In Finally Free, author Heath Lambert offers a no-nonsense, grace-filled message about porn… an epidemic that requires constant attention in the body of Christ.
Enslavement to pornography is perhaps the least enjoyable topic for Christians to bring up, let alone discuss. This means ironically that it’s extremely important to bring up and discuss. And we should be thankful for books which do just that, like Heath Lambert’s Finally Free. If you’re perhaps thinking instead, “Another book about porn and Christians?! This is ridiculous!”, the blunt truth is that since immorality is such an epidemic in the church and the lives of the Christians in them, it requires constant attention. It’s perfectly appropriate for believers around the world to address the porn problem, both from the pulpit and in print. And I frankly wish we would more often.
What I appreciate most about Finally Free is that Heath Lambert constantly speaks to the only answer to one’s enslavement to sexual sin: the grace of Jesus Christ. Without it, a Christian will never escape porn’s shackles. Heath doesn’t stray from that fact for a moment. The beginning chapter presents an interesting diagram, where God’s grace lies at the center [as the foundation to this answer], and eight specific concepts “point out” as weapons which the grace-enabled Christian can use to fight his/her unique battle. Those weapons are sorrow, accountability, a radical attitude, confession, one’s spouse (or singleness), humility, gratitude, and one’s relationship with Christ. This is the makeup of Finally Free. Each chapter brings a no-nonsense message about the [porn] problem, and sterling encouragements about the possible effects of the wise use of the highlighted weapon.
I couldn’t have predicted, however, the extents that Lambert suggests in the chapter surrounding radical measures. I fully support the idea of someone doing whatever it takes to be severed from bondage to pornography, but would have never considered changing my job, or handing my car keys to someone. Yet given the chance to stew on this for a while, it makes sense. Whatever it takes means whatever it takes, even if it seems strange. The cost to follow Jesus should never matter to us. Lambert took his material straight out of Matthew 5/Mark 9, where Jesus explicitly commands a radical approach to mortifying sin. Such measures also aren’t intended to be needed forever, of course.
Chapters 7 and 8 were the most thought-provoking to me. Chapter 7 (humility) challenged me about the notion that watching pornography, or fantasizing, is a manifestation of one’s pride. Lambert proposes that men indulge in porn especially because they want to see women portrayed in ways that God has expressly forbidden. Instead we ought to regard such actors and actresses, or the objects of our fantasies, as people who need us to represent Christ to them, not take advantage of them. It should also be viewed as a selfish use of time, which could be used instead to serve others. There are many other details concerning using humility as weapon, but the idea in general spoke to me. And the same for gratitude (chapter 8), which isn’t practiced when watching porn or thinking about it. In being thankful for what we do have, we enjoy an attitude of gladness that’s able to dispel any desire to see sexual depravity. It’s fascinating how Heath references Ephesians 5:3-4 (which I also do in another article: Not Even A “Hint”), emphasizing the three last words, but rather thanksgiving, to drive this home. His point is that the apostle Paul exhorts us to be thankful (grateful) to have victory over the sins mentioned in the prior verse (sexual immorality, impurity, greed, obscenity, foolish talk, and coarse joking). Makes sense to me!
The final chapter caught me a little bit by surprise. It’s intimately connected to the introductory chapter, but I won’t divulge how so. It helps you appreciate even more how Lambert handled the material between the two as far as all the pearls of wisdom Christians can benefit from as they fight daily for moral purity. It’s also interesting that Joshua Harris, a well-respected author [on dating and sexuality], was responsible for the book’s Foreword. Harris hints in a way that Finally Free blows his sex isn’t the problem, lust is book out of the water, and that he would recommend Lambert’s book to anyone struggling with porn addiction.
My critique of Finally Free is ultimately this; if your life is consumed by pornography and you want a book that will flood your mind with the truth of grace and also not mince words about what you’re doing, absolutely pick up Finally Free. But others can certainly read it as well. If you’re looking for extra encouragements in the rough and tumble of the daily battle, as I always do, read the book. If you want to help someone else addicted to immorality, Finally Free is a wonderful tool! And thank you brother Lambert, for keeping this deadly issue fresh in our minds.