Dealing With Porn and Lust (Part 3)

  1. Read part 1
  2. Read part 2
  3. Read part 3
  4. Read part 4

So we have established that the Biblical pattern of repentance is putting off the old man and putting on the new man. And frequently it is the new man that drives out the old man. It is the active pursuit of faithfulness and service and ministry that actually shakes off the demons of sin. Obviously hypocrisy must never be indulged.

Do not stand up and condemn sins that you have domesticated in your own life. Dealing with sin is not the same thing as making friends with it and taming it. Dealing with sin means killing it, running from it, crying out to God for deliverance from it. But when you’re running toward Christ and your sin is chasing you, that is not hypocrisy, that is faithfulness, and God promises to bless your flight.

The sins of lust and porn are at least in part grounded in fundamental laziness. This is because there is a gift of God called sex, and that gift is to be received and enjoyed and celebrated in the context of marriage. And lusting after pornstars is trying to get these gifts on the black market. These sins are fundamentally lazy because it takes real, honest, hard work to love a flesh and blood woman, and it takes even more work to keep her.

It’s easier to look at pictures and pretend. It’s easier to serve yourself than to serve another person. And laziness is best friends with lack-of-self-control. When you are lazy, you are not in control of your life, your life is being ruled by the moment, by the television, by your computer. You are at the mercy of whatever comes next, whatever pops up next, whatever comes on next. But the fruit of the Spirit is love and this love exhibits self-control. This love has discipline, direction, mission. This is because this Love is the person of the Holy Spirit driving us to walk worthy of the calling with which we were called.

So here’s the point: When a guy is struggling with having self-control on his computer, I ask him, “Where else are you struggling with self-control? Where else are you being lazy with your time and decisions? How much do you drink? How much do you smoke? What are your eating habits? Study habits? Consumption habits in general?”

You cannot refuse to exercise and then wonder why you are not strong. You can’t be lazy all day long in other areas and then expect to be a disciplined, hard worker when it comes to women and sex. And this means that one of the ways that you should attack the sin of lust is through hard work and discipline. Set limits: time limits, drink limits, food limits, whatever, and you don’t have to get all legalistic about it.

Of course there are Biblical standards which must be observed, but practice makes perfect. When people practice saying “no” when they don’t have to, this exercises self-control muscles which will most certainly be needed later in other contexts. But if all you ever say is “yes” and “more” why do you think you will suddenly have an outbreak of self control when it really matters?

Laziness in one area of life is rarely isolated. Cultivate discipline. Get up at reasonable hours, go to bed at reasonable hours, work hard at your job, pay your bills on time, don’t over eat/drink/smoke/whatever, read your Bible, spend time in prayer consistently. Make a schedule and stick to it. And as you do this, do not do this as though this is a magic formula for porn deliverance. It isn’t. Do this in faith, do this before the Lord, and do it prayerfully.

“O God, I’m scheduling this week carefully because I want to learn self-control and discipline so that I can be a real man and learn to love a real woman. Help me keep my word and do this for your glory. In Jesus’ name, Amen.”

And if you’re already married, then you already know the name of that real woman, and you can insert her name in the prayer and get busy loving her.

Original post here.

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