How do pastors fight pornography?

I found the following to be a great blessing. We are in a war against pornography. Please read this and pass it on. To read the entire article please click here


By Deepak Reju
Editors’ note: This article was adapted from the new eBook from Southern Equip and The Gospel Coalition, Porn and the Pastor: The Life and Death Consequences of Addiction in Ministry, edited by Jeff Robinson and Garrett Kell. The book is available for free download.


You’re a pastor and you have a porn problem. You know something has to be done about your sin. Our goal for this chapter is to answer, “How do you (as a pastor) fight this sin?” I hope to pull you out of the ditch and give you a hopeful direction.

Porn struggles are addictions—something harmful that you habitually return to because of your lack of self-control. Let Scripture speak into this. Terms like desires run amok or voluntary slavery help to make sense of your struggle. You’ve voluntarily chosen this sin, and have done it so often that your desires for porn rule your heart and mess up your life.

One principle will undergird everything—as a sinner, you need God’s grace, just like every member of your church. The lie is you’re a super-Christian so you don’t need help. As a pastor, someone who teaches God’s Word to God’s people, you are marked by a greater maturity than the rest (Titus 1:5-9). But depravity corrupts you, just like every believer in your church (Rom. 3:11-12). Pride, selfishness, anger, self-pity, self-righteousness, idolatry—like a drop of poison in the King’s cup, these sins seep into your heart, and dull the effectiveness of your ministry. Grace—God’s undeserved favor—is something you teach, but also something you need. God’s grace triumphs over sin, and you need God’s help to get rid of your porn problem.

Building a solid firewall

Picture a hospital scene, where a man rushes in, screaming, “I’m bleeding! Help me! I’m going to die!” Now imagine me as the triage nurse, looking him directly in the eyes, saying, “Calm down and tell me about your struggles. Why are you so scared?” That would be ridiculous, right? A proper response to acute bleeding is to stop the bleeding and put all the other issues aside temporarily. So it is with porn struggles—we’ll address heart issues, accountability, faith, and other things later. First things first—we’ve got to stop the tide of pornography from seeping into your heart and mind by building a solid, impenetrable firewall. The goal is to let nothing in.

Don’t think that because you are a pastor you’re beyond using the common means that porn strugglers typically use. Pastors who overestimate themselves, and underestimate their sin, get themselves in trouble. Rather, you need to be defined by “sober judgment” (Rom. 12:3) about your sin. See sin for what it is, even in your life—self-deceiving, dumbing down your spiritual senses, fooling you into thinking you can handle this on your own.

The goal is to cut off access to pornography. Be brutal about halting access. A passive approach won’t work. The devil is too smart. He’ll take advantage of your weaknesses. Jesus insists that you need a radical approach to your sin.

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About the author

Austin Gardner is pastor of Vision Baptist Church in Alpharetta, GA. Previously he was church planting missionary in Peru for 20 years.

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