Yesterday was Independence Day, remembering how our country broke free from tyranny and enslavement. Last Tuesday at the Porch we talked about Jesus healing the Gerasene Demoniac, a man who was enslaved by Satan. Satan’s main objective is to enslave you to anything other than Jesus, and he will do anything in his power to trap you in ever-growing sin. In our day, Satan uses sexual sin and perversion as one of his most powerful tools. I believe that we will soon see a new flavor of homosexuality, sexual perversion, and bondage to sexual sin that is born out of pornography and sexual addiction. If you struggle with pornography or have children (or want to someday), I’d encourage you to read on.
As a culture, we underestimate the power of pleasure. Pleasure is one of the most powerful forces in the world. Pleasure is a key motivator in life. If someone experiences something that feels good, they will continue to return to it. If it feels really good, they will return to it even at great cost or great risk. This is simply common sense – people do what feels good to them. This is the reason people have unprotected sex, or look at porn so much that they lose their job. They see the pleasure as worth the risk. Sex, or specifically orgasm, is the most pleasure a human can experience naturally.
When someone experiences this release, they are literally bonding themselves to their surroundings. More specifically, they are bonding themselves to the object of their focus during that release. This phenomenon results in many outcomes related to sexual addiction and similar struggles. This is one reason why sex complicates a relationship and why someone will stay with a sexual partner even when it is ignorant to do so. There are people who have sexually bonded to their car, to a relative, or even to their boots. There is one story about a man who could not experience sexual release without his boots on, because they were his focus during orgasm throughout his adolescent years.
This phenomenon results in people being sexually aroused while submerged in water, or smelling a certain scent, or being in a particular place. Their five senses have bonded them to their surroundings. Some psychiatrists call this relatively new phenomenon “sex glue”.
Consider, for a minute, the brilliance of this design. God made a person to bond with another person, for a lifetime. God teases this in Genesis 2:24, “That is why a man leaves his father and mother and is united to his wife, and they become one flesh.” Creator God designed us this way, that two would bond together to become one. This is not a new idea; it dates back to the invention of humanity.
This design was meant to serve us and help us with monogamy. One man, and one woman for a lifetime. As their bodies change and age, they remain attracted (literally bonded) to each other because they continue to experience this pleasure together.
The Perversion of Pleasure
When we take this and begin to experience release with different people, or images, or things, we are rewiring this bonding to crave variety instead of commitment. A porn addict who has not gone through diligent recovery work, will most likely never be satisfied by one partner. He or she is a serial adulterer; they have trained themselves for serial adultery. Their addiction is not to sex so much as they are addicted to experiencing release from a variety of images. Some porn addicts cannot experience release with anything except porn. They haven’t bonded to real people; they’ve bonded to two-dimensional images of people.
The slippery slope of porn addiction is bonding to images that become increasingly more and more bizarre and perverted. If you’ve drunk from this muddy puddle, you know exactly what I’m talking about. Porn is dangerous, and the danger makes it more appealing. Here’s why: when someone is afraid, their five senses are heightened. Their pupils dilate, their vision focuses, and whatever they hear, feel, smell, and taste is more powerful. This is one reason why affairs are so popular. Candidly it is “better" sex – meaning it might feel more pleasurable, but it is also more costly and a disgrace to God. So, when you add fear and the bizarre into the mix, the bonding that takes place in porn becomes even more dangerous.
Pornography is a search for more. The two-dimensional, flat pictures will soon no longer satisfy. The consumer turns to video, then voyeur cameras, then chats with pictures and videos from real people in real time. While women certainly struggle with pornography, it is a man’s world 2-to-1. So, many of the “real images, real time” out there involve male nudity.
This doesn’t need to be appealing at first. It can even be gross. But its lack of initial appeal adds to the “I shouldn’t be doing this" factor, which mixes with the powerful bonding agent of orgasm, and suddenly you have someone who is experimenting with same-sex-attraction in the worst way. They are creeping in through the dark alley of pornography. This same “formula” has implications for pedophilia too.
How do I know all of this to be true? Admittedly, this is not my story. While I was a slave to pornography before coming into a relationship with Jesus, my struggle was always of the heterosexual, legal-age type. What motivated me to write this blog, was hearing this story from others more and more (If you think I’m talking about you, I’m actually talking about dozens of you). People who never struggled with same-sex-attraction, have found themselves looking at and bonding to gay porn on their search for the ever-more obscure. This short-circuits God’s genius wiring of humans. Only a small percentage of the population identifies as homosexual, but my guess is that this number will continue to grow as people seek pleasure over monogamy.
If you delight in feeding your perverted sexual appetites, it is a great time to be alive – anything you could desire is available to you. But it will also devour you.
Now is an even better time to be a Christ-follower! These are the times where we must stand against what is evil. These are also the times where we must continually share the grace and truth of the gospel, telling an ever-more perverted world about the love and power of God to heal them from whatever addiction they may be facing. No addiction is too dark, twisted, or powerful for Jesus to overcome.
If you are addicted, we would love to talk with you and point you to Jesus. We’ve also put together some resources to fight porn in other blog posts about how to overcome a pornography addiction, and how to hate porn. Please also listen to this message on how to respond when you sin sexually. Jesus wants to set you free!