The Healing Church – Victory over Pornography

Date: February 21, 2024
Host: Jim Schneider
​Guest: Sam Black
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At younger and younger ages, people are being exposed to pornography.  The impact is being carried through the teen years and into adulthood.  Many secretly struggle with porn and those inside the church are not exempt.  Too often local churches ignore this problem with some not wanting to admit its existence.  For others it’s a lack of knowing how to deal with it and help those trapped by it.

Marriages have been shattered, families have been broken and the vocational livelihoods of many have been ruined by pornography and according to the guest on this Crosstalk, there is great risk in doing nothing.   

Sam Black is a renowned author and expert in the field of pornography recovery.  He is the author of The Healing Church: What Churches Get Wrong About Pornography and How to Fix It and The Porn Circuit: Understand Your Brain and Break Porn Habits.  He regularly speaks at parenting, leadership and men’s events across the country.  He is Director of Recovery Education at Covenant Eyes.

Sam began looking at this issue by explaining what Jesus said about lust and what’s impactful to our hearts.  Jesus said that if you look at another with lust in your heart you’ve committed adultery.  If that’s you, you must think what’s causing you to objectify someone else because as Christians, that’s what pornography is to us.  

What does Sam believe is causing this great proliferation of porn?  He believes we’ve been on a steady march from the 1950’s.  In the 80’s there was VHS video, the ’90’s brought us the internet and in 2007 came the iPhone.  This means that today, if we have a smart phone, we’re literally carrying around the world’s largest library of pornography ever created in the history of mankind.  As we allow our kids to use these devices, they become exposed to the pornography that’s on them in various forms and it infiltrates their lives.

Sam noted that depending upon which study you look at, the average age children are at when first exposed to pornography is when they’re between 8 and 12.  So today, kids can go from not knowing anything about sexuality to hard-core, ugly, abusive, violent and degrading pornography.  It’s very shocking and confusing to them. 

Looking at this from the adult perspective, two-thirds of Christian men and about one-third of Christian women say they have an ongoing struggle with porn.  Some 69% of pastors say porn has adversely impacted their church.  Sam indicated that while it can be easy to think your church is exempt from this problem due to the theology of your denomination or the makeup of your church, such exceptionalism is just a lie and does not make your church immune to pornography.     

Is the church ignoring this issue?  How can those caught in this trap get on the redemptive path rather than remaining on the captive one?  How can we stop this problem that’s undermining every ministry in the local church while at the same time help guard the next generation?  Find out when you review this edition of Crosstalk.

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