1999 James A. Fowler
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I. Representative Biblical references
A. Old Testament
word zahnah - "adultery, fornication or harlot"
38:24 - "your daughter-in-law has played the harlot"
106:39 - "they became unclean in their practices, and played
the harlot in their deeds"
5:1-23 (whole chapter)
7:1-27 (whole chapter)
B. New Testament
- (noun) - "immorality"
- (verb) - "to commit acts of immorality"
- (noun) - "prostitute, harlot"
- (noun) - "immoral persons, male prostitute"
5:32/19:9 - "divorces..except for the cause of unchastity/immorality"
15:19/Mk. 7:21 -"out of the heart come adulteries, fornications
15:20,29; 21:25 - "abstain from idols and from fornication"
Cor. 5:1 - "there is immorality among you..."
Cor. 6:13 - "the body is not for immorality, but for the
Cor. 6:18 - "flee immorality.. the immoral man sins against
his own body"
Cor. 7:2 - "because of immoralities, each man have his own
Cor. 10:8 - "nor let us act immorally"
Cor. 12:21 - "not repented of impurity, immorality, sensuality"
5:19 - "deeds of the flesh are immorality, impurity, sensuality"
5:3 - "do not let immorality or impurity be named among
3:5 - "consider the members of your body to be dead to immorality,
amounts to idolatry"
Thess. 4:3 - "the will of God is your sanctification, that
you abstain from sexual immorality"
2:14,20,21; 9:21; 14:8; 17:2,4; 18:3,9; 19:2
II. Definition of the terms
A. Greek words porneia and
translates as "fornication"
English usage often refers to premarital sexual relations, but
actually broad enough to be synonymous
refers to sexual intercourse outside of the context of marriage;
sexual intercourse between
two persons who are not rightfully married as husband and wife.
B. English word "immorality"
"Not consistent with morals"
From Latin moralis - "custom, manners"
mores - binding customs of a particular group
is whatever is contrary to the societal standards of a particular
A. What is pornography? How do we
determine what is pornographic?
1. Is exposure
of the human body wrong?
much exposure? face? (Arabs); arms, legs?(Victorians); torso?;
in art? Greek statuary. Italian art. Playboy magazine.
B. U.S. Supreme Court has decided that
pornography is determined by local standards of
C. Defining pornography
- sexual intercourse of persons not married; graphe -
writing or pictures.
pornography is a graphic portrayal of sexual intercourse between
persons not married
to one another.
IV. What is the real issue?
A. The real issue is not morality.
is not morality.
tries to attribute morality to actions
intercourse is amoral. God made it possible when he created mankind
"male and female"
(Gen. 1:27). "Very good" (Gen. 1:31)
character of good or evil can be expressed within the act
godly, righteous, faithful character
sinful, selfish, unfaithful character
problem is not solved by censorship or censure of graphic portrayal
or actions; legislated
B. The real issue is the character of
character is that of purity, holiness, faithfulness, love
only way to have and express such is spiritual regeneration
character will first be found in thought and emotion, and then
Possible to have sexual intercourse with married spouse and to
be "immoral" in character
to have God's character in the midst of our sexual thoughts,
graphic portrayals and actions
will be "immoral"
alternative to having the character of God in such is to have
the character of the Evil One,
Immorality and adultery are identified with death
Immorality and adultery are identified with idolatry
To do so is to ascribe "worth" to, and to live for,
something other than God.
Acts 15:20,29; Gal. 5:19,20; Col. 3:5; Rev. 2:14,20
6. The avoidance
and overcoming of immorality is only by the indwelling presence
expression of the character of God in Christ within our sexual
thought and behavior.