TRUE FREEDOM BY NEW AFFECTIONS
Whether it is pornography alcohol, drugs, or anything that enslaves you; the only way you will truly be set free is to acquire a new affection. The new affection must be greater than the one that enslaves you. To help understand this, I am riding the shoulders of the Scottish preacher Thomas Chalmers (1780-1847) and his sermon “The Expulsive Power of a New Affection.” Taken from the text 1 John 2:15, “Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him.”
Chalmers first point is “A moralist will be unsuccessful in trying to displace his love of the world by reviewing the ills of the world. Misplaced affections need to be replaced by the far greater power of the affection of the gospel.” He points out that love has two conditions that we are to regard. The first is when the object of love is not in our possession and so it is a desire that we have. The second is when the object of love is on our possession and so it becomes indulgence. When we are under the impulse of the first condition, we are urged on a path or are pursuing an activity for our gratification. It can become consuming and crowds our mind with ambition to acquire it. Often in this pursuit, we can become weary and even acquire a distaste for what we are doing, yet the desire is so strong that if not substituted, the chase continues.
The common way we attempt to deal with a strong desire and the pursuit is to cut it out or simply put – just stop it. Chalmers points out that our heart will rise in resistance. To simply try and stop a pursuit or habit leaves a negative and cheerless vacancy behind it and it will fail.
I will continue this defense that to be set free from the world affections of things such as pornography, new affections must replace it and they must be stronger and greater than the powerful pull of pornography. Point two from Chalmers tomorrow.