Evangelical Neil Kennedy recently wrote an article about how men can can keep themselves pure. While Kennedy says that men are culpable for their sexual peccadilloes, it’s clear from his article that he places most of the blame on women. After all, women are predators out to destroy men.
When societies lose the directional parameters of purpose, they cast off all restraint. The 1960s sexual revolution ushered in a degrading of America’s young people. Now, the first generation of men who grew up with unlimited access to pornography are suffering unexpected collateral damage—porn-induced erectile dysfunction (PIED).
With unrestrained access to pornography, and semi-pornographic images blasted at us daily, how can a man keep himself pure? What’s the answer? Do we put the burden on women? Cover them head to toe in black sheets? Vail their eyes?
Solomon, a man who knew women far better than most, gives us powerful principles for keeping one’s self pure:
Pay attention to wisdom (Proverbs 7:1-5). Wisdom is like a sister that gives you insider information about women. She says, “Listen, I’ll protect you from an affair with an immoral woman and her deceptive flattery.”
Keep your distance from seductive women (Proverbs 7:6-8). Sin requires proximity. Create boundaries.
Don’t give an ear to seductive words (Proverbs 7:5) Don’t allow a woman to whisper in your ear.
Go home after work (Proverbs 7:9). Men make bad decisions when they don’t have direction.
Bounce your eyes from the brazen look (Proverbs 7:13). Follow the example of Job. Make a covenant, a spiritual promise, with your eyes to not look lustfully. We’ve all seen the guy who looks googly-eyed at a woman. Imagine if you saw a man looking that way at your wife or daughter. Don’t be that guy!
Know the difference between lust and love (Proverbs 7:23). Lust is manic, obsessive, and uncontrolled desire to take something or someone. Lust takes while love gives. God is love—God is Holy; therefore, love must be holy. Contrary to popular culture, love is confined to righteousness established by God.
Honor another man’s wife (Proverbs 7:19). We should practice a man-code. Job recognized that looking upon a woman lustfully opened the door for his wife to serve another man (Job 31:10).
Don’t be persuaded (Proverbs 7:21). Seduction comes from flattery. Flattery is a type of witchcraft. It’s a manipulation by deception.
Understand that impurity is a trap (Proverbs 7:22). Men often say, “I’m a grown man, I am free to do what I want.” In reality, sexual sin is addictive and is a trap that enslaves men.
Remember that the immoral woman will embarrass you (Proverbs 7:26). You will be victimized. You’re better than sexual sin. Your purpose is greater than fantasies.
Consider that the immoral woman will escort you to your death (Proverbs 7:27). There’s nothing to gain in your life in the secret chambers of porn.
Watch out for those Jezebels, men. They are out to get you!
The Black Collar Crime Series relies on public news stories and publicly available information for its content. If any incorrect information is found, please contact Bruce Gerencser. Nothing in this post should be construed as an accusation of guilt. Those accused of crimes are innocent until proven guilty.
Yesterday, I posted a story about alleged sexual crimes of Shannon Griffin, an IFB pastor’s wife and a kindergarten teacher at Jordan Baptist School in Burbank, Illinois. Today, the Chicago Tribune reported an alleged conversation between Shannon Griffin’s husband, Thomas, and a church member by the name of Mike Mollo:
Parents at the school said they sent their children to the private school because they trusted the Griffins. Now they are feeling betrayed.
“He said, ‘Dad, you got to see this,’” parent Mike Mollo said. “He pulls his phone out, and it’s a bunch of pornographic videos of her doing things to herself.”
Mollo’s two children went to the school, and his family belonged to the church.
“The second I saw that video, the very next day, I pulled my kids out of that school, and we stopped going to church there immediately,” he said.
He said explicit images of Griffin began circulating among students. Photos were provided to CBS 2 by an adult.
Mollo said he went to police and confronted his pastor, Griffin’s husband.
“I called the pastor, and I said to him, ‘You better get in front of this.’ I said, ‘All these kids are passing videos around of your wife.’ And he said, ‘It’s not my wife. It’s not her. We’re just going to pray about it. Let the lord take care of us,’” Mollo said.
Mollo said he feels beyond betrayed by what happened.
“You pay that kind of money to send your kids to a school to where you can trust these people, and they go and do this?” he said. “Betrayed is an understatement. Violated, betrayed, angry. There’s no words to describe what I was feeling.”
Note carefully Thomas Griffin’s response to Mollo: “It’s not my wife. It’s not her. We’re just going to pray about it. Let the Lord take care of us.”
First, Pastor Griffin lied. He and his wife have been married for twenty-eight years. I am sure, by now, he knows what his wife looks like naked, and otherwise.
Second, clergy in the state of Illinois are mandated reporters, as are school teachers. Pastor Griffin was legally obligated to immediately report his wife to law enforcement. So were any school officials who heard rumors or knew about Shannon Griffin’s sexual misconduct. Sometimes, doing the right thing is hard, but Pastor Griffin had a duty to protect church and school children from his wife’s predatory behavior.
Third, it is absurd that Pastor Griffin, instead of doing what was legally and morally required of him, wanted to pray about the matter and leave it in the Lord’s hands. This is exactly what more than a few IFB preachers are known for: covering up criminal behavior. Griffin is a graduate of the late Jack Hyles’ college, Hyles-Anderson College. I can’t help but see a connection between Pastor Griffin’s response and the pernicious teachings of Hyles.
Pastor Griffin just wants to put his wife’s misconduct in the Lord’s hands. Sadly, Jesus has never, ever called law enforcement to report one of his children. Instead, he forgives their “sin” and wipes their slate clean. This is why sexual abuse allegations CANNOT be left in the hands of pastors and churches to investigate and control. In IFB churches, in particular, protecting the testimony of the church is far more important than protecting and caring for those who have been victimized by pastors and congregants alike. Cover-ups abound.
Fourth, how is it that Pastor Griffin has not, at the very least, been suspended or put on leave? His comments reveal that he does not have the best interests of the church and the school at heart. (And at some level, I understand his desire to protect his wife and their three children.) According to several news reports, Shannon Griffin was doing at least some of the things she is accused of for six years! Six years! Jordan Baptist Church is not a huge church, attendance-wise, and the school only had a hundred or so students. I find it hard to believe that no one heard any rumors about Mrs. Griffin’s alleged criminal behavior over the past six years.
It will be interesting to see how this story plays out. The overwhelming majority of Black Collar Crimes series stories feature male perpetrators. When it comes to female wrongdoers, there’s often a double standard. An adult male teacher has sex with a teenage student and it’s rape. Let a female teacher do the same with a teen boy, and it is considered every boys’ wet dream.
The Black Collar Crime Series relies on public news stories and publicly available information for its content. If any incorrect information is found, please contact Bruce Gerencser. Nothing in this post should be construed as an accusation of guilt. Those accused of crimes are innocent until proven guilty.
Shannon Griffin, an IFB pastor’s wife and a kindergarten teacher at Jordan Baptist School in Burbank, Illinois, was arrested Monday and charged with sexual assault and solicitation of child pornography. The Chicago Tribune reports:
Shannon Griffin, 49, of Oak Lawn, a teacher at Jordan Baptist School, was taken into custody Monday after a monthslong investigation, according to the sheriff’s office. Investigators allege that Griffin “engaged in sexual conduct” with a male underage student who was enrolled at the school, according to a news release from the sheriff’s office.
Griffin is also charged with sending nude pictures and videos of herself to that minor and another juvenile at the school, both males, and asking the minors to send her images, according to the sheriff’s office.
The alleged conduct began in 2013 and continued until March of this year, police said.
Griffin, who is also charged with distribution of harmful materials and grooming, is expected to appear in bond court on Wednesday.
The investigation began in early March when the Burbank Police Department received an anonymous tip, according to Burbank police records obtained through a public records request. The tipster also told police that the school pastor, who is married to Griffin, and the principal were made aware about the inappropriate videos and images, according to the police records.
During an interview with detectives, the student said that a female teacher sent images and videos showing a woman “removing her clothing and exposing her breasts and vagina,” according to Burbank police records. The student also gave police a Samsung Galaxy tablet, which he said he used to make copies of the messages, the police records indicate. Burbank detectives who reviewed the messages noted the images did not show “a visible head or face of the female,” according to Burbank police reports.
Jordan Baptist School is owned and operated by Jordan Baptist Church, an Independent Fundamentalist Baptist (IFB) congregation. Jordan Baptist is pastored by Thomas Griffin, a graduate of Hyles-Anderson College. Currently, both the church and school websites are down. A cached page says the following about Pastor Griffin:
Thomas Griffin, Pastor of Jordan Baptist Church, Burbank, Illinois, was born in Toledo, Ohio. He is a graduate of Hyles-Anderson College and previously worked for his home church of Lewis Avenue Baptist Church, Temperance, Michigan; and as an Assistant Pastor of Jordan Baptist Church for five years. Pastor Griffin was called to Jordan Baptist Church in 1997. Since becoming pastor, Jordan Baptist Church has seen great advancements both numerically and spiritually. Several new ministries have also been started under his pastoral leadership.
He and his wife Shannon have been married since 1991 and have three daughters: ***, ***, and ***. He loves his church and has a tremendous burden for the Chicago area, and even through busy ministries and growth, Jordan Baptist Church has maintained its close-knit family atmosphere with a passion for serving people.
Griffins’ adult daughters also teach at Jordan Baptist School — an unaccredited institution.
Update, July 3, 2019
The Chicago Tribune reports Shannon Griffin had her first court appearance today. Lori Levin, Griffin’s attorney, said her client “vehemently denies that it’s her in the photos.”
Cook County Judge John Mahoney ordered Griffin held on a $750,000 bond. He also ordered that she have no contact with the alleged victims in the case or with any minors.
Police said the inappropriate conduct began in 2013 and continued until March of 2019. Prosecutors said there are two victims. The first is a male student who was between 15 and 17 during the alleged crimes. Prosecutors said Griffin and the student had sex five times, often in her minivan in an industrial park, and a sixth time after he graduated. It was usually in exchange for a bottle of alcohol.
“In 2013, the victim asked the defendant on Snapchat if she would get a bottle. The defendant said, ‘Yes, if we have sex,'” Gruca said.
The second victim was a 16-year-old student who prosecutors said communicated with Griffin over Snapchat several times. The victim started taking screenshots of several pictures and video Griffin allegedly sent him, “One picture depicts the front of the defendant from the neck down in her bra and underwear with a message written across the picture, ‘warm out of the shower missing uuuu,'” Gruca said.
Both victims also told investigators Griffin has a tattoo of an arrow on her left hip. Griffin’s attorney did not answer whether or not Griffin has the tattoo after the judge asked her in court today.
After hearing the details the judge said, “This is a horrible betrayal. It boggles my mind…what a betrayal.”
Did you know that Pornography Causes Brain Damage?
It’s neuroscience. There are lots of reports on it.
The brain compensates for the over indulgence of a porn addict by creating less dopamine receptors in his brain.
The result is that it takes more to arouse him.
Addicts go from soft porn, to hard porn, to eventually things like rape porn, bestiality, child porn, etc.
To compensate for less dopamine receptors in their brain, they start to wire in their “aggression drive” into their “sex drive” and start doing things like choking, spitting, slapping, bondage, etc, to get aroused.
That is why the path of pornography has created many rapists and even serial killers.
The following excerpt is from a Question and Answer article in Evangelical Michael Pearl’s No Greater Joy magazine (March-April 2019 edition):
I know you don’t care who you make mad, so you are my last hope. Us guys need a voice.
I am 18. My church ministry is to teach eight guys, ages 13–15, guitar lessons on Sunday evening. We discuss the Bible and pray at each lesson. Here is our problem:
We have a fun youth group and a great youth pastor. At the youth meetings, one girl always wears a dress and usually during the meeting she opens her legs about five inches and creates the “shaft.” When she sits on the swivel stool it is really bad. Don’t laugh.
I talked to my mom and asked her to talk to the girl. Mom (divorced) just reasoned with me that you can’t really see anything but a flash of white, but mom just didn’t get it. It is like the most private thing of a girl and suddenly it is there in my face and it is REALLY distracting. I make an effort to avoid the girl, but I always forget and get shot with the shaft. Then my mind goes nuts and my body does its thing so I am freaked if suddenly called to stand up front. It is not that particular girl—it is just the shaft. Any female that spreads her legs would get the same unwelcome response. I am sick of the guys having to bear the pain. Girls need to know that guys don’t WANT every guy in the room to gawk at their girl’s shaft. It seems lowlife.
The guys in my class talked about how to avoid looking down the shaft. The 13-year-olds really struggle. They never participate in games due to the possibility of the bulge. I went to the youth pastor and then to pastor, but they each said they were sorry but their position was delicate because one word and the girl or her mother would probably get offended and accuse them of lusting and they would lose their job and maybe marriage. Us guys have prayed for an open ear from someone in authority, but so far we have not found how to fix the problem.
Now this girl wants to join our guitar class, and us guys are like, NO. No way. I took a stand, told WHY, and it did not come out the way I thought. I have been told all kinds of stupid nonsense about submitting to authority and how we should not be this or that against females. Heck, I like females. It’s just that church is not the place to be turned on. I don’t like being manipulated. Everyone says she doesn’t understand how guys are and thinks that when guys look at her it means they like her. Then all I have to say is SOMEONE in authority is failing to do their job in explaining things to her.
Everybody complains about cigarette smoke being blown in their face; well we are having something blown in our face. Just one girl controls all us guys. It’s wrong.
If the church doesn’t let me keep my guys’ guitar class, I am considering starting a church in my house so we can do it without the shaft!
It is hard being a young man nowadays with porn everywhere. It is even more discouraging when it sits across from you on a high stool and spreads wide just as you get ready to pray for the meal.
I won’t print Pearl’s answer, but he does side with the man, If you are interested in reading his answer, you can find it here.
Let’s all stop and pity this poor, helpless horn dog of a man. FEAR THE SHAFT! This girl evidently revs this guy up sexually and he doesn’t know what to do. So, he blames everyone but himself for his stiff penis. Still think religious indoctrination doesn’t cause harm? This man is a textbook example of someone whose mind has been filled with Evangelical nonsense, rendering him unable to think or act normally.
I grew up in rural Northwest Ohio. We didn’t have XXX movie houses or strip clubs. In Bryan, Ohio, only two establishments sold adult magazines. I was nineteen and a student at Midwestern Baptist College before I saw my first pornographic magazine. I suspect many of the young men studying at Midwestern had similar experiences. Our rural, small-town cultures sheltered us from the perversity found in big cities, as did the hellfire and brimstone preaching of the churches we came from. Sexual naïveté ran wild at Midwestern, and the college’s answer was to regularly preach against sexual sin, hoping that doing so would keep students from sexual temptation.
Pontiac, Michigan was a dirty, dying industrial town. Its downtown area had numerous adult entertainment establishments, including a XXX movie house that played the latest pornographic movies and hosted amateur night stripper contests. It was not uncommon to see a dozen or more prostitutes plying their trade on downtown Pontiac street corners. One woman who comes to mind was a rather large woman with huge DDDDDDDD breasts. She would briskly walk the streets braless, breasts bouncing chin to belly button. It was quite a sight to behold.
As you might surmise, downtown Pontiac was a magnet for young, virile, horny Baptist boys. The personal contract rules at Midwestern forbade physical contact between dating couples. No hand holding. No kissing. No hugging. No nothing. Students were required to stay six inches away from their boyfriends/girlfriends at all times. (See Thou Shall Not Touch: The Six Inch Rules) Of course, students broke the six-inch rule with impunity, causing all sorts of guilt. The good news was that Jesus was only a prayer away. That’s the Baptist way: sin, ask for forgiveness, promise never to sin again — wash, rinse, repeat. It’s a great way to live.
One night, after much prayer and temptation, I decided to check out the fine art films at the XXX movie house. I parked away from the theater, thinking that if anyone who knew me drove by they wouldn’t see my car. As I walked from my car to the movie house, I could “feel” the “Holy Spirit” telling me, Don’t do it, Bruce. God says it’s a sin. The Bible says it’s a sin. Your pastor says it’s a sin. Your dorm supervisor says it’s a sin. Your preschool Sunday School teacher says it’s a sin. All these voices in my head, but one voice stood above all others — mine. I wanted to do this. I was curious about what was behind the theater’s doors. And so I made my way to the theater’s entrance, paid my admission, and found a seat at the back of the theater.
The first act of the night was an amateur stripping contest. Local young women — some of them prostitutes — stripped and paraded back and forth on the stage. This was the first time I had ever seen a woman naked. I battled conflicting emotions. On one hand, I felt guilty. I was breaking THE law of God, and I was violating college rules. On the other hand, I felt excitement, sexual excitement. It was my first time seeing a woman’s body in all its glory — as naked as Eve in the Garden of Eden — what more can I say? After all of the women had strutted their wares, judges determined the first, second, and third place winners. The winners were given cash prizes.
Then it was time for the feature film. As with the amateur contest, the movie definitely exposed me to sexual things I had never seen before. Needless to say, I was fascinated by what I saw. I am sure some readers of the Evangelical persuasion are thinking, Oh my God Bruce, you were taken in by Satan’s greatest temptation — lust. I bet you couldn’t keep from doing this again, right? Sorry to disappoint you. This was my first and last trip to the XXX movie house in downtown Pontiac. I would later marry a beautiful dark-haired girl who was a wonder to behold in her own right. Why look from afar when you see, touch, and well, you know….
The highlight of the evening came not on the stage, but as I was leaving the theater. As I exited and turned my head to the right I saw, much to my surprise, a graduate of Midwestern and deacon at Emmanuel Baptist Church (the church college students were required to attend). Our eyes met, and then both of us quickly turned away, pretending that we had never seen the other. This man and his wife were friends of Polly’s parents. When their names came up in family discussions years later, I so wanted to say . . . boy do I have a story to tell!
If there’s one topic that freaks Christians out the most, it’s masturbation.
When you tune into the discussion, it can get alarmingly serious.
There are believers who stand on either side of the fence on this topic, but overwhelmingly within the Church, masturbation is considered off-limits.
In a world of passionate forbiddance, I’d like to stand up and ask…
What if masturbation could heal us?
What if there are people and situations being overlooked in the debate?
What if masturbation is more of a grey area that we ever anticipated?
You’ve probably heard that porn is like a drug. It affects your brain in the same way heroin or cocaine can. Both behavior and substance can become addictive, and users may become dependent, requiring heavier doses to experience the chemical ‘rush’. With both sexual behaviors and drug use, withdrawals are a common struggle when beginning the recovery journey. The suffering associated with withdrawals often leads to relapse.
The solution for heroin or other opioid addicts is Methadone. It is a prescription drug which eases withdrawal symptoms to make the transition to sobriety possible in those first few weeks or months. It is a controlled and safer substance, but is still addictive in itself and carries risk. It has been used successfully to treat recovering addicts and is a method accepted within society.
The sex or porn addict on the other hand, is expected to make a full recovery by going ‘cold turkey’ overnight. Assuming they are unmarried, the addict is encouraged to remove every sexual outlet in their life. Why do we expect success if we know other addictions are so difficult to recover from without a pseudo-drug or at least a gradual weaning process?
What if instead of eliminating absolutely everything sexual, which like a starvation diet, encourages relapse or bingeing, the addict could work on individual struggles one at a time? Masturbation may be the final frontier to conquer. What if it helped them to truly find freedom?
Perhaps masturbation could be Methadone for the recovering sex addict.
If you’re burning with rage, or are already scheduling in a handy little marathon, hold up. This is not a free for all. Let’s talk accountability.
How would you feel about allowing masturbation in your life…under supervision? I don’t mean your accountability partner needs to watch you do the deed. But, in your ongoing accountability journey, take two simple steps. Firstly, determine your personal boundaries. Within a Christian worldview, perhaps masturbation could be helpful if it’s private, safe, not compulsive, not being used to withhold marital intimacy or bury emotion, is free from lustful thoughts or is part of a therapeutic program (I know, makes it difficult doesn’t it?). Next, commit to being open with your accountability partner about when you do masturbate, and why.
Whether you feel convicted to pursue a life with or without masturbation, accountability is key. Orgasms are powerful. Once you start experiencing them, you’ll think having sex with anything and everything is a great idea. Both lifestyles open themselves to bingeing or relapsing. You need someone to keep you on track.
What if allowing masturbation and removing the shame could actually break the cycle of addiction?
Earlier today I posted the following observation to Facebook:
“If a woman wears sexually suggestive clothing around a man is that not also sexual assault? Men are visually stimulated and unwanted stimulation should meet the basic definition of assault. I am not condoning bad behavior by men but women need to understand that by walking around in their little sister’s skirt they are guilty of indecent visual assault on a man’s imagination which does cause mental anguish and torment especially on men who really are trying to live in harmony and respect toward women; something made more difficult when every ripple and curve are exposed to the men around you. Something to think about.”
Needless to say this caused a flurry of comments both in agreement and disdain. Many – too many – concluded I was fabricating an excuse for sexual assault against women by men. But those people, men and women, willing to wade into the deep end of the pool got it, thankfully
Many married women also feel assaulted and infuriated by the provocative dress of other women in part because they know what it’s doing to their husbands. And what, exactly, does it “do” to their husbands?
When a man sees a naked or partially dressed woman a chemical reaction happens in his brain. Neurotransmitters like dopamine and serotonin are released, giving him an involuntary surge of pleasure… involuntary!
It does also appear that women know this affect they have on men. This is likely due to cultural conditioning over several decades. From the sexual revolution of the sixties to Hollywood’s push for more and more sexual imagery in movies girls have been conditioned to accept the normalization of using their bodies as tools to gain acceptance in society. The “look at me” addiction has led to smaller and smaller bathing suits on beaches with modesty having all but disappeared. The porn scenes made in private studios have gone public. Men are in a state of constant sexual assault by women who either don’t understand the severity of what they are doing because it’s cute and they like the attention, or worse – they do know the feelings it stirs and like the control they have over men.
There are literally millions – nay – billions of pictures we could post here but again, soft porn. Do the women know what they are doing? Yes, of course. But are they aware that it fits the definition of “sexual assault?”
Finally let me say, for your own sake and ours, please put some clothes on. Stop the sexual assault against men. Yes, you have the power. Yes, you are pretty. But also yes, you are assaulting us.
I have on and off over the years subscribed to Sports Illustrated (SI). Published weekly, SI features stories about athletes and sports leagues. One issue every year is devoted, not to sports, but to the wonder of the female body. The Swimsuit Issue, as it is called, is chocked full of photographs of bathing suit-wearing models. SI chooses exotic locations for the photo shoots. The photographer part of me lusts over what can only be described as a dream gig — splendid locations and beautiful women, what’s not to like, right?
Over time, the bathing suits have become skimpier; a reflection of our society’s increasing comfortableness with nudity. Every year, Evangelical groups express their outrage over the Swimsuit Issue, and every year countless Baptist preachers rush to the mail box so they can preserve their SI copy before their wives get a hold of it. Evangelical morality police are not the only people who get a self-righteous hard-on over the Swimsuit Issue. So do Catholic groups such as Catholic Youth Apostolate:
That takes us to the other half of your question, one of swimsuit models on magazines. Again, the real question here is one of intent. Swimsuit catalogs exist to sell swimwear for women. One could safely say that these kinds of images should be harmless to someone striving to live chastity [sic]. The Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue (we use this example because the SI Swimsuit Issue is the highest grossing, most widely distributed issue of their magazine every year… interesting, for a magazine that is supposed to be supporting a culture of sports fandom) exists to sell supermodels to men. No one purchases that particular issue of SI in order to buy a new swimsuit for his wife. The women in those magazines are styled and posed in such a way that could easily lead anyone viewing them to lust – they’re often topless, sometimes naked; posed not to show off the swimwear, but their bodies.
One might say, ‘But I’m just admiring their beauty, what’s wrong with that?’ The problem lies in JPII’s quote above – you can’t admire their full beauty as a human person, because you don’t know them. All you have to admire is their physical form, separate from their heart, mind, and soul, so it’s impossible not to objectify them. Furthermore, the women in those magazines don’t express the wide variety of God’s beauty in all men and women – all the women in those magazines are roughly the same size and shape, a cultural standard of ‘beauty’ that simply means ‘sexy’ and is impossible for the average woman to achieve. Beauty is much broader than the images displayed in magazines. It’s not that these images show too much, but too little.
Does this mean that if you happen to catch a glimpse of the cover of the SI Swimsuit Issue in the check-out line at the grocery store, you have sinned? Probably not. But in order to grow in the virtue of chastity, it would be wise to not pick it up and flip through the pages. In as little as two-tenths of a second, an image can be emblazoned in one’s memory for years. And Jesus would rather you not risk it, since he said that everyone who looks at a woman with lust has already committed adultery with her in his heart (Mt 5:28). Again, make no provisions for the flesh…
This could just as easily of been written by an Evangelical preacher.
Back in my Evangelical preacher days, I would watch for the Swimsuit Issue to be delivered so I could throw it in the trash before I or one of my teenage sons was led into horrible sexual sin. One particular year, the magazine never arrived. Hmm, I thought at the time. I wonder what happened to it? Months later, while working on a vanity light in our master bathroom, I found the missing issue hidden above the cabinet. How did this magazine get here? I wondered. Come to find out, one of my sons had intercepted the magazine and hidden it. I made sure my mag-stealing son knew that he had sinned against God, and then I tore the magazine up and threw it away. Today, we heartily laugh about this story, but at the time, absconding with the magazine was viewed as a serious act of disobedience to God. I felt it my duty to make sure that my sons were not exposed to pornography, be it Playboy, Hustler, or the SI Swimsuit Issue.
Fast forward to today. Last Saturday, the 2017 SI Swimsuit Issue arrived in our mailbox. I spent 20 minutes or so looking at the magazine while we were driving to Defiance for our granddaughter’s basketball game. I didn’t have lustful thoughts or feel the need to masturbate or engage in sexual intercourse. Shouldn’t I have been filled with lasciviousness as I dared to gaze upon the exquisite bodies of the fairer sex? What’s changed between now and twenty years ago? Gone is the fear and guilt caused by the teachings of Evangelical Christianity about sin — especially sexual sin. As many former Evangelicals will attest, once the fear and guilt are no longer a part of the equation, things once considered “sin” can be enjoyed (or not, depending on one’s tastes and desires) without feeling like the reader just committed a heinous crime. Now that God, the Bible, and Evangelical moralizers no longer have my attention, I am free to be a normal, healthy heterosexual man. What is most interesting is that, once something is no longer taboo, it often loses its power and draw.
I will leave it to Evangelical men to guiltily shuffle into the darkness with a flashlight to look at their copy of the Swimsuit Issue. I no longer need to deny myself pleasures, wants, and desires. I know that the Swimsuit Issue is not everyone’s cup of tea. Each to his own, right? No one is forced to look at the magazine. People are free to subscribe, not subscribe, or cancel their subscription over what they believe is Sports Illustrated’s promotion of “soft-porn.”
Did you, or your father, back in your Evangelical days, subscribe to Sports Illustrated? How was the Swimsuit Issue “problem” handled? Did your pastors preach sermons about the Swimsuit Issue? Do you know of anyone who committed adultery or fornication after perusing its pages? Do you know of anyone who, after viewing the scantily clad models, turned to pornography? (You know, the Swimsuit Issue acting as a gateway drug of sorts.) Please leave your thoughts in the comment section.
The enemy’s formidable weapon against men are enchanting women to entice you into adultery. According to Ephesians 6:10-18, demons are behind these women, they not being aware are being used to cause Jesus’ followers to sin against Him.
We men must keep our eyes pure because that is the entry way into our souls. This is Satan’s primary attack for entrance. How do we protect our eyes from letting darkness creep in?
Don’t watch anything that has women wearing almost nothing as to entice your minds.
Don’t read anything in WordPress that’s sexual in nature because your mind have eyes as well and will convert the sexual words into images.
Don’t look at porn magazines which is a landmine, throw it away immediately.
This is the seventy-eighth installment in The Sounds of Fundamentalism series. This is a series that I would like readers to help me with. If you know of a video clip that shows the crazy, cantankerous, or contradictory side of Evangelical Christianity, please send me an email with the name or link to the video. Please do not leave suggestions in the comment section. Let’s have some fun!
Today’s Sound of Fundamentalism is a video by Katie Gregoire. In the first part of the video Gregoire dismisses Evangelicals who say you can pray away temptation. However. later in the video she proceeds to tell viewers that “talking to God” (prayer) is an effective means of overcoming the desire to look at porn.
Katie, her mother Shelia, and sister Rebecca have all found ways to make money “ministering” to women. I find it interesting that Evangelicals need advice givers such as the Gregoires. I thought the Bible was all that Christians need to live the victorious Christian life. I thought the Holy Spirit lives inside of every believer. If Christians have the inspired, inerrant Word of God — God’s revelation to humanity, and God himself — the Holy Spirit — living inside of them, why do they still needs advice givers such as the Gregoires?
This is the fifty-first installment in The Sounds of Fundamentalism series. This is a series that I would like readers to help me with. If you know of a video clip that shows the crazy, cantankerous, or contradictory side of Evangelical Christianity, please send me an email with the name or link to the video. Please do not leave suggestions in the comment section. Let’s have some fun!
Most people would agree that watching porn in plain view of strangers — especially on an airplane — is inappropriate. However, in the process of listing every minute detail of what the man was watching, Hawkins forgets that she too was watching porn. If watching porn is a sin, why was Hawkins watching it? Hawkins intently viewing what was on the man’s screen and then complaining about it is akin to someone getting drunk and then preaching against alcohol use. I highly doubt the man was watching child pornography. Hawkins knows this, but suggesting that the man “might” have been watching child pornography gives the story a salacious appeal and likely promotes increased giving to NCSE by outraged Christians. Hawkins reported the man to the police. I found no public record of anyone being arrested for watching child porn on an airplane.
Text of the video:
Hi everyone! My name is Dawn Hawkins, I’m the Executive Director of Morality in Media. I direct a number of anti-pornography campaigns, and I just wanted to share with you my experience from the weekend. I’m kind of emotional about it still, so bear with me.
So, I was heading to Texas from DC. I was asked to speak at a conference about the links between pornography and sex trafficking. And I boarded my flight in Baltimore, at 6 AM on Friday. Only to find that the man sitting in front of me was looking at pornography on his iPad. Of all people to be sitting in front of, he was right in front of me. I was speechless, I was stunned, I didn’t know what to say. I could not believe he was looking at pornography right there on the airplane, at six am in the morning.
So, I sat back, for enough time for him to for him to flip through about eight images. They were all of very-very young girls. I couldn’t tell if they were 14 or 18. They were definitely young. They were all Asian. And a couple of the photographs were very violent in nature. One of them even had one girl whipping the other girl. With a whip.
As soon as I gathered myself, I couldn’t help it, I definitely said something. Somewhat loudly, I asked him if he was really looking at pornography at that time. I said, you know, “is that really pornography?! Are you looking at pornography right now, on this airplane?” “Are those girls even 18? Is that child-pornography?!” I was making a fairly big deal about it. And everyone seemed to be look at us. “Are those girls even 18? Is that child-pornography?!” I was making a fairly big deal about it. And everyone seemed to be look at us.
And I turned around, and there was a flight attendant right behind me. A male flight attendant. And I said to him, “Sir, this man is looking at pornography. Will you please do something about it?” The flight attendant just stood there. He did nothing. He said there was nothing he could do. That he refused to do anything, especially because it was making me and other passengers so uncomfortable. And I am so sure it was making the other passengers uncomfortable as well.
Anyway, the guy put it away. I was sitting there, shaking. I was so upset.
A few minutes later, I leaned forward and in a much quiet voice, directed just at the man, I said to him, “Sir, I’m head right now to speak at a conference about pornography and sex trafficking. You are contributing to the problem. You’re exploiting millions of women. And children. You’re creating the demand. You’re the one contributing to all this harm.” And right then, a woman who was two rows up from us, she stood up and interrupted me. And she faced me and she said, she was probably in her 50’s, she said, “be quiet! No one cares!”
I couldn’t, I could not believe that a woman, of all people, would stand up and tell me to be quiet. She didn’t tell the man to stop looking at pornography! She didn’t say anything about that! She just said, no one cared, that he was looking at pornography. What was likely child pornography.
We know that pornography is so addictive, and that man was likely very addicted to whatever, that’s why he was looking at porn right there. And that early. He couldn’t help it! I feel really bad for him. Part of me does. Just because I understand that he was struggling with these urges, and I’m sure that he doesn’t. He’s not happy and he doesn’t want that.
I just wanted to share this experience with you all. Have you experienced pornography on your plane? Is this the common danger to us? I mean, I’m involved, every day, in the fight against pornography. And I did not realize that there is a danger to us on airplanes in the United States. I got off the airplane and I reported it to a police officer, who promised to investigate. He went to man’s next gate, especially because the likelihood that it was child pornography is very high.
Needless to say, airlines need to have a policy. It needs to be spelled out. That obscenity and pornography is not allowed on an airplane, especially since it’s a danger to all passengers, and flight attendants. It would be a very unhealthy working place.
I work for Morality in Media, we direct the war on illegal pornography at pornharms.com. I hope to hear from you soon!