Tag Archive for: all ages

God is Right Now over a dark background with hour glass, pocket watch, and old style clock with roman numerals

The Reality of History…

As Western culture has re-evaluated its relationship with history over the past couple years, a common refrain has been, “History is written by the victors.”

The point of the phrase is that it’s easy to lose the story of the people who “lost” in the progress of history because they are either dead or their self-expression is suppressed by those who “won.” Therefore, we have been coming to grips with the reality that history is not as clean cut as we might have learned in 5th grade history class.

….And Our Future

Our ideas of the future are similar. We tend to have formulated a plotline for the rest of our life at any given time…

… I’ll live here
… I’ll be married
… I won’t be married
… I’ll have kids
… I’ll work this job, etc.

But the future is even more dubious than the past. There are thousands of factors that affect the outcome of your life that are completely outside of your control. And yet, how quickly we become anxious or worried about the future that will almost certainly not happen the same way we imagine it!

The Way God Wants Us to Know Him

I think Christians sometimes do the same thing with God. We tend to think about God on the basis of our past or our future. “God must be blessing/cursing me because I was good/bad in the past.” “God, please bless me with (fill in the blank) in the future.”

And don’t get me wrong, our God is the same yesterday, today, and forever. He “declares the end from the beginning and from ancient times things not yet done, saying, ‘My counsel shall stand, and I will accomplish all my purpose.” (Is. 46:10) But my concern is that we forget that the way God wants us to know him is in the present. 

Do you remember Elijah’s lament to God in 1 Kings 19?

Elijah complains about his past… “I have been very zealous for you, God! And everyone has rejected you!” And then he complains about his future… “They are going to kill me now!”

And how does God answer?

In the present. He says, “Stand over there, Elijah. I’m going to pass by you.” He basically ignores Elijah’s worries about the past or the future until the very end of the text! He just comforts him by saying, “I am here right now.” 

God reoriented Elijah. “Elijah, what’s more important than the past or the future is the fact that I am with you right now.” 

Even though we don’t want to admit it to ourselves, that’s what we want. I have two little daughters and sometimes they call me into their room in the middle of the night because they’re scared. At that point, they don’t need a logical argument about how the dark cannot hurt them or about how the sun will come up soon or how there has never been anything bad that has happened in their room in the middle of the night in the past.

God is here right now. That’s what our soul craves; that’s what God is.

They just need their daddy to be with them. 

The past is a story we struggle to make sense of, the future is a made-up story we tell ourselves. God is here right now. That’s what our soul craves; that’s what God is.

And that means that you can dispense with the stories you tell yourself about your past.

No matter how or what you struggled with…it’s paid for at the cross. It is finished. And you can stop worrying about the story you expect to play out in the future. It’s not your story to write.

But you do have right now, and a God who loves you, approves of you, desires to be with you, walks with you, speaks to you right now.

“So long as it is ‘Today,’ be sure to hear his voice.” (paraphrase of Hebrew 4:6-7)

Breathe in.

Breathe out.

You’re right here, right now.

You don’t exist “then.”

And God is right here too. 


Caleb Schultz is the Content Editor for Conquerors through Christ. He serves as a pastor in a suburb of Toronto, Canada.


You’re Not Hurting Anyone 

It is so easy to believe this because screens are deceptive barriers. No one gets concerned for the health of an actor when we see a fight scene in a movie. A tragedy in a sitcom may tug the heartstrings, but we know that the pain is fabricated and the tears don’t leave the set.

Porn is not like that.

Its effects do not remain behind the screen. Though it may be scripted, it is not inconsequential. Those are real people performing real acts that defy God’s desires for our bodies. And it’s not just the actors and actresses who are affected. Watching those actions has real detrimental consequences on the viewer.

Though the porn industry often causes serious problems in the lives of the performers, it always does harm to its viewers.

Porn teaches both men and women unrealistic and unhealthy expectations about each other’s bodies.

Porn teaches both men and women unrealistic and unhealthy expectations about each other’s bodies. Some types present sexual violence as a legitimate and beneficial way to find pleasure. Porn can lead to sexual dysfunction. It breaks the trust in relationships and infiltrates the committed love between spouses.

The use of porn can create a negative feedback loop of shame in the mind of the user. But most importantly, porn takes blatant violations of God’s will for his gift of sex and throws it in our faces declaring, “This is good!” The private and secluded environment in which most porn is viewed can delude us with the lie that there is no impact to the outside world.

But pornography hurts the people on both sides of the screen. It harms the viewer’s relationships, both with family, and more importantly with God. 

Your Body, Your Business 

Throughout history, sexual sins have had some of the strongest societal taboos. It is not so with porn in our society. In fact, during the height of the pandemic some governments were encouraging their locked-down citizens to watch porn and ease their sexual desires in that way.

Again, the deceptively secluded nature of watching pornography allows the devil to convince us that it’s really not anyone else’s concern if this is how we find satisfaction or relieve stress.

It’s not like infidelity or premarital sex because you’re not physically committing sin with anyone else, right?

And while it’s true that the consequences of those things may be more visible, pornography is also out of line with God’s plan for how we use our bodies, and specifically our sexuality.

So while the world may tell us watching porn is a personal matter, we know that is not the case. It impacts current relationships and is a hindrance to future ones. But most dangerously, it can damage our relationship with God.

Make no mistake: Watching pornography is a sin.

Our bodies are not our own; they are temples of the Lord who made them (1 Corinthians 6:19).

Acting in a way against God’s desire for our bodies transgresses his perfect law. Repeated sins that become entrenched in our lives always present a threat to our walk of faith.

This is Who You Are 

One of the most soul endangering deceptions that Satan works on believers is that the identity of a Christian is tied to their sins, that what we have done defines us.

Again, to our logic which is corrupted in the sinful world, this doesn’t seem like so much of a stretch. Throughout history people have been associated with their actions, whether noble or devious.

Felons face the reality of the societal identity their actions have given them every day. Even neighbors decide who gets a friendly wave and who they happen to not see based on what they’ve done. This is Satan’s final and most devastating tactic.

After he has convinced you to seek your own pleasure, he turns the perfect mirror of God’s law toward you and laughs, “What sort of ‘Christian’ would do that?!?” His final aim is for you to believe you are what you have done…failure.

When God the Father looks at us he sees only the perfection of the Son, won by his sinless life and sacrificial death.

But praise be to God that he does not look at us through the lens of our actions. When God the Father looks at us he sees only the perfection of the Son, won by his sinless life and sacrificial death.

Viewing pornography is a sin that hurts the producer, the viewer, and the loved ones around them.

But for those who believe and confess that Jesus is the Savior, a sexual sinner is no longer who you are. Rather, you are washed, redeemed, and justified through the blood of Jesus.

That does not mean that quitting porn will be easy, but it does mean that it is possible.

And it means that after every fall you have a Savior picking you up in love and after every triumph you have a Father rejoicing as you walk in service to him.

Admitting to a porn problem is daunting and worrisome, especially for Christians. But Christ did not call us to walk in fear.

Recovery is possible. The God who set the stars ablaze and spun the planets looks at his children not as a collection of their sins but as a reflection of his Son’s holiness. 


Jonas Landwehr is a pastoral studies student in his second year at Wisconsin Lutheran Seminary. 


Sexual Liberation or Infidelity Hell

Sexual Liberation or Infidelity Hell


“You have no right to judge me.” Or so I’ve been told.

Truth is, they’re right. As a sinner saved by grace I am in no position to cast any stones of condemnation. The rationale as to WHY I shouldn’t be judging, however, is where the debate comes in.

Yesterday’s reasoning for abstaining from judgment was because I too was a sinner and therefore didn’t have the right to suggest I’m better. We’ll call this the moral hypocrisy argument. Again, I don’t disagree. But that’s not today’s rationale. Today, in the 21st century, the logic we’re generally fed for why it’s inappropriate to make moral judgments about others is because everyone is responsible for forming their own truth. At least that’s the current cultural assumption. Do what you want to do, be true to yourself, just don’t hurt anyone along the way. This is the moral relativism argument.

This is something of a hollowed out Golden Rule and is fairly clever. It sounds nice and is probably the best case you can make for morality apart from God. But, with just a little thought, the average person can recognize that moral relativism doesn’t work.

If everything is permissible so long as you’re not hurting anyone, who gets to say for sure whether or not someone is being hurt?

Take something as commonplace today as pornography usage.

We now have 20 years of research on the effects of internet pornography, a generation of people largely educated by the public to believe that porn was a legitimate “safe sex” alternative to engaging in more risky sexual behavior. It wasn’t just a victimless crime. It was touted as a “healthy” alternative.

Today, we know that approximately 80% of young adult men, 70% of middle-aged men, and 50% of older adult men admit to accessing pornography on some sort of regular basis (Pornography usage numbers, by the way, are often considered by experts to be notoriously underreported, i.e. it could be higher.). Couple this regularity with the tidal wave of research that says pornography consumption leads to a vastly heightened prevalence of sexual addiction, sexual dysfunction, more graphic, illegal, and abusive sexual practices, the devaluation of monogamy and child rearing, and quite predictably, the likelihood of an affair.

In 2002, the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers reported the following as the most salient factors present in divorce cases:

  • 68% of the divorces involved one party meeting a new lover over the Internet.
  • 56% involved one party having “an obsessive interest in pornographic websites.

From a practical perspective, pornography can, and often does, lead to divorce and therefore to victims: the other partner in the relationship, children, extended family who have to pick up the pieces. But even if a legal divorce isn’t the end result of porn use, there are still victims. For married people, porn use can create images and ideas in the mind of the user which he or she brings into the bedroom with their spouse…like inviting a third person into their relationship.

For single people, porn can lead to unrealistic expectations of the opposite sex. And then there are the actors and actresses in the films, many of whom are coerced or forced to act in pornography, and even if they do so willingly, are far more likely to deal with psychological and physical problems as a result of their work, such as depression, sexual violence, suicidality, and poverty…at a rate that is nearly 3x the rate of people who do not act in pornography (according to a 2011 study of women published in the Psychiatric Services journal)!

The cultural command is…everything is permissible so long as you’re not hurting anyone. Again, I ask, who gets to say for sure whether or not someone is being hurt? It certainly seems like millions are hurting because of the relative morality dictum.

So, I’m suggesting we reconsider.

Relative morality does not work. Darwinian amorality, where everyone does whatever they see fit, even if it does involve willfully hurting others, would end civilization. The third option, the only option left, is universal morality. And the absolute truth that teaches universal morality can only be found outside of us, in divine revelation. It would make sense for us to once again revisit such an option at a time like this.

Since universal truth is, by definition, timeless, it is unchanging. This is why Jesus, thousands of years after Creation, can reaffirm God’s design for human sexuality:

“Haven’t you read,” he replied, “that at the beginning the Creator ‘made them male and female,’ and said, ‘For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh’? So they are no longer two, but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, let no one separate.” Matt. 19:4-6

Moving back to that paradigm WOULD CAUSE LESS HURT. No more pornography. No more hookups. No more cohabitation. No more infidelity. I guarantee we’d be happier, healthier, and more satisfied. We’d hurt less.

But renewed effort, redirected goals, and godly guidelines won’t atone for our mistakes. For that we also need divine intervention.

So, for all who have been hurt by the slavery packaged as “sexual liberation,” the Bible also has a wealth of comfort.

Amazingly, God himself also knows exactly what it’s like to be hurt by sexual unfaithfulness. He knows what it’s like to be a victim of another person’s sexual misconduct. God even specifically had his prophet Hosea take a cheating wife, Gomer, to illustrate to his people that he knew what it was like to be devastated by (spiritual) philandering.

When the Lord began to speak through Hosea, the Lord said to him, “Go, marry a promiscuous woman and have children with her, for like an adulterous wife this land is guilty of unfaithfulness to the Lord.” Hosea 1:2

We have a God who has been cheated on. And he has all the power in the universe at his disposal to heal us of our wounds and free us from our slavery. He also has enough love to pay the price to separate our sins of unfaithfulness from us, as far as the east is from the west (Psalm 103:12).

Now he guides us to a more beautiful design for human sexuality.

What would it look like if we all really believed that?

I attended a conference earlier this year and heard a presentation from Elyse Fitzpatrick, a Christian counselor and author, who has been counseling for more than 50 years. During a Q&A following her presentation, she was asked what progress she has seen the Christian church make over the last 50 years in the field of counseling.

She answered, “One place I think we’ve seen a lot of progress is in caring for women who are in abusive relationships. I think it’s a good thing, and we’re finally doing that better. We don’t really get it yet, but I think that people are trying to do a better job caring for women who are in abusive relationships, whereas let’s say 15 years ago people would say, ‘Oh you’re having trouble with your husband, it’s because you need to submit more.’ I trust that that’s changing. I think I see a push for that.”

The pastor interviewing her then asked, “You’ve done a ton of counseling over the years. Was that a common response?” She replied, “Yeah, very common. Over and over, yes. And I’ll be honest, you know, there was – I’m trying to think carefully – I don’t think I saw the way abuse, I don’t think I saw it in Christian marriages the way I see it now.” The interviewer asked, “Can you expand on that? How do you see it now?”

Fitzpatrick answered, “I think a lot of what passes for the way that women, Christian women, are told to be in their marriages, I think that that gives birth to or weight to really abusive relationships.”

The interviewer then asked what she meant by that, so she gave the example of a man who has a problem with pornography and said, “And that’s not like so unusual, like 65% of men in the church say that they view porn more than once a month.”

“So, a woman comes in and she says, ‘My husband’s got this porn thing happening.’ And she’s told, ‘Well, you know, if you’d lose 15 pounds…’”


The pastor asked, “So that’s the counsel people are getting?” “Uh, yeah,” she answered, “You know, be more sexually available, because his sin is your fault. See, women are saying ‘yeah’? [referencing women in attendance who were vocalizing their validation of what she was describing] Because that’s a true thing that women are told…”

“‘Your husband has a problem with pornography, because you don’t want, you’re not sexually available to him all the time. Your husband gets angry with you because you’re not submitting enough.’”


It was my favorite moment of the three-day conference. I share the story, because too often I hear from pastors that what she describes is rare. But the testimonies I hear from women who reach out through the Conquerors through Christ website tell me that this experience is not rare.

According to Barna Research, 68% of church-going men seek out online pornography at least once per month, as well as about a third of church-going women. WELS is not immune to these stats.


I have heard from and about too many of our sisters in Christ who say the counsel they received from their WELS pastor was to be more sexually active, more sexually available, and more sexually willing. This essentially downplayed their husbands’ adulterous activity. They were told that their husband’s porn problem is, at least in part, their fault. While it is good that we have compassion for a man addicted to pornography, we cannot let that cause a lack of compassion for the woman who is left feeling unloved, unseen, and unvalued because of his addiction.

Let us not misapply Ephesians 5:22 and ask women to submit to their husbands’ sin. 1 Corinthians 7:4 does not give a man the right to objectify his wife as he attempts to excite himself by acting out a fiction he has seen. We need to recognize that the majority of the people in our congregations are either addicted to pornography, married to someone who is, or raising someone who is. This experience is sadly commonplace, and perhaps the reason we don’t realize it is we have shown ourselves to be dismissive of the struggle many women in particular face around this issue.

Pastors need to trust women. When a woman comes to her pastor and tells him that she knows her husband is actively viewing porn, the pastor needs to not only trust everything she says as true, but the pastor also needs to recognize that what she is doing is very difficult for her to do. She has finally brought herself to tell her pastor because she trusts him, and she needs help. God has particularly wired women for meaningful relationships, and in that moment, many of her meaningful relationships are threatened! Women who are hurting like this are part of our body as the church and we need to listen to every part of our body.

When a woman does the hard thing of telling her pastor about an issue that pains her, she needs a pastor who tells her that she’s not alone, she’s not the only one, and there is hope.

When a woman does the hard thing of telling her pastor about an issue that pains her, she needs a pastor who tells her that she’s not alone, she’s not the only one, and there is hope. Yes, there will be a time to work through forgiving her spouse and rebuilding trust, and maybe, God-willing, re-establishing intimacy. But that will take time, and it cannot be our first word to women who have been sinned against by the porn use of their husband.

Jesus says that the merciful will receive mercy, but first he says that those who mourn will be comforted. (Matt 5:4,7)

Let’s lead with comfort, brother pastors, and continue to remind our wounded sisters in Christ that in all our days of faithlessness, our faithful Husband, the Lord Jesus, holds on to us. He enables us to stand. He has already forgiven all our lovelessness.

Jesus perfectly loved his spouse (the Church) and that’s our record.


The Holy Spirit continues to enable us to walk this road and causes us to remember how he has loved us. He is faithful. We are not. But he loves us faithfully in spite of the weakness of our love. That’s good news and it’s the only news that will enable her to love and forgive her spouse, a fellow sinner, as he walks toward truth with her.

Loving and forgiving her spouse does not mean she needs to stay married. Maybe she will, and that can be great. But first, he needs to stop, and he needs help. In fact, stating that fact is the first step in helping that sister begin to show mercy. Only when his behavior is called out as the sin that it is can her heart be softened by Jesus’ love for her. Only when she hears that her Savior is on her side can she begin to see Him as an ally and stand with Him to forgive her husband.

Brad Snyder is a pastor in Boise, Idaho and serves as the chairman for Conquerors through Christ. 


Sixty seven countries speak English as their official language. Despite the official agreement on that count, many of them have dialects and accents that make it difficult for some from the United States to understand them. But inversely, almost every English speaker understands a North American accent. Sure, there may be some confusion with idioms and turns of phrase, but on the whole the message gets across. A lot of messages get across. Why is this? Everyone watches TV shows from the U.S., everyone sees movies from the U.S., and yes, everyone watches porn from the U.S. Granted, “everyone” is an exaggeration. But the United States is an unparalleled media content creator with global influence. This means that aspects of U.S. culture are being broadcast to the world, and not all of them are beneficial.

Among these is the trivialization of sexuality that is present in many shows and movies. Name a popular sitcom, late night show, or drama series, and it is sure to include lewd jokes, contempt for a biblical view of sex, and approval for worldly ways of interacting with sexual desires. The internet allows these ideas to make their way all over the globe, including to countries that still hold more traditional views of marriage and sex. For better or worse, what the U.S. is doing impacts far more people than just its residents. The Daily Mail reported that the United States produces 60% of the world’s pornography. While this number is from a decade ago, the growth in the industry cataloged by IbisWorld displays a steady increase since then. Aided by a jump during the COVID-19 pandemic, the industry is now worth over a billion dollars annually.

To make this more concrete, the percentage of the world that has consistent access to clean water is just a little higher than those who have access to the internet. Online porn is almost as easy to get globally as a glass of potable water.

What can we take away from this? Perhaps a little bit of perspective. Despite what the older generations may lament and what we may see in media, the U.S. is not uniquely struggling with a problem of sexual depravity. Pornography is a sin problem, not an isolated social result of a secularizing culture. And sin can be found wherever we look in this world. Porn consumption is not as much a matter of acceptance as of availability. Where it can be watched, it will be. This is one of the biggest downsides of the internet; vast amounts of immoral material are available to anyone with an internet connection and mobile device.

I am not saying this to make the situation seem hopeless, to shame ‘those people,’ or to discourage the members of the body of Christ who are involved in this fight. I’m saying it to lead us to realize that it is a fight! To the death.That every one of us participates in. Paul in his letter to the church in Rome says, For if you live according to the flesh, you will die; but if by the Spirit you put to death the misdeeds of the body, you will live.” Every day in the life of a Christian is a fight to put to death the desires of our sinful flesh. And since the fall into sin when the first married couple, Adam and Eve, looked at each other’s nakedness and felt shame, sexual sins have been among the most pervasive. This goes beyond just physical action, as Jesus explained. To even look with lust at someone is to break the sixth commandment. As one of my professors put it, “The Devil wants you to think that there is an acceptable margin of error as you live your Christian life. There isn’t.” Millions of people, millions of Christians, find themselves in this imaginary margin with their porn use. 

Prepare yourself for battle. The fight against pornography is difficult. You may be tempted to stay in the lie of that margin. It’s a comfortable place to be, but is also a soul-endangering place to be. Jesus had some strong illustrations about the danger of sin. Better to lose a hand than sin and lose heaven. But he also provides the most loving and welcoming place to those who want to escape their sins. “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.” 

For this reason the crucial first step to freedom from porn is confession. But it is incredibly hard to do. All of our sinful flesh and the hordes of hell scream at us to remain unseen in the margin. But may God give us all strength not to stay there, whatever the sin that keeps us there. Confession will not be the end of the struggle, but it is certainly the beginning of the end. We all must daily put to death our sinful flesh. That is why confiding in a trusted Christian friend, family member, or pastor is so important for breaking addiction to sin. They can provide accountability day by day, redirection when we fall, and heap on the message of God’s overflowing forgiveness and boundless grace. Brothers and sisters, do not live in the margin. Flee the sinfulness of the flesh. Run to Christ, who gave his life for the sins of the whole world, which includes you.


Jonas Landwehr is a first year student at Wisconsin Lutheran Seminary. 

Doug was a middle-aged man with all he could ask for. He had a wonderful wife, three charming kids, and a solid job. He was a regular attender of church services and served on a few boards. The congregation knew him as a backbone of many projects and plans. If you needed someone, whether it was to fix your car or give you emotional support, Doug was your man. But Doug struggled with lust. He had a wandering eye. He knew it was wrong–he had a wife! No matter how hard he tried, he kept on feeling more and more guilty…

Katherine was a high honors college student, on her way to becoming valedictorian. She participated in two sports and volunteered her free time in a program to help those with special needs. She was by no means the most popular girl in the class, but everyone who spent time with her enjoyed her company. But Katherine struggled with porn. Sure, she kept it a secret, and that made it even worse. She felt like a fraud, because she looked so good on the outside but was filthy on the inside…

Stephen was the oldest member in his congregation. He was of a good age of seventy-eight, and was still blessed with excellent health–never been hospitalized in his life. He was everyone’s grandpa. That’s just what his personality was made for. But he was haunted by the one night back in high school when he and a girl took it a little too far…

Now, go back and consider those situations again. What if those stories weren’t about Doug, Katherine or Stephen….but about you?

Maybe those stories aren’t exactly your story, but if you’re someone who has ever struggled with sexual sin, you can relate, can’t you? You feel the emotions, the guilt, the loneliness, the darkness. You are the one who struggles with lust. You are the one who can’t escape porn. You are the unmarried one who had sex that one night. You are.

Do you ever feel like David did when Nathan confronted him about his sin? David, the one after God’s own heart, lusted after Bathsheba, took her just to satisfy his sexual desire, and then tried all he could to keep it secret. The great king of Israel fell so low to become an adulterer, murderer, and liar. God sent Nathan to David, and after his story about the king, the poor man and his lamb, Nathan cried out to David, You are the man!” (II Samuel 12:7). Immediately, he had a guilt-ridden conscience. Read Psalm 32 and you may see that in a few verses. Do you ever sense that accusing finger of God’s law pointed right at you like Nathan’s finger was pointed at David?

The Law completely destroys you. The Gospel builds you back up.

The Law completely destroys you. The Gospel builds you back up. Just like David, you confess, “I have sinned against the Lord” (II Samuel 12:13). And what Nathan said to David is just as true for you: “The Lord has taken away your sin.” God’s promise rings in the guilty heart: he forgives wickedness and remembers sin no more” (Jeremiah 31:34). That’s what he promised. That’s why Christ suffered and died. To forgive your sin. To pay for it. To make you holy in God’s eyes.

That sin has been wiped completely away. It’s gone. But the consequences still linger–King David experienced that, too. He was graciously forgiven but that son born from his selfish sexual act died. I’m not in the position to break down all the things that still linger from your sin. I don’t know what they are. You might. But I am in the position to tell you that Christ has paid the price for your sin.

You were dead in your sin. You used to live in the ways of the world. You gratified the thoughts and desires of your sinful nature. You were by nature an object of God’s wrath. But because of his great love with which he loved us, God, rich in mercy, made you alive in Christ when you were dead in your sin. By grace you have been saved. You were dead. But now, you are alive. (Ephesians 2)

You are the one who is forgiven. I am the one who is forgiven. God’s love is great! The consequences of sin still linger in this world, but the ultimate punishment has been absorbed by God in Jesus.

In God’s eyes, your story isn’t a story of sexual sin, but of righteousness.

In God’s eyes, your story isn’t a story of sexual sin, but of righteousness. You are his loved son or daughter. So, count yourself differently.

Romans 6:10–11 says, The death [Jesus] died, he died to sin once for all; but the life he lives, he lives to God. In the same way, count yourselves dead to sin but alive to God in Christ Jesus.”

To “count yourselves” means to think about yourselves differently than what appears to be true on the outside. The consequences of sin say something, but that’s not who you are in Christ.

Be who he has made you to be!


Nathaniel Brauer is a first-year student at Wisconsin Lutheran Seminary.


Not that long ago, people didn’t talk about pornography publicly. Silence didn’t keep porn use from growing. In fact, use of porn and porn addiction has exploded. The Conquerors through Christ team has pushed back.

CtC has done unique and effective work. We’ve created a program to help people addicted to pornography use to Reject it. We’ve created a system to aid parents, pastors, and teachers in leading our maturing children to Resist the temptation of online porn.

Now it’s time for us to focus on…

The Bohemian Issue: Does Anything Really Matter?
The Bohemian Issue: Does Anything Really Matter?
“Nothing really matters to me.”

That line ends arguably the most unique and well-loved rock song of all time, Queen’s “Bohemian Rhapsody.” Interestingly, despite the popularity of the 1975 song, the term “Bohemian” hit its low in frequency of usage in the English language in 1980. Very few people, even those who know the song well, know what a “Bohemian” is. Do you?

Specific definitions vary, but that last lyric of the song does a pretty good job summing all of them up. A Bohemian is someone who lives with very little grounding in the real world. Nothing really matters to them.

Freddie Mercury was the quintessential example of a Bohemian. A man who found no grounding other than in the pleasure of wild living and the praise of man.

Over the past two and half years, we’ve seen the things that we thought could never change shown to be fragile. Who would have thought that the NBA and NHL would have shut down like they did? Who would have thought that international travel would slam on its brakes?

But sacred things, things that formed identity, things that grounded us, things that truly mattered were also halted: family gatherings, in-person school, and most importantly, the physical life of the Church in the gathering of believers around God’s Word and the reception of the Lord’s Supper.

As one pastor put it, “When people see that even the things that matter most aren’t truly sacred, why would we expect them to take anything seriously?”

This isn’t an article about how churches, schools, or families react to COVID. This is an article to acknowledge that this is the world the young Christians of our world live in today, a world that, by no fault of their own, has “bohemianized” them (if I may make up a term). If you’re older you may not feel it the same way. Much of your life and identity has already been set, and as things went back to a form of normal, you could too. But for young people who are growing into who they are, a foundation is necessary. For about 2 years, the world robbed them of that. It told them that “nothing really matters.”

The problem is that when nothing really matters, we are tempted to turn our thoughts inward to find meaning, pleasure, peace, and foundation. And while being a Bohemian occasionally produces awesome rock tunes, often it also leads into self-destructive behavior.

While most young people don’t have the resources to behave like Freddie Mercury, they do have cheap alternatives, one of the cheapest, most easily accessible, most addicting, and most destructive being pornography.

When “nothing really matters,” who cares if I watch this? Who cares if people get hurt? Who cares if it messes with my brain chemistry? Who cares if ruins my relationships with the opposite sex?

This may be hard for some to believe, but this is the fight we engage in now. We fight not just to help those struggling with pornography, but also to help those who are trapped in porn’s grip to see that this really does matter.

Psalm 144 feels this. It begins by acknowledging that from an earthly perspective, human life isn’t that significant.

LORD, what are human beings that you care for them, mere mortals that you think of them? They are like a breath; their days are like a fleeting shadow. (Psalm 144:4–4 NIV)

If this is all we are, then nothing really matters, but then the Psalm continues…

Part your heavens, LORD, and come down. (Psalm 144:5 NIV)

And God did. God came down into the womb of the Virgin Mary to show humanity that their life really does matter, that they really do matter.

And the result? The psalmist records that when the Lord comes down…

Then our sons in their youth will be like well-nurtured plants, and our daughters will be like pillars carved to adorn a palace. (Psalm 144:12 NIV)

You matter enough to God that he would become human to save you. He wants to grow and shape you into something beautiful.

Today, pray Psalm 144 for our young people. Pray that God would continue to come to them in Word and Sacrament to grow them and shape them into people who give glory to God by their lives. If you feel a little like a Bohemian, pray that God would make you believe that this really does matter. And finally, pray for Conquerors through Christ, that we can help more people see that this fight really matters.


Caleb Schultz is the Content Editor for Conquerors through Christ. He serves as a pastor in a suburb of Toronto, Canada.



Conquerors through Christ has produced a Parent Support System to assist and equip parents in teaching their children about God’s gift and design of sexuality. Conquerors through Christ also has Middle School Lessons and a High School Curriculum available.


Probably every age is a fine age to talk to your child about sexuality in age-appropriate ways. Talk to your two-year-old about privacy and differences between boys and girls. As they develop, you can continue teaching them about their body and later about the temptations and threats that exist in the world and can harm our bodies. Sex education is a process, not an event. You are not looking for a time to have one big awkward conversation. You are looking for many opportunities throughout your child’s life to advance the process of teaching them of God’s blessings and intentions for them and their bodies.