National Association of Marriage Enhancement

Zero Shades of Gray

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You probably have heard of the bestselling book and the upcoming movie, 50 Shades of Grey, a story that hundreds of thousands of women have read fantasizing about the character Christian Grey. The book is about an explicit, detailed, sexual awakening including but not limited to strong elements of sadomasochism. This story is PORNOGRAPHIC, and pornography is a SIN. Shockingly, Christian women everywhere think it is okay to participate in the reading of this book and many other graphic novels. In many homes, there is a double standard that men cannot watch pornography, but women can read this filth. Neither is okay by God’s standards, and the Bible makes this clear. Do not be fooled: this is a black and white issue; there are zero shades of gray.

“Let us walk properly as in the daytime, not in orgies or drunkenness, not in sexual immorality and sensuality, not in quarreling and jealousy. But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provisions for the flesh, to gratify its desires” (Romans 13:13-14). Let’s breakdown this verse so we can understand the God’s clear Word in regard to the issue at hand:

  • Orgies: Let’s get one thing straight. God wants you to orgasm… IN marriage. He has created your bodily functions, and wants you to experience that passion with the one you are covenanted to. God does not want you to orgasm with others OR selfishly. That’s right. Love is not self-seeking (1 Corn13:5). By reading or watching pornographic material for your own sexual arousal, you are selfishly trying to satisfy yourself.
  • Sexual Immorality: This is anything that God does not define as holy and righteous. Sex itself, when designated in marriage, is holy, but sex outside of marriage, either prior to marriage or adulterous, is sinful.
  • Sensuality: It is interesting that Paul makes a separate distinction from sexual immorality to include sensuality on this list. According to the dictionary, sensuality means, “the enjoyment, expression, or pursuit of physical, especially sexual, pleasure.” This is exactly the point of a graphic novel, to whisk one into this sort of fantasy. The Bible tells us to think on whatever is honorable, pure and commendable (Phil 4:8).
  • Jealousy: We all know that God does not condone coveting, so why do some think fantasizing is a ‘gray’ issue? Do not be jealous of the possibility of a partner other than your own. That is a slippery slope, which leads to deeper sin.
  • Make no provisions for the flesh, to gratify its desires: We are at war with ourselves. We have a spirit and a flesh. As Christians, we are constantly needing to posture ourselves by submitting to the Holy Spirit so He can sanctify our spirits. As fleshly creatures in a fallen world, we are imperfect and sin, but Christ’s death on the cross justifies us. We are to cloak ourselves in this Gospel message, thus rejecting fleshly pursuits. On this earth, we will always have faults of the flesh, but our spirit should always be stronger, since that is what we feed.

Books and movies like 50 Shades of Grey are not gray or morally ambiguous issues; God makes himself clear—ZERO shades of gray. You give your time to what you care about. When you choose books like this over the Bible, or even other morally clean books, you are making a statement about what you care about. “For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also” (Luke 12:34). Let’s do our best to commit to things that strengthen our spiritual walk and fortify our marriages. Who is with us? Will you make a stand for righteousness?