Every Man’s Guide to Winning the War on Sexual Temptation One Victory at a Time


Stephen Arterburn and Fred Stoeker

Waterbrook Press, 2000, 229 pp.   ISBN 1 47856 368 2


Arterburn is the founder and chairman of New Life Clinics and a nationally known speaker and author.  Stoeker writes and speaks to men about sexual purity.  The book is quite straightforward, even explicit.  Both men tell their story of overcoming sexual impurity.


“Sexual sins are the termites in the walls and foundations of today’s marriages.” (3)


God’s standard for sexual purity is Ephesians 5:3: “But among you there must not be even a hint of sexual immorality, or of any kind of impurity.” (9)


“Much of the sexual immorality in our society is so subtle we sometimes don’t recognize it for what it is.”  Even Forrest Gump.  (21)  “I guess I’ve been watching movies for so long that I didn’t even notice.”  (22) 


“I’m becoming frustrated and angry with the church.  The Bible says that women should dress modestly, but they don’t.  The women soloists are always wearing the latest, tightest fashions.  I look at them, but all I see are curves and legs.” (23)


Test for sexual addiction on pp. 26-7


The vast majority of men are fractionally addicted.  They experience addictive drawings.  “We’re compelled by the chemical high and the sexual gratification it brings.” (31)


“Because of the differences between men and women, forming a satisfying sex life in marriage is hardly a slam dunk.  It’s more like making a half-court shot.” (40)


“Your purity must not depend upon your mate’s health or desire.  God holds you responsible, and if you don’t gain control before your wedding day, you can expect it to crop up after the honeymoon.” (41)


“We can be naďve and foolish regarding God’s standard for sexual purity as we stumble blindly into wrong ‘because everyone else is doing it.’” Sometimes we’re rebellious or maybe we consider God’s standard too ridiculous to take seriously.  (43)


We’re commanded to avoid sexual impurity in more than half of the New Testament books. (45)


“Our adolescent Christians are often indistinguishable from their non-Christian peers, sharing the same activities, music, jokes, and attitudes about premarital sex.”  “And don’t we realize what our slack standards are costing us in our witness to the world?” (54) 


“Sexual impurity has become rampant in the church because we’ve ignored the costly work of obedience to God’s standards as individuals….”  “We’ve crafted an image and may even seem sexually pure while permitting our eyes to play freely when no one is around, avoiding the hard work of being sexually pure.” (58)


“Given what the sight of nudity does to the pleasure centers of our brain, and these days it’s pretty easy to see many naked or near-naked women, it’s no wonder our eyes and mind resist control.” (66)


“For males, impurity of the eyes is sexual foreplay.”  “God views foreplay outside marriage as wrong.”  See Ezekiel 23:3.  (66)


“No doubt about it: Visual sexual gratification is a form of sex for men.” (68)


Jesus is our role model.  He never looked on a woman with dishonor. (72)  Job said, “I made a covenant with my eyes not to look lustfully at a girl.” (Job 31:1)


God’s definition of real manhood is pretty simple: It means hearing His Word and doing it.”  (77)


God has provided everything you need for a life of purity.  What we lack is urgency.  “He is waiting for you to rise up and engage in the battle.” (90-92)


“Sexual impurity is a series of bad decisions on our part.  “Holiness is not some nebulous thing.  It’s a series of right choices.” (92)


“Satan’s greatest weapon against you is…deception.”  “He tricks you into thinking you’re a helpless victim.”  (103)


“You are sexually pure when no sexual gratification comes from anyone or anything but your wife.”  (104)


“Your objective in the war against lust is to build three perimeters of defense into your life:

1.     With your eyes.

2.     In your mind.

3.     In your heart.” – strengthen your affections for and commitment to your wife (104)


“Impurity is a habit, but it fights like an addiction. (105)  Habits can be changed.  Practice a new habit with great focus for six weeks and the old habit will become unnatural. (106)


Train your eyes to ‘bounce’ away from sights of pretty women and sensual images.  Immediately.  (125)


“We have a very good rule at home.  Any video unsuitable for the kids is probably unsuitable for adults.” (131)


Use a good Bible verse as a rallying point.  The opening line of Job 31 is a good one: “I have made a covenant with my eyes.” (141)  Use another verse as a shield, for example, I Cor. 6:18-20, “…you were bought with a price…”  “You have no right to look at that or think about it.  You haven’t the authority.”  (142)


“If you find someone attractive, your first line of defense is a proper mindset, which is this: This attraction threatens everything I hold dear.” (169)  Bounce your eyes.  Avoid her.  When you’re in her company, play the dweeb – be unappealing. (170-71)


When someone finds you attractive, spend absolutely no time alone with that person, even in public places, flee from her, send absolutely no return attraction signals, play the dweeb.  (173-74)  [My friend R.C. says when he sees a signal in a woman’s eyes, he looks at her nose.  He refuses to look into her eyes. Dlm]


Your innermost perimeter is about being consumed with God’s purpose to cherish your wife.” (187)


“Your wife gave up her freedom for you.  She relinquished her rights to seek happiness elsewhere.  She exchanged this freedom for something she considered more valuable: your love and your word.” (201)



Further reading: The Treasure Principle by Randy Alcorn