The Lord Is Beautiful is a 2012 book on pornography and Christian sexuality by Joel Danker-Dake. It is part treatise on sex, part spiritual memoir. Here, Danker-Dake chronicles the ten years he spent as a pornography consumer and addict, and how God delivered him from it.
The Lord Is Beautiful is the second important book on Christian sexuality and pornography to come out in 2012 (the other is Surfing for God by Michael John Cusick); there’s overlap, but both are worthwhile – this one probably has more to offer women.
Danker-Dake’s thesis is that God is the source of all beauty, and as such, only he can truly fulfill the desires that he himself gave us, including the desires for sex, beauty, pleasure, and intimacy. Freedom from sexual addiction and relational fulfillment are found in Christ. Danker-Dake covers a number of other sex-related topics here, including relationships, struggle, self-effort, and sex trafficking, and he challenges both society’s and some of the Church’s teaching on sex and desire.
On the whole, Danker-Dake’s theology is sound – and I have not come to nitpick. He uses scripture extensively to support his arguments – the reader might well feel like he’s read a third of the Bible by the time he gets done with this book. It’s a bit much at times, but Danker-Dake mostly does a good job of incorporating it into the flow of the manuscript.
Danker-Dake’s everyman status works well here. He’s not a psychologist or a marriage counselor, and he’s not telling the reader to do this or that to change his life – just to be willing to be free, and to fight for that end. Essentially, he’s saying, this is what happened to me, and this is what God did for me, and he can do it for you, too. His story is a testament to the power of the Gospel.
Danker-Dake’s writing is engaging, even entertaining. He has a lyrical, almost poetical style, and the book features a number of truly delightful sentences. At the same time, Danker-Dake is unflinchingly open, and his honesty and humility are what make the book work on the most fundamental level.
The Lord Is Beautiful might be the best book on Christian sexuality I’ve ever read. It’s a phenomenal, powerful book, and is recommended reading to just about everybody.