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Timeless Truths: Every Kind of Sin is Serious

Anyone who justifies a porn habit is on very dangerous ground. In this week's "Timeless Truths" segment, we'll look at what the Bible says happens when we allow a pattern of sin to remain in our lives.

Host: Ken Larkin has joined us in the studio again. Ken, we want to deal with a question that came in from an individual who has been struggling with internet pornography for years. As a way of justification for their pornography use, they're looking at it from the perspective that since they're not actually involved in an affair with another person then their sin really isn’t a big deal. They see it as just blowing off steam and a way to enjoy their free time and yet they're asking the question, “How can I continue in my spiritual journey while doing this?” Interesting question there.

Ken: Yes, it is. First, I would say that if they have a sincere desire to grow spiritually and become more like Jesus, then the internet porn must go. There is no rational justification for sinning to blow off steam. And without a doubt, any sin, especially a long-standing sin like habitual pornography is hindering this person in their walk with God.

Host: Okay, now let's take a look at some of the negative effects of viewing pornography.

Ken: Well, all sin has consequences even if they're not readily apparent. So, what I would say first of all is that their heart is becoming more defiled and increasingly hardened as they continue this behavior. And with that, it's going to affect their relationship with the Lord in a negative way. There's no way of getting around that. And lust is selfish by nature. So, a person is going to be alienating themselves from the Lord and from other people the more that they are involved in this behavior.

Host: For sure. Well, Ken, let's deal with the perspective that he has that I think is very often common from men that are involved in pornography. He is justifying himself by saying he isn’t engaging in sin physically with someone else. Tackle that issue if you would.

Ken: What I would say is that really, it's a heart issue. Even though you're not physically involved in a relationship, you are committing adultery in your heart. You're having an affair with someone in your heart. And that would be true whether you're married or whether you're single. And with that also, you're heading down a dangerous pathway spiritually. The wages of sin is death and there's no way to get around that.

Host: Well, Jesus talks about this too.

Ken: Yeah, he sure does. Jesus explains this and He also gives us a serious warning in Matthew 5:28-30. He says, “But I say to you that whoever looks at a woman to lust for her has already committed adultery with her in his heart. If your right eye causes you to sin, pluck it out and cast it from you; And if your right hand causes you to sin, cut it off and cast it from you; for it is more profitable for you that one of your members perish, than for your whole body to be cast into hell.” (Matthew 5:28-30, NKJV)

Host: Now, you started this discussion by assuming this individual was sincere, that they have a sincere desire to grow spiritually and become more like Jesus. So, if they truly are sincere, what should they get out of that passage in Matthew? What really would you admonish a person to do if they are serious?

Ken: We would call it radical amputation. Do whatever it takes to free yourself of this addiction. First of all, you have to get rid of the pornography, that’s nonnegotiable. With that, maybe an internet filter or something like that, that would help you would be great.

Host: Whatever it takes. That may mean getting rid of the computer or getting rid of the smartphone if some kind of protection software isn't going to do it for you. And I only say that because I know you can have all the protection software in the world you want, but if you really are craving sin, there's always a way to get around it. So, if it means getting rid of the computer, then it means getting rid of the computer.

Ken: That is so true. Secondly, I would say if you haven't done so already, it's important that you share this sin, get it into the light with your pastor or some godly individual that you can trust. And they can provide you with guidance and accountability as you're coming into freedom over this addiction.
       Thirdly, I would encourage you to enroll in our Overcomers At-Home Program. I've seen many individuals radically changed from the inside out as God has dealt with them at the root issues, this pride, this selfishness and all these things that aid and abet your sin. When God gets to the heart issue, it goes beyond outward change like putting a filter on your devices, God begins to take the desire for sin out of your heart. I've seen men come into a relationship with the Lord they never had before. Where they have something better than their sin and they enjoy that sweet fellowship with the Lord.

Host: And that's so important. I think that was the thing that was missing in this individual's question was they saw the issue as, “What do I do about my spiritual journey?” But all they focused on was pornography. They missed what so many of us missed until the Lord opened our eyes: pornography really wasn't the issue. It was just the manifestation of the deeper issues of the heart that the Lord wants to deal with.

Ken: That's so true. And I would also say the Lord is not trying to take from us. God is wanting to give this individual more of himself and this pornography is just getting in the way. As they open up their hearts through genuine repentance and put their faith anew in Christ, He wants to pour in His spirit and give them that abundant life that He's promised for all of us.

Host: Amen. Well, Ken, thanks so much for talking to us about this question today. And we do want to let folks know if they are interested in the Overcomers At-Home Program or our Residential Program, there's information for both of these on our website at Just click on the counseling tab.

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