Lord, if You are Willing You Can Make Me Clean ~ blog
All of us are sinners…some are just better at hiding it than others. However, if you were alive when Jesus walked this earth and had a physical deformity or illness your sinfulness was being broadcasted to all those around you.
When the disciples saw a man born blind, they asked Jesus…
“Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents,
that he was born blind?”
I am surprised that Jesus did not respond to them that their question was a stupid one. If he was born blind obviously it could not have been him unless his sin was committed in the womb. However, to jump to the conclusion that it was his parents was a bit presumptuous as well.
In their culture, they associated sickness or deformity of any kind to be the punishment of God because of their sin. I cannot imagine the guilt and shame those parents lived with when they realized their son was blind at birth.
And if someone was a leper everybody could see their sickness and the damage it caused to a body that was being eaten alive by the disease. Lepers had to leave their family and live with other lepers. If anyone was getting near them, they had to cross to the other side of the road and cry out loud…
Imagine the weight of that shame crushing you every day you were alive. However, in Luke 5 a situation arose where there was a man “covered with leprosy.” Literally, the text reads “full of leprosy.” It was all over him and all through him and his death from the disease was not too far off in his future.
He did not cross the road to get out of the way. Instead, he fell at the feet of Jesus and begged Jesus saying…
“Lord, if You are willing,
You can make me clean.”
Then Jesus did what nobody was ever supposed to do. Jesus reached out His hand, touched him, and said…
“I am willing; be cleansed.”
And immediately the leprosy left him. Instant healing. Complete healing…from head to toe. The flesh ravished by the diseased immediately became like new and everybody could see that Jesus just did what they had never seen before…the power of God manifested in cleansing a disease that never went away.
And just to make sure everyone understood his healing was complete Jesus told him to go to the priest and to make an offering for his cleansing just as Moses had commanded to be done. Then, the news of this miracle spread, and we read…
“…large crowds were gathering to hear Him
and to be healed of their sicknesses.”
So, let me ask you…how are you feeling about the leprosy we call porn addiction. Nobody can see it by observing us walking through our lives. For 8 years I lived a life of addiction to porn, preaching every Sunday, leading staff meetings, having board meetings, and pretending that I was not sick…but I was, and I was growing sicker as long as my sin remained undisclosed.
I hated my sin and I hated myself, but you would never know it because I could play the role of the pastor with a flair. My abilities in preaching were finely tuned but my words had no power. I was trained how to lead and cast a vision but apart from the power of God, I was only building a house of cards.
I knew the verses that said that I could be sure my sin would find me out. I understood that eventually, I would reap what I was sowing, and God would not allow me to mock Him. However, I bought the lie that if I worked harder, I could stop. I would someday turn over a new leaf…whatever the hell that means. Makes no sense because if there is a leaf that I could have turned over it would have been on the ground already and its life slowly ebbing away. So it dies on its back instead of its front…but it still dies…and I was dying.
Porn addiction is such a multifaceted problem. It is not only a spiritual problem. I have learned that it is a chemical addiction caused by continuously reigniting the neurological pathways in my brain, releasing the chemicals in my brain that make me feel good, focused with the ability to forget my problems with another dose of visual heroin. Always wanting more and always needing more frequency and more variety.
Further down into the darkness I fell until…like the leper…I needed Jesus to make me clean. I needed confession and to tell the truth to those I still deeply loved…my wife and our children.
I needed to stop walking in the darkness and turn on the lights and show others what a decerped creature I had become. I needed to walk in the light as Jesus is in the light so that I could have real fellowship and remain in that place where the blood of Jesus would be continuously washing me clean from all my sins.
Now… fifteen and a half years later there are teams of men doing the same thing. Walking in the light and having the fellowship we all need by telling the truth and allowing the blood of Jesus Christ to be continuing to cleanse us from all sin just like John wrote in 1 John 1:5-7;
“This is the message we have heard from Him and announce to you, that God is Light, and in Him there is no darkness at all. If we say that we have fellowship with Him and yet walk in the darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth; but if we walk in the Light as He Himself is in the Light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus His Son cleanses us from all sin.”
Contact me if you would like to be experiencing this powerful fellowship by joining one of our Online Support Teams. You can sit in and see for yourself what real fellowship is really like.