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Defeat Lust & Pornography 4 minute read

Why Porn Makes You Feel Far From God

Last Updated: October 27, 2023

When we ask people why they use Covenant Eyes, we get one answer more than any other: to help their relationship with God. And why would people come to us for help with their relationship with God? Because porn makes people feel far from God.

But have you ever stopped to think why exactly porn makes you feel far from God? Here are 5 reasons. Can you think of any others?

1. Porn Disrupts God’s Plan for Sex

Before the end of the very first chapter of the Bible, God has already begun revealing his purpose for sexuality. First, verse 27 tells us that male and female humans reflect God’s image. In the next verse, he commands them to be fruitful and multiply—to fill the earth and subdue it. At the end of chapter 2, we see the first marriage ceremony, where Adam and Eve are joined as two individuals to become one flesh.

 The Fifth Commandment clarifies this further: do not commit adultery. And Jesus takes the point a step further in Matthew chapter 5, saying that if you even lust in your heart you’ve committed adultery. So then, we can see that pornography violates God’s law and runs counter to his plan for sex in marriage.

For more on this, check out Sexual Purity: What Scripture Teaches About God’s Plan for Sex.

2. Porn Displeases God

Not only does watching pornography run counter to God’s plan for human sexuality, but it grieves God. In recounting the story of God’s people, Psalm 78:40 says, “How often they rebelled against him in the wilderness and grieved him in the desert.” When you disobey God’s plan for sex by watching porn, it likewise grieves God.

Jesus explains in John 14:15 that if we love him, we will keep his commandments. This sounds harsh to our modern ears, but it’s just as true today. Think about it: If you really care about someone, are you going to intentionally keep doing things that grieve that person? When you say something or act in such a way that hurts someone, how do you reconcile with them? You say you’re sorry and stop doing that thing.

How much more so if that person is the God of the universe!

3. Porn Contradicts Christian Identity

Have you ever finished watching porn, put down your phone, and thought to yourself, “That wasn’t me!” If you’re a Christian, there’s a sense in which that is true. Romans 6 tells us that our old self and all its sinful desires were put to death with Jesus on the cross. When you watch porn as a Christian, you’re going against your true identity.

Paul wrote to the Corinthian church because they struggled a lot with following God’s commands for sex. Paul warns them that sexually immoral people will not inherit God’s kingdom, and then he says, “And some of you used to be like this. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God” (1 Corinthians 6:11).

In other words, that’s not who you are anymore. That part of you is dead!

4. Porn Distracts You From God

Can you imagine trying to worship in church with a pornographic movie projected on the wall behind the praise team? You couldn’t do it. Nobody could; porn is way too distracting. But porn is a distraction even when it’s viewed in private and nobody else knows what you’re looking at.

Some of my favorite verses are in Colossians 3:1-2, “So if you have been raised with Christ, seek the things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things.” I need this reminder often! Verse 5 drills down further into some of the key areas that distract us from the higher things, “Therefore, put to death what belongs to your earthly nature: sexual immorality, impurity, lust, evil desire, and greed, which is idolatry.”

You can’t worship God with porn in the background, whether it’s Sunday morning or Saturday night. It’s a distraction.

5. Porn Is Unholy

Hebrews 12:14 makes a bold and uncomfortable statement: “Pursue peace with everyone, and holiness—without it no one will see the Lord.” You read that right—holiness is required to see God. Now, Hebrews 10:10 has already said that we are made holy “once for all time” by the sacrifice of God. And yet, here it’s equally clear that holiness is something we must pursue.

It’s no contradiction. Holiness is both something that is given to us by Jesus and something that we must work at with everything we have. The unholy person cannot see God, and that’s exactly why watching porn makes you feel so far from God. It puts up an “unholy wall.”

How to Feel Closer to God

All this can feel very discouraging, but remember, there is no condemnation for those in Christ Jesus, even if you watch porn! This frees you to pursue your relationship with God. Getting closer to God involves a lot more than staying away from pornography, but we can see from these five things why it’s nonetheless essential. If you’re concerned about porn’s effect on your relationship with God, we’re here to help you eliminate porn. Get started with our blog post, How to Quit Porn: 6 Essential Steps.

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