“But your beauty went to your head and you became a common whore, grabbing anyone coming down the street and taking him into your bed. You took your fine dresses and made ‘tents’ of them, using them as brothels in which you practiced your trade. This kind of thing should never happen, never.

And then you took all that fine jewelry I gave you, my gold and my silver, and made pornographic images of them for your brothels. You decorated your beds with fashionable silks and cottons, and perfumed them with my aromatic oils and incense. And then you set out the wonderful foods I provided—the fresh breads and fruits, with fine herbs and spices, which were my gifts to you—and you served them as delicacies in your whorehouses. That’s what happened, says God, the Master.

And then you took your sons and your daughters, whom you had given birth to as my children, and you killed them, sacrificing them to idols. Wasn’t it bad enough that you had become a whore? And now you’re a murderer, killing my children and sacrificing them to idols.

Not once during these years of outrageous obscenities and whorings did you remember your infancy, when you were naked and exposed, a blood-smeared newborn.

And then to top off all your evil acts, you built your bold brothels in every town square. Doom! Doom to you, says God, the Master! At every major intersection you built your bold brothels and exposed your sluttish sex, spreading your legs for everyone who passed by.

And then you went international with your whoring. You fornicated with the Egyptians, seeking them out in their sex orgies. The more promiscuous you became, the angrier I got. Finally, I intervened, reduced your borders and turned you over to the rapacity of your enemies. Even the Philistine women—can you believe it?—were shocked at your sluttish life.

You went on to fornicate with the Assyrians. Your appetite was insatiable. But still you weren’t satisfied. You took on the Babylonians, a country of businessmen, and still you weren’t satisfied.

What a sick soul! Doing all this stuff—the champion whore! You built your bold brothels at every major intersection, opened up your whorehouses in every neighborhood, but you were different from regular whores in that you wouldn’t accept a fee.

Wives who are unfaithful to their husbands accept gifts from their lovers. And men commonly pay their whores. But you pay your lovers! You bribe men from all over to come to bed with you! You’re just the opposite of the regular whores who get paid for sex. Instead, you pay men for their favors! You even pervert whoredom!”—Ezekiel 16:15-34

Whew! OK, I know the last chapter wore some of you out, because it wore me out. Let me just share something with you before I begin today’s study. Yesterday, I was so (physically) exhausted and weary that I called one of my spiritual mentors for some insight and she shared something that was very profound. She said that as a person begins to experience deep, intense deliverance, there may come a level of mild depression or even physical sickness.

Now, I already know what some of the super-spiritual people are gonna say: “I rebuke that and I am not even going to speak that into my life!” But remember, with wisdom comes an understanding (Proverbs 4:7). Her reason for saying that was because as your spirit begins to detox, there may be some effects that it has on your flesh as well. So, I am going to tell you what she told me: “Deliverance doesn’t have to be something that you suffer through. Take your vitamins (my mother prescribes Magnesium/Zinc and Calcium as a nerve calmer), drink plenty of liquids, pamper yourself and be sure to walk everyday. As you physically walk some things out, your mind will be made clearer. Just make sure that you take extra special care of yourself during this time. It’s a special time.”

In Shellie terms, “As you throw up some stuff, it can get a little messy. Make sure to keep yourself clean so that you don’t take in what you just spit out.” OK, now we can move on into Renee and her digression into harlotry.

“But your beauty went to your head and you became a common whore.”

I think we all know a woman (or two or 10) who has let her beauty go to her head. How funny when the Book of Romans said that God became frustrated because the creature started worshiping the creation more than the Creator (Romans 1:24-25), that we don’t think that can apply to our unnecessarily elevated opinion of ourselves.

There is a particular woman I know who is physically stunning. She’s also…let’s just say “interesting” because I have heard it come out of her own mouth on more than one occasion that she doesn’t hang around a lot of women because they all are jealous of her looks. This same woman was in a club a couple of weeks ago (yes, I was at a club) grinding up on some man who is “supposedly” in a relationship with someone else, with her bra exposed.

This is what happens when you move outside of God’s glory. Whenever you operate outside of his will, wisdom and direction for your life, like Eve and like Renee, you become naked, unarmed (Ephesians 6:14-17) and perhaps without even noticing it, acting like a common whore (a woman who engages in promiscuous sexual intercourse).

Now, let’s spend some time dealing with the word “promiscuous”. Several years ago, I spoke at a local college and during the Q&A time, a young woman asked me how many partners I’ve had. At the time, it was 10. Some of the class said, “Man, that’s it?” while the others mumbled, “Uh, you’re a ho”.

Let me tell you something, especially those of you who like to justify your foolish “PG-13” (in your eyes) behavior. Salvation is a very personal thing and when God calls us not to fornicate (Ephesians 5:3), God is not handing out brownie points because you only let one man “hit it” as opposed to several. Remember, Rahab was a whore and she has received the promise of entering the kingdom (Hebrews 11:31) just as much as Christ’s mother, Mary (who was a virgin). Why? Because she repented (Acts 3:19).

So my past promiscuous sistahs, if you have a past full of men, don’t let guilt, condemnation or spiritually-immature females who act like they don’t need the same Jesus as you do get you down. You can’t do anything about what you’ve done and all you need to do now is acknowledge Christ who died for you to change where you are going (Romans 8:1). However, for the women who have “done everything but” or “only slept with their boyfriend”, let me shed some light on what the term “promiscuous” means:

Promiscuous: characterized by or involving indiscriminate mingling or association, esp. having sexual relations with a number of partners on a casual basis; consisting of parts, elements, or individuals of different kinds brought together without order; indiscriminate; without discrimination; lacking standards of selection; casual and unrestrained in sexual behavior.

And the synonyms of “promiscuous” are:

Promiscuous: abandoned, cheap, easy mark, immoral, for free, fast, loose, lax, pushover, musical beds, slut, tramp, swinging, unrestricted, licentious, wild., run around, dog (hmm, maybe that’s why so many rappers are comfortable calling women the b-word).

We serve a God who desires that all things be done decently and in order (I Corinthians 14:40). The Word goes on to say that we were bought with a price and so we are not to be slaves of men (I Corinthians 7:23). OK, so with that said, let me share that it’s because of this scripture that I no longer believe in the whole “boyfriend/girlfriend” theory:

Slave: a person who is the property of and wholly subject to another

A man wants to know who you are talking to on the phone? A man accuses you of “cheating” when he sees you out with some other guy? A guy feels that he has the right to speak about how you run your household and (silly rabbit), you listen?

Recently, I had someone’s “boyfriend” call me to tell me what “she” was gonna do and what I needed to do in response to her decision about “him”. Do you know what my response was? “You are no more than her friend. You are not her husband and so you don’t have the kind of right or hold that kind of weight in her life right now to even come at me like that.”

But the thing is, I should’ve called and told her that. Some of us are promiscuous, not because we’ve got a lot of notches on our belt, but because we are living pseudo-married lives via a boyfriend. While a boyfriend is a boyfriend, he hasn’t paid the price that gives him the right to have authority over us (I Corinthians 7:4) and yet far too many of us are working to please “him” like he did. Working for free, well, either that makes you a volunteer or a slave.

However, let me tell you this: A man of God is not interested in receiving the privileges of marriage until he has earned them, and that doesn’t just go for your physical body. This is how you know if your “willingness to serve” has gone from volunteer status to slave status. A slave master takes advantage of what a person is offering. He knows that what they are doing is worthy of a price and yet, he is not willing to pay it. In other words, if a man wants to lead you and your home, then HE NEEDS TO MARRY YOU. Until then, when you let him have any more authority over you than you would your other platonic friends (and that should be quite minimal because the only one who should have authority over you is God and the government that he appoints [Romans 13:1]), you are casting your pearls before swine (Matthew 7:6).

Matthew 13:45 shares the tale of a merchant who sold all that he had to purchase one great pearl. The Dictionary says that a pearl is “something precious or choice; the finest example of anything”. If the all-knowing, all-perfect, all-gracious God could see the value in you enough to buy you (I Corinthians 6:20), then why would you let a mere mortal get the privileges of your mind, heart, body and spirit for free?

Matthew 7:6 tells us not to cast our pearls before swine. When I went a looked up the word “swine”, this is what I found (other than pig, of course):

Swine: coarse, gross, or brutishly sensual person; a contemptible person.

Any man who tries to have exclusivity to you and is not willing to pay this price is indeed (contemptible) “worthy of being despised and rejected.” Sure, you can have close friendships with men, but a “house-band” is the only one who is to connect and keep the family together; a man only becomes a husband through marriage. Until then, baby, you are single and it’s you and God who runs this.

Now back to all of the “I’m so pretty” gals. A funny thing happens when you start feelin’ yourself. You begin letting other people feel on you as well. Hey, that’s what lusts does. Now remember, aside from lust being “intense sexual desire or appetite”, it’s also “a passionate or overwhelming desire”, or “extreme pleasure or delight”. You can have a lust for more than just sex. You can have a lust for money, for power, for fame, for status. Even for your own looks.

I John 2:16 states, “For all that is in the world—the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life—is not of the Father but is of the world.” (NKJV)

You are physically attractive? Good for you. But at the end of the day, so what? Again, when your beauty is not exemplified by God’s glory, you are out of his hedge of protection (Job 1:10) and you can best believe that the Enemy is just waiting to pimp you out. Unfortunately, many of us forget that Satan was the most beautiful being created (Ezekiel 28:15) and yet once he started to believe his own hype, that was when the beginnings of vanity began setting in (Ezekiel 28:17). And now, it is because of him, that children are molested, women are raped, men are violators of others and themselves and sin is in the world. He is evil and deceptive. So is vanity and anyone who associates themselves with the two.

Take it from me, when you start kickin’ it with the pimp known as Satan, really crazy things begin to happen. Suddenly, you are not just sleeping with one man, but two or more at a time. The clothes that should be used to adorn your temple (I Corinthians 6:19), you are now using to desecrate it (no one should have the right to see for free what your husband has “bought with a price” through marriage). Now, instead of reading the Word and letting it serve as your guidance map, you are letting your “Johns” talk you into watching porn with them—in your house, no less.

Now let’s stop here for just one moment. According to the National Coalition for the Protection of Children and Families:

*Approximately 40 million people in the US are sexually involved with the Internet
*2.5 billion emails are day are pornographic
*12% of men and 13% of women have admitted to accessing pornography at the workplace
*There are 800 million rentals each year of adult videos and DVDs
*Half of all hotel guests order pornographic movies
*The largest consumer of Internet pornography is the 12-17 age group
*51% of US adults surveyed said believe that pornography raises men’s expectations of look and changes men’s expectations of how women should behave
*40% of adults surveyed believe that pornography harms relationships between men and women
*42% of adults surveyed indicated that their partner’s use of pornography made them feel insecure
*For every 10 men in church, 5 are struggling with pornography
* The more pornography men watch, the more likely they are to describe women in sexualized terms and categorize women in traditional gender roles
* Median age for the first use of pornography: boys: 11-13 girls: 12-14
* According to pastors, the 8 top sexual issues damaging to their congregation are: 57% pornography addiction, 34% sexually active never-married adults, 30% adultery of married adults, 28% sexually active teenagers, 16% sexual dissatisfaction, 14% unwed pregnancy, 13% sexually active previously married adults, and 9% sexual abuse
* One out of every six women grapples with addiction to pornography
* Playboy’s third quarter profit rose to $3.2 million from $1.9 million in 2005.
* Non-Internet pornography can be purchased or used through the Internet and is estimated to produce $20 billion in revenue world wide

Last week, I interviewed a local sex therapist for a story here (www.davidyarian.com) and he shared something that I found to be most enlightening: “Humans do not learn about sex in the way that animals do. For animals, it’s instinctive but for humans, it is learned behavior. Unfortunately, most men learn about sex from porn and most women from Cosmopolitan and romance novels. When you put two ignorant, inexperienced people in a dark room there is a lot of chaos going on. There is no love or expression of love. There is nervousness, performance anxiety, fear and the obsession with getting gratification for yourself more than your partner. And, when you have graduated to sexual addiction [there are several other signs that lead to that], no matter what your partner does or says, it’s never enough.”

Last year, I watched a documentary on pornography. One of the actresses said, “Do you know how I have sex with my husband? Missionary position in the dark. What you see me do on a flick is just fantasy.” Another woman said, “If you believe that the sex you see on screen is real, then you’re a fool. It takes a lot of make-up, lighting, sometimes drugs and editing to make it look that way.”

Let me tell you how much carnality will jack you up. It wasn’t too long ago that I said, “Shoot, if I’m gonna get and stay abstinent then I don’t want a virgin husband. Ain’t no way I’m gonna hold out all of that time and then get someone who doesn’t know what he’s doing.”

Now, into my full abstinence and even deeper into God’s design for courtship and marriage, let me tell you what I am praying: that God will remove as many memories of my sexual past as possible because I don’t want to bring any other men into my marital bed (Hebrews 13:4).

Ain’t it a trip how we are the first ones to quote how buck we can get in the bed because of Hebrews 13:4 (when really we should be using Songs of Solomon as our defense for that), but let’s not miss what it’s really saying. The word “undefiled” means “pure”. The word “pure” means “free from anything of a different, inferior, or contaminating kind”.

If you are single and you have a sexual history (intercourse, oral sex, dry humping, fondling, kissing whoredom, masturbation, mutual masturbation…it doesn’t matter), you need to ask God right now to honor his promise of removing your transgressions from you just as far as the east is from the west (Psalm 103:12). Remember, when you are in Christ, you are a new creation; old things have passed away and ALL THINGS HAVE BECOME NEW (2 Corinthians 5:17). This includes you and your sex life.

Even now, God is deprogramming my sexual memory. Sure, I am aware that I had sex with other people and even some of the acts that I committed. I believe that without those “landmarks” in my mind, I 1) wouldn’t remain humble about my deliverance and 2) wouldn’t be able to help others and prepare my children for the trappings of the Enemy (I Timothy 4:16). But what I do know is that I am remembering less and less about how those people made me feel or how I made them feel. I am no longer interested in being “good in bed”. I am interested in being “right for my husband”. In time, with God’s leading and my husband’s loving, they will become one in the same (because he and God being pleased is all that really matters). For now, holiness is all that I, as a single woman, should be after.

In the meantime, as I am doing, I ask you to pray for your future companion in this same area. If most men (both in and out of the Church) battle with pornography (sexually explicit pictures, writing, or other material whose primary purpose is to cause sexual arousal), whether they realize it or not, that puts your marital bed in the front lines of spiritual warfare. Remember, godly sex is designed to make two people one (Genesis 2:24). You don’t want any more than that brought into your sexual union.

I remember recently talking to a male friend of mine who told me that most times, he would prefer looking at porn to satisfy his urges than deal with the “headache” of a female. As I was trying to share with him the dangers of porn addiction, his immediate response was, “C’mon, now. I’m not addicted. I don’t have an addictive nature and I don’t even see how you can get addicted to porn.”

Have you ever seen the movie, The Best Man starring Morris Chestnut, Taye Diggs and Terrence Howard? Do you remember when Terrence’s character said, “My mama not being around ain’t got nothin’ to do with how I treat these b—-es.”

Really, now?

Look, if you put unleaded gas in a car, it will run smoothly. If you put diesel in there and it’s not created for diesel, it’s not gonna run right. Philippians 4:8-9 says:

“Summing it all up, friends, I’d say you’ll do best by filling your minds and meditating on things true, noble, reputable, authentic, compelling, gracious—the best, not the worst; the beautiful, not the ugly; things to praise, not things to curse. Put into practice what you learned from me, what you heard and saw and realized. Do that, and God, who makes everything work together, will work you into his most excellent harmonies.”

If you’re filling your mind up with porn, male or female, IT IS AFFECTING YOU. The reason why my friend can treat women like they are disposable, in large part, is because of the lies that porn have taught him. Women are not pieces of meat; they are God’s children. And so ladies, even without (possibly) knowing him, make it a point in your daily prayers to ask God to renew your husband’s mind and replace ungodly thoughts with good ones. It will benefit every room in your house if you do. Remember, what does a wife bring to her husband? Favor? Exactly (Proverbs 28:11).

The last thing that I am going to cover today (I told you this was gonna be a several parts study) is the domino effect of disobedience. Ezekiel 16:20 says that “You took my sons and daughters…and killed them. Wasn’t it bad enough that you became a whore?”

Ladies, we have addressed abortion once before but let me just say that when you are out of God’s hedge of protection, no one around you is safe. When you are living a life of disobedience, more than you and the one you are sleeping with is affected. The thing is, when you are promiscuous, when you are “running around” acting like you are “for free”, and as a result of your folly you become pregnant, you often forget that the baby growing within was bought with a price as well. Just as a man who is not your husband doesn’t deserve the right to lead your life, you are not under the authority to take the life of someone else just because it’s “convenient” for you. Please remember that:

“These six things the LORD hates (to dislike intensely or passionately; feel extreme aversion for or extreme hostility toward; detest), yes, seven are an abomination to Him: A proud look, a lying tongue, hands that shed innocent blood, a heart that devises wicked plans, feet that are swift in running to evil, a false witness who speaks lies, and one who sows discord among brethren.”—Proverbs 6:16-19 (NKJV)

God is a God of love, but be cautious of the things that he says that he hates. If you don’t want to put yourself in a place where he hates what you do, don’t get “illegitimately” pregnant. And the best way to do that is to not have sex. I just love it when I public speak on my testimony and people say, “One abortion I could see, but four? Didn’t you use protection?” In the physical sense, sometimes I did and sometimes I didn’t, but when you are in sin, LISTEN TO ME: The Enemy comes to steal, kill and destroy (John 10:10) and there is no protection without God. You wanna have “safe sex” then you need to wait until marriage (Proverbs 29:25).

Homework for today: Ask God to reveal to you if you have issues with vanity. John 7:24 tells us that we are not to judge according to appearance, but with righteous (morally upright) judgment. I Corinthians 11:31 goes on to say that if we judge ourselves we will not be judged. And Proverbs 31:30 reminds us that “Charm is deceitful and beauty is passing but a woman who fears the Lord she shall be praised.” It didn’t say she “might”. It said she “shall”. You ain’t got it goin’ on unless you got God. “Nuf said.

However, if in response to vain women you are someone who finds yourself battling with envy, remember God’s Word says that “envy is rottenness to the bones”. James 3:6 goes on to share that “Where envy and self-seeking exist, confusion and every evil thing are there.” Some of you ain’t got a man yet because envy (i.e. evilness) is in you. So what should you do? You need to take that woman that you envy to the altar in prayer, repent and then pray for her blessing. That is the only way you will be freed from that kind of bondage.

Humble yourself and ask God to show you if you are promiscuous (i.e. for free) in any way. God bought you with a price and any man who wants you should do the same. A boyfriend doesn’t qualify.

And finally, get reprogrammed. If you have never fallen victim to porn, PRAISE GOD!!! If you have, research all of the scriptures on purity and meditate on them. Pray God’s peace of mind not just on you, but your future mate. For the marriage bed to be pure, the people in it have to be as well.

Class dismissed.

©Shellie R. Warren/2006