DONE: You Have Been Given Assurance that You Will Rise from the Dead

For we believe that Jesus died and rose again, and so we believe that God will bring with Jesus those who have fallen asleep in Him. (1 Thessalonians 4:14)

What if I told you zombies were real?

Now, don’t go running off to buy a chainsaw or a shotgun just yet. This verse doesn’t mean you need to worry about brain-eating zombies crawling out of their graves and chasing you into a pub.

In order for us to understand what’s really going on here, we need to look at the broader context of this passage:

We tell you this directly from the Lord: We who are still living when the Lord returns will not meet him ahead of those who have died. For the Lord himself will come down from heaven with a commanding shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trumpet call of God. First, the believers who have died will rise from their graves. Then, together with them, we who are still alive and remain on the earth will be caught up in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. Then we will be with the Lord forever. So encourage each other with these words (1 Thessalonians 4:15-18).

When we read this passage in context, we can see that Paul isn’t talking about the dead coming back to steal life away from those who are still living (zombies); he is talking about Christ coming back to restore life to those who are already physically dead (resurrection)!

You see, the early believers in Thessalonica were concerned that anyone who believed in Christ but died before His return would miss out on the resurrection and eternal life. Which is why Paul encourages them to rest in the truth of what God has promised us will happen when Christ returns:

  • Those who have died after trusting in Christ will be resurrected first.
  • Living believers will follow closely behind.
  • All believers will be reunited with their loved ones.
  • All who are in Christ will be reunited with God!

So yes, my friend, the dead will rise. But they won’t be zombies, they will be resurrected children of God!


Done Cover MockupThis post was an excerpt from my book, DONE. 52 Amazing Things that Became True of You the Moment You Trusted Christ.

The entire book is available as individual posts here, but if you prefer a good old-fashion paperback, you can purchase a copy from Amazon.

My One Thing: Randal Ajimine

“What’s the one piece of advice you would give
to someone struggling with porn addiction?”

Randal Ajimine runs the web-based ministry, and is also involved with the organization Thank God for Sex.

Connect with Randall




Twitter: @churchandsex

10 Lies Men Believe about Porn Preview

Check out all the “One Thing” video interviews here.


Steve: Hey, guys! Steve here with Belt of Truth Ministries and I’ve got Randall Ajimine on the line. And Randall runs the web-based ministry,, and he’s also involved in the organization, Thank God for Sex. I met Randall. He’s a fellow contributor with so I’m aware of his ministry through that. And Randall is graciously jumping on the line with us today to answer the question, “What’s the one piece of advice that you would give to someone struggling with porn addiction?”

Randall: Sure. I think my one piece of advice would be to be very gracious to yourself. I think one of the things that keeps people trapped in any kind of addiction and porn addiction is definitely one of them, is a kind of shame cycle where they might try to abstain from whatever they’re addicted to but then go back into it and then get kind of this shame cycle where it’s like “Oh my God! I’m no good. I suck. I can’t do this,” and then that might lead to another kind of bingeing round where they stop. But what this shame cycle keeps them from doing is getting underneath the activity that they’re trying to be free from because usually, any kind of addiction is kind of used to cover over some deeper thing that’s happening in their life and so. And the other organization that I’m involved with, Thank God for Sex, it’s kind of dedicated to helping heal Christians and even helped the church kind of talk and deal with the issue of religious sexual shame. I think the church can unfortunately be unhelpful in the realm of sex and sexuality. In some of the ways that it teaches around this area can lead to a lot of guilt and shame kind of feelings. And again, that keeps Christians and other people, but Christians from getting underneath whatever the addition is. And if you never really get to the root cause of what issue is this addiction covering over, if you never get to what’s underneath that, then it’s I think it’s always going to be this thing that keeps cycling through or even worse. Even if you are able to kind of move past a porn addiction, again, if you’re not getting through the underlining issue, it’ll move to another addiction, sometimes, anyway, yeah. So the only way out of this whole shame spiral is to really accept yourself as you are, to say, “I am looking at these sites” and to not get super judgy on yourself for it to say, “I’m looking at these sites. I did it again and I’m not going to just berate myself for it. I’m going to try to calm myself down a little bit and be curious.” I think the curiosity bit is one of the best cures for a shame cycle. Curiosity being is this idea of “What am I covering over? What I like try to avoid? What feelings, what doubts, what insecurities am I trying to paste over with these things that I’m looking at?” And again, the only way to get out of that shame bit is to kind of slow down and to just be gracious to yourself, and not always be just beating yourself up over whatever you’re looking at. So yeah, being gracious to yourself as God is gracious to you, that’s I think the first ten biggest step.

Steve: Great! Well thanks for sharing that, Randall.

Randall: Sure.

Steve: And so where can people find out more about your ministry?

Randall: Sure. I’m on will leave you to my blog where I do a lot of writing and linking to articles. And I have the same username as for Twitter, And those are the two primary ways. I’m working on getting on other social media platforms but those are the two kind of prime ones right now.

Steve: Okay. We will be sure to link to those in the show notes and in the video description. But thanks for your time, Randall.

Randall: I super enjoyed it.

Steve: Okay, see you later.

Smart Quote: Doug Bender

"No life is too tattered, no soul too battered, no heart is too dirtied for the forgiveness of Jesus." —Doug Bender

Thoughts on this quote? Feel free to discuss them in the comments below.

Why Porn Addiction is Not About Fulfilling Sexual Desire—Part One: The Deepest Needs of Your Heart



cover-mockupNote: This post is part one of a six-part series on desire. It has been adapted from my book, 10 Lies Men Believe about Porn, available now wherever books are sold.

I graduated high school in 1997 at the wise age of 17. My sole criteria for selecting a college was that it not be in my hometown, mainly so I would have an excuse to move out of my parents’ house and live on my own. I was accepted to Oregon State University and soon found myself living out in the real world before I was even old enough to buy cigarettes.

My life really began to separate into two personas during my college years. On the surface, I was “Steve the church guy,” going to Bible studies and maintaining a facade of moralistic perfection. Under the surface, though, I was a completely different person. I had an entirely different group of friends who I would party with on weekends, often driving up I-5 to all-night raves in Portland where we would fry our brains with a cocktail of illegal drugs. I embraced the freedom of no longer having a curfew (or any house rules), and reacted like a dog being released from his cage. The lack of boundaries in my life fueled more than just my party lifestyle. It fueled the flames of my pornography addiction as well, causing it to grow into a raging inferno.

The Internet was still a novelty in the ’90s. Prior to college, I had only experienced it at friends’ houses. But now I had 24/7 access and a room with a lock on the door. This was not a good combination. Actually, that is an understatement. It was more like pouring gasoline on the fire of my addiction. I would lock my door each night once my roommate went to bed, plant myself in front of the computer, and surf porn sites until I couldn’t stay awake any longer. What used to take 10 minutes to download now took 10 seconds. Instead of seeing two or three images a night, I was suddenly able to view thousands. I felt as if I had won the pornography lottery. But no matter how long I looked, I could never get enough. I was always searching for the elusive “perfect image” that would fully satisfy me.

I always knew in my heart that this lifestyle was wrong. I begged God to take my sex drive away until marriage. I made promises to Him. I installed an Internet filter. I tried everything to stop, but nothing worked.

It wasn’t long before I lost any hope of finding freedom from pornography. I began to believe that I had a sex drive that was significantly more intense than other guys and there wasn’t anything I could do to control it. God had apparently created me to require a release multiple times a day, and at least porn was a better option than sleeping around. My best chance at freedom, in my mind, was to get married. I believed that once I was married I would be permitted to have sex with my wife whenever I wanted and would therefore no longer need pornography.

These thoughts were all lies.

As men, we tend to believe our struggles with pornography are purely about sexual desire. If this were the case, though, my addiction would have gone away once I was married. So why is it my addiction actually became worse within marriage? Why did I repeatedly choose to reject the advances of my beautiful, attractive, and loving wife in order to get my sexual needs met through pornography?

The only answer that makes sense is that porno­graphy addiction isn’t actually the result of an overzealous libido. It’s also not about an underattentive spouse, a lack of willpower, or even sexual desire. Pornography addiction is the result of being too afraid to risk anything in the process of trying to meet the deepest needs of your soul.

The problem with porn, though, is it can never make good on its promise. In fact, it will pull you away from the very things that truly can meet those deepest needs.


TRUTH: Pornography addiction is an attempt to meet the deepest needs of your soul without being required to risk anything in the process.


What are Your Deepest Needs?

God has placed within the heart of every man the need to be validated as a man, the need for adventure in his life, and the need to experience intimacy with others. These needs are not sinful in and of themselves, but we often attempt to satisfy them in sinful ways—such as through pornography.

In order to meet these needs effectively, you will be required to take risks. And risk, by its very nature, carries the potential for failure.

Because of this reality, Satan will try to deceive you into finding an easier way to meet these needs. He wants you to believe that you can be fulfilled in these areas without having to put yourself on the line. Lasting and effective solutions will only be found in the truth, though, which is why it is so important to understand each of these needs within you and recognize how porno­graphy will never be able to truly fulfill any of them.

Continue on to Part Two: Your Need to Be Validated as a Man (coming next Monday)

10 Lies Men Believe about Porn Preview

Weekly Web (W)roundup


Each week, I round up the best resources, articles, and videos I find that are relevant to finding freedom from porn addiction. Please note that by posting a link here it does not mean I agree with everything in the linked article. It just means I found it interesting enough to share.

Pete Wilson: Clarity vs. Trust

“How many times have you said to yourself, ‘If I only had clarity… then I would move forward.’  ‘Is this the right thing to do?’  ‘Am I in God’s will?’”

Relevant: Faith and the New Golden Age of Late-Night TV

“Thankfully, in the place of the old guard, a new kind of host has been emerging. And along with ushering in a new era of TV comedies, they are offering an important lesson to the Church, which is also in desperate need of a change.”

Covenant Eyes: 5 Things I Always Say to Porn-Shocked Wives

“I answer a lot of letters from women dealing with the discovery of porn in their marriages. Mostly, they are shocked and hurt and alone, wondering where to go from here. While I answer every one of those letters individually, over time I’ve realized there are some things I almost always say, in one form or another.”

Gospel Coalition: 5 Myths and Truths in Loneliness

“Having been an ordained minister for 32 years and licensed psychologist for 18, I (Gary Barnes) have had the privilege of being entrusted with many personal stories of loneliness. As individuals from all walks of life have opened up with their struggles, I’ve been deeply affected from two different directions. From a psychological perspective, I’ve been struck by the depth of pain humans encounter in their experience of loneliness. And from a theological perspective, I’ve been amazed at how significant human loneliness is to the triune God.”

The Bible Project: Paul’s 1st Letter to the Corinthians

DONE: You Have Been Made Complete

So you also are complete through your union with Christ, who is the head over every ruler and authority (Colossians 2:10).

I can remember sensing something missing in my life as far back as my early teen years. As I grew older and my hormones began to take over, I started to believe that missing piece could be found in relationships.

All I needed to do was find a girlfriend and then I would be happy and my life would be complete.

Somehow, I finally convinced a girl to date me around my sophomore year of high school. I’d developed an interest in girls long before that of course, but all my previous attempts at charming them had failed miserably.

But now that I had a girlfriend, why did the hole remain?

Surely it must have been her inability to meet the need—or so I believed.

Inevitably, we broke up and I began my decade-long cycle of moving from relationship to relationship, hoping to find the right girl who would fill that void and complete me.

But no girl ever did, because no human relationship could ever fill the hole in my soul.

Yes, relationships are important. They can be a source of happiness, joy, and love in your life. But they can’t—and won’t—complete you.

Only Christ can truly complete you and make you whole. And the best part is, if you are in Christ, He already has.

When you were united with Christ, He filled that hole in your heart. Which means you don’t have to keep searching for the missing piece to your puzzle. You can finally be done with looking for the right person, the perfect job, or whatever else you are currently believing will fill the void and make your life complete.

You already are complete, because Christ has made you complete!

Done Cover MockupThis post was an excerpt from my book, DONE. 52 Amazing Things that Became True of You the Moment You Trusted Christ.

The entire book is available as individual posts here, but if you prefer a good old-fashion paperback, you can purchase a copy from Amazon.

My One Thing: Jon Snyder

“What’s the one piece of advice you would give
to someone struggling with porn addiction?”

Jon Snyder is the founder of Mighty Man Ministries.

Connect with Jon


Twitter: @MightyManMin

Books: Mighty Man Manual


10 Lies Men Believe about Porn Preview

Check out all the “One Thing” video interviews here.


Steve: Hey, guys! Steve here with Belt of Truth Ministries. I’m on the line with Jon Snyder. Jon is the founder of Mighty Men Ministries. Jon, thanks for joining us today.

Jon: It’s my pleasure, Steve. Thanks for having me today.

Steve: Yes. If you can give one piece of advice to guys struggling with porn addiction, what would you say?

Jon: Okay. Well, you’ve prepped me nicely on the question but I wouldn’t have needed to think long and hard about it at all. I think the number one thing that most guys and actually, most Christians, this is a broader issue than even just porn addiction. But certainly, all the guys who’ve come to our ministry, I think the number one thing that keeps guys tripped up over and over again is just not being in right relationship with God as it relates to how they respond to a fall and how they are connecting with God in order to receive what they need from Him in order to get the heart healed and the wounds healed. So I can unpack that a little bit. I know that we’ve got a few minutes. But do you have any questions before we kind of like go into expanding on that a little bit?

Steve: No. Yeah, why don’t you unpack that? I think that will be good for people to hear kind of some details on that.

Jon: Yeah. Good. Okay. So the Bible says that there’s a right way and a wrong way to repent. Not a lot of people realize that. In 2 Corinthians 7, it says that there is worldly sorrow that leads to death but godly sorrow creates zeal, indignation, vehement desire, no regrets, all these very healthy emotional fruits that should be present when we repent. So the way that you can judge whether you’re repenting properly in a godly fashion or whether you’re stuck in this whole worldly sorrow thing is immediately after you fall. What do you do? Do you feel like you have a desire to run right to God? Do you feel like a fall actually improves your relationship with God? And I can get into that in a minute. What I find that most guy’s experience is the opposite of that. After a fall, you get into this like “I can’t believe I did that. I’m such an idiot. I am just so dirty. I’m like the scum that dirt washes off of itself.” So there’s all this self-beratement, there’s all this shame. And people feel like it’s driven a wedge between them and God. I believe the statistics is something like 92% of Christian men, when they were asked if they feel like pornography affects their relationship with God, the answer is yes. And that shows that at least 92%, and in my experience more, at least 92% of guys are responding to God out of the old men rather than responding out of who they are in Christ. And the reason that’s such a big deal is because you literally can’t get out of this. And God doesn’t give you help to get out of this until you’re relating to Him properly because it shows there’s a few things happening in your heart. It shows that you are trusting in your performance to make you acceptable to God more than you’re trusting in what Christ has already performed to make you acceptable to God. That is worse in God’s eyes than you struggling with porn. It shows that you have a worth that’s based in works and God says, “No. I want you to come to know that your worth is based in something far deeper than that.” So it’s all about Jesus Christ and your dirt doesn’t make his righteousness dirty. So I always tell guys when they come to our ministry, I say, “If you are upset with you when you fail, it was your strength that you were relying on and not Christ’s strength for you.” So the bible talks how do we actually overcome sin? Well, the bible says in 1 John 2:5, it says, “If anyone is able to keep his word, truly the love of God has been perfected in him.” And so we tend to think “I got to clean up my act, I got to get it all right, and then I can come to God.” It’s not. It’s the exact opposite of that. It says “If you run to Me, then I can give you what you need in your heart” that’s going to give you a healing of the heart wound that took you down that path in the first place. It’s going to give you the love and acceptance that you need for that love to go deep so that like the bible says if you can keep his word, the love of God is perfected in you. That’s what we should be going after. And so when we blow it, if I can take just one more minute, kind of the process that I’m going through in my life, at first, it’s going to take some rehearsing for the guys who are out there because it’s completely foreign because most of us have just been immersed in this whole you feel unapproachable with God until you clean up your act, and that’s completely backwards. So what I’ve done is I’ve got kind of a bunch of life scriptures that I’ve just kind of jotted down so I remember them for this interview but it creates a dialogue that I started to rehearse with God. So when I would feel dirty or when I would feel unacceptable, or whatever the case may be, I would have these things that I would talk about with God. I was “reminding” God of what his words says but really I’m reminding my own soul so that I don’t go down that path again. One of them I love in Hebrews 7:25, if anybody wants to look it up, it says that we have this high priest who is able to sympathize with us [inaudible 6:08] weakness so that we can come boldly to the throne of grace, find help in time of need, and it says that he always lives to make intercession for his saints. So that means at our dirtiest, right after we messed up, if we could run into heaven, what we would see is Jesus interceding for us, doing the same thing He did on the cross. “Father, forgive them. They don’t know what they’re doing.” He has the sympathy for us. So I would say things like “Jesus, right now, even at though I feel like I just blew it so bad, You’re interceding for me.” I would do other things like in some of the verses that just blow my mind is John 17:23 and John 15:9. That’s when Jesus is talking to the disciples and he says, “Father, help them to know that as You have loved me, so I love them.” So Jesus loves us as much as the Father loves Jesus. That’s crazy to me. And then He also says in 17:23, He says, “I pray that they would come to know and understand that as You love me, You also love them.” So the Father loves us as much as He loves Jesus, do I would include that in my dialogue with God. I would say, “God, You are radically in love with me. You love me as much as you love your perfect Son, Jesus,” awesome stuff. “You die for me all over again if it were even possible.” That comes right out of Romans 5:8-9. It says He died for sinners, how much more than those who are saved? Paul said when he’s struggling with sinning, “That’s no longer me who sins. The sin dwelled in me.” So I would say things like “That’s not the real me. That was just some dead guy,” things like that. I am the righteousness of Christ, not I have the righteousness of Christ because that might say it can come and go. But the bible says in 2 Corinthians 5, it says that we have become the righteousness of Christ. So just like if you think would Jesus have any shame coming before the Father? Would he have any hesitation asking the Father for something? No. And He would have this full confidence that He can receive from God. So I would come with that same confidence, and I would say, “God, there is nothing standing between You and me because I am the very righteousness of Christ. I have as much right to be in Your presence as He does even at my worst.” So this is some of the dialogue that I’ve developed with God. And I allow that so that if I were to fall, I would get up, I would run to God right away rather than go on to hiding, rather than go on to that downward spiral for a while. I would run and fall forward if you will and say, “God, you love me. You’re radically in love with me. I have as much right to talk to you now as Jesus does.” And just go through these things that the bible said to me until I had this. And at first, it’s like “Man, do I even believe that? No.” But as you rehearse what the bible says about you, it becomes part of who you are. And that puts you in the place in right relationship with God so that you can receive everything that you need to overcome. And it’s all about Him anyways. It’s not by our might, it’s not by our power but it’s by God’s spirit. If we walk in the spirit, we don’t carry out the desires of the flesh. So this is so foundational to being able to walk in the spirit and to have the access to the Father that we need to heal the heart to overcome the sin. And if you don’t have this right relationship with God, you don’t have any of the tools spiritually that you need in order to overcome. So that’s why I think it’s the first and most fundamental thing that I would tell anybody struggling. You need to be in right relationship with God. You need to be operating out of this new man and relating to God on that level so that you can receive what you need to get over the sins that are ensnaring you.

Steve: Yeah, you’re telling my story, man. That was one of the first major turning points in my recovery journey was exactly what you talked about there. For years, every time I sinned, I felt like I had to hide from God, I had to clean myself up…

Jon: Yeah.

Steve: Before He would accept me.

Jon: Yeah.

Steve: All the shame and guilt would come in and it wasn’t till I realized like those verses that you shared, those were the same verses. “Come to the throne of grace in my time of deepest need.” Well when does my time of deepest need?”

Jon: Yeah. Right.

Steve: You know for me, it was when I just looked at porn.

Jon: Yeah.

Steve: And so realizing that God loved me in that moment…

Jon: That’s right.

Steve: And so then what happened, instead of responding with shame, I would start like every time I would fall, I would start responding, “Lord, thank You that this doesn’t define me. Thank You that Jesus paid for this.”

Jon: Yeah.

Steve: “Thank You that I’m forgiven for this sin and this doesn’t separate me from You.” And I would start…

Jon: Yeah.

Steve: Praying those verses. And like you said, it’s crazy. It’s like it’s almost as if your sin starts drawing you closer to God.

Jon: That’s exactly it!

Steve: Yeah.

Jon: That’s exactly it. You just hit the nail in the head and you got to repeat that for the guys. If your sin is driving you away from God, your whole paradigm needs to flip upside down. Your sin needs to drive you into God’s arms. And when that’s happening, then you’re in right relationship with God. So good, Steven.

Steve: Yeah. Well hey, thanks for sharing all that. Jon, tell people where they can find out more about your ministry and what you do and all that.

Jon: Okay. Check out for more about us. There’s all kinds of great resources on there, and the Mighty Men Manual, and the work book if you want to do it with your small group at your church or whatever, two great resources where we take guys through all these foundational steps, then we give them tools, and then we take them through like just good old identity change. So it’s kind of this three full process that builds a platform to kind of get up and out of addiction.

Steve: Awesome! We will be sure to link to all that in the show notes. Thanks again for your time.

Jon: Thanks, Steven!

Steve: And all the awesome stuff you’re doing for the Kingdom, so keep it up.

Jon: Likewise. Alright!

Steve: See you!

Jon: Blessings!

Smart Quote: Martin Lloyd-Jones

“Have you realized that most of your unhappiness in life is due to the fact that you are listening to yourself instead of talking to yourself?” —Martin Lloyd-Jones

Thoughts on this quote? Feel free to discuss them in the comments below.

Weekly Web (W)roundup


Each week, I round up the best resources, articles, and videos I find that are relevant to finding freedom from porn addiction. Please note that by posting a link here it does not mean I agree with everything in the linked article. It just means I found it interesting enough to share.

Covenant Eyes: The One Thing SUCCESSFUL Porn Addiction Recovery Has in Common with AA

“We wrongly think people take identity from what they do. We think if we change the way we act, we will change the way we feel inside—and that may have temporary effects. But eventually, behavior always reverts and follows a person’s internal beliefs no matter how many tips, tactics, and twelve steps are employed to control one’s actions.

Gospel Coalition: The Best News You Can Possibly Imagine

“Several Protestant Reformers asserted that justification is the doctrine by which the church stands or falls. The more I understand of the gospel, and the needs of my fallen heart, the more I feel that I tend to stand or fall each day based on whether I’m living out of my justification.”

Relevant: The Secret Enemy in Your Marriage

“We thought we wouldn’t have the marriage troubles others had. How naive of us to assume we had all the answers when we had barely even begun to understand the questions.

Ian Hamilton: When I Don’t Feel Forgiven

“One of the most disturbing experiences a believer can face is losing the felt sense of God’s forgiveness. This desolating experience has touched the lives of many Christians throughout the ages.”

Voddie Baucham: How to Fight Addiction in a Pornographic Culture

DONE: Your Roots Have Been Planted in Fertile Soil

Let your roots grow down into Him, and let your lives be built on Him. Then your faith will grow strong in the truth you were taught, and you will overflow with thankfulness. (Colossians 2:7)

Jesus once told a story about a farmer who was planting seeds. Some of the seeds fell on the hard path and were quickly eaten by birds. Some fell on shallow soil and appeared to grow just fine, but as soon as the hot sun came out they withered and died. A few of the seeds fell into the thorns and were choked out by the more aggressive plants.

Wow. Thanks for the bummer story Jesus.

Yes, if the story had stopped there, it would be a total downer. Thankfully though, the story doesn’t stop there.

Jesus tells us about a fourth group of seeds that landed in good soil. Fertile, life-giving soil, full of nutrients and moist with the water of life. These seeds not only grew, they produced crops that were up to 100-times more than what was planted!

What we often fail to realize though, is this story isn’t really about how to plant seeds. It’s about the condition of your heart.

Or, more specifically, has your heart been tilled and softened to receive the message of God’s grace?

The seed that fell on good soil represents those who truly hear and understand God’s word and produce a harvest of thirty, sixty, or even a hundred times as much as had been planted! (Matthew 13:23)

The moment you put your faith in Christ, the soil of your heart was transformed into good soil because of His presence within you! Which means you already have everything you need to establish deep roots into the water of life. Not because you’re a special seed (sorry), but because your roots are planted in special soil.

Done Cover MockupThis post was an excerpt from my book, DONE. 52 Amazing Things that Became True of You the Moment You Trusted Christ.

The entire book is available as individual posts here, but if you prefer a good old-fashion paperback, you can purchase a copy from Amazon.