4:00PM EDT 5/23/2013 Jeremy Wiles/Conquerseries.com
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Pornography. It’s a problem in the church that everyone knows but no one dares talk about.
It’s amazing how close our production team has gotten since we started work on the Conquer series. A subject none of us ever thought we’d muster the courage to mention amongst ourselves, let alone share with transparency, is now a topic we’ve become so familiar with, and it’s scary. But I guess this is what happens when you shed truth to something as ugly and shameful as pornography.
Some surprising statistics among churchgoers reveal the pornography problem:
- 67 percent of men are involved
- 25 to 30 percent of women are involved
- 50 to 58 percent of pastors are involved
Because sexual sin has such contemptible connotations amongst Christians, few dare to examine it for what it really is. It’s like a disease that no one wants to get close to, but denying the existence of an epidemic doesn’t stop it from spreading. Hosea 4:6 says: “My people perish for lack of knowledge.”
As we’ve come to understand what sexual sin is and Christ’s redemptive power on the cross, as well as the scientific facts that corroborate God’s Word, we’ve realized that this knowledge—this truth—has the power to set men free, where they no longer have to live each day with shame and guilt.
A close friend who has experienced this firsthand is Eric Hovind. His father, Kent Hovind, is a world-renowned creationist public speaker. Eric is the president of Creation Today and has debated some of the nation’s fiercest defenders of evolution.
The first time Eric was exposed to pornography was in the fifth grade—at a Christian school. He was brave enough to share his testimony on how God freed him from his struggle with pornography. You can watch a preview by clicking below.
Many men want to be freed from pornography, but they expect God or someone else to do the hard work. They pray and then blame God for not removing the problem. There is a process of renewing our minds in Christ before seeing the results of complete restoration. Viewing porn is not about sex; it is about how men have learned to medicate the pain in their lives.
Pastors can become effective heart surgeons when they understand these principles. Unfortunately, many men who struggle with sexual sin and dare admit it to their pastor have to go along with the typical church response: “We’ll pray for you.”
The next time he tells his leader that he viewed porn again, the pastor says, “Well, stop it because we’re praying for you!” Where does that get you? Nowhere. God can miraculously heal men instantly, but typically it is a two- to five-year process of renewing the mind and becoming a new creation in Christ.
There is no question that a man who struggles with pornography needs to pray and enlist God’s power, but it shouldn’t stop there. There are practical steps to take—adjustments that can be life-changing—but it all begins with knowing what sexual bondage is and God’s weapons and strategies for His children.
A Discipleship Tool for the Church
My goal is to empower pastors with this discipleship tool. I know it’s not an easy or comfortable topic to talk about. This is why I have put everything on hold to produce the Conquer series. Christian men struggling with sexual sin in the church is a subject too important to ignore. Once men know the truth about hell’s master plan, they will find boldness in talking about it.
If you think what I shared with you is of value to the church but no one likes to talk about it, then please be the voice of your church. Share the Conquer series with your pastor, men’s ministry leader or friend. The Conquer series is the easiest and most effective way to present this sensitive topic to your church.