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Why Should We Care About Porn if It Wasn’t an Issue During Biblical Times?

Core Christianity / Adriel Sanchez and Bill Maier
The Truth Network Radio
November 15, 2023 11:30 am

Why Should We Care About Porn if It Wasn’t an Issue During Biblical Times?

Core Christianity / Adriel Sanchez and Bill Maier

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November 15, 2023 11:30 am

Episode 1359 | Adriel Sanchez and Bill Maier answer caller questions.

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 CoreChristianity.com

Questions in this Episode

 

1. How was the unregenerate thief on the cross able to confess Jesus as Lord?   2. Does the Bible condone slavery?     3. Why should we care about porn of it wasn't an issue during biblical times?     4. Should we view COVID-19 as one of the three plagues in Revelation 9:18?   Today’s Offer: Inner Core   Want to partner with us in our work here at Core Christianity? Consider becoming a member of the Inner Core.   View our latest special offers here or call 1-833-THE-CORE (833-843-2673) to request them by phone.   Resources

Book -  Core Christianity: Finding Yourself in God's Story by Michael Horton

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Why should we care about pornography if it wasn't an issue during biblical times? That's just one of the questions we'll be answering on today's edition of Core Christianity. Well, hi, this is Bill Meyer, along with Pastor Adriel Sanchez, and this is the radio program where we answer your questions about the Bible and the Christian life every day. You can call us with your question at 833-THE-CORE.

That's 1-833-843-2673. You can feel free to leave a voicemail if you get our voicemail system. Of course, you can always email us as well at questionsatcorechristianity.com.

First up today, let's go to a voicemail from one of our listeners named David. Since we know that no one can call Jesus Lord without the power of the Holy Ghost, 1 Corinthians 12-3, why then did the thief confess Jesus Lord prior to asking for salvation? Luke 22 42 43. If it wasn't very important for him to make that public confession to Jesus as Lord prior to asking for salvation. David, thank you for that question, brother. You know, so I think sometimes we can get caught up with just the words in particular, the word Lord or the title Lord, for example. When 1 Corinthians chapter 12 says that no one can call Jesus Lord except by the Holy Spirit, Paul is not saying that individuals can't say Jesus is Lord with their lips or even say Lord, Lord. Matthew chapter 7, right, Jesus says, you know, on the day of judgment, there are going to be many who stand before me and say, Lord, Lord, didn't we do this that and the other in your name? And presumably they spent their lives saying Lord to Jesus and confessing him as Lord with their lips.

And yet they didn't follow him. And so it's one thing we're not just talking about here, lip service, we're talking about a heart that is aligned with Christ, with the true and the living God, to say that Jesus is Lord is not just to recite something, some incantation, it's truly confessing him as Lord, as the true God, as your savior. And so I wouldn't get caught up with the fact that the thief on the cross says Lord, when did that happen? Did he have the Holy Spirit there?

What's going on here? We do know and believe based on what Jesus said that he's in heaven, right, that he died and went to be with the Lord in that moment. And so, I mean, what's highlighted there is the absolute grace of God, the mercy of God in receiving, you know, the deathbed sinner, the person right there, you know, who says, man, I recognize, Jesus, that you are who you said you were, that you are who you say you are, and I'm confessing that you're Lord and I need your grace. That's the work of the Holy Spirit. But just giving lip service to God, well, people have done that throughout history.

This is the problem that God had with many of the Israelites in Isaiah chapter one. You guys, you know, you guys come to me with all these offerings. You lift your hands, you pray, but those same hands are stained with blood.

This people draws near to me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me. And so we have to distinguish between those two things, David, and I think when we do, it clears up the dilemma that seems to be posed there. God bless. You know, one of the most powerful things about the thief on the cross and his confession is that, and I'm sure you hear this a lot as a pastor, people will say, oh, man, I've done so many bad things in my life. There's no way God could forgive me. I'm this and this and this, and I'm just so bad that God could not, you know, forgive my sin. And yet you look at the thief, unless, you know, I do restitution, unless I, you know, do make it all better. Not that we shouldn't do that, but the thief on the cross had no opportunity to go back and make good what he had done.

It sure is wrong. It's the struggle that so many of us have. I think even sincere believers who question, can God really save me? Can he really forgive my sins? Okay, I don't have a problem believing that Jesus is gracious, that he's good to people out there. You know, I hear when I go to church the pastor preaching and the promise of the gospel being given, but when I look in my own heart and I see how many times I've wandered from the Lord and the sins that I still struggle with after all these years, boy, man, Lord, I can't believe that I'm still making these same mistakes.

God, can you be merciful to me? And this is where the gospel is so important, where it's so important that we grasp the power of God to redeem us so that we don't slip into despair, because despair says it's hopeless. My sins are too strong, too great, too numerous for Jesus.

But the truth is that's not the case. No matter what you've done, no matter how many times you've failed, the blood of Jesus is potent enough, it's powerful enough to cleanse you, to forgive you. That doesn't justify your sins. It doesn't make it okay. That doesn't mean, you know, let's go on and keep sinning. That's exactly what Paul says. Should we continue in sin that grace may abound?

No way, you know, by no means. No, you're dead to it now. You've received the grace of God. And so I think what we have to do is we have to get our eyes off of ourselves, and we take all of our sins to the Lord, and we trust in his ability to save. And that gives glory to God, and it gives us great hope as well.

So well said. This is Core Christianity with Pastor Adriel Sanchez. We'd love to hear from you. If you have a question about the Bible or the Christian life, doctrine, theology, you name it, you can call us and leave a voicemail 24 hours a day at this number, 833-THE-CORE.

That's 1-833-843-2673. You can also email us at questionsatcorechristianity.com. Let's go to Megan calling in from Vermont. Megan, what's your question for Adriel?

Hi, Pastor Adriel. I was having a conversation with a friend of mine who's a non-believer, and they were trying to discredit the Bible by saying the Bible is okay with slavery. And I'd never really heard of that before, and I didn't really know what to say. And I'm wondering, how would I respond to someone who says that? It's an excellent question, and one that comes up pretty often. We got actually a very similar question not too long ago, and it was toward the end of the broadcast.

It's just like, oh, man, I need way more time to answer this question. But there are a couple of things I think that we can say. There were prohibitions in the Old Testament given laws relating to slavery. In Israel, if someone had fallen upon hard times and they wanted to become essentially an indentured servant, a slave, they could do that. Now, in one sense, a way of providing for themselves, and there were opportunities for freedom given in the law after a period of time, your slave was just supposed to go free.

Or they might choose to stay and to become a part of the household. And a lot of times when we think about slavery, we hear about slavery, we're seeing it through the lens of the horrific history that we have here in the United States with slavery and the slave trade. So a couple of things. I think one, it's anachronistic to read that experience back into the biblical times. Two, the Bible gives us a whole theology of mankind made in the image of God. And so it gives us the foundation for treating all people with dignity and respect, not objectifying others. And it's this theology that was at the heart of the abolition of slavery at various points in history.

It was that reality. We're not talking about beasts here, less than humans. We're talking about human beings made in the image of God who should be treated with love and dignity and respect. And so even though there were allowances made in the Old Testament, that was never supposed to be the case, the thing. I think of it sort of like divorce, Megan.

When Jesus is talking to the religious leaders in Matthew chapter 19 and they said, Moses gave permission for doing a certificate of divorce. And he says, look, from the very beginning, that's not how it's supposed to be. In God's world, in the perfect world, that's not how it's supposed to be.

It's because of our own sinfulness, our hardness of heart that these things happen in the world. And that's certainly the case with something like this, with the objectification of another person, treating them like a thing for my own advancement. That's wrong. And why is that wrong? You can say to your friend, well, it's wrong because that person is made in the image of God. That's why it's wrong, because we're not just the product of blind chance and evolution. Well, if that's the case, then how do you have a real basis for anything that's objectively good or moral?

You don't. You might say, well, I don't think that that's right. That's how I feel. But some periods in history said it was totally fine. And you wouldn't have a real basis for arguing against that. We're saying, no, we have something foundational as Christians, as theists who believe in a good God who made us in his image for saying that should be rejected. And in the new creation, there's going to be none of that.

And so I think there are a lot of places you can go with this, but those are some of the things that I would say in having that conversation and hopefully steering it back to the fact that, look, we're made in the image of God. This is why we ought to give each other that love and dignity and respect and care for one another as God calls us to. You know, one of the things we've often talked about here at Core Christianity is just because something is mentioned in the Bible, it doesn't mean it's prescribed by God. Polygamy is another example of that, just because we see that happening.

The king's taking multiple lives. It's not like God said, hey, I want you to do that. Yeah. Yeah. I mean, absolutely. If you're reading the Bible and you're thinking, oh, look, King David did this, so it must be OK for me. Bad news.

That's not the way. I mean, the amazing thing is you read about so many of these patriarchs and heroes and people that, you know, we often look at and say, oh, they're such a godly person. I remember when I was reading through First and Second Samuel with our kids and we get to the scene with David and Bathsheba, my kids were shocked. My kids were shocked because up until that point, you know, you're sort of David is this great hero, this great king. He's obedient to the Lord, not like King Saul. And yet here he is acting in such terrible ways. And it's sort of like all my kids, their their jaws dropped and they think he's he's a bad guy.

He's he's. And and he's a sinner. And we're sinners.

We're desperately in need of the grace of God. And we long for a world where people aren't treated like things. We see this a lot. I mean, so we see this a lot also.

You know, I'll just bring it up. We see it a lot in in the the lust of our society. Lust is a problem because it's treating another person as an object for your own gratification, your own sexual gratification.

That's wrong. That's the objectification of another person. And yet so many are blind to that today.

So well said. This is Core Christianity with Pastor Adriel Sanchez. We'd love to hear your question about the Bible, the Christian life doctrine, theology, maybe something to do with what's happening at your church right now, some kind of struggle your church is going through. We'd love to hear from you. You can leave us a message, a voicemail message at this number, 833-THE-CORE.

That's 1-833-843-2673. Also want to mention, we have a special group of people here at Core Christianity that we call our inner core. Now, we don't play commercials on this program. We don't receive money from a church or denomination.

We don't get money from a radio station. We count on people just like you to make regular gifts to keep us on the air. And the people that join the inner core are folks that believe so strongly in this ministry that they've made a monthly commitment.

Yeah, it's a monthly commitment of $25 or more. And so first, I want to say thank you very much to all of you who have joined the inner core and encourage everyone else. I mean, if you're blessed by this broadcast, the work that we're doing, would you consider also committing to make that monthly gift of $25 or more a month?

And to view it... Here's how I would love for you to think of this is not just as helping us, but really as a partnership, as working together to spread the truth of God's word, as serving side by side for the sake of the gospel. We want to be in the saddle with you, and we want to share the truth of God's word with people via podcast, via radio, however God allows us to. And so your gifts help us with that. And we thank you and just want to again say, if you're blessed by the broadcast, consider joining the inner core.

It's easy to do. Just go to our website corechristianity.com forward slash inner core, just one word. So corechristianity.com forward slash inner core.

Learn more about joining that special group of people and we'd love to send you Dr. Michael Horton's book. Core Christianity is a special gift for joining the inner core. Well, we do receive voicemails here at Core Christianity. Here's one that came in from one of our listeners named Kevin.

My question is, who in the Bible watched porn, as horrible as it is, and disgusting for a woman to think her husband is watching porn, or looking at girls? We put too much emphasis on it and don't think about the people who need to be saved from hell. And we don't think about how much destruction there is in racism that seems to be running rampant constantly. Thank you.

Bye. I think that those are all problems. Racism, pornography, lust. You said, who in the Bible looked at porn?

The truth is, Kevin, there's nothing new under the sun. In the days of the Roman Empire, the society was very pornographic, not in the same way. They didn't have phones and computers and internet pornography. But it was in other ways, through theater, through statues.

The Temple of Diana. There were pagan religious ceremonies that involved sex acts. And so it was a society that was very much charged by lust, charged by illicit sexual behavior.

This was the society that the gospel was being preached in. We oftentimes look around us and think, especially when we're thinking about sexuality and the sexual revolution, it's never been this bad. The truth is, it was probably worse in Paul's day. The difference between then and now is we just have more creative ways of satisfying our lust through technology. So that's a problem.

That's horrible. But in terms of the sin, it's always been there. And it's always a threat to us. You said, with all the stuff that's happening and the danger of hell, this is why Jesus brings up lust in his Sermon on the Mount. In Matthew 5, verse 27, you've heard that it was said, you shall not commit adultery.

But I say to you that everyone who looks at a woman with lustful intent has already committed adultery with her in his heart. If your right eye causes you to sin, tear it out and throw it away. For it is better that you lose one of your members than that your whole body be thrown into hell. In other words, this is an issue that we're talking about hell here. Again, he goes on to say, if your right hand causes you to sin, cut it off and throw it away. For it is better that you lose one of your members than that your whole body go into hell. So we don't have to pick and choose which sin do we call out. Racism is a terrible sin that will condemn a person to hell if they don't repent. Sexual immorality, right?

That same thing. Jesus says if your right hand causes you to sin, if your right eye is causing you to sin, pluck it out. In other words, whatever it is that's a stumbling block for you in this area, take this seriously.

Don't just pretend like it's a game. Don't think that it's not a big deal. It is a big deal, Jesus says.

It's not just, and this is where he's really digging into the religious leaders of the day. They thought, well, that commandment, the command to not commit adultery, that doesn't have anything to say to me. I've never cheated on my spouse. But Jesus says, well, have you looked at another woman with lustful intent? If you have, if that's what you're doing, if you're harboring all of these lusts in your heart and while you're not acting on them, that's what you're doing.

Your mind is wandering places where it shouldn't go and you're entertaining those thoughts and you're looking at someone and you're treating them like a thing in your mind. You're stripping them of their dignity as image bearers, as creatures made in the image of God. Jesus says, well, that's sin.

That's wrong. You've already committed adultery in your heart. And in a society like that society was, but even like our society today where sexual sin is so rampant and when people, it's just sort of like anything goes so long as it's consenting. People don't recognize that what Jesus says here is true and good, that you can even objectify another person by just how you look at them. And that's what God has examined. He's looking at your heart.

You can see what you're doing. We do need to talk about this stuff. It is important that we address the sin of pornography, that we address the sin of racism as well. Like all of these things, we need to talk about these things, call people to repentance and to receive the grace that God has for those who turn to him.

And I just want to say one other thing. When Jesus is preaching this in the Sermon on the Mount, I think you could have heard a pin drop. I mean, he's preaching outside, right? So, you know, were it not for the fact that he's preaching outside, I think you would have been able to hear a pin drop amongst his listeners because what he said was so shocking, so revolutionary when it came to sexual sin. Jesus didn't pull any punches. And he says, you know, that the crazy stuff that's out there in the Roman world, you know, the promiscuity, the flagrant of sin in your face, that will condemn you. But it's also the secret sin, the stuff that you cling to in your heart that no one else sees, that also will condemn you.

So I think that would have been a shock to people. What was also shocking about Jesus in his teaching with regard to sex and sexuality and so forth was he didn't pull any punches when talking about sexual sin, but he also had arms wide open to sexual sinners who came to him broken longing for forgiveness, whether it was the prostitutes or the woman at the well who had been in one relationship after another relationship after another relationship. She was cohabitating with a guy who wasn't her husband and she probably was viewed as just like, oh, you know, that woman, she just goes from one guy to another and Jesus pursues her.

He pursues her and he calls her to himself in love and in grace. The people we tend to look at and say, oh, you know, for whatever reason, those sinners. Jesus had arms wide open to people who had been sexually abused and people who were enslaved to sexual sin, if they came to him and asked for his grace and forgiveness, he gave it to them. And that was a shock to Jesus's contemporaries as well.

And so we have in Jesus one who doesn't justify or just sort of overlook sexual sin, but he does welcome sinners and redeems them, forgives them, and heals them. And that's the beautiful thing about our Lord. Amen.

So well said. Thanks for that, Adriel. This is Core Christianity with Pastor Adriel Sanchez. You're always welcome to leave a voicemail on our voicemail system if you have a question about the Bible, the Christian life, doctrine, theology. Here's the number 833-THE-CORE.

That's 1-833-843-2673. You can also email us at questions at corechristianity.com. Here's an email from AJ, and she's actually talking about the book of Revelation, which you recently preached through. Revelation 918 speaks of three plagues. And AJ says, do you think COVID-19 was one of those plagues?

AJ, thanks for that question. I mean, I'll just say at the outset, no, I don't think that the plagues in the book of Revelation are... That COVID-19 is what's being referred to there specifically. Now, there are judgments throughout history that we experience. And one of the things that I highlighted when I preached through the book of Revelation is that the book as a whole is giving us essentially a picture of world history that repeats itself. The technical, fancy theological word that we sometimes use is history recapitulates. So you have these rises and falls again and again and again leading up to culminating in the second coming of our Lord and various judgments of God that are exercised throughout history. And so there are some people who read the book of Revelation as entirely in the future. A lot of it though had to do what was taking place there in the first few centuries of the churches as Jesus is comforting the church under the Roman Empire that's being persecuted, that's being attacked, where they're being ostracized because of their faith, both from Jews and the Romans. And so they're looking for some help.

Give me some help here, Jesus. And the book of Revelation is meant to be a comfort to them. We often read it as, it didn't really have anything to say about the first century believers.

It's all about us today. Is this person the antichrist? Is that the plague that's being spoken of? But we have to recognize that first and foremost it was written to suffering saints in the first century. And it speaks to us today insofar as we as believers today even continue to suffer for faith in Jesus Christ. The word of God, the book of Revelation, has a lot to say to us there.

And it also speaks about the future judgments and the judgments that take place throughout history. But I think it's too simplistic to say, okay, I see the word plague here, COVID-19, that seemed pretty bad. Maybe that's what was being spoken of. I think that's not exactly what John had in mind.

So I appreciate the question, especially a couple of years ago, and a year ago even, we were getting a lot more of these questions. Is this vaccine the mark of the beast? Is this the plague described in the book of Revelation? Been getting less of those now, but I know that it's still something that many people have wrestled with, Bill. You've also mentioned in the past, when referring to the mark of the beast, it's not something that, oops, I got it. Big mistake on my part.

On accident, right, yeah. Well, that's heartbreaking because for many people they're gripped by fear. And fear does seem to be one of the main motivators today, sadly.

You know, media uses it, social media, you know, people want you to be afraid. And so one of the great concerns that people had was, well, am I going to accidentally get the mark of the beast? And the answer is, this is not something that you do by accident.

This is something that happens. We're aligning ourselves with pagan worship, with pagan idolatry, with a pagan world system that rejects Christ and his gospel. And so if you're a believer in Jesus Christ, you're filled with the Holy Spirit, you've been sealed by the Holy Spirit, and God is not going to let you go.

Christ is going to keep you and preserve you, faithful for himself and glorify you on the last day. God bless. Thanks for listening to Core Christianity. To request your copy of today's special offer, go to CoreChristianity.com forward slash radio, or you can call us at 1-833-843-2673. That's 1-833-833-The-Core. When you contact us, let us know how we can be praying for you. And be sure to join us next time as we explore the truth of God's word together.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-11-15 12:15:24 / 2023-11-15 12:25:42 / 10

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