“Abuse. Divorce. Abortion. Pornography. People want to talk about these issues; they’re just scared to go first. We’re trying to help people go first.”
Caleb Schultz, pastor at Cross of Life, Mississauga, Ontario, Canada, is talking about Conquerors through Christ, a ministry of WELS Special Ministries that exists to help people resist, reject, and recover from pornography use or addiction.
The Conquerors through Christ website was developed eight years ago, mainly to help those who are addicted to pornography. It has recently been redesigned, expanded to offer resources that can be used by any person—parents, pastors, teachers, spouses, friends—to combat the sin of pornography.
“I think our culture is increasingly saying this ministry is not necessary, particularly for Christians in your average congregation,” says Schultz, spokesperson for Conquerors through Christ. “This is unfortunate because all the statistics say [pornography] is way more common than we like to admit.”
One statistic Schultz shares is that by sixth grade, many children have been exposed to pornography in some way. “It’s often not their fault,” he says. “They’re scrolling through Instagram or watching videos on TikTok, and they take one wrong click and they’re in a place they shouldn’t be.”
Several of the new resources Conquerors through Christ has developed are to help parents, pastors, and teachers talk to children and young adults about sex and pornography. The Parent Support System offers age-appropriate resources for parents to use at home with children ages 2 through 12. A middle school lesson on the Sixth Commandment is perfect for use in a Catechism class. A high school curriculum provides teachers and youth group leaders opportunities to have biblical discussions on the topic with teenagers.
“We’re not trying to equip you to do an event, to have ‘the talk,’ ” says Brad Snyder, pastor at Cross of Christ, Boise, Idaho, and Conquerors through Christ team member. “It’s a process of teaching your children about godly sexuality and the threats that are there.”
Having those conversations are important, Snyder says, because children are learning a lot about sex from friends, social media, and television. “We want them to learn from you, their parents,” he stresses.
All of these resources fall into the “resist” category—helping to prevent the first click or teaching how to respond when unexpectedly faced with pornography. Materials on rejecting pornography also are available for those who have fallen into this sin. “We’re going to drown you in the gospel,” says Schultz. “You already are a conqueror through Christ.” For those who are close to someone struggling with a pornography addiction, recovery resources—including a directory of qualified Christian counselors—provide support.
Adding a fourth category—rejoice—is being discussed. It will focus on what the Bible says about godly sexuality.
In the end, Schultz stresses that combating pornography is a battle we all need to fight. “There is hope in a battle that seems so dark, regardless of what side of it you are on—if you’re a user or know a user or are a parent hoping your children don’t become users.”
Learn more at conquerorsthroughchrist.net.
Volume 108, Number 8
Issue: August 2021