Tackling the TV Threat – Spectator Sport?
Key Bible Verse: We take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ. – 2 Corinthians 10:5, NIV
Bonus Reading: 2 Corinthians 10:3-5
Is TV viewing a spectator sport? Hardly. With split-second accuracy, you must change channels, zap commercials, or even shut the whole thing down.
This year I was with a group of friends watching the Super Bowl. My pastor, C.J. Mahaney, had the remote. As soon as commercials came on he’d switch to C-SPAN, possibly the safest channel available.
Why does he practice “active remote” television viewing? Doesn’t he know how entertaining the Super Bowl commercials can be?
Yes, and he also knows how often they use sex to sell their products. He knows that nothing he might miss is worth exposing himself to lustful images.
Well, it’s just a commercial, I’ve rationalized. It’s going to be over in a few seconds. It can’t be that bad. But that’s a lie. A sinful image can lodge itself in my mind in much less than 30 seconds.
At times when I’ve traveled and stayed at hotels, I’ve sinned against God by mindlessly surfing through the channels, knowing there’s a good chance something will flash before my eyes. This is an expression of lust. Because of my poor track record, I no longer turn the TV on in a hotel.
—Joshua Harris in Not Even a Hint
My Response: I’ll agree with my wife on what will automatically trigger termination of a show or commercial.
Thought to Apply: In Beverly Hills they don’t throw their garbage away. They make it into television shows.—Woody Allen (director, comedian)
Adapted from Not Even a Hint (Multnomah, 2003)
Prayer for the Week: Lord, when I relax, it’s easy to let my guard down. Please keep me spiritually vigilant all the time.