4 Aug 2001

How to stop sinning with pornography?

Submitted by theshovel
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Hello, you asked:

...give me some practical advice on how I can be born again and stop sinning anonymous

I have to ask you some questions in order to answer your questions: 1) What does it mean to you to be "born again"? 2) Is the practical advice you seek on how to "stop sinning" specifically related to porn and masturbation? 3) Do you see yourself doing well otherwise? 4) Why do you think you are ashamed and full of guilt? 5) What do you mean when you say "I will do it right now"? 6) How do you think the work of Christ fits into your problem? 7) Where does this fear of "being punished forever in due payment of my sins" come from if Christ has already made the due payment of your sins? Sincerely, Jim Minker


Hello again!! Now, before I begin it is very important that you do not lose your concentration by thinking of monkeys, okay? The questions I asked in my first email were more for you than for me. I bet you didn't realize that, huh? :) Of course I did want to know more about what you were asking and I wanted to make sure of a few things you wrote, but mostly I wanted you to hear how you answered the questions. Did you notice a progression to the questions? By the way, when I said not to think about monkeys, I meant all kinds of monkeys, as in apes, gorillas, orangutans, baboons, chimps, and especially spider monkeys. So, are you paying attention? Your first email and your answers to my questions in the second email reveal that you are focused on sin. Even as I asked you how Christ fit into the picture with His complete payment of sin you still spoke of facing your sins. You wrote:

...since that time way back in May I have been offending with my presence and my words many dear people like my mother, my brothers and sisters, and various friends anonymous

Do you not understand why that would be? Hey, don't think of King Kong, either! Focus, Grasshopper!! Doesn't it seem a little strange to you that you would define the term "born again" by the meaning of "to stop sinning"? Now, you indicate that you have studied the Bible quite a bit, and I believe you, so why would you use this fantastic phrase describing the miraculous birth of the Spirit of God to mean "stop sinning"? This is what I call "sin-conscious". Okay, so why have I been interjecting those silly comments about monkeys? Simple, to illustrate a point. Were you thinking about monkeys before you started reading my email? Did you think about monkeys or perhaps even picture them as I told you NOT to think about them? Did you see some spider monkeys or maybe King Kong in your imagination? You see, my demands that you NOT think about monkeys actually produced the opposite effect in you. So it is with sin and the law. Are you following me? Awaiting your reply, Jim Minker :)

I am focused mostly on myself, not on Jesus Christ's merits and works of grace. Forgive me, Jim, that shows me that I have to emphasize on the positive, not the negative. anonymous

Hello my friend, So, do you actually think that by emphasizing the positive and not the negative will solve your problems? Not a chance. People have tried that for years on end. Now, the real problem may find another way to express itself, but it won't go away by attempting to avoid it. You have mentioned "self-righteousness", and I have no doubt you are accurate in your assessment, but self-righteousness is stirred up by something else. Any ideas?

Thanks for your useful insight about 1 John 4:19 in your latest newsletter. That is one of my dearest verses in the Bible. anonymous

I'm glad you enjoyed it. :)

Jim, feel free to contact me anytime regarding my wrong thinking, and don't forget to express freely all the advice you have in store for me as God puts it in your heart. anonymous

I'm not as much concerned about your "wrong thinking" as I am about the lack of LIVING thinking. And I will definitely keep up with you, bro! Jim Minker


Just so you know, my brother, I am not trying to trick you in any way with my questions, but instead I simply want to stir up that righteous mind of Christ that has been put within you. :)

You really got me this time, Jim. I honestly don't have any idea about what stirs up "self-righteousness". If you are not talking about the "heart" of a sinner, maybe you refer to "pride" or "egolatry". Excuses, trying to justify myself, judging others constantly are some of the most common sins in my heart. anonymous

The fact is that the cause of our problem is usually the "remedy" we use to get rid of it.

The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law; 1 Corinthians 15:56

THE POWER OF SIN IS THE LAW. You see, it doesn't make any difference if you take one of God's own laws that He gave to the Jews or if you make up your own, it will still affect you the same. You see, this forming of their own law-standards is exactly what the Corinthians were doing as they began to compare themselves with one another. All their problems that we read all through the letter were caused by their fleshly mindset which was stimulated by this law-mentality that came from measuring themselves by themselves. If you want to read a little more on how this principle operates, check out this link: Licensed to Sin? My brother, I look forward to hearing more from you!! :) Jim

I didn't hear back from him after this

Comments

This comment alone stood out the most to me among the things said “Where does this fear of “being punished forever in due payment of my sins” come from if Christ has already made the due payment of your sins?” Since Christ said it is finished! what exactly did he mean….if not that our sins are paid for….then it is ourselves that redeems ourselves by our own actions? This of course is not the truth…..the enemy truly is powerful in his deception of the word even to believers…..seeing as how he is the ‘ruler of the air’ lord of this world….we should not be surprised that today we are still unable to focus on what a perfect God we have been blessed and saved by!
theshovel's picture

Thanks for your reaffirming response. :)

Jim

The Licensed to Sin? link is broken.
theshovel's picture

Thanks for notifying me of the broken link! If you'll check it now, it works (I left out a simple "/").

Jim smiley

'How to stop..?'

This enquiry proceeds from the perception whereby we imagine ourselves to be bound to an obligation to the same worthless formulas that provide for the ruling power of sin over our behaviour. It is the law. And any response offered within the framework of this question to serve as resolution to its supposed predicament will only end up reinforcing the power of this deception over the mind. For though at times it may seem as if it is going against itself by imposing 'goodly' restrictions the supposed resolutions proposed by flesh are nevertheless only its means of justifying itself and reaffirming its own power. But in the life of Christ there is no knowledge of unrighteousness and therefore there is no opportunity for such. So then '..what if who we truly are in Christ is the only real practicality?' (Shovel quote)

 

theshovel's picture

big smile

I am 29 really struggle with Porn, is looking to get it off my back from long time, I have a calling to be a Worship Leader but I believe this habit doesn’t allow me to do something I enjoy. sorry I forgot to mention I Believe in Yeshua. There are some more topics which I want to clarify on, but this is one of my main concerns for now. YESHUA BLESS YOU !
theshovel's picture

Hello my friend :)

Thank you for your encouragement, but was there a question I missed in what you wrote?

Jim

Thank you. this is something I struggle with on a daily basis..

The world would beat you up and so would your “brothers” that make claims to faith but, you and I know that it is Christ the Life that knows the living heart within you. You might be surprised to find out that what is making a huge deal and push towards these things in a [imbalanced] way, is the message of the Law.

 

Christ is comfortable with you and sees you clean. let him show you that there is much good in things that seem evil often times and that the “bad” is often the things we think of as “good”. I'll trust Him to show you what I am saying here.

 

Love,

Adam

I am sorry but what does law have to do with this person’s pornography problem? In this easy to understand case there is a law built within all people that “says” don’t look at naked photos or naked videos because it degrades the opposite sex. It de-humans a person. Its far from the natural thing to do. The fact the person automatically senses that he has a problem is enough said. It’s simply wrong as murder is simply wrong. Its not that difficult and takes no technical decision making process to stop looking at porn. How can law cause the problem when a law is telling this person to stop looking at porn? Gee, the person disciplines himself, and overtime through trial and error, and victory and yes giving in to porn, eventually he stops looking at porn. To stop may be difficult at first but hold on to that law that is screaming inside you “stop looking at porn”. Its such a tangable case. Just keep your fingers from typing the word p-o-r-n-o-g-r-a-p-h-y in the google search or delete all your pornography bookmarks, or walk away from the computer or that magazine rack when the temptation comes. The question and confusion I have is about this “message of law” CAUSING the problem. How so? Follow the law that speaks in you and you will solve the problem.

Hi, I will share my own experience on this issue because I relate to the question that you're posing because I have posed the same for a long time.

I am sorry but what does law have to do with this person's pornography problem?

It has everything to do with the perpetuation of the illusion that he has a problem in the first place. It's not that the law itself is evil, quite the contrary, but it is rather the way the bodily motions respond to the law when it occupies the mind. This is on purpose, so that through the law what is in fact evil, - that is the flesh, - may become evident to all people so that there would no longer be excuse for trusting in the flesh or the law that binds to it. For is it not self-evident to all people that the body works on the basis of response? And the way the body responds to those perceptions of the knowledge of what the mind conceives as forbidden is by becoming aroused in those bodily motions of lust that aim after the very thing that is being perceived as prohibited. You may have had a realization that pornography is indeed something worthless to invest attention into and this understanding currently subdues your own body from enslaving you in your behavior in this particular matter. But for those of us who have had been entangled in the perceptions of the law, the bodily lusts, being aroused in response to the law, deceived us through forging  for us a mindset of hateful desires that caused us to do the very things we didn't approve of in the first place.

Now if we didn't approve of them as being good and living, how were we the ones doing them as if did approve of them? It wasn't us that did them, but it was the motions of sin, in response to the legal mind, that enslaved us in causing us appear to be doing them outwardly. But within ourselves, in the motions of the inner being, we were at variance and utter conflict with this whole mindset and the desires that it caused in our bodies. (For If it were not for the body, the law would have worked. But now because of the perfect weakness of the body, the law is WORTH-LESS so far as attainting to life is concerned. ) So therefore, in ourselves we ourselves are the righteousness of real life, for we are incapable to do evil. We cannot sin, sin being an impossibility. But so far as our flesh is concerned, the body is death and the servant of sin. So that we can live in peace with our body, knowing that its futile nature doesn't stain us.

Gee, the person disciplines himself, and overtime through trial and error, and victory and yes giving in to porn, eventually he stops looking at porn. To stop may be difficult at first but hold on to that law that is screaming inside you “stop looking at porn”.

You are missing the point. This isn't about outward behavior at all, for one does not need a miracle, but mere mind tricks, to alter that; it is rather all about the utter completeness of life wherein there is no knowledge of the possibility of sinning or transgressing. It is all about the absence of death. For pornography is not looking at pixels or naked women, or pleasing the body by masturbation, but is to hope at heart for attainting to the fulfillment  of life through the legal mind of flesh. The same mind you appear to be prescribing as if it were somehow against pornography. For the law is not concerned with outward appearance, but is spiritual, concerned with the heart.

But if we prescribe the mind of pornography as if it were against pornography to that very man that only appeared to be doing pornography but was in fact the very one not doing it, who do you suppose is going to be justified? Who do you suppose is the one truly upholding the law? Who is the one that continues to live in sin?  We ourselves are then being revealed to be evil, for we are plainly seen to be in consent to the mind of evil, whereas that righteous man whom we did not recognize as righteous by his appearance was all the while in variance with the very evil we lured him into. It would have been better for us not to have been born at all, for now not only are we become the true transgressors of the living law, but are also causing the righteous men of God to stumble.

The fact the person automatically senses that he has a problem is enough said.

This is a misunderstanding of the underlying issue. The incompatibility and conflict of the righteous is not with the outward behavior at all, it is with the appearance-based mind that understands what is perceived as being forbidden to be in fact desirable. The Spirit doesn't speak in terms of 'don't look at porn', fleshly men do; but rather in terms of the encouragement of the knowledge that we cannot sin or die.

theshovel's picture

Georgi, I so appreciate you jumping in and sharing the insights you've learned from your own experience, for what you've written goes right to the heart of the question. There is true freedom in this!

Jim

I believe I have a general understanding what you are saying up to this point in your comments, but again, maybe I am only seeing the “tip of the iceberg”. I need help with the following. For pornography is not looking at pixels or naked women, or pleasing the body by masturbation, but is to hope at heart for attainting to the fulfillment of life through the legal mind of flesh. The same mind you appear to be prescribing as if it were somehow against pornography. - Georgi You’re saying here that the mind against porn is a legal mind that exercises requirements in the person to not look at porn but then this legal mind is not really against porn because that same legal mind also gives in to see porn because teh flesh is too weak and cannot overcome law. It’s the same legal mind that is for and against porn. And this legal mind engages in a futile mental civil war between looking at porn versus feels shame and sets-up laws to stop looking at porn. For the law is not concerned with outward appearance, but is spiritual, concerned with the heart. - Georgi I am confused with this sentence. Please help. I think you are saying that an eternal law or true law is birthed in the heart and this law is a Life of its own and not concerned with outward appearances, however when we are tempted and give in to look at porn this eternal law is not touched. But if we prescribe the mind of pornography as if it were against pornography to that very man that onlyappeared to be doing pornography but was in fact the very one not doing it, who do you suppose is going to be justified? - Georgi Answer: the man that only appeared to be looking at pornography. Who do you suppose is the one truly upholding the law? - Georgi Answer: the man that only appeared to be looking at pornography. It seems you are saying that someone who is one with Christ could look at porn or not look at porn and either way that would be okay because the one in Christ does not get aroused while viewing porn nor is he tempted to look at porn after not viewing porn for weeks. He sees through porn (the outward appearance) to what porn is truly about and he only sees porn in the light and Life of Christ. Hope that makes sense?!?!? Who is the one that continues to live in sin? Answer: ?? - Georgi *******This next section is the most difficult for me. Can you elaborate on this next section please: We ourselves are then being revealed to be evil, for we are plainly seen to be in consent to the mind of evil, whereas that righteous man whom we did not recognize as righteous by his appearance was all the while in variance with the very evil we lured him into. It would have been better for us not to have been born at all, for now not only are we become the true transgressors of the living law, but are also causing the righteous men of God to stumble. - Georgi (From: How can law cause sin when law is there to stop sin?)

Hello, I am glad to see your thoughtful response. Feel free to ask anything.

You’re saying here that the mind against porn is a legal mind that exercises requirements in the person to not look at porn but then this legal mind is not really against porn because that same legal mind also gives in to see porn because teh flesh is too weak and cannot overcome law. It’s the same legal mind that is for and against porn. And this legal mind engages in a futile mental civil war between looking at porn versus feels shame and sets-up laws to stop looking at porn.

The legal mind, whilst only appearing to be against the behavior known as porn, is in fact for it. How so? By creating an opportunity for the body to become aroused and to cause the very behavior the regulation 'prohibited'. It doesn't really prohibit it then, it promotes it. It not only is unable to abolish the supposedly bad outward behavior, but it causes the knowledge of condemnation inwardly. Meaning that through giving heed to regulations it is impossible to attain to the knowledge of righteousness, of not having sinned; it is impossible to think reasonably, because there are conflicting thoughts of insanity; it is impossible to keep the very regulation you heed either. Not only because the law itself implies the ability to transgress (for why would I impose a law upon you if you can't transgress? It's foolish.), but because in response to it the bodily motions that the legal mind arouses eventually lead to the knowledge of having transgressed a boundary through a particular behavior.

For the law is not concerned with outward appearance, but is spiritual, concerned with the heart. - Georgi

I am confused with this sentence. Please help. I think you are saying that an eternal law or true law is birthed in the heart and this law is a Life of its own and not concerned with outward appearances, however when we are tempted and give in to look at porn this eternal law is not touched.

Haven't you noticed in your day-to-day life that without exception all the laws of mankind are concerned entirely with outward appearance? Not so the law of God. For God examines the inward being and he relates to it on that basis. The eternal law is the very being of God. Those who fall short of his own life are still dead and therefore un-right in view of what life is all about.  The life that exempts us from the expectation of having to die cannot be attainted to by the regulations that are concerned only with the outward dead flesh and that imply that we can still die through transgression.

It seems you are saying that someone who is one with Christ could look at porn or not look at porn and either way that would be okay because the one in Christ does not get aroused while viewing porn nor is he tempted to look at porn after not viewing porn for weeks. He sees through porn (the outward appearance) to what porn is truly about and he only sees porn in the light and Life of Christ. Hope that makes sense?!?!?

Who is the one that continues to live in sin? Answer: ?? - Georgi

Still very much tempted and weak, so far as the flesh is concerned. But the life of God cannot be tempted, nor does he tempt. Because He is the freedom from the flesh that is tempted. But seeing that we ourselves cannot sin, we also cannot transgress. So that though our flesh is weak, we can live in peace with it, not attempting to free ourselves from it seeing that we already are far from being it. Therefore we don't live in view of regulations.

We can do things that others cannot and in view of a purpose and a hope they neither know nor have access to. They cannot shift they behavior as they please without becoming condemned in their minds for transgressing a certain code of conduct they perceive themselves to be bound to. All that they ever do whilst living in view of the condemnation caused by the regulation is to seek to appear right in comparison with others.

 In the world, men bound by the perceptions of their outward regulations are also bound to perceive one sided issues as if they are both good and bad. That's why one fleshly behavior is condemned and another is praised. But it still is in fact the same dead flesh. Obviously this allows for them to condemn others to death whilst supposedly exempting themselves from it. But if they judge the appearance of others as condemned to death, and yet they bear the same appearance, what are they saying of themselves? But the flesh, ruling over their minds through the law, blinds them to their own unrighteousness while they are quick to condemn others. The righteous judgment that apprehends all things without this ugly bias is impossible within the legal mind.

So then, the one who continues to reinforce an obligation to a life in view of the knowledge of sin is the one who creates an opportunity for the dead flesh through the law. 

We ourselves are then being revealed to be evil, for we are plainly seen to be in consent to the mind of evil, whereas that righteous man whom we did not recognize as righteous by his appearance was all the while in variance with the very evil we lured him into. It would have been better for us not to have been born at all, for now not only are we become the true transgressors of the living law, but are also causing the righteous men of God to stumble. - Georgi

Those who are so quick to lure others into their legal frameworks wherein they have set themselves up as examples of righteousness are the ones that are in agreement with the mind of evil. They are dead, extortionists, manipulators, hypocrites, liars, murderers, fornicators, haters, abusers, boastful, malignant, they feed their stupid pursuits for rightness through the life and labor of others, seeking to find glory in mere flesh. It is certainly far more profitable for such not to have been born at all, than to spend their years in view of the knowledge of sin and to become a source of stumbling for the truly upright at heart, that is those in whom God has made his dwelling. 
 

theshovel's picture

Georgi, thanks for following up on this with such well-considered insight. I thoroughly enjoyed reading what you had to say, for it transcends any one issue. It applies to anything we come across in dealing with things of this world.

Jim

hug

Yes..and so “what shall we say then”?

 

I will hopefully be able to address your post further visitor. I am currently pretty strapped for time today. Thanks for following along though.

 

Adam 

Yes I agree Georgi, from what I had time to read of your post, I would say that it is indeed helpful and full of insight into the Life of Christ.

 

 

Thank you brother,

 

ADAM

Wow. This whole post is amazing insight. Thank you all! I think what I am taking away from this is that i stead of focusing on sin, I should focus on Christ who saved and freed me, and the miracle that is the universe created by the all mighty Creator.

The mind of Christ within us looks at porn and says, "Gag a maggot....let's go somewhere else where the air is fresh."

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