Society has increasingly set the norm for what is acceptable in the realm of sensual pleasures and sexual behavior. No longer are we a modest culture attuned to what should be left to the privacy of our homes and bedrooms (and married couples), but society has morphed into human beings without a sense of propriety. Media has reshaped our views for relationships, marriage and sex, giving way to every form of behavior under the sun and doing away with morality as we were once taught. Sadly, a portion of the Christian community has also fallen for the lies and deception of Satan.
One such deception that my single (and married) Christian sisters have recently gravitated toward is the "Fifty Shades" trilogy. Not in the least bit subtle in its depiction of sexually explicit behavior of bondage, submission and sadism, Christian woman are drawn to its pages and reading as a romance novel or sheer entertainment. In reality, this is pornography shrouded by the guise of storytelling. Judging from the comments of those who have read the trilogy, and those I've interviewed; they are simply drawn in and unable to put it down. Simply put, this is another subtle stronghold of the enemy.
Are these stories an escape into fantasy and some sort of "Calgon" moment? Second Corinthians 10:5 reads: "Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ." When we open ourselves up to material, be it visual or written, that stimulates our senses, we run the risk of drifting into areas that the Holy Spirit has been sent to guard us from. We begin to grieve Him as our spirits are tainted.
Reading and viewing subtle and overt pornography causes our minds to wander into realms of fantasy and impure relationships. For my single sisters and brothers, you just may begin to fantasize about someone you know and begin to form emotional bondage and emotional affairs.
A suggestion would be to adopt these Shades of Purity: Philippians 4:8 "Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things." Try the aforementioned "shades of purity" and you will see the fruit of your thoughts and imaginations.
A Christian singles, our thoughts and activities must be such as to bring glory to God. It is a warzone out there with everything within our sphere being focused on the flesh and perverting everything that God meant to be pure and shared within the confines of the marriage relationship. While some say they can read "Shades" without any emotional reaction, I disagree. Sex was meant to trigger an emotional response. Now, however you choose to manifest that response, only you know. Do you find yourself replacing the characters for someone you know and find yourself in an emotional attachment having sensual thoughts? Why put yourself in that predicament and end up fighting the emotions that come along with those thoughts?
As children of God, we were not meant to "test the waters" with things of the world. We are dead to sin and everything associated with sin. We cannot expect be pure while exposing ourselves to pornographic material. So you see, even a little dab of this and a little reading of that, can defile our conscience and eventually, nothing will prick our conscience to convict of impure influences.
So, let's be more diligent and intentional to put our desires under the microscope of God's word. A simple test to see if our activities are safe is to ask the questions, "would God be pleased with this activity?" or "does this line up with my lifestyle as a Christian?"
With a little quality control, we can stay out of the "Grey" zone and enter into the "Purity" zone.