Christian Rapper Andy Mineo has a keen insight to make about porn:
Porn is the modern day story of cigarettes. As a whole, our culture has absolutely no idea how destructive it is. Years later, we will.
Today with the ever increasing availability of internet pornography through smartphones and tablet computers, the dangers of this destructive sin are just a reach in the pocket away from just about everyone in this technologically-driven generation.
Just this summer, Ariel Castro was arrested for kidnapping three women and keeping them locked in his house as sex slaves in the Cleveland, OH area. When standing before the judge, he claimed he was “not a monster” and that “he was addicted to pornography.” (see ABC News report and Albert Mohler’s commentary). I do not know which came first, the kidnapping and rape or the pornography use, but it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to guess that pornography acted as a gateway drug that enabled Castro to plunge into the dark and twisted world of sexual sin, feeding his perverse sexual desires and making it impossible for him to have self-control.
And that same gateway drug has inroads in the church as well. I’m not going to cite statistics, but I’m confident in saying that pornography is one of the biggest issues the American church faces today. Numbers of porn addicts is on the rise, and the average age at which people first catch their fateful first glimpse of pornography is dropping. Porn is destroying lives, marriages, and families.
That being said, with the number of people struggling with this specific sin increasing, the church needs a book that explains how the gospel of Jesus Christ speaks to this sin and allows people to be set free from the bondage that it brings. That is why Christian counselor and professor Dr. Heath Lambert wrote Finally Free: Fighting for Purity with the Power of Grace.
Lambert describes why he wrote the book:
For many years, I have counseled people who feel locked in a losing struggle against pornography. They need grace-filled, practically relevant strategies as they seek to flee sexual immorality. This book provides eight clear strategies to help you work out your salvation and experience freedom from your desire for pornography. These strategies are tools designed to help you turn from sin to righteousness based on the work of Christ. I have seen them work time and again. I pray that you will see them work in your life and in the lives of those God has given you to help. [page 14]
The eight strategies covered all are spokes on the wheel of righteous living that has the Gospel of Grace at the hub of the wheel. Those eight strategies are each covered in their own chapter and are as follows: sorrow, accountability, radical measures, confession, your spouse (or your singleness), humility, gratitude, and a dynamic relationship with Jesus.
No matter how terrible pornography is, no matter how much trouble you are in, no matter how flimsy and weak your resources are, you are never in a pit so deep that the grace of Jesus cannot lift you out.
The great danger in your struggle is that you will devote all of your energy to thinking true and awful things about pornography and spend no time dwelling on the true and wonderful things about Jesus. [page 28]
Throughout the chapters, Lambert shows how each of the tools is to flow from grace, sharing practical and theological tips of how to implement the tool and how not to implement the tool. Each tool is explained clearly and succinctly, which is one of the blessings and curses of a book like this. It is a blessing because it is a fairly quick and easy read; it is a curse because some issues could be discussed further and offer more pertinent information. One of these chapters is the chapter on accountability. Lambert shares that accountability software can help people stay pure with their devices, but gives no practical suggestions about what programs are out there and the strengths and weaknesses of each one. This is perhaps because of space or more likely that the world of technology and accountability software is changing so quickly and he wanted to have a book that could help people for years to come. I think the latter is more likely, and I think Lambert will see his book do just that.
Lambert helpfully concludes each chapter with a section of questions entitled “Fighting for Purity with the Power of Grace,” that gives readers practical steps to take to put each tool into practice. This gives readers a “To Do” list at the end of each chapter with practical steps to reconciliation with God/others and freedom.
Finally Free will help Christians in their fight for purity for years to come by its grace-filled approach that combines good theology with practical counsel to equip the Christian to win the battle for purity.
I was provided this book by CrossFocusedReviews in exchange for a fair and honest review.