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Friday, 22 April 2016

Pornography and the Gospel

Pornography. 

Boobs. Naked bodies. Images of sex. 

I have not met one Christian man who gives a thumbs up to porn. I have not men one Christian man who believes porn isn't disgusting, distasteful, damaging and destructive. We detest it. We reject it out right. But yet, the same men desire it. What's going on? 

Sinners in disguise?

Enemies of Christ?

Wife haters? Do they desire a sex-fueled sinners paradise?

No. NO. NOOOOO!! 

#christianshateporn

As a young boy who stumbled upon a pornographic magazine at age 10, I know all about the power of this drug. I used to say to myself (and to God): Can't porn be the same to me as alcohol, cocaine or smokes? If I was locked in a room by myself for one week with a bottle of Jack Daniels, a syringe of heroine, a box of Camel and a Hustler magazine, I wouldn't even bother with anything except the magazine. The other objects would be as desirable to me as bath plug. Nothing in me has ever wanted a drug, a fag or a drink. But porn...that's a different story. The more I looked, the more my body craved. The images that excited me today were boring tomorrow. I wanted...turned into...I needed. I needed more graphic. I needed a higher fix. 

Yes. Pornography is an addiction. #truth

Now listen closely...

For over the past decade, scientists have realized that pornagraphy IS as addictive as heroine. It might not be something a person sniffs, smokes or injects but the brain releases the SAME neuro-chemicals when porn is consumed. When a person experiences a heightened sense of pleasure for the very first time, their brain literally takes a snap shot, a picture if you will, and records this as something good. At the same time, the brain releases a chemical called dopamine. Dopamine is a chemical released in the brain and it's associated with pleasure and highs! The brain is literally rewired so that it will make the body behave so that it can experience that same high or even better fix to that snapshot so that more dopamine is released. This is an addiction folks. 

I get worried when preachers point their boney fingers at the men in their congregations telling them that they are moral failures and that they need to start growing up into real men and stop watching pornography. 

"You must quit!" he demands.

What the preacher doesn't know, is that telling a guy, or a woman addict for that matter, to just stop doesn't help them. Similarly, telling a heroin addict to just stop isn't going to happen either. You are not dealing with weak willed people here. You are dealing with people whose brains have been rewired. No matter how much the heart and the will of a person wants to stop! If the brain is suffering withdrawal and is demanding dopamine to be released, the person literally has no control. None.

Ever wonder why an addict experiences sweaty hands or shaking when they trying to resist their addiction? It's because their brain is screaming at them to get a fix. NOW! The shaking is actually a sign of trauma. Have you ever seen someone whose survived a horrid car accident? They shake like a leave. It's the trauma of the accident on the brain which is being released in the body. An addict shaking is a traumatic sign of their will fighting against their brain. They don't want to consume it. But their brain is demanding otherwise. THEY DON'T WANT IT.

The sweaty palms is a sign of this traumatic experience between brain and will. Unfortunately, the condemning preacher doesn't understand this. What he thinks is weak spiritual power is actually a rewired brain. The guy needs a hug of mercy not a judging finger in his face.

This information should change the way you view a porn addict vs a drug addict. #perspective

Mercy has been shown to the druggie while shame, condemnation and embarrassment has been the porn addict's cross to bear. And it shouldn't be. He has as much control, or lack thereof, as the drug addict. Scientifically proven. It's a brain thing. Not a weak will or a moral failure. 

You are dealing with a man who doesn't want to do this any more. He wants the magazine to be like the drugs, the cigarette and the alcohol. He longs to please God. He longs to walk with his head held high again. He's tired of the shame. He doesn't want to carry the condemnation anymore. He has tried to stop, believe me. He desires it no more. Don't isolate him. Don't hate him. Understand him. And give the boy a hug...

May I offer some advice to my fellow Jesus lovers who are repulsed by this drug:

1. Clean out the house. Limit your access. If you have clips, DVDs or magazines anywhere. Chuck it out. Remove any porn stash you have. And do it today.

2. Tell someone. The biggest lie I believed was that I was alone in this fight. The truth is that you are far from alone. I promise, the man you tell isn't going to judge you. Tell someone who will help you, encourage you and pray with you. Be prepared to get honest with this person. You have make yourself vulnerable here. And let this relationship be a safe one. Share daily if your have too. But share.

3. Believe the gospel. Preach it to yourself. Listen to it. Think about it. Meditate on it. What is the gospel: As a believer, JESUS will never be grossed out at you. He is not angry or disappointed in your porn addiction. You are His. And He is yours. You are eternally secure. You are safe in His care. He has forgiven you of every time you listed and masturbated to pornography. He's forgotten. And He has forgiven you already of every future offense as well. You have been justified in the courtroom of Heaven. He has made you free. Your sinful nature is dead and He has made you new. He has overcome this addiction as you and for you already. You will get through this by grace alone, through faith alone because of CHRIST alone.

Remember, don't believe the lie that you are the only one who is fighting this battle. That's the devil's biggest lie to porn consumers. He makes you feel alone. Walk in the light guys. Talk about it with other men. Pray about it with other men. Share the struggle with other men of Christ. 

Keep trusting the Lord to HEAL your brain and to rewire it. As you believe the gospel and regularly hear the gospel, repentance comes. It brings a change in mind. Changing of the brain and how it thinks will be transformed. God heals cancer. He heals brains too. Wash it with truth. Trust him to deliver you and bring healing to you.

He loves you.



3 comments:

  1. Ross, this is really an awesome perspective, and one which I receive as a man cleaned and liberated by the finished work of Jesus! Let His name be lifted high as a banner over us... One that laughs at and mocks the shame of sexual sin, and sets us into the rhythm of His grace as He triumphs in and through us!

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  2. Ja man. Good Stuff. As a former addict who wasn't just addicted but also was not even one of the guys in the scenario above who wanted to free. Was happy with my drug, like drinking coffee in the morning. But encountering the gospel and the Fathers incredible Love just drove that right out. Sure temptation gets the better of you from time to time in the process but Jesus is infinately greater than anything this world has to offer. Will also agree that you should delete all the stash and avoid being left alone with easy access. Don't give the enemy cards to play with. Sharing also liberating and helpful. Lastly, don't fall for the trap of just checking out some almost innocent Google pics, almost always escolates quickly to xxx gallery then vid

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  3. Appreciate the feedback Ross and Daniel. I find that walking in the light with any sin is key to overcoming. Shame is always associated with it. But we are a people who have been liberated from the shame! So let's DO talk, share and confess to each other. Sin in the dark has power. But in the light, NO CHANCE.

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