Closing the Window – Steps to Living Porn Free (Part 1)

As I stated in one of my very first posts on my blog it’s my intention to make people aware of resources that will help them walk in victory over sin, in particular the sin of pornography. Yet even as I type this there is a fear and apprehensiveness in my spirit in making people aware of this chronic issue for men and women because undoubtedly an individual reading this post (possibly you) will think to themselves “well, we know what that guy struggles with.” That shouldn’t be an issue in my life but one of the sins God is continually confronting me with is the fear of man in my life, but that’s a post for another day. Concerning pornography, thankfully, by God’s grace, this has not been a prominent struggle in my life, but it does not mean that tomorrow I will not give into my sinful desires and choices. Speaking of the pride that creeps into our heart that prompts us to think we’re immune from sin, the apostle Paul says, “therefore let anyone who thinks that he stands take heed lest he fall” (1 Cor 10:12 ESV). We’re all one decision away from stupid. That means you. And that means me.

That being said, I wanted to make you aware of a book that I’m working my way through. The title, “Closing the Window: Steps to Living Porn Free,” authored by Tim Chester is a book I picked up months ago in my effort to become more equipped and skilled in helping other men (young and old) walk in the victory that Christ has made a reality for believers rather than the sinful proclivities of their heart (and mine) that many times rears it’s ugly head and lures us away from following Jesus.

So, I’ll post once a week over the course of the next six weeks in order to appropriately summarize the book (introduction + five chapters). This post will simply serve as a summary with some of my thoughts (unoriginal I promise) “sprinkled” throughout and depending upon the rigor of my work-week the summary may simply be in the form of bullet-points. I hope the posts encourage you. I hope the posts challenge you. Here’s a brief summary of the Introduction:

“Let’s Talk About Porn”

Most would not argue with Chester’s opening statement, “today, there is epidemic of pornography” (7). He attributes this to two things: (1) There is an increasing permissive attitude in our society today. Just the other day I talked with a young person who was engaged in watching a show where many, if not all of the individuals in the show were engaged in sexual relations with one another over the course of the show. This isn’t pornography, but it does demonstrate the permissiveness that creeps into this young person’s heart which prompts them to look at me like I have two heads. (2) There has been an acceleration of porn in the home via new technologies. Dr. Alvin Cooper, a Psychologist, speaking to the increase of pornography in the home attributes it to the “triple-A engine,” which is (1) accessibility, (2) anonymity, and (3) affordability (8-9).

In a survey done in 2006 it was found that 50% of Christian men and 20% of Christian women are “addicted to porn.” That number is staggering and my experiences thus far have confirmed that to be true. And yes, I understand experience doesn’t validate something as true, but it certainly gives credence to the fact that pornography is indeed an epidemic inside and outside the church.

Chester then quotes Dr. Mohler (President of The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary) who said pornography is “one of the greatest moral challenges faced by the Christian church in the postmodern age” (10). I could not agree more. But when was the last time you heard anyone talk about it in your church? And certainly, mentioning it from the pulpit is taboo! However, here at Oak Park it’s been mentioned from the pulpit several times and will continue to be when relevant to the text being preached.  In addition, it’s an issue that comes up countless times in personal mentoring relationships.

Interestingly enough, many people are confused about what “qualifies” as porn. Porn, according to Chester is “anything we use for sexual titillation, gratification or escape — whether it was intended for that purpose or not. Much of the time this will be sexually explicit material in magazines or movies or on the Internet. But it can also involve looking at ads or catalogs to stimulate your lust, or ‘undressing’ people with your eyes, or fantasizing about sex with someone who’s not your spouse” (11).

Lastly, Chester states that “if you struggle with porn, then your heart will be exposed. And what you see will be ugly — very ugly — unbearably ugly, but for the grace of God. This book will probably condemn you, but it ought not to leave you condemned, for ‘there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus'” (Romans 8:1). For whatever we learn of our sin (and it is much) we should also learn about the grace available in Christ Jesus (which is more – hallelujah!).

Advertisements

One thought on “Closing the Window – Steps to Living Porn Free (Part 1)

  1. Thank you Pastor Nathan… for a frank, bold, yet humble approach to teaching many of us how to deal with a subject that has touched all men in some way … friends, family, or even personally… This I know… God is not finished with me yet. And we can all gain from a thoughtful reading of your words above. I have been told that “… I should not worry that people do not listen to me … Fear that they indeed are always watching!” More than the consequences to me of my own failure … I fear that my life might cause others to follow my steps. Oh Lord, give us Pastors, friends and family who will speak the truth in Love … without pride… for apart from the Grace of God… there go I. Thanks my pastor, my son… Love ya Dad

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s