Douglas Weiss PhD wrote Clean: A Proven Plan for Men Committed to Sexual Integrity for men who want to get and stay sexually clean and faithful in their marriages. Men have, of course, always been bent toward sexual immorality, but in this age, as Weiss points out, pornography has never been accessible as it is today. Weiss takes a blunt, no nonsense, practical approach. He doesn’t spend much time theologizing. He assumes the reader knows what is wrong and needs a guide for how to fix it. I’m very appreciative for his approach.
Solidness: Plus++ Clean is not overly theological. His basic theological framework is this: We are saved by the sacrifice of Jesus, which is able to cover all of our sin. Our sin, even sexual sin, is not bigger than the cross. Nevertheless, God has called used to sexual purity and complete obedience and therefore we need to put in the time and effort to have victory in this area of our lives. If we do so, we and our families will be protected from much harm. If we fail to do so, as God’s children, we will experience the discipline of our Father. We remain obedient to God by viewing others (particularly women) as God does (as His favored daughters), by recognizing the devistating harm that disobedience leads to, by having appropriate boundaries, and by living truthful and accountable lives. Weiss’ theological framework is both God-centered and practical.
Freshness: Plus++ Weiss’ primary contribution to the discussion, however, doesn’t come from his theological framework (others have said it better) but from his practical experience as a psychologist. He gives a ton of great ideas for how to overcome temptation. Many are ones I’ve heard before (accountability, appropriate boundaries, blocking software, etc.) but others were new, like how to use “Braindar” to your advantage, or how men need to remember that we don’t just have God as a Father, but that He is also our Father-In-Law. Some of his advise is pretty intense, but comes from a strong desire for truth, openness, and accountability within the Church. He concludes with some discussion of “intimacy anorexia” which is often related to sex addiction, a piece of the puzzle I had not yet considered.
Recommendation: I recommend Clean for any man. If you’re currently struggling, it will be a guide for getting clean. If you’ve struggled in the past, it will help you stay clean. If you’ve been consistently obedient in this area, it will give you good ideas for encouraging other men. Sexual immorality and pornography are a huge issue for men in the Church. It doesn’t do much good to sweep it under the rug or pretend it isn’t there. As pornography becomes more and more accessible, and our culture becomes more and more sexualized, this fight will only intensify. This book is a great weapon in the armory of Church in this battle.
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