I recently dropped an obnoxious question over at the Red Pill Christian reddit. This is what I asked:

What is the problem with porn?

Since most Christians regard pornography as sinful, where do we draw the line?

Song of Solomon => Erotic Poetry => Erotic Stories => Nude Paintings => Paintings of Sexual Acts => Video Animation of Sexual Acts => Photos of Nude Women => Photos of Sexual Acts => Videos of Sexual Acts.

More importantly than WHERE you draw the line. WHY do you draw the line there?

Please use biblical principles and logic to justify your answer.

The post received almost 500 views and got 31 comments. If you got time to kill, it’s worth checking out.

Otherwise, I’ll summarize the responses below. And, since this is my own blog, I will gleefully exercise my sovereign right make a final judgment on every argument.

1. There is no biblical scripture against porn because it wasn’t around back then. But the bible does tell us to “flee sexual immorality” so this would apply to porn.

Actually, porn has been around for a LONG time. Just as junior boys instinctively cover every bathroom stall with crude etchings of penises and tits, so have artists been graphically depicting sex since ancient times. The only thing that has significantly changed since biblical times is the quantity of images available and the resolution.

And, by definition, “sexual immorality” does not automatically refer to porn. It refers to engaging in prostitution and promiscuous sex.

2. The Bible tells us to abstain from “the appearance of evil” (1 Thess 5:21)

This is worth further investigation. At minimum, it can apply as an exhortation to avoid any pornography that portrays unlawful sexual acts (e.g. bestiality, homosexuality, etc.). Though sex itself is not evil so I don’t find it plausible that all “appearances” of sex would be evil. But a further point worth investigating is the fact that a lot of visual porn is produced in a sexually immoral context so technically, you are viewing a picture of a sinful act. But there would be no way to know this from the image alone…

3. Arguably, using sexually explicit material in a marriage is fine if it’s building unity. But it’s best to avoid it altogether when single.

This makes sense to me. Often times, it is helpful to see a graphic depiction of a sexual act for instructional purposes. The next question is, what about inspirational purposes?

Avoiding sexually explicit material altogether when single sounds nice in theory, but is that really practical advice when one lives in a culture saturated with sexual imagery?

4. Isn’t it clear that looking at porn is lusting for a woman other than your wife?

Not when “lust” is properly understood in the Greek. The English word “lust” means to have a very strong sexual desire for someone. The problem is that the English word doesn’t convey the same precision as the Greek word epithumeoLust in the English sense is certainly part of epithumeo, but it’s not necessarily the same thing. In order for “lust” to qualify as epithumeo, the desire must also include (1) an intensifying focus, (2) an intense emotion that borders on rage, and (3) a longing to have sex with or possess the woman of focus. In colloquial terms, we might say that biblical lust is the same as being “madly in love” with a woman who belongs to another man.

Now imagine you were the judge of a case where a young man was accused of evil intent. The evidence? He was caught ogling over his friend’s wife’s cleavage as she bent over. You talk to the young man and find he seems to be a “normal” guy. He shows no signs of mental unstableness. He works a steady job. He’s seems to be a genuinely “nice guy.” You find no evidence that the young man is stalking the wife or is obsessed with her in any way. Turns out he’s just got a thing for big tits. Would you condemn that man for adultery? Would you ask the husband if he would like you to put him to death? No! You’d have a good chuckle, pat him on the back and say, “Look man, you got to be more discreet about that stuff. You’re gonna have a hard time getting a good woman if all you can do is stare at her tits with your mouth open.”

The man who spends his time jerking off to porn is not an adulterer. He’s just the dumbass friend who can’t get laid because he just stares at the girl’s chest instead of talking to her.

5. Song of Solomon was basically 50 Shades of Grey for women back in the day and that was considered “holy.” So why not mainstream visual porn today?

I think Song of Solomon has a lot more wisdom that 50 Shades of Gray. But I don’t have a problem with the logic of the question. I think the distinction is not so much an ethical distinction as a qualitative distinction. Once you delve into Song of Solomon and start to understand female desire, you’ll realize that the mainstream porn just makes you sexually retarded. How is watching yet another variation of “Busty Blonde Gets Pounded” really gonna help you?

Dig into the Scripture’s erotica. Study the female psyche. Learn to make up sexual fantasies.

The key to getting laid is leveraging female desire in your favor.