The Set Free Summit concludes today with a focus on restoration. We have recognized the problem of pornography and how pervasive it is in our culture throughout our world. Today, we discover how we can be restored and help others become restored through God’s Word.
Dr. Ted Roberts: Is Real Revival Possible?
Roberts took the attendees to the book of Hosea, who was the prophet that God told to marry a prostitute because Israel had committed unfaithfulness to God.
We need to focus on pointing to our faults and stop looking at the faults of others. We need to own our sin and stop trying to fix others first. We need to stop pointing out how others need revival and first look at ourselves and admit we need revival too.
- Once you go down the road of obedience, you start to understand God’s plan.
- You can break God’s heart, but you can’t break His love.
- Marriage isn’t designed to grow you; it’s to heal you.
Question: How do you encourage single people?
Answer: Rambo was an idiot. We can’t do it ourselves. We need a team. Surround yourselves with good accountability and support. Learn to make healthy relationships with the opposite sex.
Luke Gilkerson: Accountability in the Church
Accountability can often become a buzzword. The problem with buzzwords is they can lose their meaning over time. We cannot tell people how to be accountable or hold someone accountable until we know what it is and how to do it.
Guilt and shame are often used together, but they are different. Guilt is a violation of conscience. Shame is relational–it’s a sense of disgrace among ourselves as we relate to others, which includes God, our spouse, and our community.
In a job setting, if you as an employee disobey, you may be fired. In our relationship with God, when we disobey, we get loved. God disciplines those who He loves. It is for our good that we may share in His holiness.
We need to stay away from two ineffective forms of accountability.
- Shameless accountability: This superficial form of accountability ignores the shame involved in sin.
- Shame-based: This asks the question, “Are we keeping the rules?” This is legalistic and gives no room for grace.
The gospel solves both ineffective forms of accountability.
- Accountability is not calling someone out, but calling someone up to God.
- Godly accountability needs to be Godly in focus.
- Accountability needs to include confrontation.
Question: What about if someone wants to break free, but the environment in their church is not set up to help facilitate this?
Answer: We should all take the spiritual temperature of our church and whether there is grace provided for those struggling. I wouldn’t say to automatically leave a church that doesn’t include grace, but we should all consider whether we are at a local assembly where God wants us to be. I’d consider including those outside our local assembly to hold us accountable in addition to those inside.
Dr. Jay Dennis: Protecting Church Leaders
The majority of Christian leaders keep silent about this awful pandemic of pornography. Satan has found his most powerful tool and weapon to hurt us and the cause of Christ. We have to take up the fight. This is a clear and present warning that we need to stop our silence and speak out.
By admitting your own struggles, it gives others permission to admit it as well. It’s a great gift to those struggling who don’t want to admit it or address it.
Pastors are the gate-keepers for the congregation. What you ignore, your congregation will likely ignore too. What you address, your congregation will likely address.
There are many reasons why the conversation isn’t happening. It’s awkward, embarrassing, controversial, sensitive, misunderstood, and pastors could be struggling with it too. But there are so many more reasons why it should be addressed.
- When it comes to addressing porn, pastors are often monkeys. They often see no evil, speak no evil, and hear no evil.
- The first step is admitting the problem. It includes men and women together.
- If you shine light on a secret, it will lose its power.
Question: Do you think a former addict always needs accountability?
Answer: Not only former addicts, but we all need daily accountability. Pastors need to set the example daily and weekly.
Josh McDowell’s Call to Arms
There is not one inhabited place on earth where people are not affected by pornography. It’s the great elephant in the room and in the church that many people and pastors are ignoring.
The church is the only hope to reverse this trend. Will you do your part?
What about you? What did you learn? How will this change how you do ministry? Let us know in the comments.