Topical Sermons

Part 3



1. The Christian has been called out of darkness into God's marvelous light, 1 Pet. 2:9. What a marvelous escape from the death, decay and destruction of sin (Rom. 6:23).
2. An epidemic that is sweeping our country threatens the moral purity and spiritual safety of Christians: Pornography.
  a. We are to abstain from all appearance of evil, 1 Ths. 5:22.
  b. We are to be holy as God is holy, 1 Pet. 1:15-16.
  c. Accomplished by making "no provision for the flesh, to fulfill its lusts", Rom. 13:14.
3. Many say porn is "harmless" and "victimless", but nothing could be farther from the truth. We have to admit the seriousness of this sin.
4. The effects of pornography include:
  a. Spiritual death, Gal. 5:21.
  b. Degradation of society (of women, marriage, sexuality, the family).
  c. It trivializes rape and other sex crimes.
  d. It is an addictive, self-perpetuating cycle.
  e. It contaminates the minds and lives of our children, thereby continuing its evil effects.
5. One cannot take the "fire" of pornography into his bosom without being burned, Prov. 6:27.
6. We must set nothing wicked before our eyes, Psa. 101:3.

  A. Defining Pornography.
    1. Legally:  In a 1964 U. S. Supreme court decision (Jacobellis v. Ohio), Justice Potter Stewart admitted his difficulty with arriving at a legal definition:

"I shall not today attempt further to define the kinds of material I understand to be embraced within that shorthand description ("pornography", jrp); and perhaps I could never succeed in intelligibly doing so. But I know it when I see it…" [U. S. Supreme Court Justice Potter Stewart, Jacobellis v. Ohio, 378 U.S. 184 (1964)]

    2. Practically:  Pornography is "predominantly sexually explicit and intended primarily for the purpose of sexual arousal." (Final Report of the Attorney General's Commission on Pornography, p. 8; Cited by Diane Dew, "Pornography and The Bible" Web Site,
    3.  Biblically:
      a. Porneia is translated "fornication", Matt. 15:19; Rom. 1:29. Fornication (porneia) is an inclusive term encompassing different forms of sexual immorality (adultery, homosexuality, bestiality).

      b.  Pornography fuels the lusts that lead to this and associated sins of the flesh.


        -Viewing pornography is not itself the act of fornication, but its images contain and depict fornication while contributing to lewdness, moral defilement, fornication and violence on the part of the participants and those who view it.

      c.  Concerning fornication:
        1)  Proceeds from the heart (Matt. 15:19).
        2)  Associated with "all unrighteousness" and "wickedness" (Rom. 1:29).
        3)  The body is not for it (1 Cor. 6:13).
        4)  Flee it (1 Cor. 6:18).
        5)  Not to be named among saints (Eph. 5:3).
        6)  Abstain from it (1 Ths. 4:3).
        7)  Repent of it (2 Cor. 12:21).
      d.  Porneuo: "To commit fornication", 1 Cor. 6:18.
      e.  Pornos: Whoremonger, harlot, Eph. 5:5.
  B. The Enticing Lure of Pornography Fuels, Feeds and Foments Sinful Lusts.
    1. Pornography attracts the lusts of the flesh and of the eyes, 1 Jno. 2:15-16.
    2. Pornography sets sinful enticements before the eyes, luring millions into sin and death, Jas. 1:14-16. Do not be deceived…Pornography is powerful and dangerous!
    3. Fornication, uncleanness, passion, evil desire are to be put to death - But pornography gives them life, Col. 3:5.
    4. Looking upon a woman (or man) with lustful desires and as objects to satisfy those sinful lusts is fueled and fed by pornographic material, Matt. 5:27-28.
    5. Galatians 5:19 and 2 Corinthians 12:21: Traits of pornography include...
      a. Uncleanness (akatharsia): "the impurity of lustful, luxurious, profligate living" (Thayer).
      b. Lasciviousness (aselgeia): "unbridled lust, excess, licentiousness, lasciviousness, wantonness, outrageousness, shamelessness, insolence" (Thayer).

      c. Fornication (porneia): Pornography feeds and fuels acts of sexual immorality.

  A. The Growth of Pornography is Alarming and Shocking.
    1. Approximately thirty years ago a federal study of pornography estimated the total retail value of all the hard-core porn in the U.S. was no more than $10 million, and perhaps less than $5 million. ("The Business of Pornography", Eric Schlosser, U.S. News and World Report, 2/10/1997, 44)
    2. In 1996, Americans spent more than $8 billion on porn. (Ibid.)
    3. Nine-fold increase in number of hard-core video rentals between 1985-1996 (from 75 to 665 million). ("The Business of Pornography", 43-44)
  B. The Acceptability of Pornography is Appalling.
    1. Pornography is becoming respectable.
      a. "Pornography has undoubtedly moved more into the mainstream. Would-be Playboy models cavort naked on Howard Stern's TV show; "The People vs. Larry Flynt" and "Boogie Nights" are box-office hits; women's magazines are chockablock with stories about 'my life as a phone-sex worker.'" ("Has The Web Made Porn Respectable?", Janelle Brown, (10/16/1998);
      b. The success of "soft-porn" on cable TV networks (like Showtime, HBO, MTV) and shows such as the Howard Stern Show attest to its increased acceptance.
      c. cf. Sports Illustrated annual Swimsuit Issue; Vogue, Cosmopolitan, etc.
"…Sports Illustrated's tradition of using 'the visual language of pornography' in its swimsuit issues. When we see a swimsuit model down on all fours with her rump high in the air, we are not in the real world of women…The imagery, derived from lower mammals in heat, is a staple of pornography. SI uses many images associated with porn." ("Swimsuits Galore, But No Jolts", John Leo, U.S. News and World Report, 3/1/1993, 17)
      d. More and more porn-businesses are going public (selling stocks).
    2. Pornography is big business in America.
      a. "One of the most rapidly growing (businesses, jrp) in the modern American economy." ("Why Write About The Porn Industry?", U.S. News and World Report, 2/10/1997, 9)
      b. Research firm Datamonitor reports that Web surfers spent $970 million accessing porn sites in 1998, estimates rise to more than $3 billion by 2003. ("A Lust For Profits", Brendan I. Koerner, U.S. News and World Report, 3/27/2000, 36)
    3. Terminology used to describe porn indicates its growing presence, prominence and acceptability in society.
      a. Euphemistically described as "adult entertainment" and a "lifestyle" (cf. "Gaming" for gambling).
      b. "Victimless crime" (by those who would eliminate legal restraints against porn).
      c. Andrew Strauss, owner of "I call it adult entertainment, not porn, because we're not sleazy guys walking around selling chicks. I mean, in one sense we are, but we're not in there watching it go on, we're not watching the girls." ("Has The Web Made Porn Respectable?", Janelle Brown,, October, 1998)
      d. "Soft-porn": "Hard-core" pornography is disdained by many who increasingly accept and/or accommodate "soft porn." (cf. "white lie," "love affair", "happy hour", etc.).
  C. Types of Pornography ("The Pornography Plague", Kerby Anderson,
    1. Adult magazines.
      a. These are commonly the "soft porn" variety and are available in many adult bookstores, convenience stores, etc.
      b. 200 million copies of Hustler, Penthouse and Playboy are distributed in U.S. homes annually. The combined circulation of Playboy and Penthouse exceeds that of Time and Newsweek. ("Quick Facts About Pornography",
    2. Video cassettes.
      a. "America is by far the world's leading producer of porn, churning out hard-core videos at the astonishing rate of about 150 new titles per week." ("The Business of Pornography", 44 and Cover, U.S. News and World Report, 2/10/1997)
      b. Hard-core video rentals reached 665 million in 1996.
      c. Approx. 25,000 video stores that rent or sell hard-core porn. ("The Business of Pornography", 45)
      d. In 1996, Americans spent over $150 mil. ordering adult movies on pay-per-view. (Ibid.)
    3. Motion pictures.
      a. In the U.S. nearly 900 theaters show porn films. (Dew, "Pornography and The Bible" Web Site)
      b. Rating standards are being relaxed - Porn is being distributed with R and NC-17 ratings.
      c. What would have been considered obscene just a decade ago are now regarded as "hard R" films.
    4. Television. (Cable TV / Pay-per-view.)
    5. The Internet (E-porn).
      a. Pornography has been described as the Internet's "dirty little secret" (really a misnomer, since E-porn is anything but little and certainly no secret!). ("A Lust For Profits", 36)
      b. Nielsen NetRatings: 17.5 million surfers visited porn sites from home computers in Jan. 2000, a 40% increase from 4 months earlier. (Ibid.)
      c. Early to mid-1990's up to 80% of all Internet traffic was adult related. "We all know the adult entertainment industry drives the Internet." (Larry Bell, CEO for ISP Strictly ("A Lust For Profits", 37)
      d. In 1998 at least 70% of all Web porn sites are being produced by people who have no experience in the porn industry (one-person operations, housewives, college students, entrepreneurs, etc.). ("Has The Web Made Porn Respectable?", Janelle Brown)
      e. In 2000 there were well over 40,000 sex oriented sites on the Internet. ("A Lust For Profits", 38)
    6. Audio porn.
      a. Every night between 9 p.m. and 1 a.m., about 250,000 Americans dialup commercial phone sex. ("The Business of Porn", 49)
      b. In 1996 Americans spent between $750 million and $1 billion on phone sex. (Ibid.)
  D. Things are not Getting Better…They are Getting Worse!
    1. Larry Flynt (founder of Hustler magazine) said about Internet porn: "Some of the stuff on there, I mean, I wouldn't even publish it." ("The Business of Porn", 50)
    2. Movie ratings are becoming more and more lenient of sexual content.
    3. Evil men will grow worse and worse, 2 Tim. 3:13.

  A. Why Does Pornography Exist? Reasons include…
    1. A refusal to respect God and one's fellow man, Rom. 1:21-29; Matt. 7:12; 22:37-39.
    2. Money. Porn is a commodity in demand, and many are getting rich at the moral expense of our nation. 1 Tim. 6:10
    3. Lust. A recent university study claims at least 200,000 Americans are addicted to E-porn. ("A Lust For Profits", 42) 1 Jno. 2:16
    4. Entertainment. Seeking to "escape the real world," they instead plunge themselves into the bondage of sin. 2 Pet. 2:19
    5. Previous sexual abuse. "It is believed that 70% of women involved in pornography are survivors of incest or child sexual abuse." ("Quick Facts About Pornography",
  B. Where Does Pornography Exist?
    1. In the mainstream media (movies, TV, magazines, books).
    2. In advertising (catalogs, TV, videos): cf. Lewdness of Victoria's Secret online and TV shows.
    3. In such common places as:
      a. Theaters, video stores…
      b. Bookstores, magazine racks, store check-out counters…
      c. Hotel rooms: In 1996, "guests spent about $175 million to view porn in their rooms at major hotel chains such as Sheraton, Hilton, Hyatt, and Holiday Inn." (Ibid.)
      d. Your home (if you allow it to be there)!
        1) VCR and DVD movie rentals.
        2) Cable and Pay-per-view TV - Easy access and anonymity…Heb. 4:13; Num. 32:23. Howard Stern, MTV, HBO, Showtime…Turn it off…don't subscribe!
        3) Your computer: Internet web sites, chat rooms, etc. (Monitor your kids, use a filter, turn the computer off!)

  A. Purify the Heart, Jas. 4:7-8; Phil. 4:8.
  B. Make a Covenant with Your Eyes, Job 31:1.
    1. "I'm just looking…" DON'T!
    2. We will fall into sin when we fail to do so! (cf. King David, 2 Sam. 11:2-5), Matt. 5:28.
    3. "I will set nothing wicked before my eyes." Psa. 101:3 (Rom. 13:14)
  C. Break the Cycle of Lust, Enticement, Sin and Death, 2 Cor. 6:17-7:1.
    1. Repent and sever every contact with pornography, Matt. 5:29-30. (Sacrifice and faith)
    2. Use prayer to resist pornographic temptations, Jas. 5:13 (Phil. 4:6-7).
    3. Meditate on God's word, Psa. 1:1-2.
    4. Heed your conscience (don't ignore it, 1 Tim. 4:2; Eph. 4:19).
    5. Obey God's truth, Matt. 7:21. Trust the Lord to bless you as you do His will (Phil. 4:13; Heb. 13:5-6).

1. Abstain from fleshly lusts which war against your soul, 1 Pet. 2:11-12.
2. The use of pornography can be repented of and will be forgiven by God when it is, 2 Cor. 12:21.
3. Pornography is classic worldliness. Set your mind on things above and live for Christ, Col. 3:1-4.