The root of every sinful act is always found in some sinful tendency, cherished in the heart. Wherever sin is cherished in the heart, Satan is given the advantage. By temptations both subtle and strong, by implanting thoughts and manipulating the emotions, Satan uses every cherished sin to bind the soul and enslave the will to him. A person who clings to known sin thus becomes a plaything of the devil.
Often a person who lives a seemingly “good” life will appear to fall abruptly into sin. The sinful act, however, is merely the outward revelation of what has already taken place in the inward heart. When corruption within meets temptation without, the person falls.
One sin that is rapidly reaching pandemic proportions across all age categories, among married couples and singles alike is that of pornography. Now, with the easy access of the Internet, pornography is more readily available than ever before. Whereas, before, a person had to risk the embarrassment of exposure by buying or renting pornography from stores, now anyone can gain access to porn in the privacy of their own home via the Internet.
Pornography is a soul destroying vice that is responsible for more destroyed relationships than most people realize. A man who indulges in pornography begins to objectify his wife or his girlfriend, viewing her as a sexual object. As no woman enjoys being viewed in such a light, emotional distance enters where before emotional intimacy had been shared. This holds true even among dating couples couples who have not had sex.
More than that, however, is that once a woman is objectified, it is but a quick step to compare her as a sex object to porn stars. No normal woman can compete with the cosmetically and surgically enhanced, airbrushed images found in porn. But it is not only her body that cannot compete – neither can her responses.
When a woman feels devalued as a person of worth, her responses to her husband will reflect that emotional change. A man who views his wife as a sex object, will begin to treat her that way as well. This leads the wife to withdraw emotionally which will affect her physical responsiveness to him. As a result of what he views as a lack in his wife, he withdraws more and more into porn. Such a man is captive to Satan.
It is impossible for a real, flesh-and-blood woman to compete with the images of a man’s imagination. In reality, a woman’s body, like a man’s, changes with age. It is unrealistic for a man to expect a woman in her 30s, 40s and beyond to retain the shape and vigor of youth. A woman will always be found wanting when compared with pornographic images or a fevered imagination.
In imagination, a man is not limited by reality. The object of his arousal can be anything and everything he dreams up. As Satan binds more firmly in his grasp the person who is given over to lustful imagination, the person becomes more and more corrupt and dissolute. What at first aroused and stimulated him, over time, loses its effectiveness. To feel the same state of arousal as he felt before, he turns to ever more depraved levels of pornography.
The availability of such performance-enhancing drugs as Viagra has only compounded the problem. There are even doses designed for daily use of Viagra. This has stolen from men their Yah-given dignity and reduced them to sexual slaves, addicted to sensual stimulation. Satan can then play upon their imaginations and lead them into sin through their thoughts over every woman that walks by.
Yahuwah intended that a husband and wife would grow ever closer as the years of life brought shared experiences, shared memories. The inevitable changes to a woman’s body brought about by childbirth and age would be viewed by her husband as marks of honor, of the willing sacrifice of herself for their children. The passing years should bind the hearts of husband and wife ever closer together as he cherishes her and she, secure in his love, returns that love with all her heart.
Under the illustration of water, the book of Proverbs admonishes all to seek their fulfillment in their own spouse:
Let your fountain be blessed, and rejoice with the wife of your youth. As a loving deer and a graceful doe, let her breasts satisfy you at all times; and always be enraptured with her love. For why should you, my son, be enraptured by an immoral woman, and be embraced in the arms of a seductress?
For the ways of man are before the eyes of [Yahuwah], and He ponders all his paths. His own iniquities entrap the wicked man, and he is caught in the cores of his sin. (Proverbs 5:18-22, NKJV)
What images are to a man, words are to a woman. Pornography has long been a vice that primarily addicted men. However, a recent rise in extremely sexually explicit novels has given rise to a new addition among women. This area of fiction, called “Mommy porn,” is every bit as addictive to women, as visual porn is to men and just as devastating to the soul. While erotica has always been available, recent publications have made porn socially acceptable.
Just before Israel entered Canaan, Satan lured them into great sin at Baal Peor. Scripture is explicit that the Israelites committed fornication with the women of Moab:
And the people began to commit harlotry with the women of Moab. They invited the people to the sacrifices of their gods, and the people ate and bowed down to their gods. So Israel was joined to Baal of Peor . . . . (Numbers 25:1-3, NKJV)
This great sin cost the lives of over 24,000 Israelites who otherwise would have entered Canaan. It will cost the eternal life of all cling to pornography and do not overcome on this point.
The only hope for sinners is Yahushua. “For in that He Himself has suffered, being tempted, He is able to aid those who are tempted.” (Hebrews 2:18, NKJV) Once ensnared in satanic chains of lust, no one can free himself. Simply determining to never indulge in pornography again is not enough. “As a dog returneth to his vomit, so a fool returneth to his folly.” (Proverbs 26:11, KJV)
Overcoming lust requires cleansing from the inside out. The Israelites of Yahushua’s day were very concerned with external cleanliness. In order to ensure that they never ate anything unclean, their rules dictated many laborious ritual washings. Upon noticing that the disciples ate without going through these ritual cleansings, the religious leaders inquired: “Why do your disciples transgress the tradition of the elders? For they do not wash their hands when they eat bread.” (Matthew 15:2, NKJV)
Yahushua’s response ignored all the posturing of external righteousness and cut straight through to the true heart of the matter. “He called the multitude and said to them, ‘Hear and understand: not what goes into the mouth defiles a man; but what comes out of the mouth, this defiles a man.’ ” (Matthew 15:10, 11, NKJV)
The disciples were confused. They did not understand the spiritual application of what the Saviour was teaching. When Peter asked Yahushua to explain it further, He gently replied:
Are you also still without understanding? Do you not yet understand that whatever enters the mouth goes into the stomach and is eliminated? But those things which proceed out of the mouth come from the heart, and they defile a man. For out of the heart proceed evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, blasphemies. These are the things which defile a man, but to eat with unwashed hands does not defile a man. (Matthew 15:16-20, NKJV)
Pornography opens the floodgates of guilt upon all who indulge. Many who do not commit fornication in the flesh do so in their minds and are just as guilty as if they had committed the act itself. Sins of the imagination are still sins even though the act has not been committed due to lack of opportunity. Multitudes, both male and female, sin in this way when they watch lewd movies.
Yahushua explained the far reaching nature of the divine law in regards to sexual purity when He stated:
Ye have heard that it was said by them of old time, Thou shalt not commit adultery; but I say unto you, that whosoever looketh on a woman to lust after her hath committed adultery with her already in his heart. (Matthew 5:27 and 28, KJV)
Yahuwah is pure and holy and all who would enter His presence must be pure as He is pure. “Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see [Yah].” (Matthew 5:8, NKJV) This depth of cleansing is impossible for any to achieve on their own.
Yahuwah made men and women to be strong. Truly masculine men and truly feminine women have firmness of purpose and strength of character. Those who indulge in pornography travel on a road that will eventually end in the total ruin of their character. That which makes a man truly masculine and a woman truly feminine will be lost because of lust, leaving both men and women hardened in their carnal nature.
All who desire to gain victory over Satan’s enslaving passions and be set free as pure, dignified sons and daughters of the Most High, will find salvation as a free gift from Yahushua. The Bible assures all: “The eyes of Yahuwah are over the righteous, and His ears are open unto their prayers: but the face of Yahuwah is against them that do evil.” (See 1 Peter 3:12.)
When tempted to sin, either in the flesh or in your mind, flee immediately to the only one who can help, your Saviour. In the morning, when you dedicate yourself to Yahuwah for the day, ask that He guard your mind and keep it pure for Him, even warning you when you are about to be tempted, so that you can ask for divine help.
When you are confronted with a temptation, there are only one of two options available to you: 1) To give in; 2) To get divine help. Yahuwah offers every encouragement to inspire hope in the heart of the sinner. Scripture assures: “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” (1 John 1:9, KJV)
Yahuwah will never force the will, however. He will never cleanse the heart of one who desires to cling to indulgence in sin. In order to be saved, you must ask for a change of your heart, your mind. His ear is ever ready to hear; His arm is ever stretched out to save. “Call upon Me in the day of trouble; I will deliver you, and you shall glorify Me.” (Psalm 50:15, NKJV)
All who seek Yahushua for forgiveness and cleansing will be given it. No one, no matter how enslaved to Satan he or she is, will be turned aside.
Then will I sprinkle clean water upon you, and ye shall be clean: from all your filthiness, and from all your idols, will I cleanse you. A new heart also will I give you, and a new spirit will I put within you: and I will take away the stony heart out of your flesh, and I will give you an heart of flesh. And I will put my spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes, and ye shall keep my judgments, and do them . . .
I will also save you from all your uncleannesses. (Ezekiel 36:25-27, 29, KJV)
Flee to the Saviour for deliverance from every entangling sin. He will deliver you. He will forgive you, cleanse you and recreate you in His own image.