Faith & Entertainment: Should Christians watch Empire?

Hi everyone,

For me, Wednesday night is not only Bible study night, it’s Empire night! I rush home, put my son to bed, grab a snack and sit in front of the television a little before 9pm, ready to view the Lyon family drama. But this past Wednesday, a thought came to mind that made me question my Wednesday night ritual. Should I be watching Empire? As a Christian, can I watch the racy love scenes, homosexuality, crime, greed and lust and be okay with it? It’s one of the biggest shows on television, but is it appropriate for Christian viewing?

I’m also a big fan of Scandal and How to Get Away with Murder. Scandal romanticizes adultery and for a while I was Team Olivia and Fitz. As a married woman, I should have been totally against it, but like millions of fans, I got caught up in the fantasy and wanted the dream to come true.

How to Get Away with Murder actually shows us how to get away with murder. Isn’t that wrong on so many levels?

I love these shows because of the great acting and fascinating story lines. I know that everyone in the world isn’t saved and there are people that act like these characters. It’s real, but is it too real?

I Thessalonians 5:22 (NKJV) states “Abstain from every form of evil”. Is that even possible? There is so much evil in this world. How can we avoid it all?

Proverbs 4:23 says “Keep your heart with all diligence, For out of it spring the issues of life.” Those issues are listed in Matthew 15:19, “For out of the heart proceed evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, blasphemies”.

The Bible is telling us that we have to protect ourselves from the evils of this world so that we are not negatively influenced. But does that mean we have to live in a bubble and surround ourselves only with faith based content? We are in the world, but not of the world. How does that relate to our choices in entertainment?

Let me know your thoughts about this topic. Are shows like Empire, Scandal and HTGAWM off limits to Christians or is it okay for us to watch as long as we don’t allow it to change our perspective and how we live?

I’m a fan, but should I be? Sound off….now!

 

 

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9 thoughts on “Faith & Entertainment: Should Christians watch Empire?

  1. First, let me say that I watch all those shows! I love the storylines and the excellent acting. However, I did having a nagging feeling (dare, I say conviction) about watching them. The Scripture tells us to guard our minds and hearts. It also states that we should mediate on those things that are good. I don’t know if it is because the more we watch something, the more we can tolerate it. For instance, the more we see people of the same sex having sex, then the more comfortable and accepting we are of the concept. The more we see people getting killed or watch acts of violence, then the more we are unmoved by violence. Not to mention, what we may be opening up in the spirit realm. I also think about my grandmother when I watch some shows, because she used to say that TV will steal all of your time. Could I be doing something more productive,more enriching ? The topic is good one and worthy of discussion.

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    • Thanks for your comment Nichole! You are so right that we can become desensitized about things the more we see them. It’s almost like nothing shocks us anymore. Christ wants us to stand for right, not get comfortable with wrong.
      There are definitely more productive things to do besides watch TV. I fasted TV for awhile and got so much more done. But all work and no play isn’t good. You have to have some down time and TV has become one of the most popular forms of down time in our society. I believe it’s about balance. Everyone has to figure that out for themselves.
      Thanks for joining the conversation and following my blog. I plan to post more thought provoking commentary soon. πŸ™‚ Be blessed!

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  2. Stephenie says:

    This is a fascinating topic. I too have questioned if I should be watching … I have more than once just turned the channel because of some of the content. My spirit was like “NO!” … LOL I guess mostly I have justified it as “entertainment”. BUT … I’m also aware of the messages sent through these shows and worry for those of a younger generation who may not have the solid foundation of Christianity to stand on.

    I’m not sure what the answer is here. I guess as long as the foundation is strong then it’s easier to separate the “show” from reality … but I’m not sure if we should even expose ourselves to it??

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    • Hey Stephenene! Thanks for joining the discussion.
      I have definitely had NO moments when watching these shows. I also justify it at entertainment, but now I’m wondering if that’s the right viewpoint.
      You make a good point about having a solid foundation. How strong you are in Christ may determine how little or much you can handle. But maybe it’s more black and white than that. I’m not sure. It really makes you say hmmmm. πŸ™‚

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  3. allison says:

    I once knew a very strong and faithful Christian lady who always said “if you aren’t walking in the light, you shouldn’t be doing it”. πŸ™‚ I always think of her when i watch shows like Empire but isn’t just about all entertainment these days somehow against our Christian beliefs? My husband and I often shake our heads at Empire and say how they glamourize evil and corruption. No one is faithful, everyone back stabs. And it’s almost like the writers are trying to make us think this is normal, this is how the world really is. I believe this to be true for just about all of the shows on tv. I think the important thing is to not get caught up in it. To know this is just a show and to know where we stand in our faith and beliefs. Although it does tug at you when you watch it.. i often think..’now would i be sitting among my church friends watching this mess?’ lol.. Hm..maybe I should just stick to Sleepy Hollow! ;b

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  4. Thanks for joining the conversation Allison! You are so right that the majority of TV shows are in some way against our Christian beliefs. The writers are bringing the drama and craziness because that’s what we like and that’s where the ratings are. There are some family-friendly shows like Blackish that do well, but the big bucks are generated with shows like Empire.
    Simliar to what you said about church friends, one of my friends said if you wouldn’t watch it with your pastor it might not be for you. lol
    I agree we can’t get caught up. We have to stand on our beliefs. We can’t allow anything to make us waiver.
    Please consider following my blog for more thought provoking commentary. God bless!

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  5. This is a great post. Right before I stumbled upon this article I had been questioning the motives behind the show Scandal. My girlfriend and I had gotten a liking to the show and we were hooked, but as the show continued I realized how they portrayed Mellie as the bad person. I realized how in real life, infidelity damages families while I’m watching it on tv and indirectly supporting it. I believe that as Christians we are called to be holistic in our faith and that there should be no separation from the sacred and secular. Everything is sacred for the Christian. I have stopped watching Scandal since. I am now looking for a new show so I would love any suggestions!

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    • Thank you so much for your response Paidiwa. You make an excellent point that Christians should be holistic in our faith. It should play a part in everything we do, not just when we feel like it. I’m really going to mediate on that.
      I’m not aware of any shows that have the drama and intrigue of Scandal that would be acceptable, but there are some good shows that will pass. I watch If Loving You Is Wrong. It’s one of Tyler Perry’s shows on OWN. It is filled with drama and has fidelity in the story line, but it isn’t upheld. The characters acknowledge that it is wrong and the consequences are clearly emphasized. He has some crazy stuff going on, but in the midst of it there’s a moral or message. The season finale is tonight so you may have to wait until before the new season to watch and catch up. OWN doesn’t believe in putting episodes on You Tube or anything. lol
      I also watch The Haves and the Have Nots. It’s another TP show on OWN. It’s borderline because there is homosexual character, but there are Christian characters as well that show the power of God in some unGodly circumstances. Be blessed!

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