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#4. DON'T WATCH FILMS, PLAYS, AND COMEDY ON TELEVISION

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#4. DON'T WATCH FILMS, PLAYS, or COMEDY

Introduction 4

Many Christians agree that television is generally bad, yet they still have one in their house because they like to watch particular programs, which they see no harm in. This bible study examines watching films, plays, and comedy on television in the light of scripture, and shows why they should be rejected by sincere Christians.

#4.1 DON'T WATCH FILMS AND PLAYS

JONAH 2:8
8 Those who observe lying vanities forsake their own mercy.

ROMANS 1:32 (Paul)
32 Who knowing the judgment of God, that those who commit such things are worthy of death, not only do the same but have pleasure in those who do them.

REVELATION 21:8 (John)
8 But the fearful and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burns with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.

Note 1: Hypocrisy A hypocrite is someone who pretends to be something that he isn't. The Greek word for an actor (Gr. ὑποκριτής, Gtr.hupokrites) is where our word "hypocrite" comes from. All actors are hypocrites, they all pretend to be someone that they are not. The purpose of the pretence is to deceive people into believing that they actually are the person that they portray; this is the aim of every "good" actor. The word "pretend" means "to claim or assert falsely so as to deceive", and obviously false assertions and deception are the work of the Devil. Their fate is clear from scripture:

(Job 8:13) "the hypocrites hope shall perish."
(Job 13:16) "an hypocrite shall not come before him (God)."
(Job 15:34) "the congregation of hypocrites shall be desolate,"
(Job 36:13) "the hypocrites in heart heap up wrath:"
(Matthew 23:13, 14, 15, 23, 25, 27, 29) "Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites!"

The watching of films and plays is the watching of hypocrisy; so why should a Christian take any pleasure in this? Sincerity, the opposite of hypocrisy, is what Christians are called to observe:

(Joshua 24:14) "fear the LORD, and serve him in sincerity and in truth:"
(2 Corinthians 2:7) "For we are not as many, which corrupt the word of God: but as of sincerity, but as of God, in the sight of God speak we in Christ."
(Ephesians 6:24) "Grace be with all those who love our Lord Jesus Christ in sincerity. Amen."
(Philippians 1:10) "that you may be sincere and without offense till the day of Christ;"
(Titus 2:7) "In all things showing yourself a pattern of ... sincerity."

The scriptural principle is that the fate of those who love watching will be similar to those doing it:

(Romans 1:32) "knowing the judgment of God, that those who commit such things are worthy of death, not only do the same, but have pleasure in those who do them."

Note 2: A lie. All fictional plays and films are lies, which are the work of the Devil. The word fiction means based on falsehood, and Jesus said of the Devil, "he is a liar, and the father of it." (John 8:44). God cannot lie (Titus 1:2), and Jesus told us to be like him, "Be you therefore perfect, even as your Father who is in heaven is perfect." (Matthew 5:48). The word of God gives us much instruction against lying:

(Exodus 20:16) "You shall not bear false witness"
(Leviticus 11:1) "You shall not ... lie one to another."
(Proverbs 6:16-19) "These six things does the LORD hate: yes, seven are an abomination unto him: ... a lying tongue ... A false witness that speaks lies,"
(Proverbs 12:22) "Lying lips are an abomination to the Lord:"
(Luke 18:20) "Do not bear false witness,"

While Jesus gave us two great commandments, to love God and our neighbor (Matthew 22:37-39), lying is an expression of hate:

(Proverbs 26:28) "A lying tongue hates those that are afflicted by it;"

The fate of all liars is clear:

(A) Punishment in this life:
(Proverbs 19:9) "A false witness shall not be unpunished, and he that speaks lies shall perish."

(B) Exclusion from the New Jerusalem:
(Revelation 21:27) "there shall no way enter into it anything that ... makes a lie:"
(Revelation 22:15) "For without are dogs, and sorcerers, and whoremongers, and murderers, and idolaters, and whoever loves and makes a lie."

(C) Condemnation in the lake of fire:
(Revelation 21:8) "all liars shall have their part in the lake which burns with fire and brimstone: which is the second death."

Will a true Christian have anything to do with this? Notice that those who love lies are classed the same as those who tell them (Revelation 22:15), and the scriptural principle is that their fate will be similar:

(Romans 1:32) "Who knowing the judgment of God, that those who commit such things are worthy of death, not only do the same, but have pleasure in those who do them."

#4.2 DON'T WATCH COMEDY

PROVERBS 17:5 (Solomon)
5 Whoever mocks the poor reproaches his Maker: and he who is glad at calamities shall not go unpunished.

ECCLESIASTES 7:3-4 (Solomon)
3 Sorrow is better than laughter: for by sadness of the countenance the heart is made better.
4 The heart of the wise is in the house of mourning; but the heart of fools is in the house of mirth.

LUKE 6:21, 25 (Jesus)
21 Blessed are you who hunger now: for you shall be filled. Blessed are you who weep now, for you shall laugh.
25 Woe to you who are full! for you shall hunger. Woe to you who laugh now! for you shall mourn and weep.

LUKE 8:14 (Jesus)
14 And that which fell among thorns are they, who when they have heard, go forth, and are choked with cares and riches and pleasures of this life, and bring no fruit to perfection.

EPHESIANS 5:3-4 (Paul)
3 But fornication, and all uncleanness, or covetousness, let it not be once named among you, as becomes saints;
4 Neither filthiness, nor foolish talking, nor jesting, which are not convenient: but rather giving of thanks.

1 TIMOTHY 3:8 (Paul)
8 Likewise must the deacons be grave, not double-tongued, not given to much wine, not greedy of filthy lucre;

1 TIMOTHY 3:11 (Paul)
11 Even so must their wives be grave, not slanderers, sober, faithful in all things.

1 TIMOTHY 5:6 (Paul)
6 But she who lives in pleasure is dead while she lives.

2 TIMOTHY 3:4 (Paul)
4 Traitors, heady, high-minded, lovers of pleasure more than lovers of God.

TITUS 2:1-2 (Paul)
1 But you speak the things which become sound doctrine:
2 That the aged men be sober, grave, temperate, sound in faith, in charity, in patience.

Note: We must first ask, "What kind of comedy are we watching?" If it is a film or play, then at least we are involved in the hypocrisy of it (See #4.1 Note 1), and in the lie of it (See #2.3 Note 2). Then we must ask, What is funny about what we are watching? Some films are funny because they portray a series of calamities that happen to someone, but this is not something that a Christian should be happy to see (Proverbs 17:5). Perhaps we find jokes funny, but Paul said, "let it not once be named among you, as becomes saints;" (Ephesians 5:3), so this should not give us any pleasure either. Jokes are usually an untrue story, which either describes a calamity, or involves a double meaning. They are told to incite laughter, which the scriptures depict as not being good (Ecclesiastes 7:3-4; Luke 6:25). In fact, "the heart of fools is in the house of mirth." (Ecclesiastes 7:4), and that is where we are when we watch these things. Real people of God are meant to be grave, sober, or serious (1 Timothy 3:2; 3:8; 3:11; Titus 2:2), and the saying, "It's no joke", really means, "It's serious". So joking is really the opposite of what we ought to do or enjoy as Christians, and if we find any pleasure in jokes then there is something wrong in our hearts.

#5. CONCLUSION ON WATCHING WORLDLY TELEVISION

If we intend to fulfil God's will for our lives then we must prepare for it. Our heart must be solidly grounded in the word of God, and when we become Christians we need to have our minds renewed with it (Romans 12:2). The Devil will do anything that he can to stop us from renewing our minds. Therefore he has filled the world with various forms of "entertainment" for people to become interested in. Television is one of the devices that the Devil uses a lot. Even if we are too old, or too weak, or not skilled enough to actually take part in many of his evils, he can still get us to do these things in our heart by watching them on television. The way out is to repent, and part of that is to destroy all association with past evil practices (Joshua 7:11-12; Isaiah 27:9; Acts 19:18-19). I encourage every Christian to destroy all association with worldly television, and even if that means destroying the television, then do it. Then spend your time doing what God wants you to do (Joshua 1:8; Psalm 1:2; Proverbs 4:20-22;  1 Timothy 4:15), and may God bless all who honor his word.

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