Self-Pity – the DNA of Sexual Obsession

Posted on April 17, 2013 · Posted in Ruling Desires, Sanctification

Our youth are falling prey to sexual sin and sensuality. However, the reason for these sins started much earlier in their life. Following is a lightly edited revison of a recent post on self-pity.

 

Driven by self-pity, Amnon became a sexual predator. He was a disgusting, pathetic, miserable young man. He is someone you need to understand.  The Holy Spirit has something for you to learn regarding Amnon. 

 

The core information about Amnon is written in 2 Samuel 13:2. All of the other events in this sad narrative flow from this one observation:

 

“Amnon became so obsessed with his sister Tamar that he made himself ill. She was a virgin, and it seemed impossible for him to do anything to her.”

 

Obviously Amnon was sexually obsessed with Tamar. But if this is all you learn about Amnon, you will miss what is most important. This passage says much about attitude and desire. You could outline the attitude portion this way:

 

He became so obsessed that he made himself ill. 

It seemed impossible for him to do what he wanted. 

 

Now we can see what is behind his obsession. The same observation could be made about countless teenagers caught in the tentacles of pornography. Let’s move back a little earlier in time and observe a whining child:

 

The five-year-old became so obsessed with his brother’s toy that he made himself ill crying about it. He knew he should not have the toy. But it didn’t matter. He could not figure out how to get want he wanted so badly.

 

This all to familiar scenario does not seem as shocking as the story of Amnon or of the teenager obsessed with pornography. However, the attitudes that fueled Amnon’s obsession are the same attitudes that control this five-year old. This point is too important to miss. You must not be afraid to connect the dots of self-pity in your children with the self-pity of Amnon. 

 

Don’t dismiss self-pity as a passing stage. Listen carefully to your children. Find out what is behind their struggles. Take the time to be accessible to them. Bring the power of the gospel to their hearts. 

 

Self-pity is the enemy of sensitivity.  Sensitivity means that I care about what is best for you over what is best for me. Sensuality means that I care about what is best for me regardless of what is best for you. Sensuality is never satisfied and continually cries out for more and more. (Ephesians 4:17-19) Sensitivity can be satisfied because it is given as a fragrant offering to God. Amnon’s self-pity led him to sensuality. Self-pity will lead your teenager into pornography that will not only destroy him, but your daughter-in-law and grandchildren. Live a life sensitivity with your children. The alternative is not pretty.

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Jay Younts
John A. (Jay) Younts is the Shepherd Press blogger, and is a ruling elder serving at Redeemer Associate Reformed Presbyterian Church in Moore, South Carolina. He has written Everyday Talk, Everyday Talk About Sex & Marriage, Finding the Right Track, the In Touch With Paul stewardship series, and What About War. He has studied and taught about biblical childrearing for 30 years. He and his late wife Ruth have five adult children.