I recently read an article by Kevin Halloran titled, “Ten Questions Christians Should Ask of Their Entertainment.” This article is a combination of the article mentioned and my sermon notes titled, “The Entertainment Trap.”

(Psalms 101:3) says, “I will set no wicked thing before mine eyes: I hate the work of them that turn aside; it shall not cleave to me.”

The NLT says it like this, “I will refuse to look at anything vile and vulgar. I hate all who deal crookedly; I will have nothing to do with them.”

The AMP says it like this, “I will set no base or wicked thing before my eyes. I hate the work of them who turn aside [from the right path]; it shall not grasp hold of me.

The HEART of the Church is the HOME! A HEALTHY CHURCH is the byproduct of HEALTHY HOMES!

We live in an unprecedented age of entertainment. The average American spends over 10 HOURS per day in front of a SCREEN!

Never before have we had so many options of TV shows, movies, music, blogs, social media, and books available through so many different mediums (TV, internet, Netflix, Hulu, Apple TV, etc). So how can we make sure we are faithfully “walking after the Spirt and NOT after the flesh” in this new entertainment age?

Discerning media consumption needs to involve more than just saying we should not watch excessive violence and sexuality (which is true). We need to understand the complex and often subtle effects of media on our lives, and how the devil is using ENTERTAINMENT to TRAP the masses. 

Here are some of the questions that he raised that I think need to be strongly considered by every Christian who claims to be Spirit-filled.

Questions Every Spirit-Filled Believer Should Ask of Their Entertainment:

  1. What would you really be missing if you NEVER turned your TV on again or deleted the host of APPS that DISTRACT you the most?
  1. What desires do my ENTERTAINMENT choices cultivate in my heart?

What impact does entertainment have on your desires for God? If I’m not intentional, my media consumption cultivates sinful desires.

(Psalms 1:1-2) says, “Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor standeth in the way of sinners, nor sitteth in the seat of the scornful (translated ungodly, or wicked). 2 But his delight is in the law of the Lord; and in his law doth he meditate day and night.”

(Proverbs 4:23) says, “Keep thy heart with all diligence; for out of it are the issues of life.”

  1. Does my entertainment consumption help me redeem the time in these evil days (Ephesians 5:16)?

Kent Hughes writes in The Disciplines of a Godly Man, “It is impossible for any Christian who spends the bulk of his evenings, month after month, week after week, day in and day out watching the major TV networks or contemporary videos to have a Christian mind…A Biblical mental program cannot coexist with worldly programming.

Donald Whitney said, “If most people would exchange their TV time for Scripture reading they’d finish reading the entire Bible in four weeks or less.”

If the world compared your entertainment habits to your habits of seeking God through prayer and Bible reading, what would they see as most important for you?

  1. Do I want my entertainment habits to be imitated by my children (or those I lead)?

If you are a parent or leader of any kind, it should concern you that you pass on your bad habits to the next generation. You are also susceptible to let your kids be discipled by entertainment and leave them as pleasure-loving materialists with dull hearts toward spiritual truth. Seek to set a godly example in your consumption of entertainment.

  1. What does your entertainment glorify?

(Romans 1:18-32 ) says, “For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold the truth in unrighteousness; 19 Because that which may be known of God is manifest in them; for God hath shewed it unto them. 20 For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse: 

21 Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened. 22 Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools, 23 And changed the glory of the uncorruptible God into an image made like to corruptible man, and to birds, and fourfooted beasts, and creeping things. 

24 Wherefore God also gave them up to uncleanness through the lusts of their own hearts, to dishonour their own bodies between themselves: 25 Who changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen. 26 For this cause God gave them up unto vile affections: for even their women did change the natural use into that which is against nature: 27 And likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly, and receiving in themselves that recompence of their error which was meet. 

28 And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient; 29 Being filled with all unrighteousness, fornication, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, debate, deceit, malignity; whisperers, 30 Backbiters, haters of God, despiteful, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents, 31 Without understanding, covenantbreakers, without natural affection, implacable, unmerciful: 32 Who knowing the judgment of God, that they which commit such things are worthy of death, not only do the same, but have pleasure in them that do them.”

(1 John 2:15-16) says, “Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him. 16 For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world.

Every entertainer holds values and many entertainers promote their values through what they produce. Many times their values are purely financial; meaning they will make whatever will sell. And to think that there are some Apostolic Pentecostals who are watching these types of shows on Netflix pretending like it’s OK because they’re not watching Television…

In light of Scripture we must ask ourselves what values does a certain TV show, movie, game or App promote? If we fail to discern this, the desires of our heart will be “conformed to the world” and pulled away from Scripture!

  1. What are you more willing to compromise: YOUR BIBLICAL CONVICTIONS or your ENTERTAINMENT choices? 

This doesn’t assume that all entertainment is all bad, but this question should help you unmask an idol if one exists. Be careful if you often find yourself saying or thinking, “I know as a Christian I shouldn’t watch __________, but…” 

This could be a sign you love entertainment more than you do God, and that you have fallen into “The Entertainment Trap!”

(James 4:7) says, “Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.

Sadly when it comes to media consumption and entertainment many “so-called Christians” seem to be RESISTING God and SUBMITTING to the devil! In this tech-driven, media-consuming, entertainment-focused world, we NEED to get our various DEVICES UNDER SUBJECTION to God! 

(Psalms 101:3) “I will set no wicked thing before mine eyes: I hate the work of them that turn aside; it shall not cleave to me.”

The NLTS says it like this, “I will refuse to look at anything vile and vulgar. I hate all who deal crookedly; I will have nothing to do with them.”

The AMP says it like this, “I will set no base or wicked thing before my eyes. I hate the work of them who turn aside [from the right path]; it shall not grasp hold of me.

Notice that God did not specify a particular “device” as “the wicked thing” because He knew that humanity would continue to invent devices that SIN would latch onto!

From literature to radio to tapes to CD’s to television to VCR’s to DVD’s to the internet to smartphones to tablets to gaming systems to virtual reality to whatever comes next…”The Entertainment TRAP” has been set and it’s up to YOU to keep yourself from falling into it!