Fifty Shades Darker and Abuse In Christian Marriages

Where is the patience, kindness, gentleness, and self-control in the “Fifty Shades” kind of “love”?

Let nothing be done through selfish ambition or conceit, but in lowliness of mind let each esteem others better than himself. Let each of you look out not only for his own interests, but also for the interests of others. Philippians 2:3-4

Think about that verse as it applies in the bedroom. Surely, causing pain and humiliation for your beloved has no place in the romance of a believer.

On the other hand, a godly sexual relationship is not boring, it’s incredibly fulfilling. When we truly consider our mate more highly than we do ourselves, we are both trying to please one another. That’s more fun, more joyful than any sick fantasy of domination.

There’s a human toll to the normalization of perversion. Women who only want to be treated with kindness by their lovers are accused of being frigid or rebellious. They suffer pain and injury in the relationship that is supposed to keep them safe and secure. They feel betrayed by their providers and protectors. And sometimes, even their church leaders are complicit.

Is this pleasing to God? Certainly not!

Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil;
Who put darkness for light, and light for darkness;
Who put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter! Isaiah 5:20

There is a reason this lustful fantasy is described in its own title as “shaded” and “darkness.” 

Jesus said, in John 3:19, that “men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil.”

This is evil, folks. Don’t believe it is anything else. 

Don’t encourage it, don’t partake of it. Get help and get out of this kind of sin if you are living in it. And if you are a victim, you do not have to submit to this. You are made in the image of God and your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit. Get help.


Our newest book, Love, Honor, and Virtue: Gaining or Regaining a Biblical Attitude toward Sexuality, is for young men in their teens and twenties. It’s due to be released in just a few weeks — preorder now to get it as soon as possible.

My Beloved and My Friend: How to be Married to Your Best Friend Without Changing Spouses, 2015 Christian Small Publishers Book of the Year, addresses these challenges in marriage and gives encouragement and help to overcome them. Or, you could join us for our marriage retreat, Come Away Weekend, for some real romance!

Too tired for Valentine’s Day? This free download, “Romance for The Exhausted” might help!

Protect your sons from heading down this path. Get some kind of accountability on every internet capable device in your home. The one our family uses (affiliate link coming) is Covenant Eyes.

And you can find more resources about healthy sexuality here.

Hal & Melanie

This article originally appeared at Raising Real Men.

Hal and Melanie Young
Hal and Melanie Young
Hal & Melanie Young are the award-winning authors of Raising Real Men and My Beloved and My Friend: How to Be Married to Your Best Friend Without Changing Spouses. They are publishers, writers, bloggers, and popular conference speakers internationally, known for their Christ-centered focus and practical, real-life stories. They are the parents of six real boys (four grown!) and two real girls and live in noisy, messy happiness in North Carolina. Follow them on Facebook and Instagram.

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