Continuing from last week’s look at Proverbs 9, I looked at the personification of “Folly” in this chapter and applied it to pornography in our modern age. Look at what Solomon wrote about “Folly” later in the chapter.
16… She says to him who lacks understanding,
17“Stolen water is sweet and bread eaten in secret is pleasant.”
18But he doesn’t know that the dead are there, that her guests are in the depths of Sheol.
Throughout the book of Proverbs, it is the young person (childhood through mid-to-late twenties in Hebrew culture) who needs wisdom and instruction. These are typically the people that “lack understanding” as verse 16 puts it. But like I pointed out last week, even people who do what is good and right – who mind their own business – can fall victim to pornography’s snare. Recent statistics about pornography are shocking: a majority of American men, even among churchgoers, views it at least monthly. Young women aged 18-30 are the fastest growing cross-section of our population viewing it. And children are first getting exposed to it at a younger and younger age.
Our culture’s wayward and hypocritical shapers suggest that pornography should be available to whoever wants it, in spite of the fact that pornography objectifies women, lowers their worth, and enslaves them. I’ve heard many declare that pornography is a victimless pleasure. It’s a lie and one that appeals to those who lack understanding.
Verse 18 says, “But he [the one who lacks sense] doesn’t know the dead are there,” and this word “the dead” is an odd word. Hebrew dictionaries say “shades” or“spirits of the departed.” You won’t walk into Folly’s condo and find a bunch of dead bodies lying around. One translation gets the gist across saying, “her guests are as good as dead.” (CEV)
Your sexuality is a sacred and cherished treasure – it is the most personal, private, fragile, and most intimate element of your soul. When it comes to the pornography machine, you will find many “shades.” From the people who lose their souls producing it and starring in it to those who open the door and get sucked into viewing it – it poisons you and sickens your soul, and it also opens the door for the evil one to access your life, afflicting even your family.
Psalm 107.10 says Some sat in darkness and in the shadow of death, prisoners in affliction and in irons, and that certainly describes those who have become “shades” or “as good as dead” because of the poisoning effects of pornography. But verse 14 declares He brought them out of darkness and the shadow of death, and burst their bonds apart. That is what the Lord does for us when we repent – turn away from sin and filth and turn toward Jesus Christ. Covenant with Him and with yourself to put no vile thing before your eyes. (Psalm 101.3)
O Israel, hope in the LORD! For with the LORD there is steadfast love, and with him is plentiful redemption. (Psalm 130.7)