GLEANINGS FROM THE SCRIPTURES
Television, Violence, And The Bible
By Keith L. Estes
Jack climbed up the beanstalk, took the goose that laid the golden eggs and then upon climbing down, cut the beanstalk and killed the giant. That's the story we tell our children and they love it. I think children are able to distinguish between facts and make believe.
Today, Jack would be arrested for breaking and entering, robbery, and murder.
Showing violence to children is not, in itself, harmful. God has included much violence in the Bible. There is a major difference, however, between the violence in the Bible and the violence on today's television. The violence in the Bible illustrates the conflict between good and evil, between righteousness and wickedness. Much of the violence on television is between evil and greater evil.
In the Bible there are Godly heroes with whom the reader can identify. On today's television programs there are usually no Godly heroes to relate to. Viewers are forced to choose between Godless and evil people. Very often the one who at first appears to be the best of the group turns out to be the worst of the bunch.
The effect of this is devastating on children. They are taught to be cynical of all people, especially parents, pastors, and public officials. They are encouraged to be like Godless men and women if they want to be popular and successful.
Do we allow murderers, rapists, thieves, and Godless people into our homes? When we turn on the television set we are doing just that.
King David didn't have any television set, but he set the example when he said, "I will try to walk a blameless path, but how I need your help (Lord) especially in my own home, where I long to act as I should. Help me to refuse the low and vulgar things; help me to abhor all crooked deals of every kind, to have no part in them. I will reject all selfishness and stay away from every evil. I will not tolerate anyone who secretly slanders his neighbors; I will not permit conceit and pride. I will make the Godly of the land my heroes, and invite them to my home. Only those who are truly good shall be my servants. But I will not allow those who deceive and lie to stay in my house. My daily task will be to ferret out criminals and free the city of God from their grip." (TLB)
God warns Christians not to even eat a meal or to keep company with a Christian who is "...a fornicator, or covetous, or an idolater; or a railer, or a drunkard, or an extortioner..."
How much more should we refuse to allow violent and Godless men and women who openly mock God and His standards to be in our home via television?
References: IBLP Box 1 Oakbrook, Ill. 60522. Used by permission. 1 Cor. 5: 11 The Holy Bible.