Defeat Lust & Pornography A young man his Bible in a coffee shop.
Defeat Lust & Pornography 5 minute read

10 Ways to Pluck Out Your Eye to Avoid Porn

Last Updated: January 15, 2024

If you are a Christian man who struggles with porn, you’re likely familiar with Jesus’ command to “pluck out your right eye and cast it away” if it causes you to lust after women. But how are you supposed to do this, exactly?

After all, you face more visual temptations, in more places, at more times of the day, than any man in human history has ever had to face. So, how are you expected to obey this command of Jesus in today’s hyper-sexualized world? By taking drastic, costly action. Here are 10 practical, biblical ways to gain—and maintain—sexual purity.

1. Understand What Your “Right Eye” Is

Your first task is to understand what Jesus means. Jesus says, “If your right eye causes you to sin, pluck it out and cast it from you; for it is more profitable for you that one of your members perish, than for your whole body to be cast into hell” (Matthew 5:29 NKJV).

To the Jews of Jesus’ day, the right eye was considered the more valuable, just as the right arm was considered the stronger. Jesus doesn’t want you to literally pluck out your right eye, of course. He wants you to pluck anything from your life that is valuable (or convenient, or useful), if it causes you to commit adultery by lusting after women.

2. Take Drastic Actions That Cost You Something

From this teaching, you’ll appreciate that Jesus expects (demands, actually) you to take extreme steps to avoid sexual sin. He expects you to take actions that cost you something. Literally plucking out your eye is a costly step, right? So, you should expect that taking the necessary steps to avoid porn and sexual temptation will also cost you something. Attaining and maintaining sexual purity should hurt.

3. Clean House

Obeying this command of Jesus means removing those things from your home that you know cause you to sin. Start with the DVDs, magazines, adult-rated video games, books, catalogs, calendars, and other things you have kicking around the house that have ensnared you in the past. Gather them up and pitch them into a dumpster. The journey to sexual purity starts with subtraction.

4. Install Covenant Eyes

These days, most porn is published digitally, so the digital realm is where you must pluck out your right eye. Start by installing Covenant Eyes on all of your electronic devices. I’m talking desktop computer, laptop computer, tablet, and phone. Make no exceptions.

Covenant Eyes is an app that blocks access to millions of explicit websites. But it also monitors your screen activity. It uses artificial intelligence to scan for concerning activity and provides access to custom block lists for additional protection.

5. Get Electronic Accountability

Porn blockers are simply one part of the solution you need to get victory over porn. They protect you against the most obvious and common sources of pornography. But victory involves relationships, too, not just technology. And that starts with accountability.

One big advantage of Covenant Eyes is that it sends alerts to your accountability partners (Covenant Eyes calls them allies) whenever it detects concerning activity. When you visit an inappropriate website or watch something explicit on your computer or phone, Covenant Eyes detects this activity and tells your accountability partner about it, with screenshots as proof. I have learned firsthand that getting caught watching porn is one of the best ways to stop watching porn.

6. If in Doubt, Block

I know a few Christian men who can scroll through Instagram, Twitter, and TikTok without being tempted sexually. I also know that I’m not one of them. So, I use the custom-blocking feature in Covenant Eyes to block these and dozens of other sites that cause me to sin. Whenever I land on a website or app that features nudity, sexual innuendo, women in bikinis, women undressing, sex scenes from movies and TV shows, and more, I block them.

7. Get Off Social Media

This brings us, naturally, to social media. Most social media sites say that they don’t permit sexual content, but this explicit material can slip through the cracks. And most social platforms do allow images and videos that cannot be categorized as pornographic, exactly, but that still are likely to arouse you sexually. Your best line of defense against these sites is to delete your accounts. Don’t simply remove the apps but keep your accounts. Delete them forever.

8. Change Your Routes

You likely face sexual temptations while you are out and about and minding your own business. Movie theatres show R-rated movies. Libraries let you borrow R-rated books. Public beaches and pools feature women wearing the bathing equivalent of bras and panties. If you want to obey Jesus by plucking out your right eye to avoid sexual lust, stop visiting the places where you know you are sure to be tempted.

9. Cancel Your Streaming Subscriptions

By the time you reach this step on your journey to sexual purity, you will have discovered that sex scenes, incest, rape, strippers, and all manner of sexual immorality aren’t found only on porn sites. They are right in your living room, thanks to HBO, Netflix, Hulu, and just about every other streaming site. So, if your TV causes you to sin, pluck it out and throw it away.

10. Throw Away Your Smartphone

Does your smartphone cause you to sin? Is your smartphone the primary way that you are tempted to lust at women with your eyes? Then pluck it out and throw it away. Downgrade to a “dumb phone” that handles calls and texts only and that gives you absolutely zero access to the internet. This is what I did. Carrying a flip phone means I no longer have a GPS in my pocket, can no longer do online banking with my phone, and have lost 24/7 access to Google. Plucking my smartphone from my life and throwing it away remains a big inconvenience. But I no longer carry porn in my pocket, so there’s that.

Conclusion

Obeying Jesus by plucking out your right eye and casting it away is drastic, inconvenient, and costly. Doing so will put you out of step with your contemporaries. Some believers may call you holier-than-thou, fanatic, or legalist. Ignore them. Sexual purity comes at a price. If you are willing to pay that price, you may walk about with only one eye and a flip phone, but Jesus says, “[I]t is more profitable for you that one of your members perish, than for your whole body to be cast into hell.” (Matthew 5:29).

  1. Abby Kittle

    I’m a woman and I’m very visual. I’ve been that way since grade school. I learn best visually, so it only makes sense that it’s extremely hard for me to forget what I’ve seen. Anything sexual is incredibly triggering for me. But, sometimes, I feel weird because of this. It’s been said that men are the visual ones, not women. Well, I am a very visual woman. This whole list can apply to women as well!

    • Keith Rose

      Thanks for your comment! You make a really important point: the old stereotype that women aren’t triggered visually is just false. While in general men might be more inclined to visual stimulation, I’ve spoken with many women who are just as you mention. Over-generalizing what kinds of things are and aren’t triggering for women does them a great disservice. Crystal Renaud Day talks about this in her podcast episode with Covenant Eyes. You can read the summary of it here or listen to the whole podcast: https://www.covenanteyes.com/2022/11/16/crystal-renaud-day-helping-women-who-watch-porn/

      Blessings,

      Keith

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