3 Ways Your Porn Use Degrades Your Wife

When you value porn more than your wife, it destroys your marriage! She wants you to stop viewing it, yet you continue. She believes you don’t value her enough to quit. Sometimes she asks herself, “What did I do wrong, and why am I not good enough to satisfy him?” This puts her on an unnecessary guilt trip of self-degradation and pain. This isn’t the only way your porn use degrades your wife. Here are a few other ways it impacts your marriage.

Porn degrades your roles in the marriage.

Husbands, love your wives, as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her, that he might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word, so that he might present the church to himself in splendor, without spot or wrinkle or any such thing, that she might be holy and without blemish. In the same way husbands should love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. For no one ever hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, just as Christ does the church, because we are members of his body.

‘Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and hold fast to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh.’ This mystery is profound, and I am saying that it refers to Christ and the church. However, let each one of you love his wife as himself, and let the wife see that she respects her husband. –Ephesians 5:25-33

God designed roles within your marriage. As a husband, your role is to love your wife so much that you would lay down your very life for her as Christ did for us. Her role as your wife is to help you be the best man you can possibly be by being your companion and friend, your lover, your helper.

When pornography enters the relationship, both of your roles slip away. You fail to love her fully as Christ loved His bride, and she loses respect for you. The marriage suffers, and you both lose.

Will you ever be asked to die for her? Likely not. But you must learn to “die to self.” That means to love her more than you love yourself, which may be harder than physically laying down your life to protect her or save her. Dying to self requires denying the flesh, putting aside selfish desires, and putting energy into someone other than yourself.

Pornography feeds the flesh and strengthens selfishness. It never satisfies, but pulls a man deeper and deeper into sins of the flesh. It is addictive! Although you may hide it for awhile, your sin will eventually be exposed, smashing her trust in you again. The bigger issue, however, is about dishonoring God. He established marriage roles, and porn devalues both the roles and the people in those roles.

Porn degrades the intimacy you share.

But because of the temptation to sexual immorality, each man should have his own wife and each woman her own husband. The husband should give to his wife her conjugal rights, and likewise the wife to her husband. For the wife does not have authority over her own body, but the husband does. Likewise the husband does not have authority over his own body, but the wife does. Do not deprive one another, except perhaps by agreement for a limited time, that you may devote yourselves to prayer; but then come together again, so that Satan may not tempt you because of your lack of self-control. –1 Corinthians 7:2-5

Oh, that little word, self-control! Intimacy in a marriage hinges on self-control. “Avoid fornication–pornea” (1 Thes. 4:3). That takes self-control before marriage. Statistics have well established that couples remaining pure before marriage have more satisfying marital relations after marriage. Self-control may be needed during times of illness, during monthly cycles, during high-risk pregnancies, and will definitely be needed during times of temptation.

Self-control, a fruit of the Spirit, brings one’s self under the control of the Spirit in obedience to the Word. In the flesh, we lack self-control. Only as we walk in obedience to the Lord and grow through the sanctification process do we develop self-control (2 Pet. 1:3-10). Self-control is necessary for a beautiful, intimate relationship between a man and his wife.

Pornography is a fruit of the lack of self-control. Porn demands and controls. Love gives to meet needs and serve others. Masturbation, fornication, and adultery lack self-control. All of these feed the flesh and destroy aspects of intimacy for the future or current marriage. However, a man who understands that his body belongs to his wife, just as hers belongs to him, will value the intimacy they share. He’ll thank God for the beauty of a one-flesh relationship that continues to lovingly mature throughout many years of marriage.

Porn degrades her 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 Corinthians 6:19-20

Before he died in prison, Ted Bundy, a serial rapist and killer, told the story of how his path downward began as a kid with pornography. I remember wondering back then how one led to the other. However, after spending many years counseling women who have been abused by their own husbands, I’ve learned to ask not if the husband is into pornography, but to ask how long and deep his porn addiction is.

I don’t believe I’ve ever counseled a physically abused woman whose husband had no history of porn. That is not to say every man who watches porn beats or rapes his wife. But the principle remains: if you value both your own body and the body of others as the temple of the Holy Spirit, you are less likely to abuse yourself or others in any way. Porn absolutely increases the risk of degrading your wife physically, emotionally, and spiritually.

Porn sees women in general as objects for self-gratification. This attitude crosses over toward the wife, disrespecting not only her person, but also her body. If she’s asked to do sexual acts that hurt her or make her feel used, she’s devastated and feels degraded.

Is her body for your abuse, or for God’s glory? Do you view her body as pure and holy? Porn clouds that picture and opens the possibility for disrespect and abuse. When you value your body as the temple of the Holy Spirit and seek to glorify God in your body, then you will more likely treat your own body with respect, and also that of others, especially your beloved wife. Your role as her protector is to help your wife feel loved and safe.

Help is on the way!

My husband has counseled many men who struggle with sexual idolatry. Help comes from memorizing very specific passages of Scripture to renew the mind (Rom 12:1-2), leading to a changed lifestyle. He regularly uses a tool called “Building Blocks of Truth To Moral Purity” (pdf). He asks the men to choose and memorize the verses that empower them to grow in victory over the addiction and to develop a mindset of moral purity and self-controlled lifestyle. He spends time on each of the seven controls to help them make very personal and specific applications to their struggles.

Another essential help is finding accountability in godly men who will ask the tough questions and encourage you to change and grow. The battle is in the heart and mind. As your heart is, so you are. Do what you need to do to grow and maintain a pure heart. Persevere. Christ is worth the change, and so is your wife! Your wife will feel valued and respected, your love and intimacy will flourish, and the oneness that God intended will grow deeper to the glory of God.

 

covenanteyes.com · by Sherry Allchin · November 30, 2016

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