1 John 2:15-17: “Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world-the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life-is not of the Father but is of the world. And the world is passing away, and the lust of it; but he who does the will of God abides forever.”
The other night in Hollywood, California, the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences awarded their annual “Oscars” to those which are considered the finest in the movie industry. The Best Picture award went to a film called “12 Years as a Slave,” while Matthew McConaughey and Cate Blanchett won Oscars for their acting performances. I did not watch the television show nor did I see any of the movies which won awards, except the animated Disney film “Frozen.”
The Bible does not explicitly state that entertainment is sinful for Christians. In fact, there are millions of devout followers of Jesus who watch television and movies. I am one of them. What the Bible does say is that we are not to “love the world.” This does not mean that we are not to love other people or God’s beautiful creation. What it does mean is that we are to completely avoid three things: the lust of the flesh, which we all struggle with on a daily basis, the lust of the eyes, which causes us to be greedy, selfish and to desire things which are not good for us, and the pride of life, which the Bible warns will lead us to destruction.
Hollywood often produces entertainment which promotes and glorifies the things of this fallen, corrupt world. Movies and TV shows seldom lead people to God, but frequently lead people away from God. Followers of Christ should focus upon the “good things” in life (Philippians 4:8), those things which strengthen our love for Jesus and enable us to not love the world. This world is dying, but those who do God’s will live forever.
Dear Lord, Give me the strength to resist the lust of my flesh, the lust of my eyes and the pride which is in my sinful heart. Help me to focus on the good things that You have created, in order that I love You and not this dying world. In Jesus’ name, Amen.