The Truth About Pornography
The advent of the Internet has not only given rise to the positive aspects of digital media, but also to the ever-alarming and skyrocketing influence of pornography and promiscuity on social media platforms. Whereas some well-meaning individuals and organizations use their pages and platforms to advise and encourage others daily through positive inspirational posts and videos, others seek to promote sexually explicit content and share it on the various social media pages and on websites directly or indirectly using click baits.
Technological inventions in the past few decades have led to the development of advanced products such as television, cable, computers and cellphones, which have made pornographic content more easily accessible to anyone with stable internet connection, sadly even kids! If changes are not made or care is not taken, I can only imagine what kind of world future generations would have to thrive in.
According to studies from https://www.whatchristianswanttoknow.com:
With the coming of the Internet, its popularity has been soaring, but so too has been a scourge of the worst kind; pornography. Everyday, there are new porn websites that go up. Just how systemic is the problem of Internet pornography? According to the very reliable statistics of Family Safe Media (familysafemedia.com/pornography):
Every second – 28,258 Internet users are viewing pornography
Every second – 372 Internet users are typing adult search terms into search engines
Every 39 minutes – a new pornographic video is being created in the United States
Another alarming fact is that over 42% of all Internet users are connecting to pornography on over 4.2 million pornographic websites. Governments are helpless in shutting these down because for every one that is shut down there are 20 more that take its place. If there was a disease with such an alarming growth rate and the problem was so widespread among the world’s population, this would be on every network television station in every nation of the world. In reality, it is worse than any disease epidemic because we are powerless to stop it and there is no inoculation against it.
Christians Are Not Immune
Sadly, 47% of all Christians say that they have major problems with pornography. Even among the discipleship group of the Promise Keepers, 53% of these men viewed pornography in the last week! An April 6th, 2007 CNN poll revealed that over 70% of Christian men and over 20% of Christian women are already addicted to some sort of Internet pornography. In the year 2000, Christianity Today completed a shocking survey that revealed 33% of the clergy (pastors and priests) admitted that they had visited a sexually explicit Internet website in the past week. Fifty-three percent of the clergy had visited pornographic websites several times in the past year. In a survey of pastors by the National Coalition in Seattle, a full 98% had been exposed to porn while 43% intentionally accessed a sexually explicit website.
We can see from all of the above statistics that this is a true epidemic and it is growing at an alarming rate and it is not just a problem for those outside of the church. Given the fact that Jesus said that “that anyone who looks at a woman [or a man if a woman is looking] lustfully has already committed adultery with her [or him] in his [or her] heart.” (Matt 5:28). Pornography is still sexual sin, even if the physical act is not involved.
Occasionally, like many other people, I get follow requests and emails from pages that promote pornographic content and each time I boldly decline them because I don’t want to open any doors of sin in my life and marriage. There are men and women who secretly have fallen victim to the snare of pornography and honestly that includes many of us! The curiosity of the human mind could easily lead to exploring pages and websites, clicking on usernames and links online that promote pornographic and promiscuous behavior. This same curiosity has the power to lead one to partaking in secret sins as seen in the story of the downfall of mankind (Adam and Eve).
The Power of Pornography
Pornography has a drug-like effect on the body and mind, and by that, I mean it not only affects what the eyes see and ears hear, but also stimulates the pleasure centers in the brain. It has a dramatic effect on the production of dopamine, which acts as a neurotransmitter which directly impacts sexual arousal like the effect of being high on drugs. It also increases the production of chemicals that promote a sexually good feeling such testosterone, endorphins, adrenaline, and serotonin, when pornography is used as a tool for sexual stimulation.
Pornography has a devastating effect on individuals in the sense that it causes shame and guilt, which leads to deep regret, especially for individuals who had vowed to themselves not to fall victim to the damage of this epidemic any longer. It destroys intimacy in marriages because it drastically reduces the ability of a husband or wife to be sexually stimulated by their spouse. It also robs it viewers or consumers of the ability to build a real connection with their spouse or partner.
Pornography creates false mental images and expectations, and it always exploits the person or individuals being used for sexual satisfaction by the party with whom there is no real relationship. Pornography is seriously damaging and addicting because on a subconscious level, it penetrates the innermost parts of your brain and soul. Pornography in most cases culminates in masturbation, which in turn could transform into an addictive or compulsive stronghold, which has the potential to lead to aggressive sexual behavior and unusual sexual practices.
Overcoming Pornography and Compulsive Masturbation
Surrender Every Aspect of Your Life to God
The first step to overcoming the snare of pornography and compulsive masturbation is to surrender every part of your being to God. Admit your struggles to our Heavenly Father and give Him full control of your heart, mind, body, finances, circle of influence, marriage and future. God can only truly set you free if you allow Him to be in charge of every aspect of your life. After surrendering to God, never for a second be fooled into thinking you have the ability on your own not to give in to the temptation of pornography and compulsive masturbation. It is the power of God and the Holy Spirit, our Helper, that truly sets us free from sin and its controlling power.
Know Who You Are As A Child of God
We have to gain the full comprehension that God created us in His image to be Kingdom Men and Women who have been charged to steer our respective spheres of influence for the greater good of mankind and more importantly, for His glory. The devil knows this very well and because this earth in a sense is his playground, he is always out there plotting to steer God’s children off course with him schemes and many forms of negative influence, which sadly includes all forms of addiction and self-gratifying or selfish pleasures. Always commit to memory the fact that we were all created with a unique gift and purpose to make an earthly impact for God’s Kingdom–we are Royal Heirs and Heiresses of God’s dwelling place, Heaven.
Find Accountability Partners and Resources
Sin only remains powerful when it resides in darkness. By connecting with other believers and trusted people within your circle of “Godly” influence, you essentially cut the power chords of sin, shame and guilt. It also helps to reach out to trusted friends, counselors and mentors of the same sex who can easily relate to the struggles of pornography and compulsive masturbation. Find an accountability partner who will bear you up in prayer when the thoughts and feelings of giving in to pornography resurfaces.
‘Confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The earnest prayer of a righteous person has great power and produces wonderful results. ‘ James 5:16 NLT
If you are married talk to your spouse about your struggles and soak your your mind, body, heart, sex life, and marriage in the blood of Jesus! The devil will always make you feel guilty and that is why it is very necessary to cover yourself and loved ones in the blood and remind yourself of your royal inheritance and freedom in Jesus Christ. Leave all your struggles and shame at His footstool because He already died and nailed all those sins and failures on the cross, securing our eternal victory.
There are other resources like Christian and faith-based social groups and prayer warriors, web and mobile browsing filters with passwords you can use to screen out pornographic terms, pages and websites if it becomes extremely difficult to deal with the scarring effects of pornography and compulsive masturbation. In the case of using a password to protect your computer and mobile phone, make sure you reach out to an accountability partner who can monitor all your browsing activities and never shares the password that restricts your use of pornographic websites with you.
Finally, you can also restrict your use of a computer and cellphone to a more open and less private space like a family living room. If the urge to resist pornography and compulsive masturbation is too strong, make it a point to be in presence of someone you trust and keep your mind occupied on a healthy mental distraction like watching a good movie or show, or even a physical activity like dancing or working out to keep your mind off it. If that does not work, confess the feeling to someone you deeply trust to help you through it. There is no shame in confessing to someone you trust.
If it means cutting out your use of the internet altogether until you are in a better spiritual and mental place then so be it! God cherishes your wellbeing and salvation more than anything else. If you accidentally come into contact with pornography through regular internet browsing, pray and ask God for forgiveness and plead the blood as covering over yourself and your loved ones. As things stand, the prevalence of pornographic websites and content will only keep rising, hence the need to take positive action for future generations.
“You have heard the commandment that says, ‘You must not commit adultery.’ But I say, anyone who even looks at a woman with lust has already committed adultery with her in his heart. So if your eye—even your good eye —causes you to lust, gouge it out and throw it away. It is better for you to lose one part of your body than for your whole body to be thrown into hell. And if your hand—even your stronger hand —causes you to sin, cut it off and throw it away. It is better for you to lose one part of your body than for your whole body to be thrown into hell.”
Matthew 5:27-30 NLT
Heavenly Father, we come before Your throne of abundant Grace. We commit every area of our hearts, souls, minds and senses, particularly our sight and hearing into Your mighty hands. We come against every scheme of the devil to throw Your children, who were created to have dominion on this earth by representing you as Kingdom Men and Women, off track in relation to realizing their purpose. Father, we cast out every stronghold tied to the epidemic of pornography and its negative influence on Your children. As we join forces in AGREEMENT, we set perpetually FREE, anyone who has succumbed to this spirtual anomaly. Lord, empower us to use our earthly dominion to steer the affairs of the Kingdom and expose all the schemes of the evil one and his legions. Turn all his plots into FOOLISHNESS and set Your children FREE in Jesus’ MIGHTY and MATCHLESS name! AMEN!
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