About the author, Sam Black

Sam Black

Sam Black is an Internet Safety Consultant and a manager at Covenant Eyes. He joined the Covenant Eyes team in 2007 after 18 years as a journalist, serving as a reporter and editor for newspapers and magazines in six states. He has been married for 17 years and is a father of two.

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The Porn Circuit

Parenting the Internet Generation Ebook Cover

Science shows us why porn is highly addictive. Learn how our neurochemistry is easily hijacked by porn to create compulsive behaviors, and discover how the brain can be rewired to escape porn's allure.

26 thoughts on “The Bible and the Brain

  1. Amen! Porn get burned into your brain, especially in the formative years, with laser like efficiency. I cannot remember any of my school textbooks nor most of the books I’ve read for enjoyment. But at 62 years of age, unwanted images I saw as a youngster and a young man are forever imprinted. By the grace of God and His Word they are defeated but always remain as scars left over from some horrible disease. A disease that lies dormant waiting for your mental and spiritual immune system to weaken.

  2. I like this sentence from the article, “Overcoming sinful practices is not so much about breaking bad habits as it is about creating something new.

    The Bible doesn’t ask us to change, it ask us to exchange! Exchange our sinful practices for new practices.

    • Following the basic premise that we teach our brains what we should find arousing through repetition, watching cartoon sex is teaching one’s brain to be turned on cartoon sexuality. This would effectively be the development of a fetish.

  3. Helpful article. I forwarded this to a friend too. Since you welcomed comments, I will share.

    I’ve been doing well in this area in 2013. As a single male in his early 30’s pursuing sexual integrity can be difficult. Nevertheless, I believe that sexual purity is vital in order to have an intimate relationship with God (Matt 5:8; Heb 12:14). There’s nothing better than experiencing the continual, transforming presence of God’s in one’s life (Ps 42:1-2) .

    I read the Bible regularly and my church is a vital link to the larger body of Christ. Without the church, I would be a floating buoy on the sea of rampant pornography. Now, with the weight and power of the Holy Spirit holding me close to God, I’m anchored to the shore of God’s presence.
    I agree with Sam Black that the Bible uses “one another” statements to encourage believers to rely on and encourage one another. We can’t do this on our own. No soldier ever won a battle for his country singlehandedly.

    My prayer is that God will continue to empower us to walk in the Spirit and not gratify the sinful desires of the flesh (Rom 8:4-5; Gal 5:16). The psalmist said, “The rules you set down are completely reliable. Holiness aptly adorns your house, O LORD, forever” (Ps 93:5 NET). Oh Lord, you have been so faithful to us, help us to be faithful to you!

    Thanks Covenant Eyes for your encouraging and practical articles. Here’s to 2013, maintaining masculine momentum, and walking in sexual purity!

  4. I have been a born again christian since 17th June 1997. my father introduced me to porn at the age of 10! my mother was in hospital at the time, he told me to get something from his bedside table in his bedroom which was covered with sex magazines. What was i meant to do at that age? Yes i looked time and again, and here i am today totally addicted. You talk about the word of God being able to set us free! but what if i hate reading the bible! Let me explain this to you. I can sit for hours reading sex stories even illegal ones, and i have no problems with the words at all, i can also read them quite fast to. Now when it comes to reading Gods word i can’t seem to do it! it seems very boring, i know this is not right, i even tell friends that its because i have server dyslexia. yes i do have dyslexia. but i don’t understand why i can spend hours reading these sometimes very perverted stories and yet can’t spend time reading about Jesus the saviour of my life. i tell my friends that i love God but don’t spend time with him. maybe after 45 years of reading and looking at this crap, to be continued! sorry.

    • Hi Stephen,

      There are many things that can be going on here, but I have a few suggestions.

      1. Consider the idea that you may have grown callous to hearing from God. One of the marks of sexually perverted thoughts is a “darkened” mind, “hardness of heart,” and becoming “callous” (Ephesians 4:18-19). It is possible that in years entrenchment into sexual perversion, your heart has grown cold to God’s words. If this is true, then consider cutting yourself off from reading anything that isn’t the Bible or Christian literature. There is something to be said for “fasting” from things of the world for a season.

      2. If you acknowledge that reading sex stories is sinful, then find someone to help you quit. Get away from all the things that have enslaved you since you were 10.

      3. It isn’t sinful to find specific parts of the Bible uninteresting. Instead, fill your mind with Scripture in other ways. Get a good Bible on CD or MP3. Listen to sermons that explain various portions of Scripture. Spend time in Bible study with friends. Don’t just focus on the “reading” aspect. Listen to and discuss the Bible in community.

    • When you are able to read anything else and not able to read the word of God, there is an operating antichrist spirit assigned to you, preventing you from reading the word of God so that you never get freedom. The one thing you can do, is come to God and ask Him for forgive you for part taking of the sin of pornography. Then rebuke in the name of Jesus the antichrist spirit. Then ask God to restore you to norma as defined by the Bible. And lastly take the Bible and try reading it again and you will see Gods power. I pray that God me manifest supernaturally in you life, in Jesus Name!

    • I don’t know how I got to this site but I was looking for scriptures on the brain. Try reading a different translation of the bible. The mirror translation I have a copy of on google docs, you may be able to download it, https://drive.google.com/drive/#folders/0Bzw8PpdNiQ6EYnVjU0tkVnRtUjA. Also, I really like the Passion translation., http://www.5foldmedia.com . You just have to dial down to hear God. Also, it isn’t information you are looking for you want to hear Jesus. He is the living word. Just listen for his voice through what you are reading and if you will change the channel. His voice is the Holy Spirit speaking. He is there you just can’t hear him through the noise.

    • The bible basically admonishes the believers to “… be transformed by the renewing of their mind…” (Romans 12:2) by the word of God the mind is being redeemed from polluted mentality and transformed into the mind of Christ. Study and pray having your mind set on CHANGE which can only come from God then their will be freedom from polluted mind leading to continuous errors. GOD help us all.

    • Looking for information on the Bible and the human mind and came across this website.
      You might it very useful to obtain an interlinear Bible; J.P. Green uses a good version of the ancient Greek called “Textus Receptus” to arrive at his literal English translation, seen directly beneath the Greek words.
      The point is this: with or without personal problems, and we all have them, if you cannot understand the Bible in English, you will become frustrated and the solutions to be found in God’s word will elude you because the English says things which seem contradictory and make no sense.
      This is because the English language is lacking in those grammatical qualities of the Greek language dialect known as “koine” – “koi-nay” – “common” – which makes the Greek so valuable for working out abstract thought. English is terrible for abstract thought. The Holy Spirit of God inspired men to write in the Koine Greek. A good interlinear Bible and a Lexicon – a dictionary of the Koine Greek words used in the NT – is an eye-opening experience. I use one from Zondervan. I am not a Greek scholar but I will never again trust any English version of the Bible, particularly and especially if the first word in the title of the Bible is the word “New”. The vast majority of them deliberately, for the sake of corrupting modern Bibles and corrupting our trust in the Bible as the inerrant and perfect Word of God, draw their Greek from the Alexandrian Text, known and agreed upon by reputable Greek Biblical scholars to be corrupt. J.P. Green uses the Textus Receptus, not the Alexandrian Greek text. And my distrust according to Acts 17:11 has been rewarded with significant gains of Biblical knowledge and spiritual growth.
      Also, if you are not in prayer, no matter how good the Bible, you will not grow spiritually and you will not overcome your personal challenges.
      Question: are you actually sitting for hours reading sex magazines? Why? Point is if you really want something you will find ways to get hold of it. If you do not want the trouble which comes with it, purge your life and lifestyle of these things – do not let them come into your house and do not let them come before your eyes. Turn off your TV, unplug it, cut the power cord in two and throw the cursed thing in the dumpster. This is as much today a haven for the sexually-distressed as any porn image on line or any book or magazine. Put a porn-block on your PC. Got modern music or do you regularly listen to modern music with all of the raunchy lyrics, suggestive double entendres, soft-porn covers, and outright sexual permissiveness? Change the station. Throw away the bad ones. Throw away the sex books, the “Bodice rippers”, and the other books which “innocently” include a dash into sexual intimacy outside of marriage.
      Most importantly, and the article makes this point, you cannot get rid of a bad habit if you do not have an alternate good habit to cultivate. The human heart abhors a moral vacuum and without something good to turn your attention to, you will return to what is familiar and what feels good even if it is utterly destructive to your spiritual well-being and your relationship with God.
      God is not about what you feel; God is about God and what He thinks, not what you think. This is where a good interlinear Bible will begin to make a difference. Prayer also is indispensable for seeking God’s assistance in dealing with the attacks of the enemy upon you regarding sexual indiscretions.
      Oh, yes. God’s enemies are right next to your shoulder, tempting, teasing, trying to bend your mind away from godly behavior. “Resist the devil and he will flee from you”.

  5. i have been trying to find
    how much understanding doidge might have of repentance according to jesus and the bible
    as i posted in another comment just a bit ago

    i too was intrigued with doidge’s aligning his concepts with the concept of repentance and jesus…
    but it seems to me that he does not seek to fully align his ideas of repentance
    fully with what jesus and the bible have to say about the full benefits
    that jesus and the bible teachings give thru
    being convicted of one’s sins and repenting and accepting the holy spirit…

    such alluding to the correctness of jesus
    seems to me to be more for one’s own image of insights
    that aligning fully with the insights that would come with giving full considerations
    to the teachings of jesus and the bible….

    • Good question, Josh. From what I remember in Dr. Doidge’s book, he does not present any information at all about repentance in a Biblical sense. He is just relating information about the neurology of learned behaviors and attitudes.

      I’m not exactly sure what your exact question is, however. What exactly about this article has you confused?

  6. This is such a good article. This topic needs to be addressed in our churches. I discovered my husband had a severe addiction many years ago . In addition, he was accused of molesting my granddaughter. Our marriage ended but as time has passed, I have been able to sympathize with his problem. Many churches are offering help through organization like Celebrate Recovery for alcohol and drugs but not pornography. Wives, in particular, need a support system and a place to freely express how devastating this is to their soul. I encourage everyone to bring this to the attention of their church leaders.

    • I attend Celebrate Recovery. Actually, only one out of three participants struggle with addictions like drugs and alcohol. The other two thirds are in recovery from things like depression, guilt, anger, overeating, sexual problems including pornography, control issues, you name it. We deal with all kinds of hurts, hang ups and habits.

  7. I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. Truly there is a battle going on in our brains every day. When I gave my life to Christ at 24 years old I had a very active thought life about spiritual things that were not always of the light. When we make a choice (Brain) to follow Christ and invite him into our (Heart) He comes in to us.
    We follow Christ because we Love him (Heart) and we give Him permission (Brain) to change us because we Love Him (Heart). It begins with Love for Him who Loved us first.

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