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Removing wickedness from your sight

Psa 101:1-4 A Psalm of David. I will sing of mercy and justice; To You, O LORD, I will sing praises. (2) I will behave wisely in a perfect way. Oh, when will You come to me? I will walk within my house with a perfect heart. (3) I will set nothing wicked before my eyes; I hate the work of those who fall away; It shall not cling to me. (4) A perverse heart shall depart from me; I will not know wickedness.

Oh, if it were only true that I did not know wickedness.  I think that this is a lament that most of us (most=99.44%) can make.  I don’t know when David wrote this Psalm, at what point in life, but I know that he didn’t live up to it when you take his whole life into consideration. Yet, he was a man of God, not because of his imperfections, but because he repented and turned from wickedness when he did sin.

One thing that is for sure, if you look at these verses of the psalm you may come away with the idea that in seeking God, it is necessary to turn from evil. When Israel met the Lord on Mt. Sinai, they spent 3 days in preparation and purifying themselves. What kind of evil David has in his mind is not specified and it may just be wickedness in general, Gossip and pride are mentioned later on, but this phrasing makes an interesting lesson too easy to pass up.

I will set nothing wicked before my eyes. As in, perhaps, just to pull something out at random…mmmm, uh…Television?

I just finished watching a commercial for a new movie coming out, or I think it just did come out. “This means War”. (I say finish watching because I didn’t have the remote in hand to turn the channel) You know, I feel too old sometimes when I begin to question whether I am just becoming too strict on things like this, or if it simply is the Devil trying to goad me back to a time where I didn’t really care so much. (Which is not to say that I shouldn’t have cared but I was young and well “It won’t affect me” seems to be a common statement even today. Ah, youth….I believed (past tense) that statement too! )

Now I notice things that shouldn’t be there to be noticed in the first place. This movie has sexual tension and themes written all over it and just from the commercials; it is going to appeal to the baser desires. The question you need to ask yourself is what is it that you will be subjecting yourself to?  Is it good? Is it edifying?

Now for anyone under 30 who reads this, I will give you a disclaimer here. If this movie had come out, when I was in your age range or younger even, sure, I would want to see it. I would have gone to see it. However, I do not offer myself as a standard, I wouldn’t go if I had developed the sense of understanding that I have now. Still, if you are going to use a standard of any kind, ask yourself if Jesus would go to that movie? Read the reviews and then ask yourself, if you walked in on  your friend with their boyfriend/girlfriend doing the same things in that movie (in real life—not fiction) would you pull up a chair and pop some popcorn? (ugh. Just asking that question makes it seem not clean!)

I know I mentioned Television and wandered off into movie land but even on TV, the question needs to be asked. My opinion is that the commercials are worse than the shows. You have to watch with a remote in your hand. Maybe it is time to put the remote down, after you turn the TV off.

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T.V. or not T.V. that is the question!

I am sorry! Maybe I am just missing it. Perhaps in my early youth (which implies I still am in my youth…just a bit older) I didn’t care. Perhaps I didn’t think it didn’t matter. Maybe I didn’t want it to matter. Maybe I wasn’t spiritual enough, perhaps I wasn’t strong enough or maybe…just maybe there were a too few many thorns in my soil. (see previous post)

However, I seriously have to ask you if any Christian should be watching T.V.!! Now wait! Before you click back, home, or however you leave a blog, I am NOT talking about the T.V. shows. Well, not in this post so much even though I could.

Kids watching commercialNo, I am not referring to the Television shows that are easy to turn off if the material is too risqué, mature, or down right crude.Everyone should be familiar with the on/off switch and use it accordingly. What I am referring to is the commercials.

 There you are enjoying a good show with clean humor, no language to make you cringe and then Bam! Here comes some Pizza commercial full of innuendo with the NFL cheerleaders in the guy’s fantasy or some NFL player in the lady’s version. I tell you a truth, I lie not: It used to be that if God had not created women there would be little selling of anything! Now the women are getting into the act by objectifying men too. I guess it would be doubly true then: If God had not created man or woman, there would be NO selling. But then, I suppose,  I wouldn’t have anyone to read my blog.

Who needs sex, sex appeal, scantily dressed women to sell Orange Juice, Pizza, Butter or a myriad of other products? Apparently it is needed. I seriously doubt that Madison avenue is putting this stuff out there because the majority of the world doesn’t like it!  They are in the business of making money and if they alienate their audience, sales do not improve.  I don’t recall all of the language my Communication Studies professors would have used to describe this but I do know that media is out to sell a product and they KNOW how to do it. And yet…there is a more important question to ask:

As a Christian can I allow myself and my family to be subjected to the world’s standards so often that it starts to make no difference to them or  the next generation?  In 1939 the Best picture was Gone with the Wind. In this movie, there was one profane word. Just one! By today’s standards not even a particularly offensive one. However, a couple of generations later, well…I don’t really have to finish that thought with examples, now do I? What is next for T.V. in the upcoming years? I shudder to ask or think about it.

If it were a T.V. show that offended, I could avoid watching it. However, if the price to pay for watching shows that I do want to watch is the advertisements advertising the shows that I don’t want to watch, (which often remind me of why I do not want to watch them), then one has to ask: Is the price too high?

David said: I will set nothing wicked before my eyes (Psalm 101:3). Funny that we call it a T.V. set!

Job said: “I have made a covenant with my eyes, Why then should I look upon a young woman” (Job 31:1)

Jesus said “If you look upon a woman to lust after her, you have committed adultery in your heart” (Matt 5:28)

Sure, this may come off as judgemental and about now, you might expect a call for a boycott! However, I simply want to raise the question. Because there is not a man or woman alive over the age of 18 who has not had a struggle with this to some degree or another. Not just on T.V. but in real life. So why add to struggle by adding to the exposure.   We need to take an honest, prayerful look at all of our activities, even the passive ones, and ask if people see Jesus in us.

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