I was teaching a Bible study this past week on the topic of sexual immorality. Specifically, we were looking at I Corinthians 5:1-13. In order to help folks make practical application of the material, I had reason to do some investigation into the pervasiveness of pornography.
There are some astounding statistics…
According to www.familysafemedia.com, with every second that passes $3075 is being spent on pornography and 28,258 users are on line viewing the stuff. Every 39 minutes a new pornographic video is being created in the United States.
The web is inundated with porn. There are 4.2 million pornographic websites, which constitutes 12% of all the internet sites. The average age of the first internet exposure to porn is 11 years of age! And the National Center for Mission and Exploited Children estimates that 20% of all internet pornography involves children.
Safefamiles.org reports that the total porn industry revenue for 2006 was an incredible $13.3 billion in the United States and $97 billion worldwide. That’s a “B” as in BILLION!
Comscore Media Metrix reports that 70% of men from the ages of 18 to 34 visit a porn site each month. And I am told that 17% of women are struggling with a pornographic addiction.
And lest we think that all these statistics are for those “out in the world” and they do not include Christians, let me give you a few more facts. Christianity Today did a leadership survey in December, 2001 and in that survey 51% of the pastors said that cyber-porn was a possible temptation for them. An amazing 37% reported that it is a current struggle. At a 1996 Promise Keepers event, over 50% of the men in attendance said they were involved with pornography within one week of attending that event.
So what should we do? First, I might suggest that believers stop acting like this is a massive problem for everyone else and start addressing it within the church.
We need to be talking about it. We need to form accountability groups that study God’s Word and apply the specific principles outlined for dealing with sexual immorality.
Secondly, we need to be honest with each other. If this is an area of struggle for you or someone you love, it is time to act. Find a fellow believer who can biblically assist you to reorient your thinking and raw a line in the sand. It is time to stop this insidious drain of personal purity. Isaiah exhorts us to “…wash and make yourselves clean. Take your evil deeds out of my sight. Stop doing wrong!” (Isa. 1:16).
Together let’s declare: “I will set before my eye no vile thing. The deeds of faithless men I hate, they will not cling to me” (Ps. 101:3).