Is Masturbation a Sin?

Masturbation is when a person stimulates themselves in a sexual way. It’s when a person attempts to please himself / herself sexually.
Does the Bible say anything about masturbation? The Bible does not mention the word “masturbation” nor does it say whether or not masturbation is a sin.
However the Bible does speak about sexual lusts; it does speak about sexual immorality and it also speaks about the lust of the eyes.
For example, Jesus said that if we look at a woman with lust then we have committed adultery in our heart (Matthew 5:27-28). Therefore God tells us to guard our heart and mind from having impure or inappropriate sexual thoughts.

Therefore, because masturbation is a sexual act, it’s important for a person to examine the actions and the deep-rooted motivations that lead to masturbation.
If masturbation is motivated by pornography or lust or any kind of immoral sexual fantasy, then masturbation becomes a sin. And so the real question is – can a person masturbate without having lust or without being sexually aroused by any pornographic material or sexual fantasy? In most cases it is impossible to masturbate without having any lustful fantasies.

Now, in certain cultures – there are some who would say that masturbation is normal and it doesn’t harm anyone. However, objective studies do show that masturbation has several emotional & psychological side-effects.

  1. Masturbation can lead to guilt because of cultural or spiritual beliefs
  2. Masturbation can become addictive to the point of interrupting your normal daily routine.
  3. Masturbation can breakdown your self-control so that you’re controlled by your feelings and temptations rather than by your mind and reason.
  4. Masturbation can negatively affect your sexual relationship with your spouse by causing you to lose interest & the desire for intimacy with your partner.
  5. Masturbation can affect your soul and your spiritual relationship with God.

So if you’ve been struggling with masturbation and have been experiencing the side effects of masturbation – you will most likely discover that masturbation is usually connected to lust or immoral thoughts and so this becomes a sin.
Therefore, the only way to deal with a masturbation problem, is to deal with the problem of lust.
If one deals with the problem of lust, the less one will have a desire to masturbate.

2 Timothy 2:22 tells us to flee from youthful lusts, while 1 John 2:16 tells us that the lust of the eyes does not come from God but from the world.
We should therefore conform to God’s values and not the standards of the world.
Pornography and other lustful activities are widely accepted in today’s culture.
However, in society one will discover that such factors like pornography, sexual relationship issues and lust problems can be temptations that eventually cause people to masturbate.
Dealing with these factors will reduce or completely remove the desire to masturbate.
So is masturbation a sin? Yes it is.



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