Thursday, 26 July 2012

AN EYE FOR SMUT OR BEAUTY?

It all starts with the eye, the gateway which allows evil to creep surreptitiously into the mind.

                                                                       

Many have hardly any qualms about watching pornography these days, a habit which has spawned a worldwide multi-billion dollar industry. It is even seen as harmless and educational.

The glorification of eroticism has never been so open and excessive as it is today. Tantalising images are easily available online. Obscene DVDs are hawked in the pasar malam (night market), disguised as children’s educational wares, while suggestive music video clips bordering on soft porn invade the living room of couch potatoes.

It all starts with the eye, the portal which allows evil to creep surreptitiously into the mind.

When Jesus recommends plucking out one eye (Matthew 5:29), He is merely exaggerating. His purpose is to warn us that our eyes can affect our eternal destiny. It’s better to be one-eyed in heaven than to have both eyes in hell.

 If your right eye causes you to sin, tear it out and throw it away. For it is better that you lose one of your members than that your whole body be thrown into hell” (Matthew 5:29).

Sound amusing? But Jesus is dead serious.

“I will not set before my eyes anything which is base,” proclaims the psalmist (Psalm 101:3). It is a call for purity and holiness in our personal lives.

What was Jesus trying to say in the following passage?
The eye is the lamp of the body. So, if your eye is healthy, your whole body will be full of light, but if your eye is bad, your whole body will be full of darkness. If then the light in you is darkness, how great is the darkness!” (Matthew 6:22-23).

He is stressing the point that the eye, though it is just one tiny little organ, is crucial to the overall health of the body.

A “healthy” eye is able to perceive that which is pure, honourable and of spiritual value. It is not just physically sound. When we set our eyes and mind on the positive, *  it edifies our inner man. Light enters our soul and we, in turn, are able to radiate that light from within us (Matthew 5:16).

If we allow our eyes to linger on corrupt things, darkness will fill our soul. If this habit is not nipped early in the bud, we will soon be consumed by and addicted to base things. Vile thoughts, which fill our minds almost every waking moment, will distract us from any positive endeavour. By then, Satan has already ensnared us – all because we are not aware of the destructive effects of viewing smut.

We will not be able to spontaneously serve God with a clear conscience. It’s important especially for leaders (and those aspiring to be leaders) to set their house in order in this area if they want to be effective. How can they lead and minister if they themselves have no peace and are still struggling to overcome sexual sin in their personal lives?

Believers who have fallen into this porn trap should confess their sins and renounce them, preferably before a minister/ counsellor.

Often those who are addicted to porn need help from others in their walk back to freedom. Thereafter, they should make themselves accountable to a mature person who can continue to encourage them and monitor their progress.

DWELL ON THE POSITIVE AND LOVELY:
  *    Read and meditate on good books, including the Bible; watch epic movies with positive themes; view glorious sunsets, waterfalls or other majestic sights of nature; worship, pray and fellowship with others.

“Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things. What you have learned and received and heard and seen in me—practice these things, and the God of peace will be with you” (Philippians 4:8-9).


Whatever negative thing we “sow” in our lives – by allowing our eyes to view that which is base – we will reap (Galatians 6:7).


“For those who live according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who live according to the Spirit set their minds on the things of the Spirit. For to set the mind on the flesh is death, but to set the mind on the Spirit is life and peace” (Romans 8:5-6).


May we all choose life and peace.



Related post:  
YOUTHFUL PASSIONS.
Why does the Bible single out the young – especially young men – when it comes to keeping ourselves morally pure?



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