Watching movies and being holy?

My soul is in the midst of lions; I lie down amid fiery beasts– the children of man, whose teeth are spears and arrows, whose tongues are sharp swords.” (Psalms 57:4 ESV)

 I recommend parents check out Parent TV, a web site where you can get a fair appraisal of not only movies but TV shows as well. 

Once in a great while I rekindle my former love affair with movies and rent (after an agonizingly long perusal) what I think will be some life affirming and uplifting movies. This past weekend, I rented “Son of Rambow” and “Leatherheads”. Both were rated PG-13 and the first one said it was rated this way due to “Some violent imagery and reckless behavior”, the second, a movie by George Clooney, was rated PG-13 due to “Brief strong language”. Judging the first to be good clean fun with some behavior bordering dangerous recklessness, I thought it might be a bit nostalgic considering my own reckless behavior growing up in the 60’s and 70’s. Mr. Clooney’s effort I figured I could tolerate (ignore) the language since it was brief. 



1341438 Well, I must say I would never recommend “Son of Rambow’ to any Christian much less to a parent of an impressionable child. The movie was littered with profanity, swearing using the Lord’s name and crude language. The child actor who played Will, the bully, was a foul mouthed version of Huck Finn. I imagine we were supposed to allow for his sailor talk because of his loveless and abusive home environment. But, kids did not have to talk this way a few decades ago no matter what their background.

The second movie I watched completely, having turned off “Son…” about 30 minutes into it. Let me just say that the PG-13 rating was not entirely truthful, again. The bad language was not brief at all, but at least it was not consistently strong or terribly crude. My biggest problem was with the very casual use of the Lord’s name or a regular basis. The movie was funny and christian-movies-right-bottom3nostalgic and had a thin morality tale immersed in it, but overall was a weak movie. I like George Clooney a lot as an actor since he seems so comfortable being self-deprecating and down to earth. At the same time the movie was not uplifting or enlightening so I rate it a waste of time.

What this has taught me (and this came to me while I asked God to forgive me for the time I wasted watching these) is that God wants us to be like little children when it comes to evil of any kind. So that means, in my family, we are going to limit ourselves to watching only movies that are appropriate for small children. Movies like “Toy Story”, “A Bug’s Life” and others seem to fit that bill nicely. I am fairly sure even “Monsters Inc.” will fit into that category. But, as Christians we are called to be like David and “set no evil thing” before our eyes.

I read many other believers blogs where I have seen pastors (!!?!!) recommend crude comedies as “the funniest” they have seen. What is wrong with these so called Christians? Simply put, I believe they do not let God rule their lives or their thoughts in a way that glorifies Him or shows they truly love Him with all their hearts, their minds, and their strength. What are they doing being shepherds then?

I have a friend whom I enjoyed good fellowship with for a while, but since the last time we spent time together he has apparently begun to lose sight of what is evil, giving high marks to the darkest kind of movies such as “No Country for Old Men” and “There Will be Blood”. I pray for him and have let him know how much I grieve over him watching such movies. Many excuse it as a way to really grasp the kind of evil there is in the world. Does any Christian really need to know how evil and wicked the world is and continues to become? I can barely stand to read the paper or watch the news anymore, but in order to stay “relevant” I force myself to do so occasionally. And sometimes I find myself becoming cynical about the foolish people they show or write about. The evil that is in the world will steal your love!

Fellow believers, do not buy into the idea that you are strong enough to “handle it” and watch or read the trash that is out there. Satan wishes for nothing less than your destruction and to paralyze your walk with God. Every time you give into evil or excuse it, you are rebelling against the very Savior who bought you with His precious blood! Please don’t betray Him! And don’t think that what you watch won’t affect your witness to others. Like the old saying “:You are what you eat”, so is “What you watch will become normal, and you become what you read”.

Watch yourselves, so that you may not lose what we have worked for, but may win a full reward. “

(2 John 1:8 ESV)

Be exalted, O God, above the heavens! Let your glory be over all the earth!” (Psalms 57:5 ESV)











6 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by memnan on November 30, 2008 at 6:45 pm

    The names Son of Rambow and Leatherheads should have been a clue…*: )

    You can check out movies before rental on line at Netflixs…there are some great ones available.

  2. I know what you mean. We have dumped television as of a few years ago, and are extremely selective of the movies we watch. I don’t pay too much attention to ratings, because we’ve been burned more than once by a PG rated movie. I do check out reviews though, and even then, we sometimes miss it.

    We can never be too careful about the stuff we put into our minds.

  3. Posted by churchesofchrist on December 1, 2008 at 12:59 pm

    Heck, even most TV shows these days are filled with trash. It is indeed a task to find something clean to watch these days. You can get DVD’s with the trash cut out though…

  4. Nancy dear, I examined the descriptions on the back of the DVD’s and they didn’t tell me squat. I actually thought Leatherheads was going to be a great movie since it’s about the early days of football.

    Thanks ladies, for the advice. I am just sticking with G and some PG movies from here on out I think.

    I’ve heard about those “censored” movies, but don’t you have to buy a special player and have a subscription of some sort? Movies are not THAT important I don;t think. Give me a good book any day!

    And about TV: the only things I can bear to watch are “Are You Smarter Than a Fifth Grader”, “The Amazing Race” (I’m always waiting for the in-fighting to start though, based on earlier seasons when I quit watching it) and once in a while “Wife Swap”. Despite it’s somewhat lurid title, there have been some pretty good episodes where families learned some useful and encouraging lessons.
    OPB usually has some decent stuff in the evenings, but I try to avoid watching TV because it’s a black hole as far as time goes. I have better things I can do.

    How anyone can call themselves an obedient slave of Jesus Christ and watch filth like “Desperate Housewives”, “ER”, “House” (which I watched for a while until the sexual innuendos became regular features), “Dancing With the Stars” (the show is truly burlesque), “American Idol” (Doesn’t the name mean anything to people?) and many, many more.

    It’s 90% junk and I almost look forward to an Electro-Magnetic event!

  5. Hmmm… American Idol… Wasn’t that the big thing where the mainstream media was in love with Obama? He won, didn’t he?

    I told you I don’t watch TV…


  6. Good for you Jen! I could live without it, but my wife’s just not there yet. But, I’m praying and spending waaaay too much time on the ‘puter!

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