This post tackles pornography, which is a subject that all adults need to pay attention to. This is particularly true when many of our children on computer screens for school.
Pornography on the internet as well as print material is impacting our families in a devastating way.
Pornographic and sexually explicit material is easy to access with the introduction of tablets, cell-phones, and computers. While this post highlights many of the problems that come with pornography, there are several excellent resources that can be used to fight against pornography.
Have you ever run across a story or a theme that seems to re-occur? Sometimes, there is a particular message that the Lord really wants you to pay attention to. I love it when I sense the Lord pointing out something specific. The Lord wants to communicate with us. His desire is to lead and guide us. This is where safety and peace are.
The story that seemed to be re-occurring to me is one that Chuck Pierce tells in Possessing Your Inheritance. He is recounting a time where a stronghold had been brought to his attention. It was something that he was not fully aware of but he understood that it would ultimately cause great personal harm if he failed to deal with it.
He took the issue to the Lord which ultimately resulted in a conversation between him and Lord. Chuck read Romans 6:13 which says "And do not present your members as instruments of unrighteousness to sin, but present yourselves to God as being alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness to God."
The scripture spoke to his spirit and he, out of obedience, presented each member of his body to the Lord for sanctification. This is the power of the Word of God in relation to sin. I encourage you to read the book and read those passages out of Romans 6. You will be encouraged by the power the Lord provides in His Word.
Walk the Walk
In the same way, as we understand who we are in Christ and that we have a specific purpose in life, I believe we receive a revelation of the power we have in Him. This gives us a picture of how we are to walk.
This post will deal specifically with pornography but it is applicable to all sin and addictions.Walking in Newness of Life frees us from the power pornography can have. In fact, the walk in the Newness of Life frees us from all addictions
What is Pornography?
Merriam Webster defines pornography as the depiction of sexual behavior to cause sexual excitement. Click To Tweet This depiction includes pictures or text. These depictions are usually of a sensational nature. The images or portrayals are unrealistic and exaggerated.
Pornography is a Major Industry.
Webroot indicates that pornography is being accessed online every second of the day. Specifically, there are 28,258 people watching some form of pornography on the internet. Internet pornography users spend over $3,000.00 every second of the day.
Shockingly, 37 pornographic videos are created every day in the U. S. and 2.5 billion emails containing pornographic material are created every day.
Tragically, 116,000 searches for child pornography are done.
Clearly, with the introduction of cell phones and tablets, along with the computers in the classroom, our children have easy access to the internet and potentially pornography. Children can stumble upon pornography without even looking for it.
Pop-ups that may seem innocent yet interesting can pop up when our children are playing games or researching something for school. Out of natural, innocent curiosity, our children click on that pop-up and are then lured down a very long, dark road. The impact is devastating.
How Does Pornography Impact the Brain?
Pornography is highly addictive and interacts with the brain much like cigarettes, alcohol or hard drugs. Click To Tweet Viewing pornography actually changes the chemical make up of the brain. Anything that is controlling behavior apart from the Holy Spirit will bring harm. This is why pornography is so destructive.
I shouldn't have been surprised, but I was! There are some Christians that believe pornography is harmless entertainment. Others have even commented that pornography is a form of sex education. I believe this is dangerous ground. We as the church must stand up and be clear on our attitudes towards pornography.
Pornography and the Limbic System
The limbic system in the brain is impacted when pornography is viewed. The brain releases chemicals that are related to pleasure with the use of pornography. Dopamine is the hormone is associated with happiness and Glutamate is associated with remembering the experience.
Pornography releases an increased amount of Dopamine and Glutamate. The body reacts to this release as a feeling of intense sexual pleasure. This happens despite the fact that there is a lack of physical contact.
Sadly, the feeling of sexual arousal becomes less as more porn is viewed. In order to achieve the same level of arousal as the previous incident more pornography is needed.
It is easy to see that a vicious cycle begins. The next time someone views pornography, they are going to view more of it. Consumers watch more pornography and it becomes more deviant and violent in nature.
Pornography on the Male Brain
Dr. William Suthers notes a more specific problem. Pornography triggers mirror neurons in the male brain. These neurons are involved in mirroring or mimicking behavior. The mirror neuron system arouses the body which leads to the male seeking a release of the sexual tension. This usually results in masturbation.
The hormonal and neurological consequences that result are designed to bind the male to an object he is focusing on. Ideally, sexual attraction and arousal and bonding should be taking place between a husband and wife.
In the case of male viewing pornography, this leads to the male focusing on an image on a screen. In essence, the natural design of the human body is hijacked and bound to pornographic images.
Dr. Suthers highlights additional specific unique aspects of internet pornography.
- The desire for extreme novelty increases.
- There are almost no physical limitations to internet porn consumption.
- More and new are always available in the world of internet pornography.
- Teens are highly susceptible to addiction because their brains are at peak dopamine production and neuroplasticity. This means that their brains are more vulnerable to addiction and rewiring.
What Does the Bible Say about Pornography?
Interestingly, the Bible talks about the importance of what we allow to enter our eye gates. Matt 6:22-23 (ESV) "The eye is the lamp of the body. So, if your eye is healthy, your whole body will be full of light, but if your eye is bad, your whole body will be full of darkness. If then the light is you is darkness, how great is the darkness!"
Clearly, the Bible tells us that what we see impacts our entire being. We need to be vigilant in what we allow to enter in.
Specifically, pornography is a type of engagement in sexual activity with someone other than a spouse. This is true for married couples and singles. The act of marriage belongs in the safety and confines of the marital relationship.
Much of what happens in pornography is exaggerated, and deviant. The scenario can be described as the consumer watching a video and then going onto another and then another. He may want to stop but oftentimes it is very difficult and many are not able to resist temptation.
The psalmist declares in Plsam 101:3 (ESV) declares "I will not set before my eyes anything that is worthless. I hate the work of those who fall away; it shall not cling to me."
You can feel the energy behind that scripture. The psalmist is determined to block those things that are worthless and unproductive. As we have seen, pornography is not just worthless but is extremely damaging. It can take control of one's personality. More specifically, it can rewire the brain.
Keep Your Kids Safe
It is our responsibility to keep our children safe from things that would harm them. Pornography is going to harm our children. We know that pornography harms adults as well. I encourage you to download the freebie below. This is a list of free resources on the Protect Young Minds website. When you download the PDF you can click on the words Protect Young MInds. (ProtectYoungMinds.org)
You will have access to many critical resources that you can use to equip your children to guard their hearts and minds. There is free information that will help you have conversation with your family on how to guard yourself from the destructive forces of pornography..