Do the laws of uncleanness mean masturbation is sinful?


I have to start by saying this: I do not fall under the law, but I try my best to obey it as the Holy Spirit guides me, or, as I allow God to use me. I am also not trying to make you feel guilt or shame, for it is not my duty in any way to judge you -- good or not good -- but I am attempting to show you, perhaps, a different perspective so that the truth can be shown, instead of “acceptable” human behavior, which is what I feel is being done when people point to your web site.

I have read your comments on masturbation being a sin, and you state that it cannot be decided to be a sin. Surely, then, we should make people aware of what is necessary to be done “under the law” in order that you can become clean and that you do not make someone else “unclean.” You seem to have missed one commandment, which is this “love your neighbor as you love yourself” (also in Leviticus 5:3). If anyone touches the uncleanness on man (I would say even the man who is unclean until nightfall), whatever it may be, he becomes guilty of sin, and we should remember also that anyone who causes another to sin is sinful. So I ask, do you feel that anyone who masturbates and later goes to school or work hasn’t sinned by being in contact with others? Even if they do it at home and then go sit at the dinner table to eat with their family, is this perhaps not sinful? How can a person who has masturbated and had an emission show any form of love to their neighbor if they are not allowed around their neighbor in order not to make them sin by touch? I think touch can mean many things, including to make someone believe that masturbation is not sinful or that it is “healthy” or that it is “natural” because surely then your mind will be of this conviction. While I agree that it can be a temporary relief for those suffering mentally because of their urges, I say that we cannot treat symptoms of a serious disease in that case, but rather we should treat the cause for permanent relief. By exposing that desires of the flesh are not from God, and by showing that God wants something else for us to be and to do.

I understand the teaching of masturbation is not a sin, but how should we live our lives? Is it not by the Spirit and not by the flesh, when did the Spirit ever need for the body to masturbate?

Another perspective is this: if a person thinks about sex a lot and has many erections and this leads to “lovers balls,” then is this not the natural way of God saying do not think and dwell on sexual things? Surely this is more natural than masturbation is natural for teenagers.

This is truly a distasteful subject, and while I feel it is important to be discussed, I also feel that each case should be looked at individually, as God would, and ensure that each finds the true problem inside of them because if the Holy Spirit is convicting them, then surely the Holy Spirit knows best.

Thank you for your ear.

I must say out of the few “links” I have been faced with, your site does try to be most objective, but we have to ask what we condone or condemn, for then we are making up new rules which are not our duty. The best is that we teach against anything that does not fit the Bible’s teachings and masturbation is not taught anywhere in the Bible as something we should be doing now is it? I trust that we can find a way of teaching the truth which is that Christ is our Redeemer before God no matter what we do, but that once we have that faith it should be followed by acceptance of truth, which leads to us following a path of righteousness for the glory of Christ and ultimately God.


I find your verbal dance interesting.

  • You claim to be not under the Old Testament Law, but you claim to follow it and want to bind a section of the Law on people.
  • You claim not to judge while giving your conclusion that I am encouraging people to sin. You also conclude that because other people, who hold values that you do not approve of, refer to material on my site that I must somehow hold to those same values.
  • You say that I'm objective while charging me with being biased toward the wrong answer.
  • You said you don't want to make up new rules, and yet are arguing for a set of rules.
  • You said that Christ saves no matter what a person does, but then argue that a set of rules are required.

Because Jesus said, "Do not judge according to appearance, but judge with righteous judgment" (John 7:24) and John said, "Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world" (I John 4:1), I have no qualms against putting your reasoning to the test. After all, you claim you are being guided by the Holy Spirit and being used by God.

The bulk of your claim is that under the Old Testament rules for uncleanness, masturbating would make the person unclean. That is correct. "Now if a man has a seminal emission, he shall bathe all his body in water and be unclean until evening" (Leviticus 15:16). While this includes masturbation, it is not restricted to only masturbation. It also includes wet dreams. "If there is among you any man who is unclean because of a nocturnal emission, then he must go outside the camp; he may not reenter the camp. But it shall be when evening approaches, he shall bathe himself with water, and at sundown he may reenter the camp" (Deuteronomy 23:10-11). And it includes sex between a husband and wife. "If a man lies with a woman so that there is a seminal emission, they shall both bathe in water and be unclean until evening" (Leviticus 15:18). Thus your claim means that any man having an ejaculation, for whatever reason, must isolate himself for an entire day; otherwise, he would spread his uncleanness to others. Of course, that would mean that women must isolate themselves during their menstrual period for the same reason. "When a woman has a discharge, if her discharge in her body is blood, she shall continue in her menstrual impurity for seven days; and whoever touches her shall be unclean until evening" (Leviticus 15:19). And these are not the only uncleanness rules. Therefore, your argument is much broader than your particular application.

You also made incorrect conclusions about the laws of uncleanness when you said that if an unclean person touched another, he caused them to sin. The Old Law did not say this. It only says that the uncleanness spreads. See "Uncleanness" for a detailed study on the matter. To prove that "love your neighbor as yourself" applies, you must prove that a person becoming unclean harmed others.

The key flaw of the argument is that the Old Testament laws apply today. "And you, being dead in your trespasses and the uncircumcision of your flesh, He has made alive together with Him, having forgiven you all trespasses, having wiped out the handwriting of requirements that was against us, which was contrary to us. And He has taken it out of the way, having nailed it to the cross. Having disarmed principalities and powers, He made a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them in it. So let no one judge you in food or in drink, or regarding a festival or a new moon or sabbaths, which are a shadow of things to come, but the substance is of Christ" (Colossians 2:14-17). The Old Laws ended at the death of Jesus. Those laws had to be removed because they could not offer salvation from sin to people. "For, on the one hand, there is a setting aside of a former commandment because of its weakness and uselessness (for the Law made nothing perfect), and on the other hand there is a bringing in of a better hope, through which we draw near to God" (Hebrews 7:18-19).

That change included the laws of uncleanness. "If you have died with Christ to the elementary principles of the world, why, as if you were living in the world, do you submit yourself to decrees, such as, "Do not handle, do not taste, do not touch!" (which all refer to things destined to perish with use) -- in accordance with the commandments and teachings of men? These are matters which have, to be sure, the appearance of wisdom in self-made religion and self-abasement and severe treatment of the body, but are of no value against fleshly indulgence" (Colossians 2:20-23). Since Christ removed the Old Law, and we have died with Christ, why would we want to bring back the Old? To do so is to follow the decrees of men and not of God, and they serve no useful purpose.

I also find the argument that the desires of the flesh are not from God odd. If they are not from God, who created man in the flesh, then where do they come from? I agree that lusts of the flesh -- that is, the strong desires for something that is unlawful -- are not from God (I John 2:15-17). But the fact that people get hungry, thirsty, or have a desire for sex is merely matters concerning how we are made. You don't argue that a person should not eat because hunger is not a matter of the spirit. Nor should it be argued that a person should not marry because the desire for sex is not a matter of the spirit. Instead, God tells us that finding proper outlets for our desires is what a person should seek. "Nevertheless, because of sexual immorality, let each man have his own wife, and let each woman have her own husband" (I Corinthians 7:2).

So upon what passage do you come to the conclusion that "Christ is our Redeemer before God no matter what we do"? Paul taught otherwise. "But in accordance with your hardness and your impenitent heart you are treasuring up for yourself wrath in the day of wrath and revelation of the righteous judgment of God, who "will render to each one according to his deeds" " (Romans 2:5-6).

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