Sexual addiction, and specifically the struggle with pornography, is a substantial struggle against which many believers are wrestling. Covenant Eyes released a report detailing statistics related to this problem early in 2015: full report can be downloaded here.
Many men and women have committed to walk in victory in this area and have taken extreme measures to seek to do so. This post is specifically for them; although, these truths can be applied broadly to those seeking to live in freedom from any habitual sin.
So, here are three brief and broad applicational truths that should be kept in mind before one finds him or herself in the thick of the battle where the fog of war sets in. The key to staying on the right course is GPS.
- Grace is greater than my sin (Rom 5:20-21).
Regardless of how far you have fallen, regardless of how many times you have fallen, rest in God’s grace and in his power get up. Romans 5:20-21 reminds you that where sin increased, grace abounded all the more (it super-abounded)! Militarily, this idea means that grace outflanks sin. Regardless of the breadth of the front line of sin, grace super-abounds, outflanks, and covers transgressions. That reality makes a world of difference!
- Purity can be maintained (1 Pet 1:13-16).
God has not only made believers holy in Christ, but enables, equips, and expects believers to walk in that holiness. You can live righteously. You don’t have to give in. You are free in Christ to serve him in righteousness. You are no longer a slave to sin. 1 Peter 1:13-16 reminds you to prepare your mind for the battle fixing on the full experience of grace to come when Jesus returns. Then, Peter challenges you to walk in obedience and to be holy now, while you still live in this world. God expects you to walk in holiness. God enables you and equips you in the power of his Spirit to walk in holiness. You can do it!
- Submission is the key (Gal 5:16).
“Walk in the Spirit, and you will not carry out the desires of the flesh” (Gal 5:16). You will have sinful, selfish desires so long as you live in this fallen world. Believers are to capture these thoughts (2 Cor 10:5), acknowledge that they are not in keeping with the will of God, and then choose to submit to the Spirit. To “walk in the Spirit” is to live in submission to the direction of the Spirit of God: to allow him to determine what you will and will not do regardless of how you feel. The moment you begin to think on and feel the desires of the flesh, choose to submit to the Spirit and then take appropriate actions to ensure you follow through. This might involve making a call to an accountability partner or spouse, leaving a location, changing a channel, turning off the computer, going to bed at the same time as everyone else, or giving your spouse your mobile phone while you go on a run. Whatever actions are required, true submission, true surrender is a matter of the will that results in action. Submission is a major key to finishing each day well!