The Problem of Porn

Cody Barnhart:

[Note: In light of the subject matter of this post, I feel obligated to warn that the content and language is intended for a mature audience. My goal is not to offend, but only to edify, encourage, and proclaim the sometimes-all-too-frank biblical truth. Though I acknowledge the ever-growing porn addiction among women, I will be speaking as a man to other men simply because the problem of porn runs all the more rampant among men.]

This post is by no means the first of its kind, nor will it be the last. The problem of porn has been crippling churches for years now. I’m not here to pick up my stones and throw them. In the vein of what Jesus said to the Pharisees, I couldn’t even lob the first stone toward an adulterer. I’m writing this for myself. I’m writing this for my best friends, the pastors in my life, my mentors and blog-readers.

I’m not here to use scare tactics. We’re all familiar with statistics and numbers, pointing fingers and accountability groups. We’re familiar with Bible verses like Job 31:1 or Matthew 5:28 used as Scriptural guilt-trips. I’m not saying that any of these techniques are bad. We should be holding each other accountable for our sin as part of regular discipleship and community. Yet, I think we are quick to speak and, as a result, slow to extend grace.

Regardless of how much grace we have, and no matter how familiar we may be with Scripture, what we’re seeing in the porn industry is unprecedented. So, it is with this knowledge that I write so that the Spirit might prick the heart of a calloused generation and extend grace to the wounded and weary sinner. I write so that broken men might see the reasons why their habits will break others. I write so that a generation might rise to the occasion of doing away with foolish, childish passions and eliminating the problem of porn both inside and outside the Church—the problem that has led so many men astray from the assurance of God’s love.

According to a fairly recent study from Proven Men Ministries , approximately 64% of men in the United States view pornography at least monthly. Even scarier, 79% of men between the ages of 18–30 view pornography at least monthly. In the same age range, 34% of men admit that they view porn “several times a week” and 33% either admit their addiction to pornography or are unsure if they are addicted to pornography. The most frightening of all? Compared to those 33% of men, 21% of self-proclaimed Christian men admit their addiction to pornography or are unsure if they are addicted to pornography.

There’s no sugar-coating it—these numbers are daunting. What we are facing is no longer a simple struggle with holiness; we are in the midst of a cultural crisis. We are caught in the middle of an age where secularism and Church culture are no longer distinguishable. Sin is seeping into our congregations almost unnoticeably — and it poses a future-shattering question that we need to address before it’s too late.

via The Problem of Porn | Canon and Culture.