Masturbation – A Legitmate Blessing
The Word of God tells us that the husband’s body belongs to the wife, and the wife’s to the husband. We are to freely enjoy each other, but with great respect and consideration for the feelings and needs of our spouse. Withholding sex is definitely discouraged (1 Corinthians 7:4-5). In fact you could say that the Bible advocates a "never say no" policy.
But there are times when due to choice, chance, or circumstance, the ideal is just not possible. And not all of us are blessed with a spouse, so we have no sexual partner with which to enjoy the bliss of marital intimacy. In such situations, masturbation is a viable alternative. More than that, is it a blessing ordained by God. There are different seasons with different reasons, and there are reasons why masturbation is a good thing, and not to be condemned.
Masturbation is an activity that deals with "the edge. " To a degree it satisfies ones sexual drive. To a degree it feels good. To a degree it takes the edge off of the continual sexual tension many a man feels.
I say that it does this to a degree because it never fully satisfies the desire for touch; and more than that, the desire for actual physical, emotional, and spiritual union with a God given mate. That can never be totally replaced with sexual stimulation and gratification by ones own hand. And it never fully eliminates the temptation toward infidelity and immorality. But it helps. It helps by removing "The Edge. " As such, it is a legitimate blessing.
Over the Edge? (Really?!)
I know that some, including respected leaders, will disagree with me strongly. They believe that any degree of self-stimulation and self-gratification is forbidden (even if they themselves are doing it.) Plain and simple, it is sinful. And this is presented at conferences where men are called to repent (yeah, and how long does that last?) and in many books on Christians and sexuality where they are made to feel guilty. A man cannot use masturbation to even things out when his wife is tired, or when her sexual libido is less than his, when busyness prevents, and certainly not when he is alone and feels stimulated and just wants to jerk off. There are only two choices - intercourse, or frustration.
But, look at the results of such a stand. There are men whose wives are available only once a week, or less; men with a healthy sexual drive, and a 24, 36, or 48-hour cycle. Every day or so they crave sexual release; every day they want the intensity, pleasure, and delight of an orgasm. They would rather experience it with their wife, but they cannot. And, due to wrong ideas and bad theology, they are denied the right to masturbate. If they do it, they live with needless guilt and shame. If they don’t, they endure sexual frustration. Either way, the consequences spill over into the rest of their lives. And it need not be this way.
The Grace of God
Some may ask, "But isn’t God’s grace sufficient?" Well, if it is, why are there so many "failures? " Are most men simply weak, or rebellious, or worse, demonized with a "spirit of lust?" Why is there so much of a cycle of temptation, resisting, relenting, sexual pleasure and release, guilt, and ultimately repenting - all to be repeated again a few days later?
This constant cycle ruins a man’s prayer life. The guilt shuts him out of a place of intimacy with God. It hinders the free flow of ministry. And, it has produced so many frustrated, fearful, defeated men. So forgive me, but I think that my way is much better.
"But the Bible says God will always provide a way of escape. " Yes, but what if masturbation is God’s way of escape from the struggle? What if it a gift of His Grace? Obviously, I think it is.
Different Strokes for Different Folks
Mind you, I do not think that masturbation is for everyone. There are people who never get married. Never have a spouse. Never know sexual intimacy. And they do not masturbate, or have a desire to do so. God’s Grace has called them to a place of total and absolute celibacy. This is their gift from God.
And some are formerly married, but currently living single. They have known the delights of marital union, but now they walk with the gift of total celibacy. They do not masturbate either.
But this is not true for all, and neither should it be. There are singles who believe and obey God’s Word. They are celibate regarding sex with a partner, but they do feel free to masturbate.
And among the married there are different situations. Some few are totally celibate even in marriage; others for whom their only sexual release is with their spouse; still others who freely, and with God’s blessings, masturbate between times of intimacy with their wife.
Each of us needs to find our own way in God. He will lead us. But He will not lead us into bondage. He will only lead us into freedom.
God bless you.