Imagine your child being completely unimpressed with porn… disinterested… unaffected by its allure… is that even possible?

Yes, it is.

Bear in mind, however, that we told you MCAG is Radical and Revolutionary… you may be surprised by what you read here. And if you haven’t read the main series of articles on the MCAG site, you should probably do that first.

It Starts at Home

A Child's Reach to a Future SiblingWhen I was barely five, I remember being in my mother’s bedroom and seeing her naked pregnant body as she dressed. When she let me put my ear to her belly, I recall saying, “Hello in there!” After she gave birth to my youngest sister, I often saw her breasts as she nursed. Not until years later did I see those breasts again, when I did an EKG on my mom in the ER where I was an RN. Finally, caring for her at home as she died of a brain tumor, I saw her fully naked several times. How beautiful her body was, even at age seventy-five.

Self-Fulfilling Assumption

Here in modern America, most of our parents stopped letting us see family nakedness early in childhood. The assumption behind this restriction is that, after “the age of innocence,” the naked body becomes a sexual temptation. Unfortunately, that assumption itself plants the seed of such a temptation, the restriction inevitably cultivates it, and society reaps the harvest of a pornographic view of the body.

I’m not blaming my parents or yours. They were misled by the prevailing culture, just as their parents were before them. But I do blame the church, not just for its past and present leadership in promoting a sexualized view of the body, but for its negligence in theologically correcting this error through a mature, realistic, incarnational view of human embodiment.

The Assumption is False

Missionaries and cross-cultural workers living among naked people groups get to see what happens when this aversion to nudity is absent. They themselves quickly become accustomed to seeing nakedness everywhere. Although they learned the body taboo just as we did, they soon stop experiencing the sexual temptation it preaches. This alone should cause church leaders to tremble and ask, “What have I been teaching?” But culture is blinding. Its authority can render normally intelligent minds oblivious to the obvious.

What If…?

But stop and think. What would it be like to grow up in a naked culture? What if the bare bodies of friends, neighbors, and family members became a daily sight? Bodily growth from infancy to old age would be routinely visible. Adolescent emotional worries about the physical changes of puberty would be replaced by realistic expectations. Young people would grow up with total visual knowledge of the opposite sex, thus eliminating any prurient curiosity about body parts and their functions. Pornography could gain no foothold in such an environment, because a pornographic view of the body would be nonexistent.

In the next blog post I will discuss some practical ways to teach and practice a non-pornographic view of the body as a means to porn-proofing our kids.

Pastor David L. Hatton

MyChainsAreGone.org

Before going further, let us be

very “Up-Front” with you…

MyChainsAreGone.org exists to help people overcome bondage to pornography.

The MCAG website is Radical and Revolutionary.

It really is…

… but you might miss that if you just glance at it.

Just How Radical Is MCAG?

At MCAG, we believe that most Christians are blindly committed to a pornographic view the human body. That view is a lie. And only the truth will set us free (John 8:32).

This blog’s purpose is to:

  • Highlight the radical, life-changing truths presented at MCAG.
  • Challenge falsehoods about the body you’ve always assumed to be true.
  • Give you an opportunity to comment, challenge, question, or inquire.
  • Provide additional content that doesn’t appear in the pages of MCAG.

If you’ve read any MCAG articles, you can expect these posts to be shorter, more thought-provoking, and more controversial. We’re taking aim at some long-held and cherished—but false—beliefs… It’s time to tell the truth.

NOTE: MCAG really is all about overcoming bondage to pornography. Keep that in mind if what we say tempts you to question that fact.

When a well-packaged web of lies
has been sold gradually to the masses over generations,
the truth will seem utterly preposterous
and its speaker a raving lunatic.
— Dresden James
(pseudonym for Donald James Wheal, British writer, 1931-2008)

The raving is about to begin.

Welcome to the MCAG Blog!

When are desires sinful?bigstock_Successful_Business_Man_(bW-lrg)

In Part 2 we noted that lust (or strong desires) can sometimes be good. The Bible uses the same Greek word for both positive and negative desires. So we need some kind of criteria to determine which it is. Of course, the scriptures, not human ideas, must be our guide for determining whether strong desires (“lust”) are good or bad. Simply, if the Bible condemns it, then it is sinful.

Sexual Desire Is Normal

An entire range of desires are a normal part of our human existence. We desire food to eat and liquids to drink. We desire comfort in life. We desire rest each day. These and similar desires are not condemned in scripture, except when indulged to excess, as in gluttony, drunkenness, complacency,or laziness.

In like manner, sexual desire is a God-given gift built into us so that we would long to unite with another person in the one-flesh expression of marriage. That sexual desire is positive and good. You see, the problem is not the desire, but the misuse of the desire to pursue something illicit. Only then does that natural and good desire manifest its expression as sinful desire, or “lust.”

Where We Cross the Line

In Matthew 5:28, Jesus is making the point that “to lust after a woman” is just a mental version of violating the Fifth Commandment which forbids adultery. It is a mental decision to experience a woman sexually who is not his wife. Since that woman is not his to experience sexually, and the desire for that experience may not be righteously fulfilled, it must be judged a lust that is sinful.

The “lust” of Matthew 5:28 is the desire to sexually experience a person you have no legitimate right to. To lust (desire, covet) in this way fails to treat the other person as someone to love and respect, but rather it treats them as an object to be used or consumed for personal sexual satisfaction. The sinfulness of such lust is not determined by the simple presence of sexual desire, but the intent of enflaming or fulfilling that desire illegitimately.

If we are expressing that illicit desire with a live person, we are failing to act in true love, for godly love never endorses or expresses itself unrighteously. If instead we express that illicit desire towards an image (such is in pornography,) we are objectifying, sexualizing, and dehumanizing the image of that person for the purpose of self-gratification.

The IVP New Testament Commentary Series speaks to this in the section on Matthew 5:27-30.

“The Greek tense probably suggests ‘the deliberate harboring of desire for an illicit relationship’ …. Jesus refers not to noticing a person’s beauty but to imbibing it, meditating on it, seeking to possess it.

“Lust is antithetical to true love: it dehumanizes another person into an object of passion, leading us to act as if the other were a visual or emotional prostitute for our use. Fueled by selfish passion, adultery violates the sanctity of another person’s being and relationships; love, by contrast, seeks what is best for a person …”

(The IVP New Testament Commentary Series, Matt 5:27-30, n.b. paragraphs 7&8)

Desire for food is legitimate, but when indulgence in eating becomes an obsession, it becomes sin. Likewise, sexual desire is legitimate until it is focused upon and indulged with a person that we have no right to experience sexually. The desire is God-given; the misuse of that desire is sin.

Leave It to Our Enemy to Confuse Us

Our enemy has convinced us that our normal legitimate sexual desire is evil, making us feel guilty of sin. And—sadly—the Christian culture has unwittingly cooperated with the deception.

  • Sexual desire is not sin. Using it to mentally possess and use someone else for self-gratification is sin.
  • Being sexually alive is not sin. Objectifying others for the sake of pursuing illicit sexual expression is sin.
  • Simply feeling a physical sexual response in your loins is not sin. But assuming that such feelings are lust and giving in to them as if you have no responsibility for your thoughts or choices… that is sin.

No wonder so many men feel defeated by their own bodies. They have normal sexual desires but anytime they become aware of those desires, they immediately feel guilty. And because sexual desire persists, they give up, give in, and fall into sinful lust. They descend into hopelessness, not recognizing that their sexual desire is normal. They don’t realize they have legitimate ways of addressing that desire without giving in to mental adultery (a topic for another article). Fundamentally, sexual desire is a good gift from God which we must learn to manage righteously.

Just To Be Clear…

We are attempting to draw a fine line here… There is a difference between being made cognitively aware of one’s own sexuality and focusing sexual interest on someone specific. When we focus that interest on someone specific, we are in the danger zone, if not already across the line into lust. Where the “fine line” is difficult to assess is when it is a person who triggers that cognitive awareness… and that someone is a person to whom we have no sexual claim. When that happens, we have a choice… either to focus our sexual attention on that person (which would be sin), or to reject that focus, refusing to inflame our desires with thoughts of that person.

The thrust of these articles is not to excuse a sexual focus and response to someone besides our own spouses, but to release people from the lie that presumes that any conscious awareness of our own sexuality must also be defined as lust. Each person is responsible before God to find that “fine line” in their own heart. Chances are, it will vary from person to person.

Think About It!

Before you challenge this, be sure you understand the truths taught at the MCAG website. In particular, read the series of articles found here: “The Lies We Have Believed.”

At this point, you may be wondering what the Bible has to say about masturbation. I recommend that you read Pastor David Martin’s blog articles on masturbation

— Pastor Bill

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Previous Posts in this series:

Sexual Desire and Lust – Are They the Same? Part 1
Sexual Desire and Lust – Are They the Same? Part 2

For more on this topic:

MCAG Articles: The Lies We Have Believed
MCAG Blog Articles: FAQ–What about Masturbation?

Feel free to Leave a Comment on this post.

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Are sexual desire and sinful lust the same?Anguish

Summary of Part 1

In Part 1 I described my experience (and that of many men) of being conflicted between the acceptability of sexual desire for my wife, but unacceptability to have sexual feelings or fantasies at any other time. Such conflict led me to frustration. After fighting it so long I’d give in to pornographic lustful thinking. Previously I said that this frustration was eliminated when I finally realized that sinful lust and sexual desire are not necessarily the same. Let me explain!

Yes, Desire Can Be Sinful

Clearly Matthew 5:28 teaches us that to lust after a woman is equivalent to adultery.

But I say to you that everyone who looks at a woman with lustful intent has already committed adultery with her in his heartMatthew 5:28 (ESV)

But what does it mean to “lust after a woman” (or any other person, regardless of gender)?

Not All Desire Is Sinful

Let’s look at what the bible says about “desire.”

In the scriptures the Greek word translated in Matthew 5 as “lust” is used in both positive and negative ways. The word is epithumeo  in its verb form and epithumia in its noun form. By itself, the word is neutral… and may be right or wrong. The word is also translated “desire,” “earnestly desire,” “long for,” “crave,” and “covet.” Any strong desire is an epithumia.  What makes it good or bad is whether or not the thing desired  may be righteously obtained, then it is not sin. Sinful Lust then is the desire for something which may not be righteously obtained.

Consider a positive usage of the word: Jesus “earnestly desired” (epithumeo) to eat the Passover with his disciples in Luke 22:15. This was a righteous desire that Jesus pursued and fulfilled. In 1Timothy 3:1 when Paul says that a person who aspires to be an elder “desires” (epithumeo) a noble task, he is using the same Greek word to speak of a righteous desire.

By contrast, in Matthew 5:28 when Jesus talks about looking at a woman “to lust after her” (KJV) epithumeo is used for an unrighteous desire, condemned as equal to adultery. This same Greek word is used to translate the unrighteous desire called “coveting” in the Ten Commandments when quoted by Paul in the New Testament (Romans 7:7). The essence of sinful lust is coveting—a desire to possess something which is not ours.

“Covet” equals “Lust” – Including the Intent to Possess

While we’re talking about lust and coveting, it’s worth noting that from a biblical standpoint, they should be considered synonymous. We may correctly think of “covet” as the word used in the Old Testament and “lust” as the word used in the New Testament. In both Testaments, the original language words are used to describe both righteous and unrighteous desires.

It is also evident in the scriptures that these words indicate not just the desire, but also the intent to possess.

I suspect that most people already think of the word “covet” as implying the intent to possess, but here’s where we make a mistake in our understanding of lust… “lust” is typically assumed to mean any evidence of a desire at all!

Or more simply:

  • Covet = Desire AND a Plan
  • Lust = Desire alone.

That notion is biblically false! The correct understanding is this:

  • Covet = Desire AND a Plan
  • Lust = Desire AND a Plan

Faulty Interpretation Leads to False Guilt!

This should help us see why it is important to understand “covet” and “lust” as the same biblical concept. If we misunderstand the word “lust” in the New Testament, we may conclude that the Bible teaches something it doesn’t really teach. And this could result in false guilt, for it would be founded on a false definition of “lust”!

So, both “covet” and “lust” imply an intent to possess the object desired. But here again, it is not the intent to possess which makes a desire right or wrong, but whether or not the object may be righteously obtained.

In summary, it is biblically accurate to draw a distinction between desires that are righteous and those which are unrighteous.

Now we are ready to talk about the difference between normal desires (not sinful) and sinful lust. I’ll cover that in Part 3.

— Pastor Bill

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Other posts in this series:

Sexual Desire and Lust – Are They the Same? Part 1
Sexual Desire and Lust – Are They the Same? Part 3

Feel free to Leave a Comment on this post.

Please share this blog with others…

For years I felt constantly defeated by lust.Anguish

Lust and Desire Conflicted

I knew the desire for sex with my wife was OK, but I believed that any sexual feelings beyond that context was sinful lust.

I would awaken in the morning with an erection and strong sexual desire. I felt guilty so I’d confess it to God. I would see an attractive woman which would heighten my sexual awareness. I believed that it was sinful lust in my heart.

One minute, I’d have strong sexual feelings that I believed were lustful. So I would try to suppress them. At another time, I would be with my wife where I am permitted to feel strong sexual feelings. One moment, those sexual feelings and desires were wrong (lust) but in the next moment they were good (spousal love). I was conflicted.

To be honest I was frustrated and weary of trying to not lust… yet I experienced sexual feelings and desires frequently almost every day. I could not eliminate it from my life. Eventually, I would quit the battle and just give in to the outward expression of those sexual desires… and indulge in pornographic lust.

Most Men are Frustrated

I know I wasn’t alone. As a preacher, I could easily make men aware of their “sinfulness.” All I had to do was quote Matthew 5:28, “everyone who looks at a woman with lustful intent has already committed adultery with her in his heart.” Every man I knew felt that his heart was lustful if he merely looked and acknowledged the attractiveness of any women other than his own wife.

My Journey to Victory

I have since realized that I was confused between sinful lust and natural sexual desire. My journey to victory began with understanding the lies that I had learned and believed about the human body. The truth taught at My Chains Are Gone replaced the lies and my battle with pornography ended. I soon realized I had also believed a lie about what constituted sinful lust… a lie that had contributed to my bondage.

Could you be caught in this same trap, believing that any sexual desire, dreams, thoughts, or fantasies other than for your wife are sinful lust? I am convinced that many men are unnecessarily defeated because of this confusion. Stay tuned for part 2 where we will look at two different ways the Bible uses the words for lust. Not all lusts are equal.

— Pastor Bill

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Previous Posts in this series:

Sexual Desire and Lust – Are They the Same? Part 2
Sexual Desire and Lust – Are They the Same? Part 3

For more on this topic:

The Lies That We Have Believed – Lie #3

Feel free to Leave a Comment on this post.

Please share this blog with others…

Equal_Sign_question2After reading a post from a young Christian who is choosing the culture’s view of homosexuality and so-called “Gay Marriage,” I got to thinking about how and why young people—our own children, even—could so easily set aside the Scriptural understanding of marriage.

Then I realized… they rejected it because their parents’ already had!

No, we parents haven’t endorsed same-sex marriage, but our understanding of the meaning of marriage has already been exchanged for a meaning that is culturally—not biblically—defined.

Here’s What I Mean…

For at least a generation, it has been commonly acknowledged and practiced that marriage exists for personal fulfillment. Consequently, marriages have been forged in a moment of passion, then dissolved in a moment of frustration. I’m over-simplifying, of course, but you see my point… a person has the right to be married to whomever makes them happy. And conversely, they don’t have to be married to anyone who doesn’t make them happy.

As you probably know, the divorce rate among Christians is not much different than among non-Christians.  So, while Christians should know better, these statistics belie the fact that even Christian marriages are still—too often—based on the culture’s “personal fulfillment” ideal.

We’re Not Teaching the Truth!

What does marriage mean, though? What is it really for? Has the church been teaching it?

I don’t think so…

We give lip-service to the biblical truth that marriage is a picture of Christ and the church, but do we really know what that means? For example… what does sexual union teach us about Christ and the Church? In all my years in a pastor’s home, Bible College, full-time ministry, and listening to thousands of sermons, I have never once heard a biblical answer to that question.

Imaging God…

God made us in His image… and evidently, it took both male and female for God to adequately paint the portrait. Have you or I ever been taught why? I can’t remember ever hearing why.

When God made the man and the woman, you remember what He told them… to be one flesh, and to be fruitful and multiply. These are commands to engage in sexual union. And He told them these things right in the context of making the man and the woman in His own image!

So… exactly how does sexual union contribute to the “Image of God”?

Perhaps a few have heard this answer, but it sure hasn’t been emphasized in our teaching on marriage or sexuality. I believe the answer is this:

God is a “Trinity”—that is, He is a plurality expressed as a unity. Sexual union is a physical picture of that divine unity… it is literally a plurality expressed as a unity.

It’s right there in Genesis 1 & 2… the God who is ONE said “Let US create man in OUR image,” so now in human flesh, the “TWO become ONE.”

Marriage is a Portrait of the Divine

Marriage is not about human-fulfillment. Marriage is not about the pursuit of happiness. Marriage is not about self-expression. It reveals the very nature of God.

Marriage is not about rights. Marriage is not about equality. Marriage is not even about human love. It expresses of the glory of God.

When a man and woman come together in marriage, they reenact the creation of mankind in God’s image as a plurality—male and female. When that man and woman unite sexually, they expand that image by making tangible a picture of the perfect unity of the Godhead.

This… this is the deepest meaning of the sexual union of a man and a woman in marriage.

Have They Rejected This Picture of Marriage?

Today’s generation of young people have not rejected this truth… they’ve simply never heard it.

Today’s generation of young people have accepted our definition of the meaning of marriage—to find personal fulfillment—but they have wondered why we would be restrictive about what sort of personal sexual fulfillment is “OK.”

Today’s generation of young people have embraced our value of human love as the ultimate purpose of marriage… but they also correctly recognize that real love doesn’t just happen between opposite genders.

Do You See How Far We’ve Strayed from This Truth?

It is we who have failed to understand the true meaning of marriage from God’s Word.

It is we who have, instead, embraced the culture’s man-centered definition of marriage.

It is we who have laid aside our glorious calling as Divine Image-Bearers—Male and Female—designed by our maker to physically join in one flesh… and made sex only about ourselves.

So let us not be shocked that our children have mutated our distorted definition of marriage into one that we find offensive.

Perhaps our own distortion of marriage has been offensive to God for a long time already…

A Call to Truth.

I don’t know what’s going to happen in the Supreme Court. I don’t know what laws will be enacted regarding these issues. But I do know that we—as the church—need to be restored to God’s Truth.

And regardless of what the law of the land is or becomes, we can embrace God’s calling on our marriages. We can begin to seek out the riches of God’s Glory, revealed in human flesh as described in God’s Word. We can put the truth of God-given gender distinction into practice in our lives.

… And only then will we truly have a voice to speak to the next generation what sex is really about, and what it means to play the God-ordained, gender-determined role in that divine portrait.

— Pastor Ed

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(The following story took place about 8 years ago…)

Checking Out the Artwork

Lovely

This is the sculpture we saw that day.

My daughter had a violin recital. We had to get there early, so while they prepared for the performance, the rest of the family had to wait. Thankfully, the recital was held at a community arts center that had lots of artwork around the grounds to look at.

So that’s what I did… I looked at all the art work… all—that is—except one.

That one was a nude.

To be honest, I wanted to look at it, too… but since I still held the pornographic view of the body, I would not allow myself to look at it for fear that it would incite lust in my heart.

A Startling Question.

“Hey, Dad… did you see that one sculpture?” It was my 10 year old son. “Isn’t that disgusting?

I was a bit surprised by his question, but apparently, I had already taught him my very distorted view of the body… without even realizing that I had done so. But he took that view to its logical conclusion… a conclusion that was self-evidently false!

And it was an uncharacteristic moment of clarity that informed my answer…

“Actually, it’s quite lovely.”

I’m not sure why I said that… I guess I was just too surprised by the question to respond with anything but the truth.

Look at it… how could such a sculpture ever be described as “disgusting”? Yet that’s exactly the perspective that I had somehow communicated to my son… without ever saying a word about nudity!

What Are We Teaching Our Children?

I can’t remember what I ever told my son about nudity. I don’t recall ever telling him to spurn the sight of human skin. I never told him that a woman’s nude body was “disgusting”… but that’s obviously what I had taught him.

In fact, it seems that he was confident that by coming to me and declaring it “disgusting,” he would be rewarded by affirmation and earn my approval for his insight. I must have taught him really well…

It’s a Lie…

The sculpture my son saw was not disgusting.

Yet I was as guilty of teaching him that lie as if I had spoken it from my own lips.

You see, we have culturally defined the unclothed body as a sexual condition, so we’ve concluded that it is “indecent” to be seen in any context other than the one where sexual expression is condoned (marriage). We have supposed that this perspective promotes moral purity… but instead, it promotes a lie… which leads inevitably to impurity! (That’s just what lies do.)

The Beginning of Understanding.

This incident with my son and the sculpture happened probably eight years ago. And it was several years thereafter before God more fully corrected my thinking about the meaning of the unclothed human form. But this was a beginning. I had been startled into speaking the truth instead of  just reaffirming the lie that I had unwittingly taught my son.

It was moment of clarity from which—thankfully!—I’ve never recovered.

Ultimately, it was part of a transformation of perspective that delivered me from pornography and drove me to establish the MCAG website.

It’s time we teach our children the truth.

— Pastor David Martin

Sculpture above by Joan Bankemper, found at joanbankemper.com.
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For more on this topic:

The Pornographic View of the Body
Lies That We Have Believed
Can You Spot the Pornographic Version?

Feel free to Leave a Comment on this post.

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We’re Not Alone

centerfold-syndrome-gary-r-brooks-hardcover-cover-artWe launched the MCAG website knowing that our articles would be unique and controversial. We ourselves had been converted from skepticism to realism, and we could not be silent about the truth. Imagine our surprise at discovering that our website was validated by the teachings of a published psychologist.

Not long after our website was up and running, a lady wrote to congratulate us. Our message, she said, was similar to that of psychologist Gary R. Brooks. She attached an excerpt from his book, The Centerfold Syndrome, photocopied from a college anthology. What an encouragement to find ourselves “on the same page” with this counselor!

Insightful Observations

Here are the five principal components of “the Centerfold Syndrome,” with quotes from Dr. Brooks:

  • Voyeurism: “The culture at large seems to be generally indifferent to this trend [of female body glorification], seeing it as harmless titillation, pretty much a natural product of men’s biological makeup. I strongly disagree with this position. It is my contention that this mania, this explosion of glorification and objectification of women’s bodies, promotes unreal images of women, distorts physical reality, creates obsessions with visual stimulation, and trivializes all other features of a healthy psychosexual relationship.”
  • Objectification: “. . .when a man in a relationship is continually distracted by a fantasy life dominated by visual images of idealized bodies of strangers, that man will frequently be emotionally absent from his partner; he will be unable to have intense, here-and-now experiences with her. Tragically, if he spends most of his emotional energy on sexual fantasies about inaccessible people, he frequently will not be available for even the most intimate emotional and sexual moments with the most important person in his life.”
  • Need for Validation: “[Men] are programmed to crave validation of their masculinity, and they frequently view women’s bodies as a medium for that validation. This need for validation disempowers them and creates an odd yet vitally important inversion of the traditional power relationship between women and men. . . . When women are envisioned as sexual objects and made the centerpiece of men’s visual world, they become imbued with enormous psychosocial power.”
  • Trophyism: “While collecting new and different sexual trophies may be celebrated among adolescents, it is a sign of emotional immaturity in the world of adults. . . . Women’s bodies age, losing their trophy-like characteristics, especially in comparison to newer varieties. Hence, the trophy-hunting man, initially satisfied with his trophy-wife, must eventually face the maddening reality that his prize will eventually lose her luster, while other potential prizes will emit near-irresistible allure.”
  • Fear of True Intimacy: “. . .men are taught to suppress their needs for intimacy and sensuality, and come to invest too much emotional and psychological power in some women’s bodies. Fearing their potential overdependence on women, men develop a preoccupation with sexuality, which powerfully handicaps their capacity for emotionally intimate relationships with men and for nonsexual relationships with women.”

Worth Reading…

Dr. Brooks sees the Centerfold Syndrome as epidemic in America. His personal experience in counseling men suffering from it has made him an expert in describing the problem of a pornographic view of women’s bodies. In fact, even if you have no trouble grasping the concepts we share on MCAG, studying his perspective will reinforce your understanding. For that reason, we obtained his permission to use two large excerpts from his book as a resource for our readers. We encourage you to purchase and read the whole book.

— Pastor David

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For more on this topic:

Excerpts from The Centerfold Syndrome
The Pornographic View of the Body
The Centerfold Syndrome
on Amazon.

Feel free to Leave a Comment on this post.

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bunny specs

Some people can say a lot in a very few words. This post is the first in a new blog series where we’ll present a rich quote, and make a few comments.

This quote for the New Year is from Kenich Ohmae, a Japanese business and corporate strategist. He was probably speaking here of business, but his words are equally applicable to our effort to understand human embodiment.

We Need New Lenses…

It is hard to let old beliefs go. They are familiar. We are comfortable with them and have spent years building systems and developing habits that depend on them.

Like a man who has worn eyeglasses so long that he forgets he has them on, we forget that the world looks to us the way it does because we have become used to seeing it that way through a particular set of lenses.

Today, however, we need new lenses. And we need to throw the old ones away.

Comments…

In our world today, the pornographic view of the human body is a pair of glasses that—it would seem—almost everyone wears. So many wear them that we find both the church and the porn industry affirming the same false perspective… so we’ve all just assumed that it must be right… as if we’re really not seeing through any lenses at all!

But we are… and we are in desperate need of new lenses. It’s time to view the human body through the biblical lens of the Imago Dei.

— Pastor David Martin

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For more on this topic:

The Pornographic View of the Body
The Imago Dei

Feel free to Leave a Comment on this post.

Please share this blog with others…

It was the perfect day to build a snowman.

Snow Venus - nude Or snow-woman, if preferred.

And so Eliza Gonzalez and her two children created their own snow version of the famous Venus de Milo sculpture, albeit without the head.

One neighbor evidently complained and soon the police were knocking at Ms. Gonzalez’s door requesting that she cover or destroy the nude snow woman.

So, rather than just destroying fruit of their labors, her daughter found a bikini top and a sarong to make the snow woman “legal.”Snow Venus - clothed

One of these snow sculptures is pornographic…

Can you identify which one?

The nude?

… Wrong.

The nude sculpture accurately portrays God’s beautiful design for a woman’s torso. It makes no “statement” and tells no lies.

The “clothed” version, however, definitely does make a statement.

It says that even the representation of a woman’s breast in snow is lewd. It is sexual. It is provocative. It is dangerous to our moral purity to be observed. It is, in fact, indecent.

And the sarong? Well, everyone knows that it’s wrong to see a woman’s loins uncovered… even if she is only made of snow.

That’s a Pornographic Perspective!

Only one of these two versions of the Venus de Milo insults the woman’s form it displays… the one in the bikini.

And it tells us a lie about what that form means. That lie is that the most significant thing to be observed in the female form is its sexual impact. (see this article)

Clothing the snow sculpture gives us permission—and even encourages us—to continue thinking pornographically about a woman’s body!

Ironically, it was not the artist who crafted the nude snow-woman who sexually objectified the female form, but the neighbor who complained about it! In fact, after her daughter had dressed the sculpture as seen in these photos, Ms. Gonzalez was quoted as saying, “I thought she looked more objectified and sexualized after you put the bikini on.” (See this online article about the Snow Venus.)

I think she’s right.

nude_snowoman

Pornographic Thinking Empowers Pornography

It matters how we think about the unclad human form. It matters what we think it means. It matters because how we think about it drives how we respond to it. That is simply inescapable.

I like to say it this way:

We sinfully view the unclothed human form because we have a sinful view of the unclothed human form.

— Pastor David Martin

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For more on this topic:

The Pornographic View of the Body

The Lies We Have Believed – Lie #1

Gordon College: Policy on Nude Art Models 
— A Christian College Art Department uses live nude figure models.

A Christian Perspective on Nudity in Art by Matthew Clark

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