Defeat Lust & Pornography
Defeat Lust & Pornography 4 minute read

Sexual Addiction: The Ugly Forgivable Sin

Last Updated: April 22, 2015

James 5:16 says that the confession of sin is the beginning of healing. The Greek word for confession that is used in that passage of Scripture is exomologeo, which means to acknowledge or to agree fully. We cannot confess what we cannot admit. I had to admit to myself that the addictive activities of my past were based in sinful behavior before I could openly acknowledge them as such, even to God.

Sexual sin, because of the psychological trauma it can cause its victims, and the societal response to that trauma, is often perceived as being unforgivable. This perception is based in part on the quite natural inability of our victims, the relatives of our victims, and even our own families, to forgive. Then because our perception of God as our Father and His ability to love and forgive is built around our view of natural fathers, we incorrectly see Him as being just as unable to show mercy and forgiveness.

The Ugliness of Sexual Sin

It is easier to accept that forgiveness is possible if we understand some of the reasons why God pronounced certain activities as being sinful. There are many good reasons, none of which is because He just doesn’t want us to have fun in life. Quite to the contrary! He created us and He created guidelines which, if followed, actually make it possible for our lives to be more productive, more fun, more blessed, and above all—more pleasing to Him. God said through Solomon in Proverbs 16:7, “When a man’s ways please the Lord, He makes even his enemies to be at peace with him.”

Sexual immorality, including pornography addiction, is sin in part because it has the ability to destroy our relationship with God. But there is more.

I know from personal experience and from observing others who shared that pit with me that the pit is an ugly place to be. It is a place where the mind is so bent by addictions to pornography that social and moral boundaries disappear. In the pit those addictions are so deeply rooted that you find it nearly impossible to pass by that adult cable television channel. The so-called men’s magazines that line the walls of the pit pull you like magnets until the images they contain are marked indelibly on your mind. The pit is a place where men rape women and children without considering that they have done so. It is a place where jobs are lost and, consequently, homes are foreclosed and finances diminished. Bankruptcies are regular occurrences. Families are separated by bars that hold an incarcerated husband or father. Divorce runs rampant like a fire out of control.

The pit is a place that feeds the abortion mills when women and teenagers are impregnated by pornography addicted rapists who may or may not have known their victims. It is a place where innocence is regularly stolen and traded for a single moment of ecstasy. The pit is a place where death at the hands of the AIDS virus is more common than true love. It is a place where drugs are all too commonly used to mask the pain and depression that accompany the loneliness – the loneliness that comes from carrying on a relationship with a photograph or fantasy instead of a real person. Self-esteem goes the way of the wind.

We should be thrilled that God loves us enough to warn us away from behavior with such dreadful consequences, rather than to look at Him as an old ogre sitting on some mythological throne hurling lightning bolts at us. He declares some things to be sins simply because He does not want to see His creation suffer atrocities such as these.

The Beauty of Forgiveness

God loved me enough to lift me out of that pit. And he will respond no differently to anyone else who comes to Him with a repentant heart and a sincere desire to change. You ask, “But what about that Christian person who has struggled for years to lift himself out of a pit—a pit that other well-meaning people say he couldn’t have fallen into in the first place, had he really been a Christian?”

  • Revelation 2:20 says “. . . you allow that woman Jezebel, who calls herself a prophetess, to teach and seduce My servants to commit sexual immorality” (NKJV). The words, “My servants” indicates that Christians were indeed being enticed into immoral sexual situations.
  • When we place our own desires above God and His desires for us, we make our desires to be idols before God. But the good news is this: God told His people in Jeremiah 3:14-15 “‘Return, O backsliding children,’ says the Lord; ‘for I am married to you. I will take you, one from a city and two from a family, and I will bring you to Zion. And I will give you shepherds according to My heart, who will feed you with knowledge and understanding’” (NKJV). God told them that He would forgive their idolatry and that He would send people to them to mentor them, to teach them, and to help them stay away from such behavior.
  • In verse 22 of the same chapter, God told His people, “‘Return, you backsliding children, and I will heal your backslidings’” (NKJV). God does not forgive one person and then refuse to forgive the next one. He will heal your backsliding—your fall into the pit.
  • In 1 John 1:9, the Bible says that if we can bring ourselves to confess our sins, God will be faithful to forgive those sins and to cleanse us, or clean out that unrighteousness.

God does not expect you to make that climb from the bottom of that pit on your own. He knows exactly what assistance you need to climb out of the cesspool that you are wading around in, whether it is pornography addiction or one of its offspring, such as spousal abuse, rape, pedophilia, or any other sexually immoral act. He will stand at the top of the pit with His hand stretched down to you, helping you up and welcoming you when you reach the top again.

In 1 Corinthians 6:9-10, Paul mentions several sins in which the people in that church had once been involved, including several sexual sins. Then in verse 11, he said, “And such were some of you. But you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus and by the Spirit of our God” (NKJV).

You are no different. The pit you are in does not have to be the end. It just feels that way. I know about the pit. I know how that cold dark emotional dampness feels. I know about the loneliness and tears. I know the stench of a life that is rotting away. You see, I’ve been to the very bottom of that pit . . . and back.

Yours In Christ,
Man on the Road

  1. Jezebel's sister

    I came here hoping for answers. I never thought of myself as having a sexual addiction but now thinking I might. Maybe it is just addicted to attention, not really sure.
    I have always fantasized about men starting at a very young age, daydreaming in school about boys that they liked me and then as I grew they became sexual fantasies which took over my life where I found myself fantasizing for many, many hours each day most of my life.
    I had a difficult childhood and feel I used this to escape reality but then it never stopped until I got very serious about my faith and diving into His word.
    Even after marriage these fantasies continued about other men. After having an affair years ago I sought counseling, ended the affair (which was more a booty call really) and thought I was doing great.
    My affair partner contacted me out of the blue after years of no contact which was a complete shock to me. I was so cocky in my thinking, thinking I would never fall back into the pit. Satan knew better.
    My husband and I do not have sex and I have not enjoyed sex with him in awhile. I am not sure why this is. He did cheat on my many years ago and I forgave him. He changed and became a good Christian man.
    I have refused to see my ex but do message and have discussed sex at length with him. I know I will not cross the line of seeing him but feel guilty enough talking to him behind my husband’s back. I have begged God to help me stop wanting this attention. He got me out of the affair which I have no doubt was his intersession. I know He hears my cries.
    I worry about never going up in the rapture and being left behind because of my lust and sinful nature. I pray and talk to God constantly but cannot seem to end the connection. I keep praying the ex will do it instead and make the decision. I have told him how I feel about it but he still pursues me. He is now married himself. I feel like a horrible human being who is undeserving of God’s mercy and grace because I cannot seem to end the communication. I ask God to forgive me but then go right back and answer his messages. People will say just block him. That is like saying just snap your fingers and stop the addiction. I wish it were that easy.

    • Moriah Bowman

      Hi friend,

      Thank you for your honesty and courage in sharing a bit of your story and asking for help. You are right when you say that overcoming addiction doesn’t happen with just the snap of a finger. Something as simple as blocking a phone number is actually much more difficult when you are in the throes of addiction. What encourages me the most about your story is your desire to change. You have recognized that this affair (or potential of an affair) needs to end, and that is a huge first step towards recovery! Praise God!

      As for taking the next step, do you have a female friend or mentor whom you can reach out to and ask for wisdom and accountability? It may seem daunting to want to share your story with another woman, but I do believe that healing is found in accountability, and another person can provide that for you! I would also encourage you to research Christian counselors in your area and pursue consistent counseling. A counselor can ask you the right questions and prod you to get to the root of this issue (couples counseling might also be wise for your marriage). Finally, I want to encourage you to continue clinging to Christ. Pray, spend time in Scripture, and bind yourself to a church community. Surround yourself with positive, godly influences. Galatians 5:16 says, “But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh.” Keep walking by the Spirit, my friend!

      I am praying for you. Be strong. You are worth it.
      Blessings,
      Moriah

  2. Burning with shame and fearful judgement

    My sex addiction (lust of the flesh) took over when i was 16. I turned my back on Gods good plan for me and became a whore (after my baptism). My real dread is that he will say “depart from me” i never/dont know you because of my apostasy/willful sin. There is nothing worse, now or later. ‘( there are definitely things worse than death. Eternal seperation from God now and later. ‘( taking your eyes off Jesus and causing others to fall (jezebel). Open rebellion & wanton behavior – Better not been born! That is a very terrible place to end and i cant take it back. Wasted life & hell to pay. God is forgiving, but how much? How long? Sins are over my head. ‘( burning coals in my lap and face

    • Burning with shame and fearful judgement

      I repent in dust & burning ashes. On the outside all of my life wanting in. Just like jesus says, many want in, but few will be saved. He is not a man that He would lie. Weeping & gnashing for me.

    • Moriah Dufrin

      Hi,

      Thank you for being so open and honest about your spiritual battle. May I encourage you that it is never too late to turn to Jesus and be forgiven, no matter how horrible you consider your past to be. If we are in Christ, nothing can separate us from him (Romans 8:35-39).

      Keep up the good fight, friend! Do not lose hope. We serve an amazing God!
      Blessings to you,
      Moriah

  3. anonymous

    My wife sent me this. I am sure she means well. God can forgive me but she can’t / won’t. She has convinced herself that she’s supposed to forget it happened. Which will then tell me I can keep doing it. Forgive and forget is Hallmark not the gospel of Jesus Christ. Just because God chooses not to remember our sin doesn’t mean you have to, but you can’t go around throwing it in my face daily and hounding me with the why questions. Why did you do this, why wasn’t I enough? This way of thinking is poisoning your mind. I can’t do anything right it seems. I don’t do this or I do that, or I say this. I don’t need this article to explain to me that I need Jesus to lift me out of the pit. I have come to understand that, and I accept it. And believe it. My wife will not come to terms with it. If something doesn’t change then this separation she decided on will become a divorce. I hear almost daily how I am supposed to let her in, and she wants to help me and do this together. I’m getting my life together. You are dragging me down and preventing us from moving forward. Therapy, books, workbooks, bible studies even meeting with peers or our Pastor makes no difference. Nothing helps her she is holding on to this with every ounce of strength. I cannot tell her this I’ve tried and I’m a *******. I have a friend who is telling me to cut bait and run. File for divorce but I don’t want to I do care about her. She’s got to come to terms with this otherwise there is no future for us.

  4. JW

    What a crock of shit… I have begged and pleaded for God to help me out… and nothing… I just want off this shit earth and might have to take care of it myself….

    • Kay Bruner

      JW, I am so sorry for the pain you are in. Please know that you are not alone, and that there is help for you. Find a counselor who can help you, look for a group in your area, talk to a trusted friend or family member. There is hope and help and healing for you. Peace, Kay

  5. Maria

    I am totally addicted to this. I want a recovery. I used to masturbate. I want my husband call me slut and he is not interested. I want him to beat me. I always search for sex videos. Last 1 week I was suffering

    • Kay Bruner

      Maria, it sounds like you might want to find a therapist to help you out with this. Here’s the CSAT directory, where you can check for someone in your area.

  6. S s

    Please God please if you can hear my ergent request to heal me and my family from a recent illness or diesease I am begging you not telling you I will obey you and respect you and others in future I worked so hard to achieve what I did I was in a good place in November 2016 and would love for you to take me back to that special place. please in the name of Christ our lord, God I will pray and attend church every weekend I am to going to sleep and need your blessing and if possible please let me wake up in November 2016 . Love God

  7. Josh

    The Bible says our sins were washed away because of Jesus’ sacrifice for us. Therefore if you sin once you are forgiven because of what Jesus did. You win twice you are forgiven because of what Jesus did. Sin 7 times and ask for forgiveness sincerely then you will be forgiven. That’s the great power of Gods grace and love. God knows where your heart is and As long as your heart is in the right place he will see that and accept you just like any forgiving person accept his love for you is even greater. I think the bible says once you have your salvation it can’t be taken away. Once you accept Christ, all the sins he knows you are going to commit were already forgiven on the cross the moment you ask for forgiveness sincerely. If you are tired of being in the pit and keep back sliding then don’t lose spirit. God is God so his forgiveness is infinite. He knows if you are tired of sinning against him and the fact that you are praying about it, coming to this site to find information and relief, that right there is repentance I believe. Let me know if I am wrong. God is good and always will be by our side. No matter how many times we fall, as long as he can see that we’re sorry, I believe that is repentance and he is the loving and forgiving God who will never leave nor forsake you. Don’t think that what Christ did was meaningless or only valid for so many years. It’s valid for the rest of time. He is the beginning and the end. I hope this helps. If there is anything I need to be corrected on let me know but from what I’ve typed, that all sounds right to me.

    • Kay Bruner

      Sounds right to me, too, Josh. I think resting in God’s great Love for us is the ONLY thing that ever fills our souls and helps us to change.

  8. I have been struggling with Porn addiction for years it started when I was 11 or 12 when I saw my first porn movie then I bought Porn movies on VHS Tapes and Masturbating I hid them from family as my brothers got married and moved out then I got my own room it was easier. Then years later I was out on my own. It was more and more times Masturbating. Then I met someone years later My wife found the movies I had I threw them away in the trash I accepted Christ as my Lord and Savior got baptized I though I was changed but it was a lie I kept on watching Porn on the internet and Masturbating all these years I have been Married for 17 years and my wife doesn’t know of my addiction. But lately I am degusted with my self I feel Jesus telling me I must truly repent to be freed from the bondage of sin I must drag this sin kicking and screaming into the light where it will not have the power it has had all these years. It is going to be a very hard conversation with my wife but I know Jesus will be there to help me and my wife heal from this and to make our marriage stronger. I hope and Pray Jesus will forgive me and I hope and pray my wife will as well. In the pit but I will climb out with Jesus help. Amen

    • Chris McKenna

      Hello, David – I’m thankful that you’re taking steps to leave this wicked issue behind. You were made for more! You’re hiding it from her, but I bet deep down she knows. Porn always disrupts and creates separation. Always. Please be gentle with how you tell your wife. You might be euphoric at having the weight lifted off by coming clean, BUT many times, that just means that the weight has been transferred to her. She’s left with distrust, dispair, disgust. It creates tension in marriages, and then, that tension can lead the husband back into the crazy cycle because porn promises (lies) that you will feel better by doing it again. I tell you all of this (and maybe you know this), just to encourage you to be careful, gentle, wise, and guard her heart.

      Yes, repent. Yes, talk openly. But, maybe begin with someone other than her. God will show you the moment.
      Peace, Chris

    • L

      If you tell your wife it will break her heart yes, but she can heal from that as you heal from your addiction, but trust takes time so don’t break her heart over and over in the future, my husband keeps breaking my heart every time I catch him watching porn, every time it happens and I find out I grow more cold towards him, I’m not even comfortable being intimate with him, not even sure if I love him anymore. If she wants to be your accountability partner let her, if she wants to go to counseling go, if she needs to put parental controls on her phone let her. As a wife I know the pain she will feel, the paranoia and distrust can become an obsession, and can even haunt her dreams if you continue your behavior. I believe porn is going to end my marriage, best of luck I hope it doesn’t do the same to yours

    • Just a guy

      I’ve been fighting with porn addiction for some time. At times I win & life is undefinably good and it seems to continue for a good strong season. Then without so much as a warning I go there and get caught up in it. It’s like a riptide. I’ve quit trying to understand why I go back into it. I’m trying to understand and nurture why I want to stay away from it. I’ve been in a sexless marriage for the last 11 or 12 years. We’ve been married for 30+. It used to be great. We still love each other completely and she knows and is fine with me master bating for relief. She doesn’t want to even attempt sex so the discussion doesn’t exist.
      I hate porn because I feel genuinely dirty from it. I am afraid of being separated from God. Porn has no redeeming value. I want freedom.

    • Nigel

      Amen brutha,makes.two of us….you can what’s up me on 0844023228…..we can help each other…..God loves you

  9. James

    Very good article,I struggled with porn last night I tried to fight and avoid it but the temptation was too strong for me.So I fell into it so when trying to find forgiveness from God I came across your Article it was helpfull to get me out of porn addicted pit. thanks

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