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Posted in Lust, Sex and Nudity on 2004-12-04 07:18:26

definition of lust

Everyone experiences sexual urges, whether they want to or not. That's not lust. Lust is when a man or woman takes those urges and revels in them, turning them over in his/her mind. A man (for example) can see a picture in a girlie magazine and be attracted to the woman's body; but it only becomes lust if he replays the image in his mind, lingering over it. (On average, men are more given to visual lust than women.) This is of course talking only about sexual lust; there is a broader definition of lust too, which just means wanting or coveting something strongly.

Posted in What is a Graven Image? on 2004-11-10 22:03:53

The Ark of the Covenant

I haven't heard anyone mention this, so I will. The Ark of the Covenant, which making was part of the instruction God gave Moses, had two Cherubim statues on top, flanking the Mercy Seat. Among the intructions for the appointment of the temple were other images of things from heaven and earth. God gave Moses these instructions. These objects were not intended to be worshiped, but to direct worship and glory to God. This would imply that the Second Commandment forbids only worshiping idols, not making statues or other representations.

Posted in What is a Graven Image? on 2004-11-10 21:58:01

Isn't it rather extreme to judge a whole people by viewing a small percentage of them? First though, let me say I have read about some Catholics (and few Orthodox too) who seem to worship the icons and statuary. Much of the time, superstitions grow surrounding these objects as a result of inadequate education. In Mexico, for example, the Catholic population can be very superstitious regarding statues and the sign of the Cross. The same for some Greek or Russian Orthodox. If you look at the teachings of the churches (Catholic or Orthodox) however, you will find that these statues and icons are intended to bring us closer to God. From an Orthodox perspective, the icons of the saints on the walls are to remind us that the saints and angels are worshiping with us in heaven. Any honor we show to icons of saints (and we ONLY honor the saints, not worship) is intended for the saints, not for the wood and paint. As for icons of Christ, the only difference is that we worship the One represented as God (again, not the wood and paint). As to the French Catholic being condemned, how is that not judging others as Christ forbade? As I understand it, we are free to judge the morality of an action, but not to decide we know who will be saved and who not. Christ's mercy is endless, and He will have mercy on whom He will have mercy. May His mercy be upon us.

Posted in Should best friends date? on 2004-11-07 04:04:59

What else is marriage but best friends? Noone who isn't best friends should get married. After the initial 'in love' feelings wear off, the relationship will fall apart unless you do have at least the basis for a solid friendship. (Ideally, you should know before any commitment is made whether or not you could be good friends.) Although, a word of caution. It is completely possible that your friend would feel kind of weird, because it may completely change his view of you. That's why I recommend bringing it up casually, and giving him time to get used to the idea. Even if he doesn't feel the same way, if he's a friend worth having he'll let you down easy and still make you feel good about yourself. The AshMan