This article is written in response to the request to talk about sexual purity to a group of men of all ages and demographics who meet together to encounter God's power to heal and deliver from chains of addiction and unhealthy soul ties that interfere with Gods purpose and plan for life.
At our deepest core, we all know what is right and wrong. God put that 'knowing' in us. God designed people with an internal moral compass. It’s called a conscience. It’s part of the intuitive side of our spirit. Yes, spirit. You are a spirit, you possess a soul, and you live in a body.
God made our bodies to really enjoy pleasures, like food, adventures, entertainment, and …..sex…
The Mind is the Factory of the Heart
The Good Lord also gave us a mind. The mind is the factory of our heart. It’s in the mind we have the most important conversations with ourselves. It’s in the mind that knowledge sets up camp.
Knowledge puffs up like hyperinflation: 1 Corinthians 8:1 ‘Knowledge [alone] makes [people self-righteously] arrogant, but love [that unselfishly seeks the best for others] builds up and encourages others to grow [in wisdom].’
The scriptures talk about knowledge. Knowledge will puff you up. Just knowing something is not good enough.
Knowledge is NOT Enough
Again, knowledge puffs you up. Knowledge inflates you. Knowledge makes you a windbag. Everyone has an amount of knowledge in some area. Here is what what most people I’ve met agree on. It is a certain knowledge: Pornography is something to be avoided. Hopefully you know that. As a believer and follower of Jesus Christ, you should definitely know that.
Sexual purity is one of God’s high callings. Everyone knows what’s right and what’s wrong. Knowing means nothing without doing. You have to do more than know. Knowledge might be the first step. Without understanding or wisdom, knowledge will puff you up. You need faith.
The Power of Faith and Action
Faith requires action: in James 2:26 we read, “For as the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without works is dead also.”
We need to do what is right: James 4:17 says, “Therefore, to him who knows to do good and does not do it, to him it is sin.”
Talking about doing what is right and doing what is right are two different things: 1 Corinthians 4:20 says, 'For the kingdom of God is not a matter of talk but of power.’
I heard once; ‘until you are truly free from an addiction, you will not be able to openly discuss the issue with a clear and guilt-free conscience.’ I believe that. Perhaps this is why we don’t have too many messages on putty and holiness ….our pulpits are occupied with ministers who are not truly free. Either that or they are afraid of the Goliath, but it’s time for some Davids to rise up!
Are You a Number?
Here is something else I heard once, ‘some people are so open-minded their brains have fallen out.’
They claim freedom, but their conscience has been burned, or seared (like with a hot iron). They have lost all sense of right and wrong. These people are also really good at defending and justifying their personal opinions and positions. These people have enemy strongholds. They come in the form of philosophy and teaching, and most of the time are peppered with pieces of Scripture they use to justify their cause.
Such could be the case with masturbation. Do pure men of God make a routine of masturbating?
Consider this simple question:
Are you a number?
I am no law expert, but in the prison system, It is my understanding that people are numbered. Even our government gives us a number. It’s called a social security number. Don’t get me wrong here, I like numbers. Numbers help with organization and structure. God likes numbers.
1 Corinthians 14:33 lets us know that our God is a God or order. The same chapter tells us he is NOT the author of confusion. God brings order to people.
When statistics are run through cultures and identifiable groups, the statistics produce numbers.
Are you a number?
How many people yield their bodies, eyes, hearts, hands, and souls to the influence of pornography?
Are you a number?
Are you a part of the statistics?
In January 2020 large internet sample study based on four modalities (modality refers to the ways language can express various relationships to reality or truth. For instance, a modal expression may convey that something is likely, desirable, or permissible) was conducted by the National Institutes of Health, revealing that 9 out of 10 men and 6 out of 10 women are reported as having consumed porn in the last month.* *Solano I, Eaton NR, O'Leary KD. Pornography Consumption, Modality and Function in a Large Internet Sample. J Sex Res. 2020 Jan;57(1):92-103. doi: 10.1080/00224499.2018.1532488. Epub 2018 Oct 25. PMID: 30358432.
What side of the fence were you on last month? ….or even last week?
If you were on the triumphant, victorious side avoiding the temptations of pornography, good for you.
Be Set Free
If you are struggling and know you have a problem, the Lord wants to set you free. The Lord wants to cut you loose. The Lord wants to take you out of the prison system of sexual addiction. The Lord has a plan for you. The Lord’s plan for you is freedom from sexual addiction.
You might think, I tried to break this cycle, but it’s gripping me and I can’t seem to shake it. That, my friend, is the evidence of a habitual stronghold operating in your life. Many times we like these habits and strongholds too much to really want to give them up. We say one thing, but mean another. The last time I checked this was a pretty good definition of hypocrisy …saying one thing and doing another.
I’m sure Paul, the apostle, understood. In Romans 7:15 he writes, ‘I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do. He says, What a wretched mess I am.
What may seem impossible to you is not impossible to God. All things are possible to him who believes.
Do you believe you can be free from sexual addiction today?
Do you believe you can experience sexual purity for the rest of your days?
That is the first step. Believing it’s possible, not in your own strength, but in Christ.
Take a moment to tell yourself this right now. Speak to yourself. Say it out loud even. “I am sexually pure. I am sexually pure. I am sexually pure.” There is power in your words. There is power in confession. Life and death are in the power of the tongue. Choose life. Choose God.
One of the big questions for believers is this:
“Lord, what is your will for my life? Lord, what is your will for this particular situation?” Believers desire to know and do the will of the Father. Jesus leads by example: Father, not my will, but yours….
Psalm 119:37 ESV Turn my eyes from looking at worthless things; and give me life in your ways.
1 Thessalonians 4:3-5 ESV For this is the will of God, your salvation; that you abstain from sexual immorality; that each one of you knows how to control his own body in holiness and honor, not in the passion of lust like the Gentiles who do not know God.
Psalm 24:3-4 ESV Who shall ascend the hill of the Lord? And who shall stand in his holy place? He who has clean hands and a pure heart, who does not lift up his soul to what is false, and does not swear deceitfully.
Psalm 18:26 ESV With the purified, you show yourself pure, and with the crooked you make yourself seem tortuous.
Matthew 5:8 ESV “Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.
Exodus 20:14 ESV “You shall not commit adultery.
Matthew 5:27-28 ESV “You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall not commit adultery.’ But I say to you that everyone who looks at a woman with lustful intent has already committed adultery with her in his heart.’
Psalm 119:9 ESV How can a young man keep his way pure? By guarding it according to your word.
1 Timothy 4:12 ESV Let no one despise you for your youth, but set the believers as an example in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith, in purity.
Hebrews 13:4 ESV Let marriage be held in honor among all, and let the marriage bed be undefiled, for God will judge the sexually immoral and adulterous.
Colossians 3:5 ESV Put to death therefore what is earthly in you: sexual immorality, impurity, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry.
1 Corinthians 6:18 ESV Flee from sexual immorality. Every other sin a person commits is outside the body, but the sexually immoral person sins against his own body.
“Design is not just what it looks like and feels like. Design is how it works.” - Steve Jobs
Design is everywhere.
Natural designs may be observed and admired in trees, flowers, mountains, sunrises and the oceans and deserts of the earth. The earth is full of design and pattern. There are also man made designs, homes, door knobs, cars, kitchen cabinets, etc. Everything we see today came from what we once couldn't see …at least not with our natural eyes. Everything we see today has essentially been designed. Designs are designed.
Designs Are Created
Designs first originate from the inside of the thoughts, imaginations, observations and experiences of the artist.
Second, designs are, in-a-sense, released from the artist to the world. They metamorphosis from invisible to visible. This is the way. This is the process. Artists design. It is a creative process.
The Design Process
The design process can also be explored. Experimentation can also yield or produce and make designs. Innovators and inventors are using their God0given imaginations to explore and experiment with materials and resources they make available.
Sketches are the way many designers in the past have expressed their creativity. Drawing is a great way to begin to put form to creative ideas. Sometimes these ideas are deeply embedded in our souls and spirits. They may lay dormant for years deep with us, or they may suddenly shock us with a surprise voltage of ‘do-this-now!’
Sketchbooks & Journals
Sketches and ‘doodles’ are what I use to explore the design process. I most often start with simple lines, dots and basic shapes. I start from the center and expand the process out from a central point of focus. In my sketches, the lines and shapes of my designs often create patterns.
Designs Create Patterns
Designs create patterns, but remember …patterns also create designs.
In many instances the pattern (or blueprint) precedes the design.
It seems quite circular in concept. Think for a moment with me.
An original design emerges from the artist. The design has its origin from a pattern which has been pieced together internally …thought by thought, inspiration by inspiration, and revelation by revelation. The end from the beginning so-to-speak.
This design can then become a type of pattern for other designs.
As Steven Jobs, the creator and founder of Apple Technology Company, Design is also about function. Design is about how things work.
Designed to be a Sign & Wonder
My art is designed to be a sign and a wonder. My designs are intentionally made to bring an awareness to the Juedeo/Christian God of The Holy Scriptures. My designs work when those who see my designs and patterns become more aware of the amazing detailed and often delicate creation of life which surrounds us. Embedded within my designs and patterns are symbols and deep meanings inspired by the Bible.