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Home昔日真理報2012年 真理報文章2012 年 8 月【雙語園地】鬆開的捆綁--趙泰和的見證



A Broken Bondage -- a testimony from Ted Zhao
鬆開的捆綁 -- 趙泰和的見證
By Ted Zhao



I was enslaved by pornography and lust. God saved me, and I was free. The end.



As much as I wished this was my story, this was not how it happened. Freedom from pornography and joy in Christ did not come without much trials and suffering. But I thank God for how He has guided me through even the darkest days of my life. It is through these days of trial and suffering that His grace proved to be ever more enduring.



I was baptized when I was 13 years old. God and the gospel seemed natural to me. At home, I was obedient most of the time; at school, I didn’t need much effort to get ahead. Because I was a deep thinker, many people saw me as a prudent, intelligent and mature young man. But I knew that was not who I was. I had a secret life—a life so vile that I kept it hidden from everyone, including myself. This was the sinful life of pornography.



At church, I appeared as a proper young man. However, during those years of bondage, there was never a day where I worshiped God with a pure heart and a clear conscience. Since my very first encounter with pornography, I was gripped. I was convicted after knowing Jesus’ commands “But I tell you that anyone who looks at a woman lustfully has already committed adultery with her in his heart” (Matthew 5:28). Whenever the word “sin” was mentioned, the first thought that came to mind was pornography and immorality.



Yet this sin seemed so powerful that whenever I tried to fight it, I would lose. I knew the Bible clearly said “Do not be deceived. Neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor homosexuals, nor sodomites… will inherit the kingdom of God.”(1 Corinthians 6:9-10). I was deeply distressed everyday yet I could not tell anyone.



I really wanted to be free from it! But when I am at home alone, it did not take much time for me to fall back to the same old sin again. Pornography was like a friend to me—always available, never accusing, and always promised satisfaction—but only for a brief second. Lustful thoughts constantly filled my mind, even when I had no computers around me. I looked lustfully at women—many dressed immodestly—but that was not an excuse; I know deliberately followed my sensual desires. I knew it was a great lie, but still I was unable to resist it. This struggle did not just last for a few months or even a couple of years, but for a decade! I knew that my life would eventually be ruined if I did not stop. My actions would hurt not only my family but my future marriage as well, yet I could not find victory over it. I feared I would have to spend the rest of my life in bondage.



I often heard testimonies of people being transformed by Jesus: of alcoholics and drug addicts who got sober, of gamblers set free—I could relate to all of their struggles, but NOT their victory! Countless times I cried out to God: “Where is my testimony? Am I unfit for Your grace? I am a wretched sinner, tortured by sins, death and destruction awaits me.” But I heard no answer… The next thing I knew, I returned to the same dirty images again.



I reasoned, if God is not answering me, why shouldn’t I just completely give myself over to lust? So I turned away from God and decided to numb my conscience with more sin. I started to distance myself from church. I was tired of being a hypocrite, pretending to be spiritual and living a double life. But even this proved to be futile; the law of God was pressed deep into my heart and I could find no rest. It would be better had I never followed God to begin with. At least then I could enjoy the sinful pleasures without the law of God accusing me. I was worse than an unbeliever, wanting to obey God but could not, but neither could I enjoy the worldly pleasures like an unbeliever. Who would have thought that a young man was going through such deep pain? Who could comprehend such degrees of self-contradiction, “I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do…What a wretched man I am!” (Romans 7:15, 24) I was so alone; all I felt was deep anguish and despair.


我好像行屍走肉。但即使是在這樣黑暗的時候,神還是與我同在,見證了詩人說的“我若升到天上,您在那裡;我若在陰間下榻,您也在那裡。我若展開清晨的翅膀,飛到海極居住,就是在那裡,您的手必引導我。”(詩篇139:8-10)就在我放棄信心的邊緣,神依然引領我。祂時常用一些人,環境或經文來提醒我,祂仍然同在,祂依然掌權。即使我將自己隔絕,在我心裡仍有聖靈督促我悔改(詩篇139:7)。那曾經折磨我良知的,原來是聖靈恩典,神不允許我滅亡在罪中,祂不停地敲打我心,讓我在罪中無法有片刻安寧,直到我迴轉。最後我終於明白了,我是屬神的。祂向我證明了祂牢牢地抓著我的生命,祂在我身上的旨意不會因任何人或事而挫敗。祂的旨意是什麼? ―“神的旨意就是要你們成為聖潔,遠避淫行”(帖撒羅尼迦前書4:3)。

I was like a living dead. But even in my darkest times, God was still with me, thus affirming the Psalmist’s words: “if I make my bed in the depths, you are there. If I rise on the wings of the dawn, if I settle on the far side of the sea, even there your hand will guide me” (Psalms 139:8-10). When I was on the verge of giving up my faith, His hands still guided me. He always used some people, some situations or Bible verses to remind me that He was still there, and He was still in control. Even when I tried to isolate myself, there within me was God’s Holy Spirit prompting me to repent (Psalms 139:7-8). Looking back, I now see my inner turmoil as the merciful work of the Holy Spirit. God would not let me perish in my sin. He kept me restless until I turned and walked in His way. Finally, I came to the knowledge that I was God’s own. He has proven to me that He has a firm grip on my life and that His will in my life cannot be thwarted by anything or anyone. What is His will? “For this is the will of God, your sanctification; that is, that you abstain from sexual immorality” (1 Thessalonian 4:3).



Therefore, the choice was mine to make. I could either choose to submit myself to His sovereign purpose, or I could give into sin and hurt myself even more. So I decided to submit to God, knowing that I am totally powerless and need to obey Him in every way. But how?


我總以為如果自己可以“召喚”起一股“信心”,所有的問題就會迎刃而解。但神逐漸讓我明白,我那所謂的“信心”根本就不是信心。真正的信心要建立在遵行神的旨意上―這旨意在《聖經》裡寫得清楚明白。於是我努力學習《聖經》,尋求在神裡的自由。這個過程也至少持續了兩年,在此過程中我依然數次跌倒,但是“我深信那在你們心裡動了善工的,必成全這工,直到耶穌基督的日子。”(腓立比書1 :6)

I always thought that if I could just “conjure up” enough faith, then all the issue would be resolved. But what God has led me to understand was this kind of “faith” is not really faith. True faith rests on the submission to God and the obedience to His will—which is all written in the Bible. So, there was much to learn, and the road to total freedom took more than tw years. During this process I would fall many times, but reminding myself that it was God “who began a good work in me, and He will carry it onto completion until the day of Christ Jesus” (Philippians 1:6), helped me to realign my bearings.


我邁出的第一步是走出黑暗的孤獨。 《聖經》說:“兩個人總比一個人好,因為二人勞碌同得美好的果效。若是跌倒,這人可以扶起他的同伴;若是孤身跌倒,沒有別人扶他起來,這人就有禍了。”(傳道書4:9-10)我的悔改總不能持久,是因為我總想自己處理。帶著恐懼和羞辱,我尋求牧師的幫助。感謝神,牧師真誠地接受我,他沒有論斷我。之後他又將我介紹給一位忠心的弟兄,他每週組織“互助小組”。我可以坦誠分享自己一週的生活,不將罪留在黑暗中。從其他人的分享中也能學到智慧和經驗。同時,知道有人在為自己禱告,願意用神的話語教導我,願意監督我,暴露我的罪,我漸漸站穩了腳步。

My first step to change was stepping out of the darkness of isolation. For the Bible says “Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their work: If one falls down, his friend can help him up. But pity the man who falls and has no one to help him up!” (Ecclesiastes 4:9-10). I realized my repentance never lasted too long when I tried on my own. So with a lot of fear and shame, I approached my pastor. Praise God he received me openly without accusation! He later introduced me to another faithful brother who held weekly accountability groups. I knew I could share openly about what happened during the week without hiding any sin in the dark (Ephesians 5:11). There was much wisdom to be learned from other people’s experience too. Also, with the knowledge that someone is standing on watch for me each week, teaching me the Word and how to confront my sins, I slowly gained traction.



I began to pray with more certainty that God was really working in me. I realized that my sins were really paid for. When God justified me, He did not just declare me righteous without making it a reality. My old self really died together with Christ and I am now a new creation in Christ. My longing for holiness was strong evidence that I had a regenerated heart. The sin left in me was only a result of the unregenerate flesh, and a result of the habits I have cultivated over the years (Romans 7:4). So I needed a new habit; I needed God to purify me through the Word and prayer.


被潔淨的過程並不是什麼神秘的經歷(我以前以為是這樣)。這個過程就是認識神的話語,時刻思想並應用。神教導約書亞說:“這律法書不可離開你的口,總要晝夜思想。”(約書亞書1:8)我開始背誦《聖經》來武裝自己,更深的認識神的旨意,並且在軟弱的時候成為自己的幫助。 (箴言6:23-24,腓立比書1:6, 以弗所書1:4,2:20,帖撒羅尼迦前書5:23)

The process of purification was not just some esoteric experience where I entered some sort of an enchanted state (I thought that was how it should be for a long time). It is getting to know the Word, meditating on it, and applying it. God instructed Joshua to “not let this book of law depart from your mouth; meditate on it day and night” (Joshua 1:8). I memorized scriptures to strengthen myself, to better understand God’s purpose and to help me in times of weakness (Proverbs 6:23-24, Philippians 1:6, Ephesians 1:4, 2:20, 1 Thessalonians 5:23).



But I also realized that the bible is no magic potion. I used to have my Bible in one hand and the mouse in another. Guess what I ended up doing? I could be reading the Bible for hours but if I do not apply it and allowed myself to be close to the source of temptation, I would easily fall. So I handed my laptop over. I also asked my roommate to put passwords on the computers that I would have access to. If I needed to use a computer for whatever reason, I used the ones in the library where everyone could see what I was doing. I did this because God’s advice for dealing with lust is that I will never be strong enough to confront it head on, so I must FLEE from it (Genesis 39:12, 2 Timothy 2:22). As the Proverbs say: “keep a path FAR from her (the adulteress)”; so I ran as far as I possibly could (Proverbs 5:8).



There is definitely a cost of following Christ, for Jesus said “if anyone will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross and follow me” (Matthew 16:24). The world tries to sell all kinds of lies like “entertainment and computer are necessities like food and water.” But the truth is, I have been fine without them. Additionally, I now have a lot of free time to do more useful things. Above all, God’s glory and my purity are worth every effort.



Although God has a lot more work to be done in me, shedding the burden of habitual sin allows me to walk with Him much more intimately. I can experience the immense joy of being free from sexual sin. No price I paid was too dear compared to the price God has paid for me already. For the first time I am able to praise the Lord constantly from my heart; and for the first time I see myself becoming useful to God’s church.


對付情慾是一項艱鉅的任務,我時常問自己“什麼可以防止我再次跌到?”答案總是“在我裡面活著的基督”(加拉太書2:20)。如果我“順著聖靈而行,就不放縱肉體的情慾了”(加拉太書5:16)。弟兄們,當剛強壯膽(約書亞記1:6-9),“信心堅定,抗拒他(魔鬼),因為你們知道全世界的信徒弟兄也都在經歷同樣的苦難”(彼得前書5: 9)。我們要剛強壯膽,因為我們明白神的旨意是讓我們“和他兒子的形象相似……,如果神支持我們,誰還能反對我們呢?”(羅馬書8:29,31)(如果你想認識趙泰和,你可以通過他的個人郵箱This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 聯繫到他。)

Dealing with lust is a tremendous task, and I still sometimes wonder what will keep me from falling again. And the answer is always “the Christ who lives in me” (Galatians 2:20). If I “walk in the spirit, I will not fulfill the lust of the flesh” (Galatians 5:16). Brothers, be courageous (Joshua 1:6-9), “standing firm in the faith, because you know that your brothers throughout the world are undergoing the same kind of sufferings” (1 Peter 5:9). Be courageous, knowing that it is God’s will for His children to be “conformed to the likeness of his Son, and if God is for us, who can be against us?” (Romans 8:29, 31). (If you want to get to know Ted, feel free to email him at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.)



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