Are Sexual Dreams Sinful?

  • Added:
    Jan 02, 2013
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I’ve spoken with many Christians over the years, married and single, who are concerned that they are sinning even when they sleep! The thing they are struggling with is sexual dreams. As Christians, we know that premarital sex is sinful; so, are adultery, pornography, and lust. So, what about sexual dreams?

Can I be held responsible for my dreams?

Viewing pornography, adultery, and even lust are all conscious sins, something that you do while you are awake...while you are in control. Dreams, of course, occur while you are asleep. You are unconscious and it’s debatable as to whether you have any control. So, can a sexual dream be sin? The answer isn’t a simple yes or no. We need to figure out why you are having the dream to really determine whether there is sin.

Why do we have sexual dreams?

There are a few reasons people have sexual dreams and the reason makes all the difference. Some can indicate sin, but others do not. So, why do we have sexual dreams?

1. Symbolic Imagery

Sometimes the sex is really representing something else. It could be the union of two ideas, something related to intimacy, or various other concepts. So, first examine your dream and your current life situation to see if the sexual intercourse may have simply been a symbol for something else. If so, this is not sinful.

2. Your Natural Body

Our bodies go through sexual cycles. Both women and men have times of elevated sexual tension and reduced sexual tension due to the natural rhythm of their bodies. This can affect your dreams as well. This is natural and not an indication of sin.

3. Spiritual Attack

Satan and his demons can attack us in our dreams. There is a long history (and reports still come in today) of people being attacked by demons in a sexual manor in dreams. Often these demons have been called incubus (appears to be male.) and succubus (appears to be female). This, as well, is not a sexual sin, but rather a spiritual attack.

4. Sinful Lifestyle

Dreams are often influenced by our conscious lives. If you are thinking about illicit sexual activities during the day or regularly viewing pornography, it’s not surprising that we would dream about them at night as well.

We’ve looked at several reasons someone may have a sexual dream. Three of those reasons are not sinful, but the fourth reason is. If we are reading or viewing pornography or otherwise fantasizing about illicit sexual encounters, then we are likely to dream about that. However, the truth is that we committed sin long before we had the dream. If that is why you are having sexual dreams, then you need to repent and ask for forgiveness. But there is good news. In 1 John 1:9 we are told, “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.

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