When looking for pornography…begin in the heart
Where would you look to locate the primary problem with pornography? In our culture?
Are you tempted to initially react to the sensual realities of our culture? You should react! You should be concerned! But when you address the porn problem, are you more inclined to begin the discussion with the prevalent, pervasive, cultural, immodesty issues?
Granted it should be part of the discussion. Certainly it is right to walk our wives and daughters through how to dress modestly. It is wise to teach them how to help guard the hearts of their male friends, by dressing in an appropriate manner. However, the way they dress should not be the starting point in the pornography discussion.
Out of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaks. – Luke 6:45
Jesus began the discussion regarding behavioral sins like porn, not with the behavior, but with the heart. In the quote above Jesus tied the behavior (tongue speech) to the heart. He placed the source or the genesis of our sin problems in the heart rather than on the lip.
Matters of the heart
A man’s struggle with pornography does not begin in his culture, but in his mind. Paul appealed to us to make sure we “renew the spirit of our minds” before we put on a new behavior (Ephesians. 4:22-24).
If we do not first attack our physical sin issues at the level of our minds, we will set ourselves up for the very real possibility of that sin reappearing. If we do not put the axe to the root of the tree then there will be sprigs, then limbs, and possibly full-blown branches reappearing.
And along with the ongoing, recurring behavioral sin problem of porn, there will be the real possibility of compounded frustration, anger, hopelessness, and even less faith to attack the behavioral pornography problem.
Responding to sin primarily at the level of the behavior will not ultimately work and will lead a person toward despair. All sin, including pornography, must be rooted out where it began. Find the source and you have positioned yourself for God’s empowering grace to extract the sin.
Pornography begins in the heart. Awareness of this truth brings hope. If a man believed the root of his porn problem was in his culture then he would set himself up as a potential victim of his culture and possibly be controlled by his culture.
He would be at