“Mommy, I don’t want to watch this stuff, but I can’t stop!” a ten-year-old girl told her mom recently after the mom discovered several very hardcore porn videos in the browsing history.

“Dad, I’ve been addicted to porn for six years since I got my iPhone when I was 13,” a sophomore in college confessed to his dad. 

Parents, we have an enemy who is using internet pornography to reach into Christian homes and capture the hearts and minds of a generation. 

And most parents have no idea. 

The Bible is clear that “fleshly lusts wage war against the soul” (1 Peter 2:11). If we’re going to be effective in warfare, we must first understand our enemy’s tactics.

Consider the following brutal facts about porn:

Pornography is More Pervasive Than We Think

A survey in 2019 polled practicing Christian college students about porn use. Of those polled, all said their faith was very important to them and they were involved in a campus ministry (many in leadership). 

89% of the men admitted to watching porn occasionally, 61% weekly, and 24% confessed to watching porn daily, if not multiple times in a day. 

51% of women in this group admitted to watching porn occasionally. 

These are our future Christian leaders and parents. 

But let’s consider for a moment an even more shocking reality: The average age of exposure to pornography these days is between eight and eleven years old.

And the age is getting younger as groups like Amaze.org, an online sex education program, target pre-teens with the message that porn use is normal “even a few times a day.” Amaze.org has a goal to reach five million kids by 2022. Kids who think porn is normal love to share their favorite porn sites with their friends.

In 2 Corinthians 10:5, we are commanded to “destroy arguments and every lofty opinion raised against the knowledge of God.” That certainly applies here.

Pornography is More Addictive Than We’re Led to Believe

Any time we experience something pleasurable, our brain releases a chemical called dopamine. Dopamine is a chemical naturally produced in our bodies and it reminds us to repeat enjoyable experiences. Cocaine artificially raises the level of dopamine in the brain and so does pornography.

Addictions anchor themselves more deeply when people start to medicate the pain and discomforts of life with these unnatural dopamine highs. The new drug of internet porn is more available and easier to hide than any controlled substance. 

The ten year old girl in the opening quote didn’t keep going back to hardcore porn videos because she loved sex, but because it made her feel a high she never had before. Anytime she felt lonely, depressed or bored, her brain would seek relief and it knew where to take her to make her feel better. 

Porn is the ultimate comfort food. It’s always there. It’s always an option. It always delivers (superficially). But it also breeds the desire for more.

Porn Can Change a Person’s Sexual Preferences

As with other drugs, a person needs more of the substance to get the same high as time goes on. With porn you don’t just need more— you need different

A study of 11,000 porn users demonstrated that there was a direct correlation between frequency of porn use and personally identifying as bisexual:

  • For those who watched porn weekly, 13% identified as bisexual. 
  • For those who watched it daily, 20%. 
  • Of those who admitted watching porn multiple times daily, 27% identified as bisexual. 

Parents, our flesh can learn to be aroused by almost anything. Since the adolescent brain is more susceptible to addictive substances and activities, a sexually developing person can easily associate this arousal with identity— “This must be who I am.” 

But as the prophet Jeremiah said, “The heart is deceitful above all things, and is desperately sick; who can understand it?” (Jeremiah 17:9) 

The gender confusion that we’re experiencing today is being driven, in part, by pornography.

We have laws in place to protect young people from addictive substances. Yet through technology, they have full access to one of the most addictive substances on the planet. 

Through technology, our kids have full access to one of the most addictive substances on the planet.

Porn is Waging War on Multiple Fronts

Remember 1 Peter 2:11: 

“Beloved, I urge you as foreigners and strangers to abstain from fleshly lusts, which wage war against the soul.” 

This war in our souls spills over into many aspects of our lives:

Spiritual Growth

Dr. Samuel Perry, a sociology professor at the University of Oklahoma, studied the impact of porn use on 3,000 people over a six year period of time. He had this to say about how it impacts spiritual growth:

“Any porn use… is associated with declines in religious commitment and behavior (i.e. attending services, prayer, etc.) and an increase in religious doubts.” 

More porn = less spiritual growth + more doubts.


Dr. Perry’s peer-reviewed research revealed that if either spouse in a marriage started watching porn, the couple was 2-3 times more likely to divorce in the next two years than a porn-free couple. 

One of the best predictors of divorce is the depth of a porn habit. The current generation of youth have a deeper porn habit than any previous generation. 

More porn = more divorce.

Godly Parenting

The more porn a parent watches, the less spiritual interaction they have with their children. 

Dr. Perry states that his findings “suggest that increased pornography consumption might threaten the transmission of religious heritage from parents to children.” 

This flies in the face of God’s commandments to His people concerning their children: 

“You shall therefore take these words of mine to heart and to soul… You shall also teach them to your sons, speaking of them when you sit in your house, when you walk along the road, when you lie down, and when you get up” (Deuteronomy 11:18-19). 

More porn = less spiritual interaction with kids.

"Take these words of mine to heart and to soul... teach them to your sons."

Addressing Porn is an Opportunity

Addressing the following topics from a Biblical perspective is a powerful way to show how relevant and applicable the Bible is to such a modern issue. 

Be Preemptive

Before a certain father even had a chance to talk to his seven-year-old son about sex at all, his son came home from school and asked him about sodomy. The son didn’t know that word— he just described a video that a classmate showed him. 

Because this dad had previously de-shamed the topic, the son felt comfortable asking him about it. He’d told his son the difference between “good pictures” and “bad pictures.” “Bad pictures” show body parts that are normally covered up by swimsuits. He’d asked his son to tell him if he saw a “bad picture” and they would talk about it. 

This simple, preemptive porn talk— without even using the word “porn”— encouraged the son to bring the topic to dad. 

Talk About Sex from the Bible

Help your children understand that sex is a gift from God and is intended for enjoyment within marriage. 

Proverbs 5:18-19 says, “Let your fountain be blessed, and rejoice in the wife of your youth… Let her breasts fill you at all times with delight; be intoxicated always in her love.” 

Instead of being ashamed to talk about sex, help your kids understand that God made sex something for married people to enjoy. If parents do not give their kids a Biblical perspective of sexuality, the world will gladly fill in the blanks.

Satan Twists God’s Gifts to Make Them Destructive

Jesus tells us that the “thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly” (John 10:10). 

Having an “abundant life” includes having an abundant sex life for those who are married. But the Enemy wants to twist and pervert it, so that he can steal, kill and destroy this God-given blessing.

How does porn steal, kill and destroy? Porn users are more depressed, more lonely, less sexually-satisfied and more likely to divorce their spouses. 

Porn promises sexual satisfaction but delivers the opposite. Pointing these realities out to our kids in age-appropriate ways helps them see that God’s way is the best way. 

Set Up Boundaries to Protect Yourself and Your Family

God is a good Father and gives us boundaries to protect us. We must do the same for our kids. 

We need to be aware of the most popular sources of porn. Snapchat, Twitter, video games and other social media formats— if you have a device that can connect to the internet, you can get porn. 

Each parent has to decide what’s best for their kids, but here are some examples of boundaries proven to be helpful: 

  • No private internet access until age 16
  • No ability to download apps without parental approval
  • Filters and accountability software on ALL devices (Covenant Eyes, A2U, etc.)— many kids use parents or grandparents’ open devices to view porn. 

We can’t have “the sex talk” with our kids and just end there. Again, if we don’t “fill in the blanks” for our kids concerning questions about sex, the world will. Making these topics ongoing conversations is important. 

If your child is hooked on porn, encourage them that freedom is possible and is found in the truth. Jesus tells us that “You will know the truth and the truth will set you free” (John 8:32). Walk alongside your child and help them experience freedom. 

Find free programs and resources at TheFreedomFight.org— including the 30-Day Challenge, the Six Month Program, and other resources to help parents educate their kids on the dangers of porn.

Our kids’ future and the future of the Church depends on this generation of parents and spiritual leaders addressing this issue head on with biblical and gospel-centered solutions.