Two days ago, we had a great meeting with our cross connect (young adults group) in which we had a greatly edifying discussion about our relationship with God and our relationship with entertainment. It is no secret that we live in a time when entertainment seems to be one of the biggest gods of the culture; sadly, even Christians often bow down to its altar. Therefore, I would like to talk to share with you this week some thoughts about what the Bible has to say in relation to entertainment.
So, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God (1 Corinthians 10:31).
As we all know, God created us in Christ Jesus that we may live lives that glorify his name; everything we do must be to the glory of his name and the passage above shows us that very truth. Therefore, we must ask ourselves, is it possible to glorify God with our entertainment? Is there a way to be entertained for God’s glory? Unfortunately, it is not an easy question to answer because there are several spiritual factors to consider, but to bring it down to the basic level, I do believe there is a way to glorify God with our leisure, which, because of our flesh and the influence of our godless culture, is very difficult to do. However, we do see in the Bible many examples of people that were entertained and partook of leisure. Believers celebrated, danced, sang and played music, etc.; thus, leisure and entertainment is not something that is inherently wrong.
Even though entertainment is not sinful in itself, we do know very well that our heart is a factory of idols and that whatever takes most of our time, thought, effort and money has already become our God, and entertainment is one of the biggest idols of today. The Bible says in Isaiah 42:8 that God does not share his glory with anyone or anything; he does not allow anything to take the place that is rightfully his. Therefore, a Christian that constantly seeks to be entertained and whose life revolves much around entertainment is one that disobeys the command found in 1 Corinthians 10:31; his leisure time is not glorifying to God because it has displaced God from the throne of his heart and has sat the idol of endless entertainment on that throne. Thus, the best question may not be whether entertainment in general can be done to the glory of God, but rather, is the form, content, and time invested in my current entertainment glorifying to God?
I believe that, if you pray and consider what God says in 1 Corinthians 10:31 and Isa. 42:8 in relation to your entertainment life, the practical implications to your life will be very obvious. If you find yourself constantly, mindlessly and endlessly scrolling down your facebook, you have created a false god in your heart. If you sit daily on your couch playing video games or watching videos and movies without checking your heart, you have been giving glory to an idol. Even if you just sit around and “disconnect” yourself without a purpose and without your mind being engaged, you have created the perfect playground for Satan in your life. If you spend countless hours texting people and you never engage with them in a meaningful, edifying and God glorifying friendship, your relationship with them is just a virtual escape to be entertained. I know these situations may not apply to everyone, but you know your heart better and are able to analyze it in light of what God says about entertainment. Therefore, I urge all to prayerfully and honestly consider this question before the Lord: is the form, content, and time invested in my current entertainment glorifying to God?