Pornography's Curse
Various Passages
By Paul Robison

“When Ted Bundy was 13 years old, he discovered 'dirty magazines' in a dump near his home. He was instantly captivated by them.  In time, Bundy became addicted to violent images in magazines and videos.  He got his kicks from seeing women being tortured and murdered. When he tired of that, there was only one place his addiction could go - from fantasy to reality.  Bundy, a good-looking, intelligent law student, learned to lure women into his car by various forms of deception.  He would put a cast on his arm or leg, and then walk across a university campus carrying several books.  When he saw an interesting coed standing or walking alone, he’d 'accidentally' drop the books near her.  The girl would help him gather them and take them to his car.  Then he would entice her or push her into the vehicle where she was taken captive.  After he had molested the girl and the rage of passion had passed, she would be killed, and Bundy would dump her body in a region where it would not be found for months.  This went on for years. By the time he was apprehended, Bundy had killed at least 28 young women and girls in acts too horrible to contemplate.  He was finally convicted and sentenced to death for killing a 12 year-old girl and dumping her body in a pigsty.  After more than ten years of appeals and legal maneuvering, a judge gave the order for Bundy’s execution.  That week, he asked an attorney to call me and request that I come to Florida State Prison for a final interview” (http://www.pureintimacy.org/piArticles/A000000433.cfm).  The person who wrote these words is a well-known psychologist, James Dobson.  We'll hear part of this interview at this sermon's conclusion.
 
The word pornography comes from two Greek words: “porno” means “prostitute” and “graphein” means “to write”, so these were writings about prostitutes, which were designed to whet sexual appetites and lead to lustful behaviors.  In our reading this morning (Leviticus 18:17-30), God told the Israelites not to gaze on their relatives' nakedness, not to lie carnally with someone outside their spouse of either sex, and not to mate with animals.  These acts were called by God an abomination, a perversion, a wickedness, and defiling.  Did you also notice how He said that those who do such things will be vomited out the land?  This shows that these sexually deviant acts are so sickening, even the land can't stomach them!  Proverbs 6:27 asks this question: “Can a man take fire to his bosom, and his clothes not be burned?”  Pornography is a fire, a poison, a stick of dynamite, and a curse all rolled up together!  There is absolutely nothing helpful, beneficial, useful, or positive about it.  Here are six actions about porn for your consideration.
 
First of all, understand porn's control.  1 Corinthians 15:33 states: "Do not be deceived: evil company corrupts good habits."  When you pick up a magazine, look at a video, or watch a porn website, you are not alone because you have just linked yourself to a network of evil people.  There are the prostitutes and the pimps who allowed themselves to be exposed, the photographers, the publishers, the film producers, the website designers, and the wicked people who pay to have all this porn produced.  You might be surprised to learn this: "A nationwide consortium of five Mafia families controls the 'lion's share' of the distribution of porn books, magazines, films, video tapes, and paraphernalia through more than 18,000 'adult' bookstores and 500 [porn] theaters" (Walton quoting Scott).  "The United States Attorney General's office estimates that organized crime controls 85% of the ... annual porn revenues" (Walton). Yes, organized crime is just itching to bring about your down, and your sex drive is one of their most vulnerable targets.  Understand porn's control.  Now God created that sex drive, so it's a good thing, and God even says that in the context of marriage it's a great thing.  But in the hands of the wrong crowd, it can easily become an exploited thing.  And the evil people of porn know and understand this.  Porn's is very progressive and addictive.  One writer describes its progressiveness in this way: "Though it may start small, someone has aptly described it as 'athlete's foot of the mind.'  It never goes away. It always asks to be scratched, promising relief.  To scratch, however, is to cause pain and to intensify the itch.  It progresses to greater amounts of time devoted to it, and it progresses to greater perversions—more extreme types of porn. The user needs rougher and more sexually shocking material to achieve the same level of satisfaction each time.  For example, 'swimsuit porn' turns to more daring pictures, then to pictures of younger and younger girls.  Eventually, the user may turn to deviant sexual content, seeking more satisfaction" (Webster).  Another person puts it this way: "This is basically what a person, who views pornographic material, does to their bodies.  They get that 'feeling good' caused by the adrenaline flow caused by excitement.  This craving of the body makes the person’s desire for more, somewhat uncontrollable.  It starts with viewing a few pictures, moves into viewing short film clips, on to viewing X-rated movies, and then to “porno” movies.  If it only stopped there.  Many move on to calling those 900 phone numbers, sexual relationships, child molestation, incest, rape, and in some cases murder.  If you think that this is reaching for extremes, just look up some court cases and see for yourself (Norris)." Did you know that endorphins released in an adrenaline rush are 200 times more potent than morphine, and they are more addictive than cocaine (Decker)?  Understand porn's control.  You see, the crime bosses and porn producers know exactly how to exploit your sex drive and leave you always craving for more.  "Oh, but it won't happen to me!"  One person noted that from 1973 to 1999, the revenue generated by the porn industry increased 1000 fold (Moore).  Why?  Technology.  Porn magazines became porn video tapes, and those soon became porn websites.  All of these media are used to get porn closer and closer to your eyes. Pornography is downloaded an average of 1.5 billion times per month, 47% of religious people say that porn is a problem in their home, 60% of all websites are pornographic, and 80% of the titles in search engines in Britain have "some sexual link" (Akers, Bain, Flury, Moore).  "America’s National Council for the Protection of Children & Families surveyed 5 Christian universities on this issue and discovered that 68% of male students had intentionally looked for pornography of the Internet, 10% were frequent users of porn & 5% had a problem with it" (Moore).  "Half the cyber sex addicts are men, and half are women, with men preferring pictures and women preferring sexually explicit chat rooms" (Webster). With porn's accessibility so convenient (literally at your fingertips), there may be victims of its control even within this audience.  Parents, elders employers, teachers, and members, let's not be naive. Understand porn's control. "Evil company corrupts good habits."
 
Next, recognize porn's purpose.  "For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil ..." (1 Timothy 6:10).  So why do the crime bosses and porn producers want to exploit your sex drive?  Very easy, once you're addicted to porn, you'll soon start paying to have more.  Porn is an enormous business.  Revenues from porn theaters are $500 million annually, and income from direct mail sales is $3 billion annually (Walton).  "You know that companies spent huge amounts of money to air television commercials during the Super Bowl.  What may surprise, however, is to learn that porn revenue is larger than the revenues of all professional football, baseball, and basketball franchises… COMBINED (Bain)! Recognize porn's purpose.  According to the Justice Department, in 1998 there were 28,000 X-rated websites, generating $925 million in revenue. Only three years later, there are 280,000 X- rated websites, generating over $10-20 billion in revenue (The Wall Street Journal 26 Nov. 2001) (Decker). According to U.S. News and World Report, ... the United States is now by far the world’s leading producer of porn, churning out hard-core videos at the astonishing rate of about 150 new titles a week" (Flury).  Americans are now spending $3,075 per second on porn websites (http://blog.cytalk.com/2010/01/web-porn-revenue/).  Porn's purpose is to get your money.  Recognize porn's purpose.  "For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil ..." (1 Timothy 6:10).
 
Now the next action is so crucial: realize porn's destruction. Porn destroys men.  It turns them into beasts who think only about themselves, liars who must always try to cover up everything, and breakers of their marital vows to remain true to their wife alone.  Another preacher observes: "Here is a man who in effect has multiple wives, who is an serial adulterer, and an idolater, who having divorced his moral life from his spiritual life comes to church on Sunday believing he can acceptably worship God. He can’t. He has deceived himself" (Moore).  Porn destroys women.  "Women are seen as animals, playthings, sex objects, and merchandise.  Professor Sunstein, writing in the Duke Law Journal, says that some sexual violence against women 'would not have occurred but for the massive circulation of pornography.'  Citing cross-cultural data, he concludes: 'The liberalization of pornography laws in the United States, Britain, Australia, and the Scandinavian countries has been accompanied by a rise in reported rape rates'" (Flury).  Porn destroys marriages.  It promotes promiscuity, infidelity, and deviant sexual behaviors (Dobbs, Jr.).  "The National Victim Center now estimates that at least one woman is raped in the U.S. every 46 seconds.  Why so many rapes?  Many experts point to the increased use of pornography (Webster).  Torture and even bestiality have pornographic roots (Decker).  Porn destroys children.  "The relationship of pornography to child sexual abuse is compelling; 77% of those who molested boys, and 87% of those who molested girls said they were regular users of hard-core pornography (Flury).  "Pedophilia is never an accident.  Almost all cases of sexual abuse of children find their source in pornography" (Decker).  "Each year, one million children, ranging from less than a year to 16, are sexually molested and then filmed or photographed.  There are between 100,000 and 200,000 children engaged in the child prostitution/pornography trade. ... Porn merchants are now emphasizing materials involving children less than five years old—some victims as young as six months" (Walton). ... Testimony before U. S. Senate hearings revealed that the U. S. Is the world's largest consumer of child porn ..." (Walton).  "The high rate of illegitimacy can be partly attributed to increased promiscuity encouraged by porn" (Dobbs, Jr.).  Porn destroys society.  "An estimated 4000 [Americans] are murdered each year by 'recreational killers.'  Most of them feed on porn, [like Ted Bundy did]" (Webster).  Very graphic incidents from a commission report made in 1984 could be cited to show the degrading acts that porn can cause (Walton).  All these examples just touch the hem of the garment.  Realize porn's destruction.
 
Maybe now you understand the next action: Hate porn!  God hates the workers of iniquity (Psalm 5:5), and Jesus hated some false teachers (Revelation 2:6).  So, sometimes, it's alright to hate.  Psalm 97:10 challenges us: "You who love the Lord, hate evil!" In God's eyes, porn is degrading, destructive, deadly, and damning!  Hate porn!
 
The next action is radical: Crucify porn! "And those who are Christ's have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires" (Galatians 5:24).  How do you crucify the flesh?  Another preacher gives this advice: remember your identity in Christ; honestly confess and forsake porn; stay in God's Word and prayer; live life as an open book; make yourself accountable to another, your wife or a brother or elder in Christ; make God's will your will, seek God's means of escape when porn tempts you (Moore).  Shun it, burn it, pull the plug!  Don't let it control you!  Crucify porn!
 
Lastly, fight porn!  Take action now, when you can think clearly, to avoid opportunities to view pornography.  Protest when you see porn in local stores.  One of our members once wrote the president of a chain of stores pointing out that displaying porn was a disgrace to many parents in the city where he lived.  The manager of the store was told to put the magazine under the counter.  Fight porn!  Drive a different route away from the gentlemen's club.  Put filters and accountability software on your computer and move it into a high traffic area.  If you travel for your business, take a photo of your family and display it in your room, and if you fall into temptation, call another member, ask them to pray for you, and to call you about your actions the next day.  Fight porn!  Follow Job's actions: “I have made a covenant with my eyes; Why then should I look upon a young woman?" (Job 31:1).  Remember Jesus' standard: "But I say to you that whoever looks at a woman to lust for her has already committed adultery with her in his heart" (Matthew 5:28).  Paul says bluntly: "Flee sexual immorality!" (1 Corinthians 6:18).
 
Let's return to that interview with Ted Bundy:
"Ted: I’m no social scientist, and I don’t pretend to believe what John Q. Citizen thinks about this, but I’ve lived in prison for a long time now, and I’ve met a lot of men who were motivated to commit violence.  Without exception, every one of them was deeply involved in pornography - deeply consumed by the addiction.  The F.B.I.’s own study on serial homicide shows that the most common interest among serial killers is pornographers.  It’s true.
JCD: What would your life have been like without that influence?
Ted: I know it would have been far better, not just for me, but for a lot of other people - victims and families.  There’s no question that it would have been a better life.  I’m absolutely certain it would not have involved this kind of violence.
JCD: If I were able to ask the kind of questions that are being asked, one would be, “Are you thinking about all those victims and their families that are so wounded?  Years later, their lives aren’t normal.  They will never be normal. Is there remorse?”
Ted: I know people will accuse me of being self-serving, but through God’s help, I have been able to come to the point, much too late, where I can feel the hurt and the pain I am responsible for.  Yes. Absolutely [remorse]!  During the past few days, myself and a number of investigators have been talking about unsolved cases - murders I was involved in. ... What scares me is when I see what’s on cable T.V. Some of the violence in the movies that comes into homes today is stuff they wouldn’t show in X-rated adult theaters 30 years ago. ...
JCD: Do you deserve the punishment the state has inflicted upon you?
Ted: That’s a very good question.  I don’t want to die; I won’t kid you.  I deserve, certainly, the most extreme punishment society has.  And I think society deserves to be protected from me and from others like me.  That’s for sure.  What I hope will come of our discussion is that I think society deserves to be protected from itself.  As we have been talking, there are forces at loose in this country, especially this kind of violent pornography, where, on one hand, well-meaning people will condemn the behavior of a Ted Bundy while they’re walking past a magazine rack full of the very kinds of things that send young kids down the road to becoming Ted Bundys.  That’s the irony.  I’m talking about going beyond retribution, which is what people want with me.  There is no way in the world that killing me is going to restore those beautiful children to their parents and correct and soothe the pain.  But there are lots of other kids playing in streets around the country today who are going to be dead tomorrow, and the next day, because other young people are reading and seeing the kinds of things that are available in the media today" (same website as in introduction).  Bundy was electrocuted at 7:15 a. m. the next day.
 
Stop letting porn control you!  Confessing this sin will be the first step toward your gaining control over porn.  Ask God's help so that you can crucify and fight porn each day.  If you want to become a Christian and live a life of purity, let us assist you with your baptism into Jesus' name right now.  Let Jesus help you to live a holy life!