the master of deception, dressing up evil things in attractive packages.
A prostitute will ruin a man's honor (verse 9). How many Senators, Congressmen, and Presidential candidate's careers have been brought low when the public found out that they had frequented the services of a prostitute? Even a one night stand could ruin your reputation for life if the public found out.
Visiting a prostitute is also costly (verse 10). A prostitute knows that once she has you lusting after her body, you will pay just about any price to have her in bed again. The profits don't just go to the prostitute. Most prostitutes work for crime organizations that take a cut of the night's profits. Therefore, your hard-earned cash goes to make strangers rich.
Finally, prostitution costs you your health (verse 11). Prostitutes have sex with many men and therefore pick up various sexually transmitted diseases. Men who have sex with a prostitute then pick up the diseases. Some diseases, like Gonorrhea will destroy your ability to have children if it is not caught early enough. Syphilis will cause several ailments. Some diseases cannot be cured at this time. One of them is herpes, which causes oozing sores around your genitals. There are medicines available to send herpes into remission, but it can flare back up periodically for the rest of your life. AIDS is another disease that we don't have a cure for yet. The virus causing AIDS does not harm the infected person immediately. However, many years after the initial infection it flares up and destroys your ability to resist diseases. People with AIDS don't die of AIDS. They die of other diseases to which the body is no longer immune.
Instead of waiting until it is too late and wishing you never had visited a prostitute, you would be much better off never going to one (verse 12-14). A prostitute only brings short-lived pleasure, but she will leave you with an eternity of pain. Don't continually think about seeing a prostitute (verse 6). This leaves Satan an opening to tempt you into sin. If you frequently think about sinning, it becomes easier to imagine yourself committing the sin. One day you will give in and do it.
My son, keep your father's command, and do not forsake the law of your mother. Bind them continually upon your heart; tie them around your neck. When you roam, they will lead you; when you sleep, they will keep you; and when you awake, they will speak with you. For the commandment is a lamp, and the law is light; reproofs of instruction are the way of life, to keep you from the evil woman, from the flattering tongue of a seductress. Do not lust after her beauty in your heart, nor let her allure you with her eyelids. For by means of a harlot a man is reduced to a crust of bread; and an adulteress will prey upon his precious life.
Can a man take fire to his bosom, and his clothes not be burned? Can one walk on hot coals, and his feet not be seared? So is he who goes in to his neighbor's wife; whoever touches her shall not be innocent.
People do not despise a thief if he steals to satisfy himself when he is starving. Yet when he is found, he must restore sevenfold; he may have to give up all the substance of his house. Whoever commits adultery with a woman lacks understanding; he who does so destroys his own soul. Wounds and dishonor he will get, and his reproach will not be wiped away. For jealousy is a husband's fury; therefore he will not spare in the day of vengeance. He will accept no recompense, nor will he be appeased though you give many gifts.
The adulteress plays with your emotions - wearing down your defenses. She makes herself attractive and whispers sweet things to you. She will do anything she can to arouse the desire for sex within you - inflaming that desire into a passionate lust for her body.
Don't give in to her temptations! The best defense against the lure of a prostitute is a strong, solid life dedicated to God and living by His word. If you focus on living by the will of God, you will not often think about sinning. You cannot start down the path of sin and not be affected by it (verses 27-29). Many Christians think that with God on their side they can resist any of Satan's temptations. As a result, they will allow themselves to get as close to sin as they can without actually doing the sin. The problem is that God never promised us that He would accept us when we get close to sin. In a sense, a person who does this is tempting God; putting a test before God to see if He will really rescue us or not. God will provide a way of escape, but if we insist on approaching Satan's camp, God won't stop us.
Solomon again lists the many consequences of having sex with a prostitute. A man who is caught stealing may gain some sympathy if he were stealing because he was starving. However, he still has to restore seven times what he stole to his victim. A man who commits a sexual sin does not have someone to whom to repay his sins. Sexual sins are crimes against your own body (verse 32). Ultimately, these sins will cause you to lose your salvation. As we mentioned before, having sex with a prostitute or an adulteress can infect you with various diseases and will ruin your reputation (verse 33).
A very big danger of having sex with a woman who is cheating on her husband or boyfriend comes when that man finds out about you (verse 33). You cannot appease a man who thinks you have been having sex with his spouse or girlfriend. His revenge will be severe.
Say to wisdom, "You are my sister." And call understanding your nearest kin, that they may keep you from the immoral woman, from the seductress who flatters with her words.
For at the window of my house I looked through my lattice, and saw among the simple, I perceived among the youths, a young man devoid of understanding, passing along the street near her corner; and he took the path to her house in the twilight, in the evening, in the black and dark night.
And there a woman met him, with the attire of a harlot, and a crafty heart. she was loud and rebellious, her feet would not stay at home. At times she was outside, at times in the open square, lurking at every corner. So she caught him and kissed him; with an impudent face she said to him: "I have peace offerings with me; today I have paid my vows. So I came out to meet you, diligently to seek your face, and I have found you. I have spread my bed with tapestry, colored coverings of Egyptian linen. I have perfumed my bed with myrrh, aloes, and cinnamon. Come, let us take our fill of love until morning; let us delight ourselves with love. For my husband is not at home; he as gone on a long journey; he has taken a bag of money with him, and will come home on the appointed day."
With her enticing speech she caused him to yield, with her flattering lips she seduced him. Immediately he went after her, as an ox goes to the slaughter, or as a fool to the correction of the stocks, till an arrow struck his liver. As a bird hastens to the snare, he did not know it would take his life.
Now therefore, listen to me, my children; pay attention to the words of my mouth: Do not let your heart turn aside to her ways, do not stray into her paths; for she has cast down many wounded and all who were slain by her were strong men. Her house is the way to hell, descending to the chambers of death.
In Proverbs 7:4-27, Solomon describes how a prostitute operates. The harlot operates mostly in the evening hours. People understand that prostitution is wrong and so they prefer to do their visiting at night when others are not likely to recognize them. Harlots usually frequent certain sections of town - often the seedier side of town. If you want to avoid temptations, then it would be best to avoid the bad parts of town in the evening hours. However, no matter how often young people are warned, there are always some who will brazenly go where they ought not to walk. I am not trying to slight youth, but it seems that the lack of experience with Satan's devices makes teenagers especially vulnerable to his attacks. Young people understand the danger, but they don't really believe it is dangerous until they experience it firsthand. It is similar to the young child who will go ahead and touch the pot on the stove to find out what Mom really means by "hot."
A prostitute does not necessarily hang out a sign saying "Sex for Sale"; nor does she always wait for some man to come and offer her money to spend the night with her. The harlot will be on the street looking for an easy target. A young man, inexperienced with the ways of the world and easily inflamed with the desire for sex is a prime target. Most prostitutes will take a bold approach and make blatant sexual passes at you. They will move up close, making sure you see areas of flesh that should be covered. They will press against you, touch you in provocative ways, and tease you with words - anything to arouse your desire for sex. Prostitutes understand that a man battling his own desires will not think clearly.
There will be all sorts of reasons given to convince the hesitant why joining her in bed for just a little while is all right.
"I've caught up on my penitence, so a little sin won't hurt right now."
Sin is not a game where you take a little and give a little, so long as the net sum is near zero when you go to meet God. There is no such thing as a little sin. Any sin will separate you from the love of God.
"I've been waiting just for you."
Here the prostitute is appealing to your pride. She wants you to think that she believes you to be someone special. However, she gives the same line to every man she meets.
"It will be fun."
That may be true for the moment, but a short night of pleasure is not worth the potential humiliation, pain and agony that you could face later.
"No one will know."
I very much doubt that you could truly keep it a secret. Even if you manage to keep it a secret the first time, what about the second, third, and fourth time? What do I mean by second time? Once a person believes they have gotten away with a sin, it is very easy to convince themselves that they could do it one more time with no harm. After the second time it will be easy to try it just one more time. Soon, the person can't stop. They don't want to stop. That is the deceptiveness of sin. Of course, you can't hide anything from God. You may fool your parents and friends, but God will know and one day you must give an account of your life to him. What will you say then?
Therefore, with many different enticements, the harlot will lead her victim to bed. His passions will be so inflamed that he will not even realize, nor care that he has been seduced until the next day when it is too late.
The only safe course is to avoid the situation completely. Don't go where the harlots play and you won't have to be concerned with resisting their temptations. Don't fool yourself into thinking you have some type of special resistance to a harlot's charm. Solomon points out that all of the harlot's victims were strong men once.
A foolish woman is clamorous; she is simple, and knows nothing. For she sits at the door of her house, on a seat by the highest places of the city, to call to those who pass by, who go straight on their way: "Whoever is simple, let him turn in here"; and as for him who lacks understanding, she says to him, "Stolen water is sweet, and bread eaten in secret is pleasant." But he does not know that the dead are there, that her guests are in the depths of hell.
There is a special allurement to breaking a law. Sin is exciting because of the danger involved. It is similar to knowing a secret that no one else knows. It makes you feel as if you are better than other people. What it is doing is feeding your pride. The pride of life is one way Satan tempts us into violating God's law. Be wary of this device.
My son, give me your heart, and let your eyes observe my ways. For a harlot is a deep pit, and a seductress is a narrow well. She also lies in wait as for a victim, and increases the unfaithful among men.
Giving in to a prostitute's temptation is like entering a deep, narrow pit. The pit is easy to fall into, but very hard to work your way back out. It is easy to follow the prostitute's lead. It is not hard to have sex with her in bed. Most men would find it very pleasurable. I'm sure you could find many excuses to visit her repeatedly and even justify the expense to yourself. However, once Satan has you snared, you will have little desire to quit. All hope of heaven will be lost and most likely you won't care. Some people do wake up to reality and manage to work themselves out of the pit, but it is a long, hard struggle. In the end, for your own soul's sake, don't go near the pit!
Remember that having sex outside of marriage, whether it is with a professional prostitute or not, is not just a sin against God; it is a sin against your own body (I Corinthians 6:12-20). God did not create us so that we could have sex with whomever we feel happy with at the moment. There is a specific purpose for sex and that purpose is fulfilled in marriage. When a man is having sex with a prostitute, he has joined himself with a follower of Satan. There is no way a faithful Christian can be joined with a follower of Satan and remain a child of God. God dwells within the Christian. Do you think He would dwell within a person who is violating His commandments? Therefore, treat your body as the precious vessel that it is. Keep it pure for the holy service to God.