The Pastor and Pornography
Pastor, are you regularly indulging in pornography and rationalizing to yourself why it’s okay for you to do that? If that describes you, then you are in danger.
How should we respond we a public servant, an elder, or the preacher confesses to looking at pornography?
The sting of pornography has struck many marriages. The way forward can feel confusing and demoralizing. But there’s hope.
The question I want us to consider is this: how do we discern whether or not a pastor who sins with pornography is disqualified?
Can we restore pastors after sexual sin?
When a pastor has disqualified himself from his ministry, is he disqualified from ministry altogether? If so, for how long? Forever? Can he ever be restored? If so, how soon?
The Church and Pornography
If porn goes unchecked, the corporate consequences will be pervasive.
What would it mean to fight pornography together? What would it look like to cultivate a culture where leaders and members help one another?
Unfortunately, many young people don’t remember a time without unlimited access to pornography.
We need to foster better, more vertical accountability in our churches. How do we do that?
We should pray that our members would understand the need to make our relationships transparent—to share embarrassing things about ourselves, to speak honestly, and to ask one another careful, loving questions
Local churches ought to be the “safest space” for Christians to confess sins in general and sins tied to pornography in particular.
The temptation for the Christian is to redefine sexual purity according to the shifting standards of morality.
Tools for the Pastor
At what point, if ever, does a persistent pattern of pornography warrant church discipline?
Pornography flourishes under the right conditions—within a broader ecosystem of sins, struggles, and situations. It never operates in isolation.
When a church member first confesses pornography consumption, they’re usually relieved to admit their battle and get help in their fight.
“Men, what do you view on your screens when no one is watching?” This question will bury some women in shame.
These foundational truths should help us pastors minister to the hurting hearts of sisters whose husbands struggle with pornography
We must continue to struggle, for this is why God’s grace has been revealed, that we might be delivered from all lawlessness and pursue upright and holy lives as we await Christ’s return. Our Lord demands nothing less.
Practically, let’s talk about when and how pastors can guide dating or engaged couples through difficult conversations about past sexual sin.
In Matthew 5:32 and 19:9, Jesus gives grounds for divorce based on sexual immorality (porneia). Does pornography use qualify?
In this wide-ranging, honest, and profoundly gospel-centred book, Chester demonstrates that the contemporary pornography pandemic which is crippling lives and ministries is fundamentally a problem of idolatry.
A Better Story is a thoughtful, faithful and persuasive proposal for how to respond—or at least begin to respond—to the sexual revolution.
As a pastor and a professionally trained biblical counselor, Witt brings his experiences to bear on this book, making it useful for both pastors and professional counselors.
Overall, I would strongly recommend The Game Plan as a tool for discipling men through habitual sexual sin, especially pornography.
Sexual wholeness is vital to healing, and these resources will help pastors better structure small groups in ways that facilitate a more open and safe place for people to come and share their experiences and struggles.
Those who want to understand the biology that contributes to porn addiction will be well served by Struthers’ book.
Sexual Detox is a wonderful book, and it is atop my recommended reads for those who struggle with pornography.
The best commendation I can give for this book is that I regularly give it away to my church members and use it in discipleship groups and in counseling.
It’s vital for individual Christians to pursue holiness. But how can church members work *together* in fighting against the sin of pornography?
In this episode of Pastors’ Talk, Garrett Kell shares his own past struggles with pornography, and offers counsel to pastors who are currently hiding with secret sin.
What makes this book different? It’s written by a woman, engages the topic from a feminine perspective, and reveals why so many are using the erotic to escape reality.