Prophets and apostles say those affected by pornography addiction can avoid, overcome, and heal from its destructive influence through help from leaders and professionals, priesthood power, prayer, temple attendance, commitment to the gospel, and repentance.
Seek Help to Overcome and Change
“My beloved friends, under no circumstances allow yourselves to become trapped in the viewing of pornography, one of the most effective of Satan’s enticements. And if you have allowed yourself to become involved in this behavior, cease now. Seek the help you need to overcome and to change the direction of your life. Take the steps necessary to get back on the strait and narrow, and then stay there” (Thomas S. Monson, “Until We Meet Again,” Liahona and Ensign, May 2009, 113).
Employ Priesthood Power
“The priesthood holds consummate power. It can protect you from the plague of pornography—and it is a plague—if you are succumbing to its influence. If one is obedient, the priesthood can show how to break a habit and even erase an addiction. Holders of the priesthood have that authority and should employ it to combat evil influences.
“We raise an alarm and warn members of the Church to wake up and understand what is going on. Parents, be alert, ever watchful that this wickedness might threaten your family circle" (Boyd K. Packer, “Cleansing the Inner Vessel,” Liahona and Ensign, Nov. 2010, 75).
Pray Urgently for Help and Support
“Whether it be through the printed page, movies, television, obscene lyrics, vulgarities on the telephone, or flickering personal computer screen, pornography is overpoweringly addictive and severely damaging. This potent tool of Lucifer degrades the mind and the heart and the soul of any who use it. All who are caught in its seductive, tantalizing web and remain so will become addicted to its immoral, destructive influence. For many, that addiction cannot be overcome without help. …
“If you are ensnarled in pornography, make a total commitment to overcome it now. Find a quiet place; pray urgently for help and support. Be patient and obedient. Don’t give up” (Richard G. Scott, “To Acquire Spiritual Guidance,” Liahona and Ensign, Nov. 2009, 8–9).
A Way to Escape
“The good news is that no one needs to follow the evil, downward descent to torment. Everyone caught on that terrible escalator has the key to reverse his course. He can escape. Through repentance he can be clean. … My brethren who are caught in this addiction or troubled by this temptation, there is a way.
“First, acknowledge the evil. Don’t defend it or try to justify yourself. …
“Second, seek the help of the Lord and His servants. Hear and heed President Hinckley’s words:
“‘Plead with the Lord out of the depths of your soul that He will remove from you the addiction which enslaves you. And may you have the courage to seek the loving guidance of your bishop and, if necessary, the counsel of caring professionals’” (“A Tragic Evil among Us,” Liahona and Ensign, Nov. 2004, 62).
“Third, do all that you can to avoid pornography. If you ever find yourself in its presence—which can happen to anyone in the world in which we live—follow the example of Joseph of Egypt. When temptation caught him in her grip, he left temptation and 'got him out' (Gen. 39:12).
“Don’t accommodate any degree of temptation. Prevent sin and avoid having to deal with its inevitable destruction. So, turn it off! Look away! Avoid it at all costs. Direct your thoughts in wholesome paths. Remember your covenants and be faithful in temple attendance” (Dallin H. Oaks, “Pornography,” Liahona and Ensign, May 2005, 90).
Commit to the Gospel and Repent
“Whoever you are and whatever you have done, you can be forgiven. Every one of you young men can leave behind any transgression with which you may struggle. It is the miracle of forgiveness; it is the miracle of the Atonement of the Lord Jesus Christ. But you cannot do it without an active commitment to the gospel, and you cannot do it without repentance where it is needed. I am asking you young men to be active and be clean. If required, I am asking you to get active and get clean” (Jeffrey R. Holland, “We Are All Enlisted,” Liahona and Ensign, Nov. 2011, 45).
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