Published August 8, 2013
An initiative seeking commitments from one million men to live pornography-free lives was launched at the SBC annual meeting in Houston in June.
Named “Join One Million Men,” the initiative calls Christian men to commit to sexual purity and, specifically, to protect themselves and their families from the devastation caused by pornography. The Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission (ERLC) and Woman’s Missionary Union (WMU) jointly sponsored the initiative along with Jay Dennis, pastor of First Baptist Church at the Mall in Lakeland, FL.
If pornography causes “devastation” we should be alerted to its dangers and the havoc it can create in one’s health, heart, and home.
I went to my doctor for my annual physical recently. Every year I am required to fill out a form that asks if I smoke or drink alcoholic beverages. My answer to those questions is always “no”.
The cigarette health warning on each packet says “Surgeon General’s Warning: Smoking causes lung cancer, heart disease, emphysema, and may complicate pregnancy. Cigarette smoke contains carbon monoxide.” Scientists tell us that carbon monoxide is colorless, odorless, and tasteless, but highly toxic (poisonous).
Drinking alcohol is also damaging to one’s health. Alcohol is the number one drug problem in America. Not only is it injurious to your health, potentially causing cancer, cardiovascular disease, and cirrhosis, but it also impairs judgment, causes chaos on the highway, jeopardizes relationships, puts employment at risk, and wrecks homes.
We are probably not as familiar with the damage done by watching pornography. Pornographic images or erotic stories are far worse than polluted or filthy food. Our bodies have been so created by God that there are built-in defenses to rid the body of unwholesome food. With a few fatal exceptions bad food will only make you sick, but as a general rule no permanent damage is done.
In contradistinction, a person who feasts on pornographic pictures or dines on erotic literature records those images in this marvelous retrieval system we call a brain. The brain won’t regurgitate filth. Once recorded, it will always remain subject to recall, flashing its perverted images across your mind and drawing you away from the wholesome things in life.
You wouldn’t eat garbage. Why would you put it in your mind? It brings perversion instead of peace. It brings confusion instead of clarity. It brings stress instead of satisfaction. It brings bondage instead of blessing. It brings misery instead of merriment. It brings harm instead of health. It brings tragedy instead of triumph. It brings judgment instead of joy.
Interestingly, the viewing of pornography is not done in isolation. It generally becomes the seedbed for other sins. Last week, Ariel Castro stood in a Cleveland, OH courtroom and said his kidnapping, imprisonment, and raping of three women in his home for a decade was born out of a sexual addiction fed by pornography.
Whether his statement is simply an attempt at sympathy is up for debate, but it’s clear that his deviant interests years ago eventually became horrific for Michelle Knight, Gina DeJesus, and Amanda Berry.
There are personal, relational, and societal dangers associated with pornography, but I want to point out the eternal dangers specifically. After reminding his hearers of the seventh commandment, Jesus stated, “But I say unto you, that whosoever looketh on a woman to lust after her hath committed adultery with her already in his heart. And if thy right eye offend thee, pluck it out, and cast it from thee: for it is profitable for thee that one of thy members should perish, and not that thy whole body should be cast into hell” (Matt. 5:27-29).
Christ made it clearly known that if a man allows himself to gaze upon a woman until his appetites are excited and sexual thoughts are engendered, then the whole law of God judges him to be guilty of adultery and subject to its curse.
If the voyeur indulges his licentious imagination so as to concoct some means whereby he gratifies himself through some immoral behavior then his guilt is even greater and the consequences more severe.
Dennis has launched this war against pornography and is seeking to enlist one million men to join him in the fight. He is also asking one million women to join the battle against the sexual addiction as prayer warriors. For more information go to www.Join1MillionMen.org. This is a battle that must be won.
The Future of The Index
In our June 27th edition I wrote an editorial on “The Future of The Christian Index.” In response to that editorial we have received some positive feedback. Two individuals took immediate and positive action and gave $150 dollars to their church’s leadership, asking that the money be applied to an order of 25 subscriptions of The Index to be mailed to the church for a year (26 issues).
We also received some very encouraging letters of support. The Christian Index is 191 years old – the oldest religious newspaper in America. Your subscription to your Baptist state paper not only provides you with current news and feature stories, but it helps sustain an important part of Georgia Baptist history.
All pastors get a complimentary copy of The Index courtesy of Dr. J. Robert White and the Executive Committee. Pastors, you must not assume that because you get a copy of The Index that your members also get a copy of our paper. Please see if you can find some money in your budget to order a bulk of 25 issues to be sent to your church for an entire year. Or see if you can find a dedicated layman who will make a special gift of $150 so the church can make a “bulk” order.
Churches making bulk orders recently include:
• Ivy Creek Baptist Church, Buford
• Peachtree Corners Baptist Church, Norcross
• Dexter Baptist Church, Dexter
• Lake Country Baptist Church, Eatonton
• Omega Baptist Church, Omega.
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