Porn Talk – Part 2: Dear pornography, you’re dead to me. Sincerely, no yours.

Hi guys, this is Part 2. Check out the Intro and Part 1 before reading on!

It’s often a lot easier to win battles when the war has already been won. Today let’s have a look at Romans 6:5-14. I’m going to throw some emphasis in there.

5For if we have been united with him in a death like his, we will certainly also be united with him in a resurrection like his. 6For we know that our old self was crucified with him so that the body ruled by sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves to sin— 7because anyone who has died has been set free from sin.

8Now if we died with Christ, we believe that we will also live with him. 9For we know that since Christ was raised from the dead, he cannot die again; death no longer has mastery over him. 10The death he died, he died to sin once for all; but the life he lives, he lives to God.

11In the same way, count yourselves dead to sin but alive to God in Christ Jesus. 12Therefore do not let sin reign in your mortal body so that you obey its evil desires. 13Do not offer any part of yourself to sin as an instrument of wickedness, but rather offer yourselves to God as those who have been brought from death to life; and offer every part of yourself to him as an instrument of righteousness. 14For sin shall no longer be your master, because you are not under the law, but under grace.

If you’re a Christian today and you’ve trusted Jesus to save you from your sin, congratulations! You’re dead. But alive. But dead. Confused? Paul says we’re dead to first sightsin but alive to God. Being alive to God means we have something we’re living for and it’s Him. I’m convinced that one of the keys to living a life free from the trap of pornography is grasping this great bit of scripture. Jesus never sinned. Sin never had mastery of Him. Jesus was so submitted to the will of His Father and so overcome by love for people that He didn’t have space for sin in His heart. Paul is saying the opposite to what I often hear from people who struggle with any type of sin but particularly this one. In verse 11 he basically says “Ok this is how I want you to think. Imagine how dead Jesus was to sin. Ok. Have you got it in your mind? Great! That’s how dead to sin you are and no less.” So why don’t we think like that?

Often we refer to ourselves as “Sinners saved by grace.” Personally I have a problem with this term or at least the way it’s often used. I think sometimes when we say this we’re actually giving ourselves an excuse for sinning. It puts us down as “sinners” instead of Saints. I can’t remember who said it but I know someone has said “If you believe you’re a sinner then you’ll sin by faith.” Please wait and calm down! I’m not saying I or anyone else doesn’t sin but I’m pointing out what I believe is an important point even though it may just seem like it’s all about words. Whenever Paul writes to the believers in the New Testament, he seems to refer to them as the saints or the “holy ones” and I think this is something to pay attention to and copy. Paul doesn’t address the believers as the sinners they were but the saints they had become so that that would form the basis of their new identity. Now it would be strange for them if they sinned because they weren’t slaves to sin. Another unknown source simply says that it’s normal to sin if you’re not a Christian because you’re a slave to sin but if you sin as a Christian, you’re just stupid! Haha!

Now that we know God and His salvation, we can make far more informed choices when presented with temptation. As I mentioned in my testimony the choice to look at pornography again after knowing the new depth of closeness and intimacy with God just seemed foolish to me and I’d have been stupid to lack myself in a prison I just got released from! I believe this is so important to catch! It’s all about Romans 12:2 and getting our way of thinking renewed. We wouldn’t have to renew our minds if we didn’t have wrong ways of thinking already

established. I think one of the reasons we fail to grab a hold of Romans 6 is because it doesn’t always line up with our experience. “But dude I don’t feel dead to sin, I feel REALLY alive to it! It’s on my mind all the time.” Guess what? His truth trumps your experience! If you and God disagree, someone is wrong…it’s not Him. Sometimes reading what the Bible doesn’t say can be almost as helpful as reading what it does say. Verse 11 does not say count yourselves dead to temptation, it says count yourselves dead to sin! Think about that! Temptation is not sin. Dead things don’t respond. At all. Being dead to sin as about not responding to the call of temptation.

The phrase “Sinners saved by grace” can also get us to a place where we abuse the grace of God and assume that He is ok with us sinning because Jesus’ blood has covered it. WRONG!!! Yes Jesus’ death totally obliterated our sin but His resurrection also empowered us to resist the devil. Ever heard that verse? Resist the devil and he will flee from you? Me too. Except it’s incomplete.

James 4:7 says: “Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you.”

Get alone with God and stare into His eyes!

We can resist the devil not just because we died to sin with Christ but because we were raised to a life with God in Him as well! We have a new appetite for God and the more we feed on Him the more our appetite for sin dries up and dies! Think about it! You LOVE it when God speaks to you or you feel His presence. You LOVE it when God uses you to minister to or love someone. That feels good and right and natural to you doesn’t it? You LOVE it because you’re alive to God! Right now try not to think about Superman…oops! There he is flying through your mind in his red and blue! The way our mind works means that sitting around thinking about not watching porn isn’t going to bring us victory. Worshipping and adoring God and meditating on the near-hilarious victory Jesus won over sin and death will make porn boring. SERIOUSLY!! Make a playlist of your favourite worship songs and take time in the day to just aim them straight at His heart and belt them out!

Ask the Holy Spirit to help you and He will reveal the truth of Jesus’ victory to your heart as you praise God and read His Word. Sometimes God delivers someone of an addiction in a moment and that is a beautiful miracle that I want to see more often. However, often we get free from addiction as gradually as we got hooked in. Day by day we devote our mind to the Lord and He renews it. Mike Bickle gives a fantastic talk on how to fellowship with the Holy Spirit and how He changes us from the inside out. It’s also good to have other people to remind you of who you are because sometimes we forget and fall for the tricks. I have a few friends who text me when they’re struggling with lust and battle it with what the Word says about them! This is powerful! You should get a friend who knows God, knows you and knows the Word and partner up with them!

Instead of “Sinners saved by grace” I think we should call ourselvesSaints Made Holy by the Blood of Jesus and the Power of God.” It’s not about forgetting where He’s brought us from but rejoicing in what He has brought us into! I believe this focus and understanding of what Jesus has done will really help you in your battle. Remember, He has already won the ultimate victory for you. The battle is the Lord’s and He will protect you as you fight on. 

Thanks so much for reading. Let me know your thoughts. Part 3 coming soon!

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