Pornography: An Epidemic on Social Media

Were you aware that on Twitter, pornographers following account users are posting lewd and graphic images? I most recently reported four separate Twitter accounts which I thought violated the Terms of Agreement at Twitter. Unfortunately, four days later as of the writing of this article, Twitter has only acknowledged the reporting of these accounts but has done nothing to take them down. Every pornographer that follows me on Twitter, I block because one, I do not want them contacting my own followers; and two, these pornographers really do not actually look at my content because their posts are computer generated.

What concerns me the most about many social media platforms is their lack of taking action against pornographers. Were you aware that the pornographers within the United States are the largest producer of pornography in the world? Parents, your children are on social media. You may think that a particular social media platform is an innocent place for your children to post, but every type of sexual perversion you can imagine is out on these platforms following your kids. There are sexual predators trying to either lure your children to have sex with them or hook them on pornography. We have not even scratched the surface of how sexual predators lure your innocent children from your homes to meet up and before you know it, the kids have been abducted.

According to a study conducted by Proven Men Ministries, in 2014, 1000 adults across the nation took a survey about sexual behavior. Out of that survey, 388 were self-identified Christian men.  “Out of this segment, 97% of these Christian men admitted to viewing pornography. 80% of these men do not have or use a filter to block internet pornography off computers or cell phones. 78% of these men viewed porn before 16 years of age. 28% viewed porn before 12 years old. 55% of married men view pornography at least once a month. 32% between the ages of 18-30 think they are addicted to porn. Another 12% did not know for sure if they were addicted to porn. Not only can pornography be addictive, but it can lead to extra-marital affairs, which in turn will most likely lead to divorce.” See the following link for the full report: https://www.provenmen.org/pornography-survey-statistics-2014/

The statistics mentioned are just a few of the problems caused by pornographers. Parents, I am pleading with you. If you truly love your children, buy filters for computers that block pornography and do not buy your children smart phones as you cannot regulate what they view on most smart phones. Discuss sex with your children and talk about the consequences of porn addictions and premarital sex. If you would not give your child a loaded handgun to play with, why would you give them a smartphone so that all this evil can be downloaded into their phones and destroy their innocence and life? Once they have viewed these lewd and graphic images, they will not be able to forget them.

What does the Bible say about sexual immorality, adultery, and temptation?

Sexual Immorality:

1 Corinthians 6:9, “Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality.”

1 Corinthians 6:13, “Food is meant for the stomach and the stomach for food”—and God will destroy both one and the other. The body is not meant for sexual immorality, but for the Lord, and the Lord for the body.”

1 Peter 2:11, “Beloved, I urge you as sojourners and exiles to abstain from the passions of the flesh, which wage war against your soul.”

2 Timothy 2:22, “So flee youthful passions and pursue righteousness, faith, love, and peace, along with those who call on the Lord from a pure heart.”

Colossians 3:5, “Put to death therefore what is earthly in you: sexual immorality, impurity, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry.”

Ephesians 5:3, “But among you there must not be even a hint of sexual immorality, or of any kind of impurity, or of greed, because these are improper for God’s holy people.

Galatians 5:19, “Now the works of the flesh are evident: sexual immorality, impurity, sensuality.”

Temptation:

1 Corinthians 10:13, “No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it.”

1 John 2:16, “For all that is in the world—the desires of the flesh and the desires of the eyes and pride of life—is not from the Father but is from the world.”

Job 31:1, “I made a covenant with my eyes, not to look lustfully at a young woman.”

James 1:14-15, “But each person is tempted when he is lured and enticed by his own desire. Then desire when it has conceived gives birth to sin, and sin when it is fully grown brings forth death.”

Psalm 119:37, “Turn my eyes from looking at worthless things; and give me life in your ways.”

Adultery:

Exodus 20:14, “You shall not commit adultery.”

Hebrews 13:4, “Marriage should be honored by all, and the marriage bed kept pure, for God will judge the adulterer and all the sexually immoral.”

Matthew 5:28, “But I tell you that anyone who looks at a woman lustfully has already committed adultery with her in his heart.”

Matthew 5:27-28, “You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall not commit adultery.’ But I say to you that everyone who looks at a woman with lustful intent has already committed adultery with her in his heart.”

Ephesian 5:11-12, “Take no part in the unfruitful works of darkness, but instead expose them. For it is shameful even to speak of the things that they do in secret.”

Consequences:

Galatians 5:19-21, “The acts of the flesh are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery; idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like. I warn you, as I did before, that those who live like this will not inherit the kingdom of God.”

1 Corinthians 6:18-20, “Flee from sexual immorality. Every other sin a person commits is outside the body, but the sexually immoral person sins against his own body. Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, for you were bought with a price. So, glorify God in your body.”

1 John 3: 4-10, “Everyone who sins breaks the law; in fact, sin is lawlessness. But you know that he appeared so that he might take away our sins. And in him is no sin. No one who lives in him keeps on sinning. No one who continues to sin has either seen him or known him.

Dear children, do not let anyone lead you astray. The one who does what is right is righteous, just as he is righteous. The one who does what is sinful is of the devil, because the devil has been sinning from the beginning. The reason the Son of God appeared was to destroy the devil’s work.  No one who is born of God will continue to sin, because God’s seed remains in them; they cannot go on sinning, because they have been born of God.  This is how we know who the children of God are and who the children of the devil are: Anyone who does not do what is right is not God’s child, nor is anyone who does not love their brother and sister.”

Proverbs 7:21-27, “With persuasive words she led him astray; she seduced him with her smooth talk. All at once he followed her like an ox going to the slaughter, like a deer stepping into a noose till an arrow pierces his liver, like a bird darting into a snare, little knowing it will cost him his life.  Now then, my sons, listen to me; pay attention to what I say. Do not let your heart turn to her ways or stray into her paths. Many are the victims she has brought down; her slain are a mighty throng. Her house is a highway to the grave, leading down to the chambers of death.”

Psalm 119:9-10, “How can a young man keep his way pure? By guarding it according to your word. With my whole heart, I seek you; let me not wander from your commandments!”

Philippians 4:8, “Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.”

Conclusion

Parents, if you love your children, protect them from the evils that lurk across the internet. Pornography can steal the innocence of your children. Adults, viewing pornography can cause a division in your fellowship with God. I urge you to repent from your sins immediately and stop looking at pornography. Please don’t allow pornography to destroy your life as well as the life of your wife and children. Pornography is a tool of Satan to cause division between you and God. If you are addicted to porn, I urge you to seek counseling immediately. Finally, this is for the women and men who work in the porn business. Please repent from your sin and come to Jesus and ask forgiveness. Then never go back to work in this industry. This industry is destroying lives and families. Stop allowing Satan to use your bodies and images to destroy your life as well as other people’s lives. I pray that God will change hearts and people will repent from their wicked ways. You will never find fulfillment in participating in porn, whether you are in the sex trades or if you are viewing it. It will only lead you to hell! Only faith in Jesus Christ can change your lives and give you forgiveness, love, satisfaction, and peace.

References:

Proven Men Porn Survey (conducted by Barna Group), located at https://www.provenmen.org/2014PornSurvey/

Photo Credit: Pexels

Copyright © June 1, 2019. The Lantern & Shield Times, a Division of Marketplace Evangelism Ministries Inc. All Rights Reserved.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Espousing Hatred Versus Love

November 8, 2017: Just recently, a woman was seen riding by President Trump’s motorcade as he was in route to a meeting. The woman then stuck her middle finger up at the President of the United States of America. I must say, one must have a lot of guts to do that! Either they do not respect the office of the President of the United States or they are filled with so much hatred, that they just want to tell the President to go to hades!

I visited her Facebook page and she has this picture posted as her Cover Picture on her wall. She apparently is very proud of this because she appeared to enjoy the kudos from her friends and fan base. So many people congratulated her on her actions to the President. Unfortunately, we are seeing this behavior all over the nation. What is so appalling is that this woman was the former Community Liaison Officer for the United States Embassy in Riga, Lativa from September 2007 to May 2009; which was found on her Facebook “About” page.

According to Curt Autry’s NBC12 Facebook page of Richmond, Virginia; this picture was captured by a White House Photographer, which ultimately went viral. It was reported that the bicyclist posted this picture on her Facebook and Twitter accounts and then her employer found out about it. Autry reported that her employer fired her over it because they are a government contractor. She embarrassed them with this gesture. Although she may have had the right to make gestures, she embarrassed her employer, which they in turn terminated her employment.

What would make this woman do this? Hatred is being espoused and spewed from peoples lips every day. It is apparent that the ways of God are not the ways of our nation. People place their political candidates on a higher level than they place God. People have fallen away from the ways of God. I see no love being espoused from the lips of the generation we are living in today. I see  brothers turning on brothers and sisters turning on sisters. What has happened when the man or woman in the highest office on earth has become the most despised and hated?

Isn’t it wonderful that we can live in a country and can say the hurtful and mean things about the President and other political leaders and not worry about losing our lives over what we say. After all, we are protected by free speech, right? Why not vomit hatred and disparaging remarks on social media? After all, it is free speech, right? You know, I believe it just shows the true “heart” and a dark heart that has no love. I am tired of seeing people post hateful things on social media that are hurtful all for the sake of a political agenda. But I guess the people who do this feel that their political beliefs outweigh their Spiritual beliefs. You would be surprised to see what some people write.

The very freedoms a US Citizen has in America was won on the deaths and sacrifices of the US Armed Forces. Before criticizing your President and other political leaders with hateful remarks, why not consider praying for him? After all, we are called to pray! We are called to pray for our neighbors and get this, even our enemies. Regardless of your political stance, why not consider espousing LOVE as opposed to hate? It is easier to forgive than to carry the burden of a grudge.

What is even more startling is proclaimed Believers are participating in this type of behavior. This means that they still have a heart problem. Maybe they truly are not “real Christians.” Maybe they are even using “Christianity” as a political tool. Whatever their motive, by speaking “evil words” against a man or a woman means that one does not have the Love of Christ in their heart.

Last night, in Virginia, the Democrats won in all three of the highest offices, which are Governor, Lt. Governor, and Attorney General. This is what the people asked for and what most Virginians wanted. But instead of Republicans being angry and throwing hateful and mean spirited slurs at them, they must come together and pray for our leaders. We must all come together and pray. Whether you are Republican, Democrat, or Independent; prayer will make a difference.

I don’t know what kind of god you worship or affiliate with? But my God can heal hearts! My God can forgive trespasses! My God can help people to overcome! Why should we pray for a man or woman in leadership whom we do not care for? Because by praying for them, we are asking God to intervene for us that they will do the right thing. My God can change hearts and can save people from their sins.

Why pray for leaders to fear God? When someone leads and lives fearing God, they experience:

1. Wisdom
2. Knowledge
3. Understanding
4. Eternal Praise
5. Victory
6. God’s Protection

7. A Blameless Walk
8. Length of Life
9. Wealth and Honor
10. Humility
11. The Avoidance of Evil
12. Being Untouched by Trouble
13. The Saving of a Crushed Spirit
14. A Life That Lacks Nothing

(Credit: Dr. Mark Becton taken from sermon preached on 01/22/2017, The Victory Hour, Grove Avenue Baptist Church.)

These fourteen points is all the reason to pray for your leaders, regardless of whether you like them or not. We are called to pray and to show the love of Christ to those who do not know Him, even if it is the President of the United States of America, Governor, Lt. Governor, or the Attorney General.

By praying for them, we are asking God to guide them and lead them to make the correct choices. By praying for them, God can change their hearts and hopefully, they will lead the people in a way that is honorable.

James 5:16 says, “Therefore, confess your sins to one another and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person has great power as it is working.”

1 Timothy 2:1 says, “First of all, then, I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for all people.”

Philippians 4:6, “Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.”

Matthew 18:19, “Again I say to you, if two of you agree on earth about anything they ask, it will be done for them by my Father in heaven.”

Matthew 6:9-13, “Pray then like this: “Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name. Your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.”

Remember, before criticizing others, look at your own life. If you are without sin, then cast the first stone! But in reality, your life is just as filthy as the life that you are criticizing. Look at Romans 3:23, “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.” We all have sin in our own lives. So, before you criticize the President, Governor, Lt. Governor, the Attorney General, or any other leader; consider cleaning up your own life before trying to straighten out the lives of others! This is exactly why we must be praying for others as well as have others to pray for us!

 

References:

Dr. Mark Becton taken from sermon preached on 01/22/2017, The Victory Hour, Grove Avenue Baptist Church.

Joseph T. Lee Blog, WordPress, “My God Can!”

Curt Autry NBC12, Facebook Page, November 6, 2017.

© November 8, 2017, Joseph T. Lee, The Lantern & Shield Times LLC.

Unfriended!

Wow! I have lost yet another friend on Facebook! I had 503 and now I have 502. I guess I am going to cry! Not really. Listen, I am trying to live my life the best that I can for God. I will take a stand. Sometimes, taking a stand for God is not popular. But I have never really cared about popularity. I just want to do what is righteous in the eyes of God. I have friends on both sides of the aisle. They know what I believe. I still love them and care for them dearly. But I cannot compromise my beliefs. If I lost all of my friends, it still would not matter. One day, we will all have to make a choice. Either deny Christ or die. I am not looking forward to that day, but I will never deny my God and Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.

If one is a friend with me on Facebook, they are either family, a Christian, someone I have met in business, or a client. My Facebook page is my personal page. It is where I can share my faith and hopefully, minister to others. If someone does not want to see my posts, they could ignore them. To unfriend means rejection. But that is okay with me. If they were TRULY a friend, then they would accept me for being me.

Many people turn to social media as a way to communicate with others. They get caught up into how many “LIKES” that they can get in order to feel accepted and loved by their so-called “Friends.” The fact is those “Friends” probably do not have your best interests at heart. Many people, especially teenagers are looking for acceptance through any means available. Social media is one way of gaining acceptability and sparking their ego with many “Likes.” But if one is “unfriended,” a person’s self-esteem may already be low, and they may be devastated by the fact that someone has rejected them. “Yet for some, being digitally deleted by their contacts can be bruising to the ego — even if the relationships aren’t close” (The Canada Press, 2015).

“There’s this idea that unfriending on Facebook is like an active step that you take to tell somebody: ‘I don’t like you. I don’t want to see your stuff anymore'” (The Canada Press, 2015). People who have a low self-esteem may take this as a rejection and may resort to depression or even harming one self. It appears that some people so wrapped up in social media take offense when someone they actually do not know in real life “unfriends” them. It is very sad that people have stopped building friendships and relationships naturally by personal interaction. I have actually seen families communicate via texting sitting in the same home or at the dinner table.

Technology is a wonderful tool, but if used incorrectly, can be devastating in people’s lives. For example, take a pastor who needs to check on a congregational member who may have had a family loss or who may be facing a surgery. I believe the correct method of contact is either picking up the telephone and calling them or get into his car and go to them, if at all possible. When pastors text a congregational member who is in need of prayer, consultation, or comfort; texting is not appropriate and is impersonal.

The Internet can be an impersonal place and yet many use social media as a way to communicate in their lives. Social media means so much to some people, that they neglect their own family and personal relationships. Some teenagers are so addicted to their smart phones that if a parent took it away, they would almost have a breakdown. Their smart phones are their lifelines to others and if their phone were broken or taken away, I am sure the situation and interaction would not be pleasant to either the child or the parent.

In my opinion, a parent should not ever give a child a smart phone because by doing so, you are introducing that child to a world of information that the child may not be mature enough to process. For example, some cellular companies cannot implement parental controls on certain types of smart phones. If a child wonders on the Internet, they can be exposed to pornography. A parent cannot control what or where a child goes using their smart phone. This is not even scratching the surface. Texting in itself leads to problems. Teenager’s sexting pictures of themselves to boys and girls, and then that picture get circulated. In actuality, the child has just distributed child pornography and has committed a felony and could be found guilty and have to register as a sex offender. Many of you reading this will think I have gone to the extreme, but the fact is that Virginia is prosecuting these types of cases.

As parents, if we allow our children the freedom to do what they want on the Internet or buying and allowing them to use smart phones, we have potentially caused them harm because of the dangers of the Internet. I wonder how many parents look at their kid’s Twitter feeds or their Facebook posts? My child did not like it that I snooped and watched her social media. I did it because I love her! I have always wanted the best for her! I asked questions. I wanted to know what she meant by certain things she said. I got involved and ran interference when I thought something might have been inappropriate language.

Parents. Listen to what I am saying! If you really love your child, PROTECT them from harm. Watch their social media. Know what they are saying. Monitor their computer and smart phones. If your child will not allow you to monitor them, take their phones away as well as their computer. Protect your child from the predators on the Internet. When your child becomes so addictive to social media, then the “friending”, “unfriending” and the “Likes” will dominate their lives. Be their parent and not their friend! If you really love your children, you will be their parent first and guard them against the evil of predators.

So how did we go from an adult being “unfriended” to teenagers and children? The fact is that social media has affected everyone’s lives. Social media has almost become one’s church and god. It has become people’s lives and many may live their lives through other people’s experiences. When social media becomes more important than having personal relationships in “real life,” then it becomes an addiction. The Bible says in Exodus 20: 3 “You shall have no other gods before me.” When we as Christians place more emphasis on social media than reading and studying God’s Word, then we have in fact placed social media on a higher level than God.

Think about it! If we put anything ahead of God, we are sinning. I am not saying not to have a social media account. What I am saying is that moderation is the key! Please do not let the “Like”, “Friending” or “Unfriending” affect your walk with Christ. God wants a personal relationship with each of you. He loves you and He sent His one and only Son to die for you and to redeem you from your sins. In John 3: 16-17, the Bible says “ For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. 17 For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.” If you are looking for acceptance and you do not want to be “unfriended”, then God will never “unfriend” you if you give your heart to Christ.

As a Christian who is in love with Christ and loves God, there will be many people who despise God. And if they despise God, they will despise a follower of Jesus Christ. But I would rather be despised by the world than to be rejected by God. I love my God and I have committed my life to a lifetime of service to Christ.  Service to Christ means living one’s life in a manner that is pleasing to God. It means to follow God’s standards of living and obeying God’s commandments as well as acting as Christ would act. It means sharing one’s faith with others. I pray that you will find love and acceptance that is found only through Jesus Christ and only in God’s love.

References:

The Canada Press. (2015). CBCNews / Science & Technology. Retrieved 2015, from CBCNews : http://www.cbc.ca/news/technology/facebook-unfriending-why-you-should-think-twice-1.3154487

 Joseph T. Lee, Managing Partner, The Lantern & Shield Times LLC © November 4, 2017.