My friend was sympathizing with her husband. They shared a computer and she commented that the ads were “pretty bad,” it must be difficult to resist the temptation that popped up around the articles on various sites. I explained to her that the ads that tempted me on my laptop were for running shoes and vitamins. Our past internet searches and site visits actually determine the type of advertisements that display on our screens. Marketing has become intensely personal. Technology has made us targets like never before. Her husband, like millions of other men, was caught in the crosshairs.
The statistics are staggering. It's said that hotels make a lot of money off of internet and cable pornography when Youth Ministry conferences come to town. The Ashley Madison site break in revealed the names of many Pastors and Christian leaders who were involved in extramarital affairs. Etc. There’s no need to convince any reader that sexual sin in the church is rampant. Some churches are beginning to address the issue and are offering resources and support groups for men. Others still have their heads buried deep in the sand.
There’s no need to convince any reader that sexual sin in the church is rampant.
The article contained no apologies. The author didn’t address the potentially neglected need for human emotional connection or the necessarily suppressed desire to have a family. Apparently, these things have been sacrificed to the god of pleasure. These men have emptied their souls to make room for fleeting, increasingly insatiable self-gratification. The damage to their souls was not considered. The article was startling, the implications, terrifying.
King Solomon wrote the book Song of Solomon (also called Song of Songs) in the Bible. The book is a a love poem that is a illustration of passionate marital love. Some believe it to be an allegory of Christ’s love for His church. It chronicles the romance, marriage and consummation of the marriage between the two lovers. Many see it as love epitomized. It is intensely romantic and symbolically erotic and sensual.
How did the wisest man on earth, once devoted to one woman and one God, die, destroyed by sexual obsession?
Why was the the book of the Song of Solomon given to us to illustrate marital love when Solomon ultimately was destroyed by compulsive infidelity? To warn us. God knew that what while seduction was once a drawn-out process whereby a young man is lured into the streets, seduction would one day become an instantaneous click into a world that destroys lives.
Sin enslaves. I have seen the dungeons in English castles. Centuries later, rusty, flesh-cutting iron shackles and chains are still bolted to moldy, filthy stone walls of these actual cells that once held death-sentenced prisoners. That is the reality of enslavement. That is the truth behind pornography and sexual sin.
While seduction was once a drawn-out process whereby a young man is lured into the streets, seduction would one day become an instantaneous click into a world that destroys lives.
Scripture gives us the wisdom we need to fight any battle. I Corinthians 10:13 tells you that the resources to win are right there;
“No temptation[has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted[ beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted,he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it.”
The first strategy is to start fresh. I John 4:9 says, “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.” Admit that this is a temptation, if it is. Admit that it has become sin, if it has. Then repent. To repent is to turn away. Turn away. But don’t think you can do this alone. Turn to your loving Father.
It is also helpful if you find a trusted friend, mentor or Pastor who will listen to your struggles and pray for you. James 5:16 talks about this wonderful provision from the Lord; “Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective.”
Remember that the enemy seeks to isolate us when we are ashamed. We are weaker when we are fighting alone. Confession brings purification. Condemnation is not from God (see Romans 8:1). Shame is from the enemy. Sin causes wounding. Then we are wounded, we are weaker. God heals us and we are able to stand tall and strong.
Remember that the enemy seeks to isolate us when we are ashamed. We are weaker when we are fighting alone.
Jesus cares deeply about your struggle. He has actually been where you are! Hebrews 2:18 says, “Because he himself suffered when he was tempted, he is able to help those who are being tempted.” He will wrap himself around you and protect you! You just need to ask him. It’s amazing. In Romans 13:14, Paul speaks from experience when he says, “Rather, clothe yourselves with the Lord Jesus Christ, and do not think about how to gratify the desires of the flesh.” Paul had learned that Jesus was a refuge.
Jesus cares deeply about your struggle. He has actually been where you are!
The fourth strategy is to truly submit to God and His Spirit. You have chosen sides. Do not lean over the fence. Stay squarely on His side. James 4:7 contains a strategy that we must all come to automatically employ when the enemy comes calling; “Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.” Face him down and say “Oh, no you don’t. I worship Jesus. I humble myself before my God. Get out of here, Satan, in Jesus’ name.”
Then praise God. The enemy can’t stand that. And you win. Galatians 5:16 says, “So I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh.” Pray in the Spirit through these dark moments. “God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble.” (Psalm 46:1)
We don’t want to see our sons and friends lost to its destruction.
James 4:2 says that “You do not have because you do not ask God.” Together, let us ask God. My prayer is that more and more of us will stand in the gap (see Ezekiel 22:30) for this problem that is destroying so much that is good. If you are needing to change your direction, we are praying for you. God bless you.