Tuesday, 27 November 2012

Are we consuming too much 'filth'?

An interesting phenomenon in the news this week - after 9 years of being on the third biggest sitcom in America, the youngest regular actor on "Two and a Half Men" is renouncing it as 'filth' that people shouldn't watch.

This is a boy who has obviously found faith and decided that his day-job conflicts with his morals. Now perhaps it takes a bit more guts to renounce your day job on moral grounds if you haven't been earning $350,000 every episode, but nonetheless for a 19 year-old guy to make that kind of a stand is, I think, in some ways, admirable. 

Perhaps he ought to have spoken to his bosses before airing his views, but putting that aside, how many 19 year-olds do you know that are discerning about their media consumption in the interest of keeping their minds pure? In fact, how many people in general do you know who give it much thought?

Our media culture is so pervasive, it can be very difficult to censor ourselves, and for parents to try and keep tabs on what messages their children are taking in.

But everybody draws the line in different places and it is for us to settle prayerfully with our consciences and with the bible where that line should be. Some people will feel it is worthwhile putting up with a certain amount of language or content they don't agree with, if there are other merits to a programme/text. Other people simply won't watch/read anything where people are acting in a way they find immoral, and still more people probably very rarely find anything offensive enough to switch off or put down.

The thought has occurred to me several times recently. Why am I watching/reading this? How much am I condoning this behaviour? Is it compromising my values or am I successfully filtering out the bits I don't agree with?

These questions are tricky to answer, but I do have one good piece of advice on the subject. Instead of reacting against morally dubious content, perhaps we would have more success if we tried to be proactive and pursued more wholesome media to enjoy. Find a new favourite that you don't have any qualms about!

I've been listening to UCB radio more and more recently, and if nothing else, you know the messages you are feeding yourself aren't 'filth' (as Angus Jones might put it) when you have that on in the background!

I enjoyed the wholesomeness of Great British Bake-off (and cookery programmes in general, if you can avoid the temptation to gluttony) and it occurs to me that the presenters on Pointless are quite upbeat and pleasant too...

So do give it some thought and prayer. Can you choose and enjoy media with positive, wholesome messages rather than things which may be detracting from you spiritually? Afterall the bible does tell us: "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." Philippians 4: 8

And if you needed any more motivation, consider this difficult passage to the church-goers in Ephesus:
But among you there must not be even a hint of sexual immorality, or of any kind of impurity, or of greed, because these are improper for God’s holy people. Nor should there be obscenity, foolish talk or coarse joking, which are out of place, but rather thanksgiving. For of this you can be sure: No immoral, impure or greedy person—such a person is an idolater—has any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God Let no one deceive you with empty words, for because of such things God’s wrath comes on those who are disobedient. Therefore do not be partners with them.
For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. LIVE AS CHILDREN OF THE LIGHT." Ephesians 5: 3-8


Interested in more?
Check out some of our Sunday sermons at: http://www.buresbaptistchurch.org/sermon_catchup.php 

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