Since I speak and write books on sex, I get asked questions—a lot of questions. The most common questions relate to "what's okay in the bedroom?" Questions like: Is oral sex okay? What about anal sex? Is it wrong to role play with my husband? Is it okay that my husband likes to spank me? Do you think sex toys are wrong? What's wrong with a married couple watching porn together? Is masturbation okay?
Before we even get into discussing whether something is right or wrong in the bedroom, I want to emphasize that God's desire is for you and your husband to experience great pleasure! His standards are not to limit your enjoyment, but to heighten it. I think many Christian couples have no idea what freedom they have in the bedroom. They settle for "vanilla" sex (aka, the missionary position), placing self-imposed restrictions on themselves that have nothing to do with God's perspective. God made the marriage relationship a safe place for a husband and wife to explore, experiment, laugh, and get lost in sensational sex.
There is nothing spiritual or moral about limiting sexual pleasure in marriage. God is the greatest proponent of your pleasure—not the pleasure that is sweet for a season, but the deep, profound satisfaction that only grows sweeter with time. Once you understand what God has said "no" to, you are free to have a great time exploring all he has given you to enjoy.
As with all areas of life, God's instructions on sex can be found in the Bible. The Bible talks about sex a lot, but often the answers to sexual questions aren't found in a chapter or verse—for example, you won't find any references to vibrators. But using the Bible as a reference guide for decisions will make you wise in discerning good from evil (Hebrews 5:14) even when something seems like a gray area. Here are three questions that can help you discern whether certain sexual acts are right or wrong:
Question #1 – What does God clearly say "no" to?
There are some things the Bible is very clear about, particularly related to sex. Some women get confused about whether what God said "no" to in the Old Testament still applies in our day. For example, women wonder if it's okay to have sex during their period since the Old Testament law said not to. The Old Testament emphasized being ceremonially pure as a physical way of distinguishing God's people from the rest of the world, but since Jesus paid the sacrifice for our sin, being ceremonially clean isn't an issue anymore. However, all of God's people are still called to be morally pure, and sexuality is a big piece of moral purity.
Juli Slattery is a widely known clinical psychologist, author, speaker, and broadcast media professional. She co-founded Authentic Intimacy (www.authenticintimacy.com) and is the co-author of Passion Pursuit: What Kind of Love Are You Making?