Is Lust a Sin in the Bible?

Many lusts or selfish desires are specifically addressed in the 10 Commandments, such as when God’s people were told not to desire a neighbor’s possession (Exodus 20:14-17).

Like gluttony, lust is also part of the seven deadly sins. But do you really know what lust means? Is it actually written that lust is a sin in the Bible?

We will delve further in this article into how lust is interpreted and what the Bible says about it.

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Definition of Lust

Lust is defined in Merriam-Webster dictionary as:

  1. excessive or unrestrained sexual desire; lasciviousness
  2. intense longing; craving
  3. pleasure; delight; personal inclination
  4. to have sexual urge

Even when a person has a significant amount of the object of interest, lust is a psychological state that makes them crave it intensely. Any type of lust is possible, including lust for money, power, or sexuality.

The primary objective of lust is self-gratification, and to achieve this without considering the consequences, frequently leads to negative actions. Lust develops as a result of selfishness and greed.

If our lusts are not immediately acknowledged and subdued, they have a significant impact on how we behave. We must remember that lust is not a physical act, but a mental experience.

RELATED: Is Greed a Sin in the Bible?

What Does the Bible Say About Lust?

God’s Word touches the core of our sensual desperate desire. The reality of God’s unchanging holiness testifies against moral compromise. The Bible provides guidance and instruction that encourages us to put our faith in God to deliver us from worldly lust.

According to Easton’s Bible Dictionary, lust is an internal sin that causes a person to turn away from God (Romans 1:21). “Lusts” are objects of desire according to Mark 4:19.

According to 1 John 2:16–17, our lusts are direct defiance of God’s perfect will because they frequently serve the wrong purpose, drawing us away from God and toward our own self-centered desires.

In 1 Thessalonians 4:7-8, the Bible makes a very clear statement about lust and sin. We were called by God to be holy and not to live impure lives. Having lustful thoughts is an indication of impurity. When we refuse to live by God’s words, we are rejecting God who gives us His Holy Spirit.

Even though we might be tempted by lust, we have the option to turn from our self-centered behavior and repent. Our duty is to treat others with the same love that we would want to be treated. Selflessness is required by the Christian faith, which is also characterized by virtue and love.

Overcoming Lust

To overcome lust, we must first understand what we are up against. Understanding the “sexual buzz”—the feeling of pleasure that makes sex so satisfying a good place to start.

Our emotions, bodies, and cognitive functions are all involved in the psychobiologic sexual buzz. God created these emotions to be beneficial. Sexual buzz is an essential phase of human connection within the marital relationship.

We would not become aroused if it did not exist, and sex would most probably not happen frequently enough to maintain reproduction or marital ties. Only in the setting of a marriage relationship is the sexual buzz appropriate.

RELATED: Is Sex or Having Sex a Sin in the Bible?

Sexual Intimacy and Marriage

God’s plan for sexuality calls for a woman and a man to be united in marriage. It has always been His desire for sexual intimacy to be only shared and enjoyed within marriage, and this hasn’t changed. However, our culture has taken God’s intention for sexuality and turned much of it into a lust issue.

Essentially, lust is a sexual inclination that does not place the value of people or God at its center and also exists outside of God’s design. Pornography, masturbation, homosexuality, and sex outside of marriage and or with multiple partners are all acts outside of God’s will that take advantage of others and God for personal gain.

Bottom Line

Only when we submit to lust’s worldly authority does it retain power over us. Allowing any kind of sin to rule over our lives causes devastation and destruction.

The Holy Spirit, on the other hand, empowers us to overcome temptations when Christ reigns over our lives. God directs us through life’s downfalls and over the burden of sexual sin when we run the race with endurance (Hebrews 12:1).

READ ALSO: How Can We Overcome Sins?

Pastor Christopher Turk
Pastor Christopher Turk

Christopher was the lead elder/pastor of the local Christian church in Penticton, British Columbia but he was forced to close his church due to a COVID-19 impact. He has a dedication to serving his Lord's church and a pulpit competence that honors the legacy of his predecessor. Christopher is a passionate visionary for the Lord and His Kingdom! His church ministry background spans over 30 years of full-time service. Support Christian by buying him a coffee.

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