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How to Fight Lust With Love

Last Updated: March 19, 2018

Guest Author
Guest Author

Want to write for the Covenant Eyes blog? Share the story of your journey to freedom from pornography. Let us know how you overcame porn or how Covenant Eyes has made a difference in your life or the lives of those you love.

When dealing with porn we need to look at the big picture and the little picture. We need to fight the small battles in order to win the war. Over the years I’ve become convinced that to win to war of lust we need to learn to live out the greatest and most important commandment of Christ: love. When we love God and love others we begin to win the war.

Love conquers lust. Porn teaches us a distorted view of love, intimacy, other people, and even God. Love teaches us to value our neighbors; porn teaches us to objectify them. Love teaches us to serve others; porn teaches us that others exist to serve us. Love teaches us that nothing matters more then knowing God; porn teaches us that nothing matters more then immediate temporary pleasure.

Fighting Lust with Love

When we choose to love God and others, we choose to war against lust. But how do we fight in the daily battles? I believe this begins with love as well. Consider the concept of love as an acronym. We must fight with L.O.V.E.

L – Leave your sin.

If we ever want to see lust defeated in our lives, we must make the choice to leave our sin behind. Jesus often told people “Go, and sin no more.” Jesus calls us to the same. Have you made the choice to leave your sin?

We must make the choice to leave our sin every time the temptation strikes. The Bible tells us to flee from sexual immorality. Just like Joseph ran from Potiphar’s wife, we must run from our own temptations. Sometimes this means getting ourselves far from temptation before it even happens. Things like limiting your Internet access and Internet filtering are helpful tools here. Sometimes this means physically leaving when temptation strikes.

Go do something else. Ride your bike, cook a meal, call a friend, clean your house, just do something to leave the temptation. Leaving your sin is the first step to winning the battle.

O – Open yourself up to others.

Accountability is all about being open with others. It’s about following the Biblical commands to confess your sins and your struggles. Do you have someone who you can be honest with? If not, find someone. Just as we need to love our neighbors as ourselves, we need someone to love us enough to hold us accountable.

In the moment of temptation, one of the best things you can do is open up to someone else about your struggle. Hebrews 3:12-13 says, “Take care, brothers, lest there be in any of you an evil, unbelieving heart, leading you to fall away from the living God. But exhort one another every day, as long as it is called ‘today,’ that none of you may be hardened by the deceitfulness of sin.”

In other words, one of the key ways we fight sin is by hearing the encouragement and exhortation of another. You need someone in your life to love you and to make sure you do not become hardened by the deceitfulness of sin. Sin thrives in the darkness so expose it to the light of love. The battle will never be one alone.

V – Value the right things.

What do you really value? Porn teaches us to value temporary pleasure. The pleasure of porn only lasts as long as the time spent viewing it. God offers something better and He invites us to value the right things.

In Matthew 5:29, Jesus commands us to value our eternity even more then our physical bodies. He says, “If your right eye causes you to sin, tear it out and throw it away. For it is better that you lose one of your members than that your whole body be thrown into hell.” Do you value freedom from this sin? We must make the choice to value the things of God.

E – Engage with God.

Jesus simply says in Matthew 5:8, “Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.” The more we “see God” the more pure we become, and vice versa. The cycle of porn is one of shame and more impurity. The cycle of engaging with God is one of love and purity. Have you been engaging with God lately? To win the battles we must engage with God.

Make the choice to love. Win the war by fighting the battles. The amazing truth of God’s word is that God loves us even in spite of our sin. If we strive to love Him and others I’m convinced that the chains of lust will be broken. Let’s defeat lust with love!

Ben DriverBen Driver is the minister for the Bellevue Church of Christ in Bellevue, Ohio. He is passionate about Christians fulfilling the Great Commandment and the Great Commission. He cares deeply about the issue of pornography and wants to help others find freedom through Christ.

  • Comments on: How to Fight Lust With Love
    1. a husband who's been there

      You are definitely on the right track. I am learning and living the formula you spelled out and what a relief to know I don’t have to fight the battle against lust everyday because I am filled with God, His word and His love. It’s crazy but it really does work this way.

      • Kenneth Langford

        My Name is Kenneth Langford, I have been struggling with porn for sometime now and I’m a man of God and I’m bound by lust bro. I need prayer and for God to remind me everyday by His Holy Spirit,that He Loves me

    2. Reality

      Pie in the sky thoughts from someone who doesn’t live in the real world. People watch porn because they are alone. There are only so many times you can ride a bike or cook a meal or talk with a friend. If you open yourself up in this day an age, a person will use what you say against you and talk behind your back. Value the right things? Who says people who view porn do not value the right things? As I said, the vast majority of people who view porn are alone. It has nothing to do with not valuing the right things. Engaging God? Sounds great and all but God can’t come down and hold your hand, give you a kiss, spend time with you. God also has a habit of not hearing lots of prayers in this world and I can give many examples of this. I guarantee you that the every porn viewer out there prayed for true love at one point in life and it never came.

      Why don’t you write an article and tell it like it is. One that starts with “Ladies stop doing porn and using sex to get what you want because tempting men 24/7 is like being a drug dealer pushing coke on your street corner.” Now that is a real solution because frankly, that is a huge cause of all this. No one holds women accountable for their actions.

      • Hey there, Reality.

        As far as “telling it like it is,” holding women accountable for their actions, I’ve already answered this before in another comment. You can read what I said there.

        Myself and others have also replied to your loneliness-themed comments before, namely here and here, but you haven’t been in the habit of replying to our comments. If you want to engage in dialogue, that’s great. I’m game. But please reply to our questions and comments rather than just leaving rants for us to read.

      • James Lanier

        Hey Reality,

        I’m sorry that you are so frustrated by this post. I think you might be looking at this the wrong way. I am a single guy, 29 years old, and very familiar with the pain of loneliness–and to my great loss, I used to run to the cruel comfort of lust.

        Here are some points worth considering:
        1. There is this thing called affairs. It happens when married people stop committing to sexual purity. And there is this whole phenomenon of married men using pornography. It also happens when married people stop committing to sexual purity. Don’t make the mistake of assuming that marriage ends the problem of lust. It has nothing to do with the amount of sex, the quality of sex, the attractiveness of one’s spouse–just look at all of the cheating in Hollywood couples.
        2. Being single and lonely is bad. Being married and lonely is worse. And just like purity and contentedness in singleness is pretty hard without a lot of work and grace from God (because of one person’s sin), purity and contentedness in marriage is pretty hard without a lot of work and grace from God (because of two people sin).
        3. The root problem in lust, in my experience, is a worship problem. Lust has more to do with pride and selfishness than it has to do with biology, marital status, or the difficulty of your day. Of course biology makes you want sex, being married allows you to have the right context for sex, and the difficult of your day can be healed a bit through sex; however, the root of lust has nothing to do with any of these things. In fact, these things have just about as much to do with lust as the fact that we have physical bodies has to do with murder: Murder doesn’t exist because we have physical bodies. It exists because we have selfishness, pride, jealousy, and we never (without God’s help) count someone else as more significant than ourselves. Lust happens for similar reasons.
        4. The worship problem that lust represents is not caused by circumstances nor will it go away with a change of circumstances. Lust happens because we think we can get something out of disobeying God and disrespecting another person (she’s somebody’s daughter, some future man’s wife, she has a soul of her own that you lead down a rode to death by lusting after her even if she does want it, etc.). Lust happens because we think we can deal with our pain, but running to God won’t help. Lust happens because we only run to God to deal with our pain and not because He is simply beautiful, satisfying, and completely deserving of our worship.
        5. No good God does you any service by granting you all your desires, if your desires aren’t helping you. I am sure that Hitler, if he believed in God, would have prayers that most people wouldn’t have wanted answered and it would have been much worse for his soul if they were. Just like a parent that lets her kids eat all of their Halloween candy in an afternoon isn’t really looking out for their kids’ joy, God giving you all the things you want (even deliverance from lust) without changing your desires is really the most unkind thing He can do. There is such a thing as wanting God only for His gifts and not for Himself. There is also such a thing as an idolatry of holiness. All that to say, pray that God deal with your worship problem and then do whatever His word and your conscience teach you to do to deal with that issue now, and you will find that the lust issue will go away too.

        Anyway, I hope my comment helps! I know these are tough pills to swallow–I have had to swallow of them myself.

    3. Hmm I think it can be really really hard to find someone to open up to, that isn´t easy at all and if you (yourself) have had a hard time in life or something really bad have happened, then it can take years before trust will come to some person and if you open up, then you open up for one more person ther maybe can hurt you.

      And this with God, I guess you´re right, I don´t know what can carry us around if it´s love or not but believing must me one of the main factors. And thanks for this nice reading, I will for sure follow this blog in future.

    4. Ezequiel

      your right when being alone and also a lot of free time or slacking off causes one to wander away from the right things and mostly the godly things get the most of not getting the attention like bible studies or prayer with God and even the fellowship with Christian friends just cause mind is on own self and pleasures we are at fault its never Gods nor the church they are trying to help but we seeking own ways but you are right about that being alone is the problem.

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