The Truth About Pornography in the Church (Part 2)

Is it possible for someone to be addicted to pornography?  Many people scoff at the notion that there is, in fact, such a thing as porn addiction. But ask the man who climbed into a dumpster to retrieve the porn he shamefully discarded days earlier. What do you think he might say? There is no doubt in my mind that pornography addiction is real. In my roles as a pastor and a clinical social worker, I\’ve seen the devastating impact of porn addiction on individuals and families. Like marijuana, porn is a “gateway drug.” It can lead to other forms of sexual addiction. Dr. Patrick Carnes is a pioneer in the field of sexual addiction treatment. His research and writings provide us with ample evidence that pornography, along with masturbation, can be highly addictive.

The popular contemporary Gospel artist, Kirk Franklin, has spoken of his previous struggles with porn addiction. He, along with his wife, Tammy, took the bold step of going on The Oprah Winfrey Show, in 2006, to talk openly about his addiction and its impact on their marriage. I thank God that they had the courage to put a public face on this problem. However, Kirk is not the only Christian man who has struggled with pornography. Someone has jokingly said that 70% of Christian men have struggled with some form of sexual sin, and the other 30% have a problem with honesty.  How big is porn addiction in the Church?  A ChristiaNet poll suggests that as many as 50% of Christian men and 20% of Christian women are addicted to porn. Research reveals that 37% of pastors are frequent or regular consumers of internet porn. Even if these numbers are a bit inflated, they are shocking, nonetheless.

In his “Faithful & True” workbook, Dr. Mark Laaser gives us a helpful framework for understanding addiction. He indicates that there are five key words in the definition of addiction: (1) Repetitive, (2) Degenerative, (3) Unmanageable, (4) Medicative, and (5) Destructive. Aside from these key words, porn is addictive because the user is often motivated by secrecy and shame. According to Dr. Laaser, in order to classify a behavior as an addiction requires “a pattern of repetitive use for at least two (2) years- however, not necessarily every day.” Secondly, an addiction is “degenerative” in that it “intensifies over time.” Dr. Laaser says, “The person requires more of the activity to achieve the same effect.” Third, an addiction is “unmanageable” in that the addict is powerless over the addiction and cannot stop, no matter how hard he or she tries.   Fourthly, an addiction is “Medicative” in that the addictive substance or behavior is mood-altering. Simply put, addicts “self-medicate” to numb themselves, in an attempt to escape painful emotions. Lastly, an addiction is “destructive,” and in some cases, deadly. Addictions have led to destroyed marriages, wasted time, depleted finances, ruined careers, and clinical depression.  In fact, addicts are statistically more likely to complete the act of suicide. Sadly, a friend of mine, who was addicted to porn, among other things, took his own life.  He was a fellow minister and mental health professional, who even wrote a book on addiction, to which I contributed. News flash!  Anyone can fall into the destructive trap of porn addiction.

In 2004, a panel of experts testified before a Senate subcommittee that pornography is dangerously addictive. The neurological effects of porn on the brain were called “toxic.” They indicated that exposure to porn, over time, can actually alter the brain\’s chemistry, much like addiction to drugs. Dr. Mary Anne Layden, a psychologist, was one of the witnesses at the Senate hearing. She said that “the same criteria used to diagnose problems like pathological gambling and substance abuse can be applied to problematic porn use.” Anthropologist, Dr. Helen Fisher, has found that neurotransmitters, like dopamine, saturate the limbic pleasure centers of the brain. Thus, the pornography addict longs to come back for one more “hit.” But “one more” turns into 2 more, and so forth. One expert has called internet porn “the crack cocaine of pornography addiction.” With millions of adult web sites, a pornographic image is only a click away. Look at it this way . . . Your brain is like a digital camera, and your eyes are like lenses.  Every time you look at a pornographic image, you are storing it in your memory, for years to come.  How tough is porn addiction to overcome?  Dr. Victor Cline says, “Sex and pornography addiction can be a more difficult addiction to break than cocaine.”

Sobriety from porn addiction includes “progressive victory over lust.” Lust is the self-centered desire for that which is forbidden by God. Lust is the driving force behind this addiction. The one who is being lusted after has been reduced from a person made in the image of God to a mere object of another\’s satisfaction. That\’s why Paul said, “Put to death, therefore, whatever belongs to your earthly nature: sexual immorality, impurity, lust, evil desires and greed, which is idolatry (Colossians 3:5, NIV).”

Now that I\’ve established that porn addiction is a real problem, I\’d like to offer a solution, in the form of an acronym for the word A.I.R.  The “A” is for ACCOUNTABLE, the “I” is for INTENTIONAL, and the “R” is for RELATIONAL.  First, if someone wants to begin the process of recovery from porn addiction, he or she must become accountable to others who are on the road to recovery, themselves.  12-Step recovery fellowships, like Sexaholics Anonymous (SA), have helped many obtain and maintain sobriety. Some have found more acceptance in recovery meetings than in their own local church. Also, there are Christian-oriented programs and workshops that address the problem of porn addiction, such as Every Man\’s Battle. Secondly, one must be intentional about going “to any lengths necessary” to stay sober.  This includes removing any “stash” or external triggers of the addiction. Finally, a person who is “happy, joyous, and free” from lust is relational.  God has wired us for relationships. Some Christians might say, “Jesus is all I need to be set free from my lust.” But such people don\’t fully appreciate that God works through people. After all, even the Lone Ranger had Tonto. Consequently, every addict needs to experience “God with skin on.” Many people are learning how to avoid the trap of isolation. In fact, they have found that it is impossible to recover without connection to a supportive community.  After a lifetime of searching, they are finally experiencing “true intimacy” with others that has absolutely nothing to do with sex. If you are in bondage to pornography, I invite you to come up for some fresh “air” now, before you drown.    
          
Reverend Joel A. Bowman is the Founder and Senior Pastor of Temple of Faith Baptist Church in Louisville, Kentucky. He is a native of Detroit, Michigan. He was licensed to preach the Gospel, in 1994, at the Historic Second Baptist Church of Detroit. Pastor Bowman is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker who practices astherapist and pastoral counselor. Pastor Bowman can be reached at

 

Comments

comments

49 thoughts on “The Truth About Pornography in the Church (Part 2)

  1. Chase Mortgage Login

    If this film was a video game it would have really been sweet, in actual fact the whole movie felt like the creators of this movie just played an entire bunch of video games with alien invasion and decided to create a film of it by combining some aspects of these games.

  2. Wilfredo Dull

    May I simply say what a comfort to find someone that really understands what they’re discussing over the internet. You actually know how to bring a problem to light and make it important. A lot more people must look at this and understand this side of your story. I can’t believe you are not more popular because you definitely possess the gift.

  3. ATT Yahoo Mail Login

    To be successful within this situation you may have written about, one will must actually devote time and effort into it. I worked on performing a investigation upon it in my spare time and also you also wouldn’t think in the possibilities that opened up job wise. This can be a terrific discipline and may result in quite a few fascinating prospects. Thanks for sharing your ideas.

  4. Pingback: website

  5. cedar options

    I’m curious to find out what website platform you happen to be utilizing? I’m having some little safety complications with my most recent website and I’d prefer to find anything more risk-free. Do you’ve got any solutions?

  6. cayler and sons snapback

    You can definitely see your expertise within the paintings you write. The sector hopes for even more passionate writers like you who aren’t afraid to mention how they believe. Always follow your heart. “We are near waking when we dream we are dreaming.” by Friedrich von Hardenberg Novalis.

  7. Koncentrat białka

    Very informative and genial to look at the text. I am impressed with your composition skills. Sam I tear along several blogs and adapting them to a like designate of speech attracts so many fans of good style. I join to your bookmarks, in the look forward to that you force do the same. On a former occasion again, prodigious blog, great style, and I longing you continued ascendancy in decision gripping info, which should present to the world.

  8. Julio Fahrlander

    Physical actions that get you scorching and sweaty will help keep you most centered. People will be making sound reliable choices. You can usually ask your spirit manual for help with your readings.

  9. Pingback: residences

  10. Curcumin Benefits

    Excellent weblog right here! Also your web site loads up very fast! What web host are you the usage of? Can I get your affiliate hyperlink in your host? I wish my web site loaded up as quickly as yours lol

  11. youtube.com/watch?v=rxpUQRWc6as

    Can I simply say what a reduction to seek out somebody who truly knows what theyre speaking about on the internet. You undoubtedly know how you can bring a problem to mild and make it important. More people need to learn this and perceive this side of the story. I cant believe youre no more standard because you positively have the gift.

  12. Pingback: increase page rank

  13. Pingback: website

  14. Cheap WOW Gold

    Thanks for your write-up. I also believe that laptop computers have become more and more popular lately, and now are often the only sort of computer used in a household. The reason is that at the same time potentially they are becoming more and more cost-effective, their working power is growing to the point where they are as highly effective as pc’s coming from just a few years ago.

  15. Pingback: website

  16. Anti Aging Creams

    It is actually a great and helpful piece of information. I am happy that you just shared this helpful info with us. Please keep us up to date like this. Thank you for sharing.

  17. BCAA

    Least instructive and nice to look at the text. I am impressed with your composition skills. Sam I contend a number of blogs and adapting them to a like designate of homily attracts so scads fans of elevated style. I tot up to your bookmarks, in the craving that you will-power do the same. Once again, bad blog, brilliant label, and I specify you continued big name in verdict interesting data, which should dole to the world.

  18. bridesmaid dresses

    The bridesmaids would be the birdes-to-be aid technique. http://www.rmtgb.co.uk,,They can be a group of females contains her own family and also friends. They’re one of the most significant gals while in the bride’s lifestyle. There’re pleased for being right now there and just the delight. They input ahead of the woman. Their particular top offers the overture to the bride’s entry. Any bridesmaids apparel must wonderfully match up your bride’s own personal robes.

  19. Pingback: More about the author

  20. tiffany cuff bracelet

    Tiffany jewelry can be found right now with the ideal stuff on the earth…typically the Overhead Gems. The whole picture on the mix is located frequently on ,anchor necklace tiffany,noble jewelry choices given that it presents any monarchy’s ability and reference to The almighty upwards of a thousand quite a few years. Historically, typically the Sovereigns whom satellite around the throne theorized witout a doubt potentially they are anointed by means of The lord’s personal fretting hand and tend to be with the divine right with nobleman that will rule his or her persons.

  21. Pingback: here

  22. Pingback: You Could Try These Out

  23. Dessie

    Thank you for another excellent article. The place else may anyone get that kind of
    info in such an ideal method of writing? I have a presentation subsequent week,
    and I am on the search for such information.

  24. online casino

    What your saying is completely proper. I know that all people must say the incredibly exact similar challenge, but I just presume that you place it in a way that everyone can totally grasp. I also essentially like the photographs you position inside the adhering to. They match so nicely with what youre attempting to say. Im guaranteed youll accomplish so quite a couple of guys and women with what youve acquired to say.

  25. Kreatyna monohydrat

    Truly informative and punctilious to look at the text. I am impressed with your script skills. Sam I hotfoot it a number of blogs and adapting them to a equivalent opulence of dance attracts so profuse fans of skilled style. I add to your bookmarks, in the hope that you will-power do the same. Once again, bad blog, mammoth label, and I longing you continued big name in verdict gripping data, which should our times to the world.

  26. Pingback: website

  27. Cedrick Nguyan

    Thanks for this wonderful article. One other thing is that the majority of digital cameras arrive equipped with some sort of zoom lens that permits more or less of the scene being included by ‘zooming’ in and out. All these changes in focus length are generally reflected within the viewfinder and on massive display screen right at the back of the particular camera.

  28. profesjonalne strony www

    Hello, Neat post. There is an issue with your web site in internet explorer, might check this… IE still is the marketplace chief and a good part of other folks will pass over your excellent writing due to this problem.

  29. Pingback: website

  30. Emilie Singler

    I’ve learned some new things out of your blog post. Yet another thing to I have found is that generally, FSBO sellers will certainly reject you. Remember, they can prefer never to use your expert services. But if you actually maintain a steady, professional partnership, offering support and staying in contact for four to five weeks, you will usually be able to win a discussion. From there, a listing follows. Many thanks

  31. solar light for flagpoles

    photo voltaic safety floodlights a lightweight beam that is lazy and also better than just a gentle could be. You’ll receive that which you plan to tell: a very good safety measures ,http://www.iptaxation.com/,stableness will identify the number of w that they (usually shipped to halogen incandescent bulbs), and also that are Light emitting diodes. Commonly, Fifty and also 25 w LED floodlight for just a stability will do, depending on their dreams whilst 12 or 15 w Brought spotlights are great for. Solar technology protection light requirements areas, remote lose or perhaps car parking spots that are complicated, unattainable or very costly to be used along with power usually are this sort of places are fantastic so that you can use. Using major price savings about electricity bills, that you are secure actually during electric power failures

  32. Pingback: morocco holiday

  33. Pingback: website

  34. Kimi Belloma

    I like what you guys are up too. Such clever work and reporting! Carry on the excellent works guys I have incorporated you guys to my blogroll. I think it’ll improve the value of my site :).

  35. Pingback: website

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>