The Sixth Commandment and its Unwritten Rules: Sho

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The Sixth Commandment and its Unwritten Rules: Sho

uld the Church Compromise to the Modern World?
Roman Catholics all over the world refer to the Holy Bible as their
guide to how they live. Written in there are parables, chronicles, and
“natural” laws that could lead its faithful devotees their way to the
promised “eternal life with God”. The Holy Bible’s Ten Commandments is
similar to the U.S. Constitution. Like how the Ten Commandments lead the
lives of faithful Roman Catholics, the U.S. Constitution dictate to the
Americans what to follow or what not to. Both the written rules indicate to
their followers their rights, privileges, and limits in life. On the other
hand, these “guiding principles of our lives” are ambiguous; they can be
manipulated up to the extent where morality is deprived. As an example,
lawmakers can interpret the meaning of each article in the Constitution in
a way in which it can favorable to them by amending laws. Hence, people
who claim to be followers of the Ten Commandments informally broaden its
restrictions in such ways where their day-to-day endeavors could still
remain “chaste”. The sixth commandment “Thou shall not commit adultery”
(The Holy Bible), the most prevaricated commandment of the ten, is only
implied as the unfaithfulness of a married person to the marriage bed;
sexual intercourse by a married man with another than his
wife, or voluntary sexual intercourse by a married woman with another than
her husband (Webster’s). However, adultery meant in the Bible also includes
related offenses such as lust, fornication, incest, pornography /
obscenity, divorce, and homosexuality. Some of these, experts argue, are
unavoidable and natural (like lust and homosexuality), and some have just
become a part of the modern generation’s culture.

Lust is an intense or unrestrained sexual craving (The American
Heritage). Some would argue that looking at the naked human body is not
evil, because God made it beautiful, and Adam and Eve were naked in the
garden. However, that was before sin entered the picture. Perhaps it is
natural to be lured by the sexuality of the opposite gender, but it is the
unrestrained thought that commits us to lust.

“The eye is the window of the soul,” as the saying goes. What we look at
does affect us spiritually – and can cause us to sin. Scripture gives many
examples of men being enticed by the sight of a woman. Shechem saw the
woman before he raped her (Genesis 34:2). David saw the woman bathing
before he had sex with her (2 Samuel 11:2-5). Judah saw the harlot before
he had sex with her (Genesis 38:2-3, 15-16). It was the same for Samson
(Judges 14:2-3), etc. Jesus said that if a man “looks at a woman to lust
after her, he has committed adultery with her already in his heart.”
(Matthew 5:27-28). The sin takes place even before the action is executed.

Visual stimulation is more common in man than in woman. Nonetheless,
there’s also one example in Scripture of a woman lusting after a man by
seeing him (Genesis 39:7-12).

People that temptation of the flesh is natural to human, especially to
men. Perhaps being lured is one thing, but desiring is another. It is all
in the purity of the thoughts. On
the other hand, shouldn’t the seducers, such as those revealing enticing
flesh (like cleavages and bellies for women and the sensual alternatives
for men), share, or likewise, take the blame? According to a specific
source, wearing sensual garments with the intention is also considered a
misdemeanor to morality. They provoke lust.

Pornography is the presentation or production of sexually explicit
pictures, writing, or other material whose primary purpose is to cause
sexual arousal (The American Heritage). Although pornography is not
specifically addressed in Scripture, the principle of this is certainly
that “If a man looks on a woman to lust after her, he has committed
adultery with her already in his heart.” (Matthew 5:28). This offense
probably provides the defense that those who present the obscenity are the
blameworthy, and not those who are enticed. However, the moral crime
committed still depends on the intentions of either or both the tempter and
the tempted.

People in this kind of industry argue that they just have been
creating art as well. But clearly, as stated in the definition itself,
pornography’s main purpose is to cause sexual arousal. It is different when
an artist conveys to his/her viewers a deeper message through his/her
portrait of a naked body than when an artist presents the same portrait
with the intention of just arousing its enthusiasts.

Fornication is the illicit sexual intercourse of unmarried persons
(also known as pre-marital sex). Although the corrupt moral standards of
today’s permissive society consider premarital and extramarital sex
acceptable and blameless in the eyes of man, the
Word of God clearly declares that God considers it sin. Bible states that
sexual intercourse is to be confined to marriage; and it is only in
marriage where God sanctifies the release of sexual desire. Self-control is
a fruit of the Spirit (Galatians 5:22-23). If a couple cannot restrain
themselves, Paul said that they should go ahead and marry (1 Corinthians
7:9, 36-37).

Some today claim a “right to a trial marriage” where there is an
intention of getting married later. However, firm the purpose of those who
engage in premature sexual relations may be, “the fact is that such
liaisons can scarcely ensure mutual sincerity and fidelity in a
relationship between a man and a woman, nor, especially, can they protect
it from inconstancy of desires or whim.” (Catechism of the Catholic Church)
Carnal union (intercourse avoiding the reproductive parts) is morally
legitimate only when a definitive community of life between a man and woman
has been established. Human love does not tolerate “trial marriages.” It
demands a total and ultimate gift of persons to one another.

Incest is sexual relations between persons who are so closely related
that their marriage is illegal or forbidden by custom; or the statutory
crime of sexual relations with such a near relative (The American
Heritage). St. Paul stigmatizes this especially grave offense: “It is
actually reported that there is immorality among you . . . for a man is
living with his father’s wife…. In the name of the Lord Jesus … you are
to deliver this man to Satan for the destruction of the flesh….” Incest
corrupts family relationships and marks a regression toward animality. This
evil doing is certainly execrable and clearly not an issue to debate for.

Divorce is the legal dissolution of a marriage. The church undeniably
disapproves of this, especially to Catholic marriages, because divorce
devastates the sanctity of marriage. The Sacrament of Matrimony, as well as
all the other Sacraments, is sacred, primarily because both the husband and
the wife vows to the Lord “for richer or for poorer… till death do us
part”, clearly stating that the couple has eventually become one body, and
that only death can set them apart (This could also defend the statement
that sex can only be committed within marriage because as it is committed,
the two souls shall unite as one). Annulment, on the other hand, is
declaring that a marriage has never been valid.

The scriptures also consider remarriage after divorce to be adultery.

Mainly, the church refuses to recognize divorce; in their eyes, and in “the
eyes of God”, a person is the spouse of the one whom he/she first vowed
with in the altar until one of them dies. Remarrying another as the first
spouse, or the previous spouses, is still alive, is considered polygamy
(a.k.a. plural marriage), the condition or practice of having more than one
spouse at one time (The American Heritage).

Homosexuality, the sexual orientation to persons of the same sex, is
one of the most debated issues, scientifically, morally, and
constitutionally. There have been a lot of defense for and against
homosexuality. Science, as well as Psychology, although still uncertain
with their reasons, claim that homosexuals are born homosexuals; that it
was never their choice why they are like that. And with that reason, some
people demand that homosexuals should not be deprived of their rights in
the Constitution; that they were born that way and therefore they should
have the same rights an ordinary individual has,
including the right to marry. The church, on the other hand, claims that
they hold no discrimination toward the homosexuals. However, their argument
is that: whether by choice or naturally, homosexuals are challenged by God
through their individuality and sexuality. Perhaps the message is that they
should restrain from sexuality; Leviticus 18:22 says, “You shall not lie
with a male as with a woman. It is an abomination”; and that God is calling
them to do something else. The church proclaims that homosexuals, of
course, are still very much welcome in the kingdom of God as long as they
live the life according to the Word of the Lord, together with the other
“qualified” devotees as well.

It is clearly stated in the scriptures and defended by the church
that neither one of these adultery offenses given should be taken for
granted by the Catholics; no matter how much each of these have become a
part of their culture, or have been claimed natural and by-nature.