Daily Devotional for Tuesday September 27, 2005
(Matthew 5:28; Colossians 3:5; 1 John 2:16)
ONE OF THE MOST DESTRUCTIVE FORCES TO MARRIAGES, FAMILIES, AND INDIVIDUAL LIVES IN OUR WORLD TODAY IS INTERNET PORNOGRAPHY. IT IS A WORLDWIDE PROBLEM THAT AFFECTS MEN AND WOMEN EQUALLY. THIS MESSAGE TODAY SHINES A BRIGHT SPOTLIGHT ON THIS ISSUE SOCIETY REFUSES TO DEAL WITH, AND COULD DELIVER SOMEONE, EVEN YOU, FROM THE GRIPS OF THIS BONDAGE.
In one of today's anchor verses from Matthew's Gospel, Jesus said, "But I tell you that anyone who looks at a woman lustfully has already committed adultery with her in his heart." A few months ago, famed Criminal Defense Attorney Johnnie Cochran passed away from a brain tumor. Cochran who will always be remembered as the architect of the defense team that got O.J. Simpson acquitted of double murder was as talented a lawyer as there ever was. However, even the great Johnnie Cochran could not get you found "not guilty" of adultery if you are looking at pornography on the Internet. There is no difference in the eyes of God if you meet someone who is not your spouse and have sex with them in a motel room, or if you sit in front of your computer and lust after the images of someone who is not your spouse.
Some people may not think Internet porn is a big deal. Let me assure you that it is a VERY BIG DEAL. Sadly, I get to see the destroyed lives, the broken marriages, the damaged children from pornography every single day. A myth is that porn is a male problem. That may have been the case in the past, but I can assure you that 50% of the people I deal with daily in bondage to porn are women.
PORNOGRAPHY DESTROYS LIVES! It is not harmless entertainment. It causes people to lust which is a sin. It destroys a person's sexual life as God intended it to be. It leads people into bondage. It progresses from voyeurism to actually living out deviant sexual acts in real life. Pornography ruins marriages, ruins a person's ability to have a normal, healthy relationship with someone who they may actually fall in love with and marry, and worst of all it damages a person's relationship with God. Porn is a tool satan uses very effectively to "kill, steal, and destroy" human lives!
The fact is, pornography on the Internet could be virtually wiped out and eliminated IF there was a real desire to do so. Right now, the only technological tool to fight Internet porn is filtering. Filtering does NOT work no matter what the claims those who offer it want to make. It either filters too much content or not enough. As soon as a new filter is offered, in hours the porn industry has found ways around it. In addition, most junior high school children can get around any filter if they want to. Filtering is as effective as 5 sandbags are in trying to stop a flood.
So how could porn be virtually wiped out and eliminated from the Internet? You go after the MONEY! Internet porn is a billion dollar a year industry. Cut off the money, and it ceases to exist. When someone buys porn on the Internet the money flows through the banking system, mostly through credit cards. That money ultimately ends up in someone's bank account. If credit card companies quit processing porn transactions, if banks quit accepting money from credit card clearing companies that handle pornography business, if the government began doing serious investigations into the people and companies who own the accounts the porn money ends up in, you could put a HUGE dent in the Internet pornography business overnight.
The other way to shut down Internet porn is by companies that supply bandwidth, refusing to sell the bandwidth needed to those businesses that are putting pornography on the Internet. Also, individual Internet Service Providers (ISP's) like AOL, Roadrunner, Earthlink, Yahoo, MSN, or whichever company you use, could block any domain that provided pornographic material.
Now some of you may be saying, if it is that easy why doesn't it happen. That is a simple answer, MONEY. Again, Internet porn is a BILLION DOLLAR industry. It is HUGE business for the credit card companies. It is HUGE business for the banks. It is HUGE business for the companies that sell bandwidth. It is HUGE business for the ISP's. I can guarantee you that as easy as it would be to virtually eliminate all pornography from the Internet overnight, it will NEVER HAPPEN because there are too many people making too much money from it!!!
The other avenue to fight this battle is legally. The problem there however is gutless politicians with no desire to take on the pornography industry. Larry Flynt and other powerful people in the porn business have shown in the past a willingness to go after any politician that opposes them, not to mention the fact that the porn industry gives lots of money to politicians.
Sadly, going after the entire pornography industry that will take in over 10 billion known dollars this year has not been a priority of the Bush Administration or of the Attorney General. Factor in liberal judges around the country that will give the pornographers favorable rulings when cases are brought to court, as well as the fact that 40% of Internet porn originates from other countries, and the chance to stop Internet porn through the legal system is simply a dream.
I love you and care about you so much. Let me tell you this, Liveprayer will be illegal on the Internet before pornography is! So what is the answer? For parents, you have got to understand that using the Internet as a babysitter is like allowing your child to play in the middle of a busy freeway during rush hour. It is simply an accident waiting to happen.
You MUST be diligent and monitor what sites your child visits, monitor who they chat with, and sit them down and have open and honest conversations with them about the dangers of the Internet. Talk to them about pornography and why it is a sin. Talk to them about being careful of who they may "meet" in chatrooms. The better they are trained on the dangers of the Internet, the better equipped they will be when faced with those dangers.
As for adults who struggle with a bondage to pornography, it is a battle like any other. You have got to first be willing to admit you have a problem, and then turn to the Lord to find the strength and plan to get victory over your bondage. This may be a wake up call for many who have this problem in your life today. Listen to me, IT IS NO ACCIDENT YOU ARE READING THIS TODAY, GOD IS SPEAKING TO YOU, THIS IS YOUR CHANCE TO GET VICTORY OVER THIS BATTLE WITH PORN ONCE AND FOR ALL BEFORE IT DESTROYS YOUR LIFE!
I will be praying for you today. Praying that you realize what a huge problem Internet pornography is. Sadly, because it is such a huge industry the things that could be done to shut it down will never be done, both from the technical and legal side. That is sad because that only means it will continue to be a growing problem we will have to deal with in our nation.
Now more than ever, the church has got to get serious about this issue. We have got to reach out to those in bondage to porn and help them find deliverance through Christ. We have got to continue to warn parents of this danger so they can train their children to be aware of this trap that can destroy their lives. Ultimately, we have got to continue to share with this lost and hurting world the fact that Jesus Christ, and Jesus Christ alone is the answer. Whatever momentary satisfaction may be found in porn, it cannot compare to the true joy that comes from Christ.
The business world is not going to fight this battle, the politicians are not going to fight this battle, it is up to the people of God to fight this battle!!!