Reviewed by: William Shishko
Pornography: Fighting for Purity, by Deepak Reju. P&R, 2018. Paperback, 96 pages, $7.50. Reviewed by OPC minister William Shishko.
When it comes to the subject of battling with remaining, indwelling sin, I don’t believe there is any substitute for the classic treatment by John Owen in volume 6 of his Collected Writings, “On the Mortification of Sin in Believers” (or, for those who find Owen too imposing, Kris Lundgaard’s simplified contemporary adaptation, The War Within: Straight Talk About the Power and Defeat of Sin). But those who are looking for a condensed, bite-sized-chapter treatment of this all-important subject should read Pornography: Fighting for Purity by Deepak Reju.
This eminently helpful little volume is part of the 31-Day Devotionals for Life series, of which Reju (pastor of biblical counseling and family ministries at Capitol Hill Baptist Church in Washington, DC) is the series editor. Other topics in the series include addiction, marital restoration, doubt, and grief.
While at first I questioned the value of such a short treatment of such a complex subject, I came to realize that the very format of a daily devotional is helpful for men (and women) who struggle with pornography on a daily basis. Through this handy written companion, counselor Reju becomes your daily accountability partner to help you with the all-too-common and all-too-little-admitted challenge of battling the temptation to watch pornography in our sexually saturated culture.
The two-page chapters in the book (including reflection questions and action points) address topics such as “The War for Your Soul,” “Walking by the Spirit,” “Digging into Your Heart,” and (of particular interest to me) “Good Accountability” and “Bad Accountability.”
The author is clearly a gifted biblical counselor and writer. His words are blunt, honest, and full of searching questions that prevent the reader from becoming disengaged with what he is reading. At the same time, the counsel is gospel suffused and full of hope. Reju rightly emphasizes the Christian believer’s identity in union with Christ, and his crisp calls to repentance are clearly calls to evangelical repentance.
My only comment would be that the book applies to far more in the Christian’s life than struggles with pornography. It is a primer on sanctification, with application to any and all areas of struggle with sin. But Sanctification: Fighting for Purity doesn’t market as well as Pornography: Fighting for Purity! Highly recommended.
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