Over the last 15 years, pornography has grown increasingly accessible and available. Also, the growth of the severity of porn has been mind-blowing. Although now 31, as a teenager, the internet was just becoming a reality. As a teen, porn took work to find. But now, it’s everywhere ... What once was considered "soft-core" pornography now is found on basic cable and Instagram. Moreover, it is painfully mind-numbing and devastating to know of the existence of some of the worst kinds of porn imaginable, specifically, rape-fantasy and child pornography.
I preached on how pornography is really a theological heart issue; when sin entered the world, it distorted our view from seeing things as God originally designed. Specifically, that sex was God’s good gift to husband and wife. Everything outside of God's design for sexuality was distortion of that gift. Pornography has exploited and distorted God’s design for sex. It is a counterfeit many are enslaved to.
One way we gain freedom from our enslavement to porn is by realizing that it is a theological heart issue called idolatry. Romans 1 describes how such idolatry was a rejection of God’s truth and authority, as the Romans began worshiping created things over their Creator. And thus, people choose to reject God as the only one who can satisfy the longing of their souls.
In pornography, we believe we will gain approval, comfort, control and power. The deeper heart issue of pornography requires far more than just accountability and avoidance. Rather, you must dig deep into your heart and see how you are seeking approval, comfort, control and power. The sexual sin is but a manifestation of your seeking satisfaction in the wrong place.
Here are ways we seek satisfaction through pornography:
Approval: You want to be wanted but constantly face rejection. So, you seek porn because the woman or man on-screen looks or talks a certain way that you believe is directed towards you, and you feel "wanted" or "desired."
Comfort: You find a sense of escape and security from the pain of this world and self-medicate yourself with the comfort you find in pornography.
Control: You can’t control your spouse's sexual desire. So, by seeking out porn you try to control your sexual drive and feed it as you see fit.
Power: You want to feel in charge and the fantasy world of pornography gives you that feeling.
These are some of the deeper heart issues we face with idolatry, and then we look wrongly to pornography to give us the approval, comfort, control, and power that only God can provide.
THE GOSPEL FOR THOSE WHO STRUGGLE
The Gospel, for porn users and porn stars, is that Jesus loves you deeply. I know it’s going to be hard to admit and confess, but Jesus isn’t awaiting your confession of sin to punish you. He wants to free you from the bondage pornography has upon you. Your sin was cast upon Jesus At the cross and then buried in a tomb. Despite the shame and guilt you carry, the feeling of being unloved, He already knows what you’ve been hiding from everyone else. Just give your sin and addiction to Him today.
I know many of you are held captive to your sin and the whispers of Satan telling you that you’ll never change, but silence the enemy with your confession and repentance. Find your belief in Christ, alone, as your only hope and freedom today. Reach out to our church or your Missional Community Leader and ask them to help you believe the Gospel over your sin, and get the help you need today.
Pastor Boyd Bettis