ODJ: run

October 6, 2014 

READ: 2 Timothy 2:19-26 

Run from anything that stimulates youthful lusts. Instead, pursue righteous living, faithfulness, love and peace. Enjoy the companionship of those who call on the Lord with pure hearts (v.22).

I was 7 years old when I was first exposed to pornography. Some kids had found it, and I naively agreed when they offered to show it to me. In today’s digital world, the stakes are much higher. More than a frozen picture in time, the power of video erodes what little innocence remains in our world.

Over the years I’ve heard about porn in various forms—phone porn addictions, texted photos, images on the computer. Believers, unbelievers, men, women, young and old alike can be caught in its snare. The temptation is overwhelming, the pain of its effects palpable.

Placed in a broken world, the church carries a strong responsibility to share the answer for those who have felt the stinging effects of sin. Like any sin, when it comes to the healing from sexual sin, we begin with the truth of the Word. Our reasons for falling into immorality may vary, but the answer remains the same: repent and run (2 Timothy 2:19,22).

While we are called to proclaim loudly the wisdom of God’s Word, we must also understand that rescuing others from temptation goes beyond an admonition not to sin (Jude 1:23). All believers face, and sometimes succumb to, a moment of sexual temptation. Galatians 6:1-2 reminds us to offer our strength and encouragement to those who are struggling. The battle isn’t in what is seen, but rages in the unseen (2 Corinthians 10:3-4; 2 Timothy 2:26).

Freedom is real, and it becomes ours when we understand that shame can no longer hold us captive (Romans 8:1). A powerful vessel of hope, the church must be a safe place where people can be honest—first with God and then with others. It’s the only way we can truly engage the heartache that sin brings to all of us.

—Regina Franklin

365-day plan› Acts 1:12-26

Read Proverbs 5:1-23 and consider how this passage applies to society today. 
What does it mean when we say the church should be a safe place? What are some practical ways the church can respond to believers dealing with sexual temptation?