Should Christians watch movies or TV shows which depict evil?

The original question was, “People say things like watching evil glorifying movies, pornography, listening to certain music etc will ‘open up your home to demonic oppression (or in cases of non believers, possession)’.  What is the actual biblical answer to this?”


To me, the question isn’t whether certain things like pornography or certain music or shows will open our home to demonic oppression or possession. But rather should Christians  watch movies or TV shows which depict evil? Does watching these things cause us to influenced to do evil or to approve of evil?


We must recognize that God has said we are not to have anything which God calls evil in our homes.


Deuteronomy 7:26
You shall not bring an abomination into your house, and like it come under the ban; you shall utterly detest it and you shall utterly abhor it, for it is something banned.


Since God said sorcerers are getting the second death, I want to avoid my children being enticed that way. So we do not do magic or holloween or shows/books/movies depicting them as normal or accepable or even as a solution to a problem or a way to get something lacking.


Revelation 21:8
But for the cowardly and unbelieving and abominable and murderers and immoral persons and sorcerers and idolaters and all liars, their part will be in the lake that burns with fire and brimstone, which is the second death.


Whether a book, a song, a movie or a television show, or a play shows some sin as acceptable or normal or without consequence, then that piece of “art” is showing that thing as good or normal. This is something we are to avoid – approving of that which God calls evil.


Romans 1:28-32
28 And just as they did not see fit to acknowledge God any longer, God gave them over to a depraved mind, to do those things which are not proper, 29 being filled with all unrighteousness, wickedness, greed, evil; full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, malice; they are gossips, 30 slanderers, haters of God, insolent, arrogant, boastful, inventors of evil, disobedient to parents, 31 without understanding, untrustworthy, unloving, unmerciful; 32 and although they know the ordinance of God, that those who practice such things are worthy of death, they not only do the same, but also give hearty approval to those who practice them.
These stories are fiction. They portray sin as normal and acceptable, which could entice people to do that sin. If we cause children to sin, then we will have to deal with that.


Matthew 18:6-7


6 but whoever causes one of these little ones who believe in Me to stumble, it would be better for him to have a heavy millstone hung around his neck, and to be drowned in the depth of the sea. 7 “Woe to the world because of its stumbling blocks! For it is inevitable that stumbling blocks come; but woe to that man through whom the stumbling block comes!


Some claim that we are not participating in magic when we read or watch things like Narnia or Harry Potter. There was a wonderful response by someone to that:


“Example: porn. When you look at it you are not actually physically doing the act but you are allowing your self to be entertained by it therefor you are in sin. It’s the same thing”


More than that, by watching or reading or listening to things which depict sinful things as normal, we are led to desire or approve what God calls evil.


if we are to stay away from those things, then we must also avoid watching shows and movies and listening to songs which glorify these things or show them as normal and as acceptable to do.


Ephesians 5:11-14
11 Do not participate in the unfruitful deeds of darkness, but instead even expose them; 12 for it is disgraceful even to speak of the things which are done by them in secret. 13 But all things become visible when they are exposed by the light, for everything that becomes visible is light. 14 For this reason it says, “Awake, sleeper, And arise from the dead, And Christ will shine on you.”


Each person is responsible for his own choices. But who and what we surround ourselves with affects us, good or bad. Plenty of studies have shown this.


Businesses know that advertisements work, otherwise they would not spend billions trying to convince people they need what the companies are selling. Of COURSE what people read, and watch, and listen to, affects them. If they are exposed to what God calls good, they are more likely to be affected for the good. If they are exposed to what God calls evil, they are more likely to be affected for the bad.


Scripture tells us this same principle.


Proverbs 13:20
He who walks with the wise grows wise, but a companion of fools suffers harm.


Proverbs 22:24-25
24 Do not make friends with a hot-tempered man, do not associate with one easily angered, 25 or you may learn his ways and get yourself ensnared.


Proverbs 24:21-22
21 Fear the LORD and the king, my son, and do not join with the rebellious, 22 for those two will send sudden destruction upon them, and who knows what calamities they can bring?…


1 Corinthians 15:33
Do not be misled: “Bad company corrupts good character.”


Although people who love and trust God, through faith in Christ, are not under supervision of the Law, it still tells us what sin is.


Romans 3:20
Therefore no one will be declared righteous in his sight by observing the law; rather, through the law we become conscious of sin.


Our music, TV shows, movies, magazines, and even friends can lead us towards sin. They can influence our thinking to believe what God calls sin is good, and vice versa.


But we are to be aware of what the world teaches and reject it.


Colossians 2:8
See to it that no one takes you captive through hollow and deceptive philosophy, which depends on human tradition and the basic principles of this world rather than on Christ.


As Christians we have to resist people who are wicked.


Proverbs 28:4


Those who forsake the law praise the wicked, but those who keep the law resist them.


Romans 14:16
Do not allow what you consider good to be spoken of as evil.


James 4:4
You adulterous people, don’t you know that friendship with the world is hatred toward God? Anyone who chooses to be a friend of the world becomes an enemy of God.


We are to rid ourselves of all moral filth and evil.


James 1:21
Therefore, get rid of all moral filth and the evil that is so prevalent and humbly accept the word planted in you, which can save you.


Even if our friends do not make us think that what God called good is evil and vice versa, the things and people we surround ourselves with can be used to tempt us to sin. Even Christ said,


Matthew 18:6-7
Woe to the world because of the things that cause people to sin! Such things must come, but woe to the man through whom they come! Woe to the world because of the things that cause people to sin! Such things must come, but woe to the man through whom they come!


And Paul wrote:


1 Corinthians 10:32
Do not cause anyone to stumble, whether Jews, Greeks or the church of God


We are called to be holy, because God is holy.


Leviticus 19:2
Speak to the entire assembly of Israel and say to them: Be holy because I, the LORD your God, am holy.


1 Peter 1:15-16
But just as he who called you is holy, so be holy in all you do; for it is written: “Be holy, because I am holy.”
So we have to be careful with what we listen to, what we watch, what we read, and even with whom we surround ourselves. But even more importantly, we need to love God, trust God, resist evil, choose to not sin – and pray, for ourselves, our family, our friends, our society.

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