Physical Acts are Never Sinful

Discussion in 'Baptist Theology & Bible Study' started by Paul33, Feb 5, 2006.

  1. Paul33

    Paul33
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    The premise has been posed that physical acts are never sinful, only the sinful disposition of the mind is sin.

    Try this out.

    I have no disposition of the mind to commit adultery. I am not lusting at another woman.

    However, I do have physical sexual urges that I need satisfied.

    Therefore, I choose to alleviate or satisfy these desires by having sex with a woman not my wife.

    But its not adultery, because I am not lusting after her nor do I desire her emotionally or spiritually. I just need to satisfy a physical need which is normal and healthy with a physical act of intercourse.

    No sinful dispostion of the mind. Therefore, no sinful act!

    Now isn't that right!

    We even hear those who think like this say, "It didn't mean anything! It was just sex."
     
  2. Helen

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    Well, we might as well scrap the law, then! One can dishonor one's parents, lie, cheat, steal, murder -- as long as one doesn't premeditate it or 'have it in his heart' to do so, eh?
     
  3. Petrel

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    I assume that someone proposed this on the board? I would participate in the thread if I were sure it is not aimed at another poster.
     
  4. OldRegular

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    [​IMG] [​IMG]
     
  5. Petrel

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    I looked up the thread that this was started from, and I agree with CraigbytheSea. I think you're adding extra baggage to what he said. He said it is the motivation behind the act that is important. So in your example, the motivation for adultery would be satiating sexual arousal while selfishly ignoring the affects on your wife.

    Let's consider several different scenarios, with varying degrees of controversiality. Suppose there is a woman who is married. Her husband has an Evil Twin. One day while her husband is away, the Evil Twin comes to her house, pretending to be his brother. The woman, unknowing, has sex with him, committing the physical act of adultery.

    Did she sin? I say no--she thought that she was having sex with her husband. The Evil Twin did sin, though, because he knew that it would be wrong to defraud her and his brother like that.

    Then suppose a roofer is working on a house. He accidentally knocks a hammer off the roof and it kills his partner. He has committed the physical act of killing another. Did he sin? No, it was an accident--although he may be guilty of carelessness or irresponsibility, he is not guilty of outright murder.

    Then consider the paranoid schitzophrenic who has delusions that his landlord is an alien overlord who wants to kill him and is beaming waves into his brain. So he kills the landlord in what he considers self-defense. Did he sin? I think not to the same extent as someone not impaired, although he may have sinned by going off his meds when he knows they are needed.

    The more interesting situations to debate are those regarding people incapacitated by retardation or mental illness, and those who have a skewed moral sense so that they believe their actions are right.
     
  6. Paul33

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    Petrel, it comes from the "What is idolatry" thread.
     
  7. Paul33

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    Stick to my illustration.

    The man's wife is glad to have her husband have sex with other women. There's nothing selfish about it. He has physical appetites which she is happy for others to fulfill!

    No sin here, eh?
     
  8. Petrel

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    That would fit my scenario of a person whose moral sense is skewed. I would say that what he's doing is still wrong, but not to the extent it would be if his wife expected him to be faithful.

    But what do you think of my first scenario? The woman committed the physical act of adultery, yet her motives were proper by all reckonings.
     
  9. Helen

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    Petrel, Eve was not held to account because she was deceived. Same thing.

    Second, the Bible makes a clear distinction between murder and unintentional man slaughter.

    As far as other things are concerned, I don't find exceptions clauses in God's law.

    Yes, God judges the heart, so it is an exercise in futility for us to pretend to be God and judge what-if cases. But Jesus also pointed out, as did James, that actions come from the heart.

    Paul33, in the Old Testament we have a lot of physical pictures of spiritual truths. For instance, the Ark is a 'type' of Christ, i.e. get on or get dead. Egypt is a 'type' of sin nature, again, get out or get dead. Christ used the picture of Jonah three days and nights in the belly of the whale to explain His death and resurrection.

    Likewise, Jesus Himself uses a lot of physical pictures to get spiritual truths across in His parables and illustrations. God uses a lot of physical things to illustrate spiritual truths.

    And there is only one thing in all of creation which gives a physical picture of the unity between Christ and the believer. That is sex. The man goes into the woman and a new life is formed. To play around with that picture, even on this board as some kind of 'what if' scenario is something I personally find highly offensive for that reason.

    "Thou shalt not commit adultery" refers to the physical act. Regardless of where the heart is. Jesus simply added to the understanding by saying that if you lust after a woman not your wife you have been just as guilty of adultery -- this certainly does not negate the breaking of the law in commiting the act regardless of one's reasons or feelings.

    The law is for our benefit, not a challenge for us to find loopholes in.
     
  10. blackbird

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    Suppose I was driving along in my car---minding my own business---and ran a Stop Sign---not knowing that the Stop Sign was there---I ran it out of ignorance---and the "Super Trooper" saw me---pulls me over and wrote a ticket.

    "But Officer! I didn't see the Stop Sign!"

    Now---in my mind--that sign wasn't there but I get the ticket anyway---because I ran it in my car but not in my mind---so I have sinned by breaking man's law---although I did it in ignorance---in my car and not in my mind!
     
  11. Benjamin

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    Paul33, I was reading the other tread and thought it may not always add up without the physical act.

    The physical act never being sin is confusing at the least and I think has exceptions. Also when does a thought in the mind become adultery instead of just a temptation?

    What if a man in the situation you mentioned, “supposedly” committed adultery in his heart by thinking that if the possibility arose he would carry through with it. He flirting with the temptation was certainly wrong and besides was asking for trouble. He felt he may have this need and would fulfill it and allowed an opportunity for it to arise. Well with these weak thoughts the situation does end up presenting itself because of his wrongful actions and for these reasons he finds himself alone with the other woman who very abruptly and willingly escalates the situation from flirting with the temptation to “reality now”, BUT the man that is now facing “reality” finds his true heart says NO and he tells her he can’t do this and walks away from the situation.

    Did he commit adultery already in his heart or did he just wrongfully flirt with the temptation and when coming to the reality of the physical act that confronted him it showed him a truth that the adultery wasn’t “really” in his heart after all?
     
  12. Petrel

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    Yes, that's my point. If you are tricked into doing something wrong or if you do something wrong completely by accident, than you are not guilty even though you committed the physical act.



    I think the traditional understanding of diminished capacity is appropriate for those who are incapable of differetiating between right and wrong. Perhaps we could consider Jesus' words--"Forgive them, Father, for they know not what they do."



    But you said above that someone who is tricked into this is not guilty. Additionally, a married woman who is raped has committed the act, but would again not be guilty.

    I'm not trying to find loopholes in it, unless you think I would like to be tricked into doing something wrong, forced into it against my will, or rendered incapable of distinguishing between right and wrong because of retardation or insanity. . .
     
  13. Paul33

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    Helen,

    You and I agree. I don't mean to offend, but on another thread it was stated that physical acts in and of themselves are not sinful. I am merely trying to show that physical acts in and of themselves CAN be sinful.

    You are right. The command says, "Do not commit adultery." Period. It doesn't matter what my thought processes are, if I have sex with someone not my wife, I have sinned!
     
  14. Paul33

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    Benjamin,

    Great illustration.

    It would seem that he committed adultery in his heart, but then, as you pointed out, he did not go through with it physically!

    Here's a case where it appears that he didn't sin physically, but certainly may have in his mind.
     
  15. Paul33

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    Petrel.

    Forget about being tricked, etc.

    The question is, can a person knowingly have sex with another person not his wife and not sin if his heart is not lusting, etc.

    The answer has already been given. Sex with someone not your wife is a sin.

    Again, we're not talking about rape or an evil twin brother. We're talking about a purely physical act of sex with no emotional/spiritual attachment. It's just sex! And it is still a sin!
     
  16. rlvaughn

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    Paul, I agree with your conclusion, "Sex with someone not your wife is a sin." But I would seriously question the possibility of anyone wanting to have sex with someone not their wife and not also lusting in their heart (with the possible exception of something like retardation).

    If I were trying to prove the point that the physical act is sinful, I think perhaps I would refer to the words of Jesus in Matthew chapter five, where He spoke of committing the sin of adultery in the heart. Jesus said that if a man looks on a woman lustfully, he has committed adultery in his heart. That is clear and concise -- this mental/heart action is a sin in itself, even if no physical act follows. But if the physical act cannot be sin, there would be no reason for not going ahead with the physcial act. In fact, some people have excused themselves in this way -- "I have already committed the sin of adultery, so there is no reason to not do the act." If the physical act is not sin, then there is no reason to capture the sin in the heart and stop it there -- go ahead and do it. Same with murder.
     
  17. genesis12

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    How about deleting this entire thread?
     
  18. Me4Him

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    Re 2:6 But this thou hast, that thou hatest the deeds of the Nicolaitans, which I also hate.

    Re 2:15 So hast thou also them that hold the doctrine of the Nicolaitans, which thing I hate.

    The "primary doctrine" of the "Nicolatians" was that "anything" done in the "flesh" had no "Affect/Effect" on the "Spiritual".

    You could do "whatever" during the week and still go to "Services" and "worship God Spiritually".

    As a matter of fact, this doctrine still exist today, many live one life during the week and another on "Sunday".
     
  19. blackbird

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    Yes Sir Ree, Bob---the physical act of sex outside of marriage is sin---even when you consider the false assumption that it isn't sin if the mind is not involved---and I can prove it!!

    1Corinthians 6:15 & following teaches us that when we join our bodies to a harlot that the "two shall be one flesh"---it teaches that we are not to sin with our bodies---and joining our bodies to a harlot is a sin that needs to be repented of.

    I believe you fellas need to read a little more than just surface thoughts---your minds are being deceived when you say that you cannot sin with your body when your mind is not involved.
     
  20. HankD

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    Sin and death, there is a connection.

    Sin is conceived in lust, the birth of sin is the finished product (murder, adultery, fornication, theft), death is the end result.

    James 1
    13 Let no man say when he is tempted, I am tempted of God: for God cannot be tempted with evil, neither tempteth he any man:
    14 But every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed.
    15 Then when lust hath conceived, it bringeth forth sin: and sin, when it is finished, bringeth forth death.

    Sin and death's remedy...

    1 John 1
    8 If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.
    9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.
    10 If we say that we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us.

    John 3
    17 For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.
    18 He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.

    John 5:24 Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life.

    1 Corinthians 15
    3 For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures;
    4 And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures:
     

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