Addictions - Pornography


12/04/2006
I’ve been battling with masturbation. And from time to time I’ll go on the internet and I’ll just be looking up stuff for this and that and something will come across and I’ll just click it on. And I just keep on going further and further to the point where I just keep on masturbating. The thing that’s hurting me is I know I’m not supposed to do it, but I keep on doing it and I don’t want to do it anymore, but I keep on doing it. And I just don’t want God to think that I enjoy doing this. It’s something that I’m fighting; it’s not something that I’m encouraging. I don’t want to do it anymore.

First of all, I want to let you know that I’m proud of you for being honest and being transparent and open. I understand. And God knows what you’re dealing with. That’s the first thing that you need to know. He’s not mad at you. He’s not upset. He’s not surprised. He’s not shocked. He’s not like, “Oh my God; how could he do this?” He knows what you’ve done. He knows what you’re struggling with. And He know that there are thousands of men listening right now, thousands of men, millions of men around the world who are struggling with the same thing and many of them are not honest about it like you are. So that’s the first key to anything is to be honest and transparent about it.

The second thing that I want you to understand is that you’re no different than Paul the Apostle. You’re in good company because Paul the Apostle says in Romans chapter 7, “The thing that I don’t want to do, I end up doing. And the thing I want to do, I end up not being able to do. So, now what do I do?” And that’s basically what Romans chapters 6 and 7 are all about.

The good news is that Romans chapter 6 & 7 is not the end of the book of Romans; it goes on to chapter 8. And chapter 8 is where the victory is. It’s where the Promised Land is, it’s where you’re going to find your sense of victory. I want to encourage you to read chapters 7 & 8 of Romans.

First of all, you’ve got to take the pressure off of yourself. God’s not going to judge you and God’s not mad at you. So, first take the pressure off. Secondly, you’ve got to be honest, which you’ve done. Thirdly, you have to recognize that you’re not alone, that you’re not the only one dealing with the thing you’re dealing with. Paul the Apostle had struggles with sin and temptation – maybe not the same ones you’re dealing with. And even though Jesus never sinned, the Bible says we have a High Priest who has been tempted in all things as we are, yet without sin. So, those are the first things of importance that I need to share with you.

Now, here are six simple steps to break free from lust and break the addiction to masturbation or any sexual sin.

Number one, you must be honest to God about your situation. You’ve got to go to Him. Psalm chapter 32 says, “When I kept silent about my sin, my body wasted away as with the fever heat of summer. So, number one, we’ve got to be honest with God, admit it God, and admit it to yourself.

Number two; pour your heart out to God. Tell Him how much you want to do this but you don’t want to do it. How tempting it is but how you know it’s wrong. Tell Him. Be honest. Don’t say, “Oh Lord, I never want to do this again. I never want to do this again.” That’s a lie. You know you want to do it again. People do want to sin again. And we need to be honest and not pretend that we don’t really want to do it when in our minds and in our flesh, we really do. Our heart doesn’t want to sin, but our flesh does. And we need to pour our heart out to God and say, “Lord, I’m struggling. I’ve wanted to do this and I don’t want to do it. I’m confused. I’m caught in the middle and I need help. And pour your heart out to God and ask for help. Hebrews 4:15-16.

Number three; meditate on the Word of God. Psalm 119:9 says, “How can a young man remain pure, sexually pure?” And then the answer is, “by keeping his way according to the Word of God.” So, we have to meditate on the Word, meditate on the Word, meditate on the Word. And we will be able to remain pure as we think of the Word, as we read the Word, as we speak the Word out of our mouth.

Number four, take communion. People say, “Well, I can’t take communion until I get rid of this sin.” No, take communion and say, “Lord, I am taking communion because when I drink this cup, I am drinking the blood of Jesus that will deliver me from this lust. I am believing that the blood of Jesus is enough to cleanse me and to set me free from the power of this lust – whether its masturbation or lust or pornography, whatever it is. I believe, Lord, that when I take communion, You’re going to set me free.” Most people will tell you that you have to stop sinning before you take communion, but that’s not true. You have to take communion and say, “Lord, I believe your blood is worthy enough to deliver me from this sin.”

Number five, stop condemning yourself. You have to get out of the habit of beating yourself up when you stumble. You go to God, you confess it to Him and He’ll cleanse you and wash you from it, but don’t beat yourself up about it. You’re going to find that that step alone will set you more free than you ever thought you could be before.

And number six, have someone in your church hold you accountable. Find somebody that you can trust in your church – one of the pastors, one of the elders, one of the department leaders that you can trust – and have them hold you accountable on a regular basis, not just once in a while. Tell them, “Look, I’m struggling with this and I want you to ask me every three or four days how I’m doing in this area and I’m going to be honest with you.” You follow those 6 steps and you will be well on your path to freedom. This is the way out.

Addictions - Pornography


11/04/2006
Is it good for married couples to watch porn?

No. I don’t believe it is good for anybody to watch pornography. Pornography is a spiritual force of lust and sexual sin. Is it okay for men and women to study godly, biblical books on having a better sex life? Absolutely. But they should do it in a controlled environment where it will not lead them to temptation other than to be involved with each other.Pornography is wicked and will open the door to so many other sins. It will open the door to greed, selfishness, anger, putting demands on the other person and unrealistic expectations that they are not able to fulfill. So no, I don’t endorse that ever in any situation.

Addictions - Pornography


09/03/2006
I have a 14 year old son and I’ve been finding pornography magazines. And I’ve approached him with it and I’ve told him that if he needs to talk to me to please talk to me. And I asked him where he got it from and he told me his friends, so I see that he’s just under peer pressure. He’s a Freshman in HS. He’s very popular and so I want to keep that open communication because we have such a great relationship. And I understand teenagers become rebellious and I just want to be able to grasp and get his attention and keep him focused before I lose him.

He’s your son. You’re not going to lose him. He’s your son. And you need to exercise your love and your authority in his life. Don’t ask him if he needs to talk to you. He does need to talk to you. And you need to insist upon that. “We’re going to talk. We’re going to work it out. We’ve talked through everything up to this point and we’re not going to stop now. I know that every boy deals with that. Every young man has a battle in lust and in even pornography tries to come to every man.” And you got to just tell him, “I want to be real with you. And I want you to be real with me. And I want to get you some encouragement and if you need some other godly men that we can get involved in the situation.”

Sometimes a boy like that needs a “Big Brother,” somebody in a church that you go to that can say, “Hey, I know what you’re going through, man. Let me walk you through it.” He doesn’t need to be condemned right now because he’s obviously embarrassed and ashamed. He wants to blame it on his friends, but he knows he’s guilty. And what you need to do is say, “Look, I know you did this and I know that all boys struggle with this and I want to walk you through it and I want to get some other godly men in our lives that can help walk you through this but we’re going to talk this out. And I’m not going to lose you over this and you’re not going to lose me. I don’t judge you. I don’t condemn you. I’m not mad at you. I’ll only be mad at you if you stay silent and you don’t want to talk about it.” And that’s the kind of conversation that you need to have with him. Does that help? I’m expecting you to do that.

Addictions - Pornography


09/03/2006
I’ve been dating a guy for a while. I’m in my 30’s and we’re getting pretty serious. The other day, I found out that he has pornography in his bedroom. And he’s a Christian as well as I am. We go to church together. He told me that he would throw it away. I don’t know why I am so angry and so hurt. And I really don’t know how to deal with it, how to approach him with it. I didn’t throw a lot of anger at him and I was very adult about it and understanding, but I’m comparing myself to these women and I am then hurting myself with this, so then part of this is my issue as well. I’m not confident right now, but I know that there is a lot more to our relationship than that. But, I’m doing this talk to myself that "He doesn’t go out and gamble and he’s not at strip clubs and he’s not doing this and he’s not doing that."

Well, you have approached him with it already and he said that he would throw it away. But there’s something deeper than just throwing it away that is going to need to be addressed in his life. Now, there are a lot of men that have a problem with pornography. Most men have a problem with lust in one way or another or at least most men are tempted with lust. I don’t know anyone that’s not, except a dead man, that’s not tempted with it.

But here’s the point. It’s not for you to criticize him over this matter, but it is for you to make sure that you’re comfortable with where he’s at in this area of his life before you get any further in this relationship.

So what I would do is, if you guys are serious in your relationship, I would get some pre-premarital counseling and talk about this issue with a godly Christian counselor that you could find that would teach you and teach him about how to deal with this and how to overcome it. And also how to communicate about this subject and how to make sure that the protection is in place for you. You cannot go into a marriage with knowing that there’s an issue and knowing that there’s a problem and not being confident that it is dealt with.

That’s why so many people get into marriages that they later regret because they didn’t investigate thoroughly; they didn’t study the situation enough. They were caught up in love and caught up in the fantasy-life that never became a reality and they were disappointed. So, don’t marry him until you are confident that this is not just an area that he “throws away” by throwing away the pornography, but an area that he has dealt with that weakness in his life and addressed it in his heart.

But that’s not something that you should have to compare yourself to because it’s unrealistic to compare yourself to somebody who, with all the right lighting and all the right photography, is always going to look better than you. You’re looking at them at their best and you’re comparing them to you at your worst. And it’s just an unfair and unrealistic comparison. And it’s not something that you need to be subjected to.

And again, he needs to love you for much more of a reason that just because he’s attracted to you physically. There has to be more. There has to, there has to, there has to, there has to. There has to be such an emotional and spiritual drawing together that can never be broken. That’s the only solution to prettier women is that what draws him to you is not just how you look, and not that you should be a slouch when it comes to that area. You need to take care of yourself in the best possible manner that you can. But you need to also have confidence that he loves you for more than that. And you’re not confident in that right now.

You're just rationalizing because what starts as pornography can become later, something that’s much worse. Everything begins as a seed and can produce a harvest. And so, yes, right now he’s not going to strip clubs, but 5 years from now, he might. And I’m not saying that you should come to that conclusion and be afraid, but I’m saying you should obtain counseling so that the two of you have the confidence that this is an area of his life that is dealt with at the root level, not just at the fruit level. Do that and I believe you’ll really be blessed.

Addictions - Pornography


09/03/2006
I’ve been struggling all my life. My marriage is not doing well at all. I have had no kind of sexual relationship with my wife for 7 years. And during that time, I became really addicted to porn sites. And all of a sudden, one of my good friends who is a pastor like yourself told me that going to porn sites is going against God. I want to know if that’s true or not. We haven't had sex in 7 years because after our last child was born, she refuses to have sexual relations with me. I have sexual feelings and that’s why I turned into that site. But now, in the last year or so, I’ve give up all that because of my best friend. Because of my best friend, I turned towards the Bible and I’m trying to be more and more just like you said, to get the Holy Spirit to be with me.

First of all, I’m going to stand with you because God doesn’t want you to be in bondage to anything. He doesn’t want you to be in bondage to porn sites. He doesn’t want you to be in bondage to gambling. He doesn’t want you to be in bondage to a bad marriage either for that matter. He want you to be free. So, it’s not so much “is it wrong in God’s sight?” although the religious answer, the Christian answer is yes, it’s wrong to be going to porn sites.

But, I deal with reality. I like to deal with the root. In other words, what is causing you to feel the need to go to those porn sites? We've got to deal with the root because if we don’t get to the root, then we can tell you “stop doing this” and “stop doing that” but that won’t change you. That won’t fix the problem.

We need to get to the root of what is causing you to need to get into looking at that pornography. God wants you to be free from it, but you need to know why it’s so bad for you before you can truly change. And the reason it’s so bad is because it plants seeds in your heart. Whenever a seed is planted, it’s going to produce a harvest. So we need to make sure that we don’t allow things into our eyes and into our ears that are going to hurt us and that are going to plant bad seeds that are going to produce a bad harvest in our lives.

So that’s why it’s not advisable to get into pornography and those kinds of things. Also it defiles who you truly are because it lowers your self-esteem, it lowers your sense of self-worth. You feel less powerful when you give into that. You know what I’m talking about. You probably feel weak afterwards and you probably feel ashamed and you probably feel guilty. And God doesn’t want you to live with those feelings.

So, what you need to do is you need to get with your wife and you guys should get some marriage counseling because no marriage should be without sex for 7 years. No marriage should be without sex for 7 weeks. No marriage should be without sex for 7 days for that matter. But we need to realize that it’s a part of the health in a marriage. It’s not the only thing, but it certainly is a part of it.

Here’s the thing. Feed on the Word. Fill yourself up with God, fill yourself up with the Holy Spirit, fill yourself up with the Bible and then you’ll find the need to do those other things to be less and less. However, you need to get help immediately for your marriage because your marriage is dead right now if you haven’t been sexually involved for 7 years. Your marriage is dead. You need some counseling and your wife needs to be told and talked to so that she can overcome the fears in her life and the damage that is in her soul that has caused her to not want to have sex with you.

And you need to get healed from the damage of your soul as well and that is what good, Christian counseling can give you. So, seek out some counseling and let’s get started on that. Tell your wife, “We can’t continue this way any longer. We have to get help. We have to get this fixed.” And if she’s not open to that, call me back and we’ll talk about your next steps.