Pornography
January 20, 2012


Pornography

 

 

1 Th 4:3 KJV) For this is the will of God, even your sanctification, that ye should abstain from fornication:

 

When I was initially invited to write an article on the subject of ‘pornography’ for this magazine my first reaction was to decline the invitation. However having given the matter some prayerful consideration I realised that this is a subject that needs to be addressed for the benefit, not only of our young people but also for the whole church.  Pornography in its various forms, is an active aggressive cancer which, sadly, affects many Christians as well as non-Christians.

 

Definition

 

The word ‘pornography’ comes from two Greek words; The first word is “Promeia” which means ‘fornication’.  In its most narrow sense this word refers to an unmarried person having sexual relations with another unmarried person. However the meaning in scripture is wider than this, including as it does any and every form of sexual immorality.  The second Greek word is “Graphe” which means ‘writing’  We can thus define pornography as “any sexually explicit writing or image intended to arouse sexual desire”

 

Statistics

 

Pornography can be found in novels, magazines (and not just the top shelf Men’s magazines), newspapers, Videos, DVD’s, and the internet.  Whereas in the past one had to go to specialised retail outlets to obtain pornographic material and it was strictly confined to adults, today it is easily available to anyone regardless of age

The statistics relating to pornography are truly staggering.  Every second  around £2,500 is being spent on pornography. Every second 28,258 internet users are viewing pornography. In that same second almost 400 internet users are typing adult search terms into search engines. Every 39 minutes a new pornographic video is being created in the U.S.  79 million people view porn on the internet every week.  The revenue of the pornography industry exceeds that of Microsoft, Google, Amazon, eBay, Yahoo, Apple and Netflix combined.  It is estimated that the annual revenue income of the industry exceeds £65 billion.

Although viewing pornography is not exclusively a male phenomena it is mainly males who indulge in this sinful practice.

Whilst in the past pornography was almost exclusively confined to and viewed by adults today it is viewed regularly by children as young as 11years old.  In a recent survey in the UK found that a third of 14-16 year olds had viewed porn online by the age of 10.

Other professional surveys have shown that not only is pornography increasing it is also become more degrading and more violent as viewers become increasingly desensitised to what they normally view and thus need more extreme forms of pornography to satisfy their sexual cravings.

Pornography has been responsible for the break-up of thousands of marriages; it has resulted in personal addictions which have ruined the addicts career and his life and it has been shown to be a major factor in many sexual abuse and rape cases – the perpetrator admitting that prior to attacking his victims he was a habitual user of pornography.

What About Us?

These things seem far removed from us in the R.P. Church but the fact is that with the modern technology that most of us possess we are only a click away from thousands of pornographic images. If you have internet connection in your home you (and your children) have, what in effect is, a doorway that leads to a well stocked XXX book and DVD store. If we had such material literally stored in a room in our house we would make sure that if we could not get rid of the material itself we would have that room barricaded up so that no-one could get into it. 

 

Given the strong temptation that pornography is to an ever-increasing number of people what can we as Christians do to close our ears to and overcome the temptation that comes to us from the Siren-like call of pornography ?  Given what was said above about pornography being a problem mainly with males I address these comments particularly though not exclusively to this magazine’s male readers.

 

First we must admit that this is at the very least a danger zone for all of us and for some of us perhaps a problem area in our Christian lives.  For some Christians, pornography is an area of their life in which they struggle to overcome temptation and sin.  For others pornography has become a stronghold of sin in their lives. Let me ask you, ‘Do you have porn hidden in your life right now”?  “Are there pornographic images hidden in some file on your computer?  Have you had to clean out your history folder because it contains records of links to pornographic sites?  Do you have pornographic literature hidden in your house?  Do you rationalise your viewing of pornography with excuses?  Have you ever promised yourself that you will stop viewing pornography only to find yourself going back to it again, and again?   Admitting  that you have a problem is the first step to dealing with it.

 

Secondly  we must acknowledge that the wilful viewing of any and every form of pornography is sinful.  Time and time again in the Bible we are explicitly told to avoid “fornication” (Acts 15v20; 21v25; 1 Cor 5v1; 6v13,18; 7v2; Gal 5v19; 1 Thess 4v3).   God calls us to be “pure” in heart and in conduct (1 Tim  5v22  1 John 3v3)

 

Thirdly we must acknowledge that viewing pornography invariably produces sexual lust in our hearts and such lust is also a sin – see Matthew 5v27-30.

 

Fourthly we must understand that viewing pornographic images is disrespectful to and degrading of women. Pornography dehumanises girls and women into objects of sexual desire and sexual gratification divorced completely from the context of mutual Biblical love. Is that how God wants us to view women? 

 

Fifthly we must remember that whilst we may view pornography in ‘secret’ with no-one else being aware of what we are doing, the fact is that nothing is hidden from God - Heb 4:13 Neither is there any creature that is not manifest in his sight: but all things are naked and opened unto the eyes of him with whom we have to do. 

I would encourage you to imagine that the Lord standing beside you when you are tempted to view pornography.

 

Sixthly, if you do have a problem in this area, confess it to the Lord and seek forgiveness from him, then tell someone else to whom you can be accountable and from whom you can receive help.

 

Seventhly take practical steps to deal with the source of any pornography you may be viewing or tempted to view.  If its magazines or DVD’s throw them away  NOW!!   If your computer is the source of your temptation then get software installed on it that will help you to stay away from pornographic sites  (see end of article for suggestions).

 

Eighthly and most importantly – we can only overcome this temptation and the sins that are associated with it when we have come to trust in Jesus Christ as our saviour.  When we do that, God the Holy Spirit comes to dwell within us and through his sanctifying influence and through the spiritual power that He alone can impart to us we can get the victory over the sort of sins we have been considering. When we do give in to temptation we must remember that Jesus by his death and resurrection has paid for and dealt with that sin and if we are truly repentant and confess this sin before the Lord and seek forgiveness then God will forgive us – “If we confess our sins he is faithful and just to forgive of our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”   However we must never use the glorious truth that God does and will forgive our sins as an excuse or an incentive to sin.  As Paul reminds us in Romans 6 “shall we continue in sin that grace may abound?”  “God forbid”   As those who are servants of God we are to use our bodily parts (all of them) for righteousness – that is in ways that are in accord and fully consistent with righteousness.

 

Like Job each of us should say  "“I made a covenant with my eyes
   not to look lustfully at a young woman."  Job 31v1

 

 

Perhaps the reason some of you who are reading this have a problem with pornography is because you have been trying to deal with it in your own strength. Like the other sins in your life you have never owned up to them and confessed them to the Lord, seeking forgiveness. You have never turned to and trusted Jesus Christ as saviour and that being the case you are still a slave to sin, of which viewing pornography is simply one way in which your spiritual condition reveals itself.  What you need to do is deal with the cause of your condition, not the symptoms.  You need to repent of your sin and trust in Jesus.

 

Resources

 

xxxchurch.com
x3watch.com
covenanteyes.com
integrity.com
safebrowse.com



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