Freedom from Pornography
Question: How can I be set free from pornography?
A sexual addiction is a desire that has gotten out of control. Temptation is trying to fulfill a legitimate, God-given drive (sex drive) in an illegitimate way. Sex is to be fulfilled by your spouse, not by a picture. Your sex drive is like a fire that's burning within you. The more logs you throw on the fire, the bigger the flame gets. "The eye is not satisfied with seeing" (Eccl. 1:8), so the change must take place inside your heart.
The addiction to pornography is directly opposite to desires of the Holy Spirit. "For the flesh sets its desire against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; for these are in opposition to one another…" (Gal. 5:17). You must become more desperate to please God than to satisfy your own desires. This is called "repentance"-a decision to WANT to freedom more than bondage. Otherwise, you will keep going back to the same addictions. You have to get totally sick and tired of your destructive habits and want a new life.
First, the only way to overcome the flesh (pornography) is through a genuine work of the Holy Spirit in your heart. "Walk by the Spirit, and you will not carry out the desire of the flesh" (Gal. 5:16). Most people try to fight the flesh with the flesh, which doesn't work. Trying to stop a habit doesn't work. The Holy Spirit is your only source of holiness. Ask Jesus to come live in your heart and ask to be filled with the Holy Spirit. He will literally give you bondage-breaking power when you completely surrender to Him.
Second, you must cut off ALL opportunities to look at pornography AHEAD of time. Where do you stumble into pornography? TV? The internet? Convenience stores? Stay away from those places. Jesus said "watch and pray that you may not enter INTO temptation." Temptation is an area that's entered into. If you stay out of the boxing ring, temptation can't fight you. But once you step into the ring, you will be defeated unless you flee out of it.
Third, start fasting and praying. Fasting means to go without food while you pray. Your desires have been out of whack and need to be put in the proper place. As your hunger drive increases, your sex drive will decrease. God does something supernatural when we fast and pray.
Fourth, find a support group and accountability partner. Tell a trusted Christian friend (of your gender) who will hold you accountable for your actions. Give him or her an honest report of how your day went. Reading the Scriptures and Christian fellowship is essential to maintaining your freedom.
Fifth, live one day at a time. Life is a cinch by the inch, but hard by the yard. Make it a goal to make it through the one day without looking at pornography. Victory is won-one day at a time.
As you stop throwing logs on the fire, you will discover that your flame for sex will decrease. Your mind will begin to clear up. Eventually, you will be surprised to discover that you can go days without ever thinking about looking at porn. Yes, it is possible for God to set you free from pornography!
For more information about how to be free from pornography, read Chapter 12, "Lust Glasses" from I Once Was Blind But Now I Squint by Kent Crockett (AMG Publishers, 2004). The book can be purchased through our online bookstore on this site.