“The flesh … becomes bad only when man builds his life on it.”

The flesh is the body and speaks of its needs. But need can cross an emotional line into want. I need food to live but if I live to eat it becomes a want. Some explain this in terms of moderation. (This word, however, is found only in Hebrews 5:2 and does not address this matter.)

And the LORD God said, It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him a help meet for him. – Genesis 2:18

Needs are met by another in relationship; pornography, therefore, deals exclusively in want. Need fulfillment is a significant part of life. Getting what one wants to pleasure one’s self, if this involves another, is stolen affection. Sexual need is hormonal but want is purely animalistic. Help to satisfy need is given. Seeking gratification for what is wanted is taken and can be abusive. Needs are not selfish but are God given instruments of passion and desire to bring together two people otherwise left alone. Need can be “met” or satisfied.

Want is purely selfish. Need is a natural condition while want as an overstated demand approaches addiction and is never satisfied. I need others in my life speaks to healthy relationships, whereas, wanting other people is simply the desire to use them for personal interests that do not otherwise involve them. God meets needs when we pray for His intervention, but gratifying wants is carnality.

“So then, brothers and sisters, we are not obligated to the flesh to live according to the flesh because if you live according to the flesh, you are going to die….. For all those led by God’s Spirit are God’s sons” [Romans 8:12-14 CSB].

Print Friendly, PDF & Email