Breaking Free from Pornography
It’s easy to see pornography as “not hurting anyone.” Yeah, it’s probably wrong. But no one’s really getting hurt, right?
I’ve always been fascinated by the image that Jesus paints in Matthew 7:15 for false prophets. He says,
“Watch out for false prophets. They come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ferocious wolves.”
While, like the verse says, Jesus uses this image to represent false prophets… it reminds me of how our culture often views pornography.
I see pornography as a ferocious wolf in sheep’s clothing. Porn promises to be safe and fun, but it is lying.
Porn is devastating to our mental health and to the objectification of women and to our ability to find real intimacy, and ultimately, it’s devastating to our theology and understanding that human beings are made in the image of God.
Porn allows us to view men and women as things to be consumed, rather than sons and daughters of God, made in His image and made for His glory.
Porn allows us to view sex as a transactional event rather than the highest and richest form of human intimacy.
Porn allows our brains to get overdosed on the chemicals that sex releases, making it much more difficult to enjoy sex with our spouse.
Porn allows us to detach our conscience and to start to see women for their bodies rather than seeing them as sisters and daughters and friends.
Porn may seem harmless, in its sheep’s clothing. After all, it’s just another website. It’s just a video. It’s just a photo.
Porn helps convince us that sex couldn’t possibly be just for a marriage relationship.
But in reality, pornography is a ferocious wolf. And it’s actively attacking who God has designed us to be, what God has designed us to do, and how God has designed us for intimacy.
What do we do? How do we fight it? How do we break free from it? How do we step into what God wants for our lives and leave this insidious industry behind?
Start with the Heart
First, I think we need to briefly talk about our hearts. There are certainly actions that need to be taken, but if we can change our hearts, words, and actions will follow naturally.
One of my favorite verses in all of the Bible is Psalm 51:10. It’s a beautiful prayer of confession and pleading for God to intervene and bring change.
It’s a Psalm written by King David after his incredibly public sin of sleeping with Bathsheba and getting her pregnant, and then having her husband killed. Yikes. But we can learn so much from his prayer.
“Create in me a pure heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me.”
Before you keep reading, read through that verse a couple more times. Seriously. How powerful is that?
This prayer is a great first step for you in the fight against pornography in your life. Use this verse over and over and over again.
Create in me a pure heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me. The Hebrew word for “create” at the beginning of that verse can be translated as “form” or even “cut.” I like those words because it’s implying that God can use what you already have. God, form a pure heart out of this one. Cut into my heart and create a pure heart in its place.
Wait a second.
Before you get any ideas, God is not Amazon.
I don’t think this is a prayer asking God to deliver you a brand new “pure” heart on your doorstep in two days or you get your money back.
I think it’s a prayer of daily submission.
God, I need you again today. I need you to create within me. I need you to continue to cut into my heart. Continue to form my heart how you’ve intended me to be. Every day.
God, keep working. I need you again today. I need your help again right now. Meet me here. I need you right now.
That’s honesty. That’s prayer. That type of prayer can change your heart.
Be Steadfast in Your Struggle
The second part of the verse talks about a “steadfast” spirit. Renew a steadfast spirit within me.
To be steadfast is to be established or to be firmly set. Think about a piece of furniture that is incredibly sturdy. Or, think about pushing on the side of a house and trying to make it move. It won’t, because it’s firmly set in place. It’s steadfast.
What a thing to pray for ourselves.
God, make us steadfast in our lives. Make us steadfast in this fight. Make us steadfast as we fight this temptation. Put people around us to help us remain steadfast. Open our eyes to tools and resources to help us remain steadfast.
By God’s grace and God’s power, you can do this. You can beat this.
You were made for more than this. God is calling you to more than this.
The intimacy and connection with God, with others, with creation, with yourself, is the moon compared to what settling for porn is.
Bring someone into this fight with you. Confess. Repent. Give this sin to Jesus so that He can bury it in the ground. It’s time.
You don’t have to do it alone either! Here are some amazing resources that will help you in this fight. I highly recommend them all as you begin this battle.
Covenant Eyes: Website | App Store | Google Play Store
Reboot - Overcome Porn: App Store | Google Play Store
Victory: App Store | Google Play Store
God Over Porn: App Store | Google Play Store