I wasn’t exactly sure how to write this post. I know it will more than likely make some people mad. I hope not, but I know not everyone is going to see things as I do, and that’s fine. I’m happy with that because it means we are all individuals. I pray it is accepted in the manner by which it was written, as an effort to encourage and build up the body of Christ. I don’t have all the answers, I can tell you that right up front. I don’t know it all. I don’t have it all figured out. I’m glad I don’t, because that would make God no bigger than me, and His ways the same as mine. That would reduce God to, well, being puny like us. Who would want to serve a God that small?
The church I’m referring to in the title is not the building with four walls. It’s who we are, the Church, the body of Christ. Not sure I needed to clarify that, but there it is. I don’t want there to be any confusion as to what I’m talking about. So many people think building when they hear the word church.
I’ve been hearing a lot lately about the AMC series, The Walking Dead. People have been posting on Facebook and Twitter about characters, finales, etc. I figured I would take a look and see what all the fuss is about. I watched about four episodes on Netflix, and that’s all I will ever watch. Blood, sex, profanity, violence, and gore pretty much cover about 90% of the plot. I mean, it is after all zombies we’re talking about, so that was to be expected. I guess after hearing a lot of my Christian friends going on about the show, I was hoping it wasn’t too bad. I was wrong. My opinion is that The Walking Dead is complete and utter worldly trash that I don’t want filling my mind.
I stopped watching rated R movies a long time ago. The only exception has been Passion of the Christ by Mel Gibson. Am I saying it’s a sin to watch rated R movies? Of course not. Just because the Holy Spirit convicted me, that doesn’t mean everyone should immediately stop. I’m not a legalistic tyrant who thinks all movies are evil and any music that isn’t “Christian” is from Satan. I watch a variety of movies and listen to all sorts of music genres. I also used to download movies and music illegally. Yep, got convicted of that as well, and haven’t done it since. Philippians 4:8 says “Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.”
Watching a zombie rip apart a human being and feast on their innards doesn’t strike me as very noble, right, pure, admirable, or all too lovely. There are so many awesome movies and TV shows out there that aren’t full of that garbage. Well, to be honest, not sure about TV anymore since I hardly watch it. Years ago, I also decided I wasn’t going to have any of those items in my writing either. My most popular post to date is Why I Write Clean, and I explain my reasons for not wanting to write like that. It would be so easy to include all the elements that will sell books, but to me it’s just not worth it.
As Christians, do we not see anything wrong with a show like The Walking Dead? How could we not? Sure, it’s fiction, but why on earth would we want to fill our minds with such filth? How can we even begin to justify our reasons for watching? This makes me think about the scripture where we are to be in the world, but not of it. John 15:19 – “If you belonged to the world, it would love you as its own. As it is, you do not belong to the world, but I have chosen you out of the world. That is why the world hates you.” We are in this world. It’s not like we can choose to live on the moon or somewhere around Jupiter. We live on Earth. If the world loves us, we’re not doing something right. I’ve blogged before about persecution and how the world will hate us for being Christians.
The Bible also says we are to be set apart from the world. I don’t believe that means to shun the world and anyone who doesn’t believe the same way we do. In fact, as Christians, we should be hanging out with those whom the world has rejected and cast aside as hopeless. Gang members, prostitutes, the homeless, sinners of all kinds. If we’re not, how are we going to reach them with the Gospel? I guess my point to this is how can we been seen as set apart if we’re doing, watching, listening to, participating in, and encouraging all of the same things everyone else is? How does that make us different?
Are we perfect? Not even close. Are we going to fail? All the time. The key is effort. Are we making an effort to be righteous? Are we making an effort to think on those things that are pure, lovely, and admirable? What are we filling our minds, souls, and hearts with? If we can’t tell a difference between us and the world, then we are nothing but zombies ourselves. We have become desensitized to the garbage and filth that everyone else accepts as the norm. It’s so very easy to follow the crowd and get caught up in the latest and greatest fads, including clothes, movies, and whatever else. It becomes difficult when we decide to take a stand in our own lives and stop accepting sin and allowing it to rule us.
Sure, TV shows, movies, and even music may sound like minor things, even harmless. It’s not like we’re out there shooting up schools, burning Bibles, or murdering people for believing in God. However, sin is sin. It’s all the same in God’s eyes. For me, I chose not to watch shows like The Walking Dead because it does nothing to build up or further the Kingdom of God. Again, I’m telling you what I feel and how I’ve been convicted about certain things. None of this may mean anything to you, and that’s okay. I just feel that the church needs to wake up. We have sons and daughters who are looking to us as spiritual leaders in our homes. If we’re not setting a Godly example for our children, what example will they follow?
I’m not saying you should toss out your TV and never walk into a movie theater again. Not at all. As Christians who make up the different parts of the body of Christ, let’s fill our hearts and minds with things that please God. Let’s put in the effort to follow Christ with everything we do and say on a daily basis, not just a couple times a week when we’re surrounded by a thousand other people in their Sunday best.
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Have a blessed day