( The following is from JoeDallasOnline )
Darkening Our Minds: Porn’s Impact from a Biblical perspective
Jesus said the eye is the lamp of the body (Matthew 6:22-23). If a person’s eye is perpetually exposed to darkness, there comes an inevitable distortion in that person’s thinking. It is in this darkening of the mind that pornography makes its leap from an act that is morally repugnant to one that has frightening consequences. “Evil communications corrupt good manners” (1 Corinthians 15:33), Paul warned, and the impact on the mind of a Christian consistently exposed to the wrong types of communication is immeasurable.
Like any drug, pornography’s effects vary according to the general health of the individual who uses it. In other words, while a person will be adversely affected by using an illegal drug, the specific effect will probably vary from person to person. A person already predisposed toward violence may well become more violent when intoxicated; a person more inclined to depression may find himself acutely suicidal when under the influence. Similarly, not every porn user becomes a rapist or sexual deviant, but there can be no question of its adverse effects on the user’s thinking.
I can testify to this first hand, both as a former user of pornography and as a counselor. Having discovered the “dark magic,” I found myself increasingly withdrawn from genuine interpersonal relationships and more isolated, defensive, and detached. Accustomed to the false world of phantom relations, I found real relations less and less tolerable. In the shadowlands of pornographic imagery, people existed for my pleasure, and I existed to rule and indulge. In short, I had adopted a mindset so far away from the mind of Christ that I decided to usurp His authority for my own, thus completing the darkening of my mind.
C. S. Lewis alluded to this self-idolatry when he described the world of sexual fantasy as being “a harem of imaginary brides. And this harem, once admitted, works against a man ever getting out and really uniting with a real woman. For the harem is always accessible, always subservient, calls for no sacrifices or adjustments, and can be endowed with erotic and psychological attributes which no real woman can rival. In the end, they become merely the medium through which he increasingly adores himself.”
A BATTLE WORTH FIGHTING
After the English Parliament’s 1938 appeasement in Czechoslovakia, Winston Churchill saw the danger of choosing peace when honor and common sense called for battle. “You have been given the choice between war and dishonor,” he said. “You have chosen dishonor, and you will have war!” History, of course, would confirm his prophetic warning: refusing to fight an honorable battle may afford a temporary peace, but in the long run it’s too costly. Delaying a necessary battle may well result in a devastating, full-scale war.
Every person who has become involved in sexual sin makes a decision between battle and dishonor. As always, dishonor looks like an easier choice. Dishonor means making peace with your sin. It means telling yourself that after so many years, it’s become such a part of your life that trying to cut it out would be too traumatic and too uncomfortable. It would mean saying goodbye to a reliable (though destructive) friend, and the battle to abstain from this “friend,” with all the temptations and struggles it would involve, seems too demanding, so a dishonorable compromise is therefore reached when a person decides to live in peaceful coexistence with his (or her) sexual sin.
Tyrants, however, never coexist peacefully; by their nature, they demand increased territory, fewer limitations, and more captives. The sin a person decides not to go to war against soon demands more territory. It begins invading career, family, health, and reputation. Now the person finds that what could have been a brief skirmish, if it had been attended to earlier, has become full-blown war. He chose dishonor over battle. In the end, he winds up with both.
If your mind has become a battlefield — darkened by the use of pornography, which has distorted your basic attitudes toward life — you have already yielded a good deal of territory, and your willingness to concede it has already cost a terrible price to you, your loved ones, and the church. .God grant that today you find yourself ready to abandon the dark and see again how wonderful the true light can be.