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Author Topic: Is Watching Television A Sin?  (Read 16484 times)

Raybob

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Re: Is Watching Television A Sin?
« Reply #30 on: February 13, 2008, 12:00:24 PM »
I gave up TV in 1997.  I gave up alcohol in 1993.  Giving up TV was almost harder to give up than booze.  :o  I was always afraid I might miss something if I got rid of it.  I sure didn't miss a thing and I also sure got a lot more other things done in the past 10 years that I would only still be dreaming of doing if I still had a TV.

I wrote a song about it called "TV Blues".  If you'd like to hear it, go to https://myspace.com/raybobbowman/music/songs and click on the third song on the list.

Raybob

Hank

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Re: Is Watching Television A Sin?
« Reply #31 on: April 30, 2008, 04:38:35 PM »
TV, like any other communications media, is abused and lends itself easily to worldly influences. At least the over-the-air broadcast TV is regulated to some extent, preventing some of the worst offence though not much.

On the other hand, the internet, movies, video games, multi-service providers (cable and satellite), are not regulated at all. The very best and the very worst can be observed.

Technology is not a sin, it is the use, that is called into question. As a Christian, I feel duty bound to reject many of the forms of "entertainment" presented on television. It is a far stretch, however, to think that by merely disposing of the TV, I am some how better for it. That same reasoning can be used to get rid of the internet, the newspaper, radio, and the library. It can also be used to argue against doing anything for entertainment, at all, including fishing, hunting, ball games.

Hank

Raybob

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Re: Is Watching Television A Sin?
« Reply #32 on: April 30, 2008, 05:08:08 PM »
... It is a far stretch, however, to think that by merely disposing of the TV, I am some how better for it.

For me, there was so much I needed to do that I wasn't getting done.  When I got rid of TV, I got all those things done, not to mention the fact that I could spend more time reading my bible.  For those reasons, I believe I'm now a better man.

Quote
That same reasoning can be used to get rid of the internet, the newspaper, radio, and the library. It can also be used to argue against doing anything for entertainment, at all, including fishing, hunting, ball games.

The big difference here is that if I go fishing, I'm teaching my boy how to do it at the same time, plus I'm spending time with him and talking to him.  With the internet or newspaper or library, I can choose what information goes into my brain.  With a TV, for every hour I spend watching, I've just had 20 minutes of information put into my brain that I didn't care about through the commercials.  Big difference.

Raybob


Reformer

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Re: Is Watching Television A Sin?
« Reply #33 on: May 01, 2008, 09:05:33 PM »
TV, like any other communications media, is abused and lends itself easily to worldly influences. At least the over-the-air broadcast TV is regulated to some extent, preventing some of the worst offence though not much.


..isn't that like saying my neighbor beats his wife all day and I only beat my wife a little bit? Broadcast TV 30 years ago might have had some redeeming qualities, but I can't find any today. Maybe Sesame Street, but even they push evolution now.


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Technology is not a sin, it is the use, that is called into question.

Granted. But having said that, can you name 3 broadcast TV programs, out of the hundreds,  that are God glorifying?


Chicago Bear

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Re: Is Watching Television A Sin?
« Reply #34 on: June 27, 2008, 09:30:39 AM »
I've considered this for a while, I guess not wanting to come to this conclusion, but I've finally concluded that the answer is an unequivocal YES!

 And there is no ifs, ands or buts about it. You cannot watch today's television without committing sin because we live vicariously through what comes over the airwaves. And its 95 percent sinful. And I'm being charitable. Even the gameshows promote envy and lust of wealth.

That said, even going to work, talking to neighbors and walking down the street one sees sin, but that doesn't mean we stop walking down the street or going to work. Its a puzzle. And I don't know the answer. Anyone care to comment or think they have any answers?


Either the Bible will Keep you from Sin, or sin will keep you from the Bible

Raybob

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Re: Is Watching Television A Sin?
« Reply #35 on: June 27, 2008, 01:28:25 PM »
  • Rev 13:5 And there was given unto him a mouth speaking great things and blasphemies; and power was given unto him to continue forty and two months.

TV sure seems to me to be that mouth.  :o

Raybob

rcjones

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Re: Is Watching Television A Sin?
« Reply #36 on: October 14, 2008, 08:25:48 PM »
...

That said, even going to work, talking to neighbors and walking down the street one sees sin, but that doesn't mean we stop walking down the street or going to work. Its a puzzle. And I don't know the answer. Anyone care to comment or think they have any answers?

1Co 11:24  And when he had given thanks, he brake it, and said, Take, eat: this is my body, which is broken for you: this do in remembrance of me.

There are few who question that the bread represents Christ on the cross,( even though his body was not broken there.)

De 8:3  And he humbled thee, and suffered thee to hunger, and fed thee with manna, which thou knewest not, neither did thy fathers know; that he might make thee know that man doth not live by bread only, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of the LORD doth man live.
Mt 4:4  But he answered and said, It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God.
Lu 4:4  And Jesus answered him, saying, It is written, That man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word of God.

At the risk of being called a heretic, I remind us that "man does not live by bread alone."  suggesting that any activity that does not comply with "but by every word that proceeds out of the mouth of God" is an activity that does not contribute to life.

I believe the difference is instinctive living vs. intentional response to God.  It would be difficult to make a case that watching TV is an intentional response to God.

I see Gen 3 for the nature of original sin being instinctive living. (Looks good, smells good, I think I'll eat it...)

Doug Johnson

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Re: Is Watching Television A Sin?
« Reply #37 on: October 18, 2008, 08:55:50 AM »
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Is Watching Television A Sin?

No it is not. Is watching the world daily at work, on the street or as you live out your life, a sin? No, that's just a part of life. Don't listen to the closed minded worshipers of a book. God gave us minds, we should use them.

Melanie

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Re: Is Watching Television A Sin?
« Reply #38 on: March 29, 2011, 09:14:55 AM »
 I think, in general terms, it is mostly sin, since most of what is on TV is either sin, or promoting sin in the form of ungodly influence, envy, discontentment, lust, ridicule, pride, hate, greed, rebellion or vanity. And no one can deny that it is addicting, like a drug, so that's not good. I guess we can make an argument that it is good for information and being informed, but other than that, what's good about it?

Having said that, I readily admit that I watch TV, and probably more than I should. So I feel like a hypocrite saying that I believe it is a sin. But I have to be honest about it. When I examine the issue thoroughly, it appears to be sin to me, at least most of the time. Maybe I'm wrong. But when Reformer asked, "can you name 3 broadcast TV programs, out of the hundreds,  that are God glorifying?" I couldn't. So what does that say?

 Php 4:8
 "Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things."


William B

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Re: Is Watching Television A Sin?
« Reply #39 on: March 29, 2011, 04:37:33 PM »
I think it really depends upon what you are watching. Everything on TV can't be a sin.  I watch a baseball game every now and again, so are you going to tell me that is a sin?  I really don't think that it is. I don't see anything in the bible that would indicate this. unless for conscience sake you believe it is.

"And he that doubteth is damned if he eat, because he eateth not of faith: for whatsoever is not of faith is sin.  Romans 14:23"

So I would say if you think watching TV is a sin, then don't watch because it is a sin to you. But it may not be a sin to someone else.

Betty

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Re: Is Watching Television A Sin?
« Reply #40 on: March 30, 2011, 12:33:12 PM »

 Would it be OK for me to say i think this whole issue is trumped up and silly? Because we all watch television and that doesn't affect our salvation one bit. It might be sin if we are watching porn, but to watch a football game, a movie, a sitcom or a variety show is not sin. Whoever says that is a legalist who wants to hang their own phobias on the rest of us.

1 Corinthians 10:30
  "But if I give praise to God for the food which I take, let no man say evil of me for that reason."

If we give thanks to God for allowing us the choice of watching TV, then who is another to declare it sin?

billnjune

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Re: Is Watching Television A Sin?
« Reply #41 on: July 20, 2011, 02:14:44 PM »
Here is an article from 1990 but is still very practical with good guidelines .
TV GUIDANCE FOR YOUR FAMILY
Author unknown

  There's a monster in our house, and it wants my children all the time.  Worse yet, they want it and would choose it over other activities.

   Our monster is the TV.  Most families either struggle with controlling it, feel guilty that they don't, or suffer its ill effect.

   The A. C. Nielson Company reported that the average six to eleven year-old watched 27 1/2 hours per week.  Children under six often watch more.  Estimates range as high as 30 to 50 hours per week.

   U.S. News & World Report cites another statistic: between the ages of six and eighteen, American children watch fifteen thousand hours of television, two thousand hours more than they spend in school.

   As Christian parents, we are concerned about the values portrayed on television.  Most programs are filled with violence, sexual promiscuity, and materialism.

   Paul gives wise counsel in his letter to the Philippians.  He tells us, “whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable -- if anything is excellent or praiseworthy -- think about such things” (Philippians 4:8 ).

   It is extremely rare to find television programs that are true noble, right, lovely, excellent, pure, praiseworthy, and admirable.

   We need to ask ourselves, “Are the hours of quiet time when our children are pacified by television worth its negative effects?”  Most television programs portray values that are the opposite of Christian teachings.

   Also, consider what a child is missing during the hours he or she is engrossed in TV.  Television robs a child of time for reading, playing outside, doing homework, family interaction, playing games, and countless creative activities.

   “Watching television not only requires no skills but develops no skills,” says Neil Postman in The Disappearance of Childhood.  Research indicates that poor school performance may be linked to heavy TV viewing.

   “In its short lifetime, television has become the major stumbling block to literacy in America,” states Jim Trelease in The Read-Aloud Handbook.  “Our children must be taught in the home and the classroom how to cope with television.  They must be taught to control it instead of letting it control them.

   The problem can be solved.  It requires diligence, effort, and creativity on the part of the parent.  But, it is worth the time involved.  Limiting TV viewing pays big dividends in a closer walk with Christ, better family relationships, improved performance in school, increase creativity, and higher self-esteem.  Following are ten solutions that have been successfully used by others.

1.  Set firm limits.  At a family meeting decide on how much TV is appropriate for your family.  Some families have decided to eliminate it completely by going “cold turkey.”  Others limit TV to weekends only.  Some families allow a fixed number of hours per week.

   One family gave each child a limited number of coupons that could be exchanged for one half hour of TV from an approved list of programs.  Another solution is to give a child two or three dollars in quarters at the beginning of the week and require the child to pay twenty-five cents for each half hour watched.  Any money left over at the end of the week may be kept by the child.

   Many families restrict TV viewing during the week, allowing no TV on school nights. Minimal viewing is allowed on weekends, with children required to choose from an approved list of programs.

2.  Watch TV with your child.  Is the program appropriate for his or her age?  Is it violent?  Does it promote sexual activity?  Does it represent the values you are teaching your child?

   Talk to your children about how the values portrayed are different from biblical teachings.  How do TV characters solve their problems compared to the way Jesus teaches us to solve our problems?  Help your children become discriminating viewers.

   You can help them understand how commercials try to convince us to buy things we don't need.  Ads often promise their products will do more than they can do.

3.  Monitor TV programs.  Help your children monitor their viewing with a TV chart.  Ask them to write down each show watched and to rate it for very good to very bad.  A delightful resource to help children monitor their viewing is The TV Smart Book for Kids by Peggy Charen.

   Ask you children to write a report card for each show watched.  Have them rate it according to violence, values, and content.  Did it have a Christian perspective?  Was it boring?  Would they want to watch it again?  Would Jesus want them to watch it?  Encourage your children to become critical viewers and to watch only the best programming available.

4.  Don't use TV as a babysitter.  TV is a poor substitute for human companionship.  I have been guilty of allowing my kids to watch TV to keep them occupied when I needed uninterrupted time to get something done.  But although they were quite while watching, their behavior was worse (increased fighting, restlessness, irritability) after watching TV.

5.  Be a good role model.  Instill good habits by being a good example.  Don't be a “couch potato” and expect your child to want to watch also.  Limit the amount of time you watch TV.

6.  Make the TV inconvenient.   Some families put their TV in an out-of-the-way location, where it is inconvenient to watch.  One family didn't replace their antenna when it was blown in a windstorm.

   We live in an area with poor reception.  We subscribed to cable for a while, thinking our children would have better things to watch (i.e., Disney and nature shows).  The end result was that they watched more.  And cable offered many undesirable choices that required more monitoring.  We stopped cable service, and now we barely get two channels.  Most often there isn't anything interesting on.

7.  Encourage creative alternatives.  Stock up on arts-and-crafts supplies, models and simple science equipment.  Many books are available that give outstanding suggestions, including I Saw a Purple Cow and Mr. Wizard's Supermarket Science.

   Be willing to have more mess and as a result of creative play.  Teach your children responsibility by requiring them to clean up their own messes.

8.  Read, read, read.  Most children, because they watch less TV, begin to read more.  Include a weekly trip to the library as part of your schedule.  Try to read to your children every night.

   “Readers have become an endangered species,” says Jim Trelease in his highly acclaimed film Reading Aloud: Motivating Children to Make Books into Friends, Not Enemies.  “Reading is a torch that must be passed from generation to generation.”

9.  Have a family game night.  You can plan special nights for family games.  We enjoy Bible Pictionary, Bible Trivia, and others.  Our children love to play charades and enjoy watching Mom and Dad act like clowns.  We all laugh and have a wonderful time together.

   It can be more festive if you invite another family to join you.  Plan simple snacks, and you will have an inexpensive and fun evening to remember.

10.  Plan family outings.  You can encourage family togetherness by taking trips to museums, zoos, factories science centers, arboretums, etc.  On a nature walk with your child you can look for the beauty of God's creation.  What about building a fort or clubhouse?  How about flying a kite or launching model rockets, fishing or bird-watching?

   Ask your children what they would like to do.  Have them help you come up with creative suggestions.  We treasure the memories of our family activities and look forward to many more adventures.

   Television doesn't need to be a monster in our homes.  It can be tamed.  And it needs to be tamed.

   Television portrays the opposite of the sanctified life.  God calls us to be holy.  We can strive toward holiness by avoiding the negative influences in our lives.  Eliminating or restricting TV viewing is one way to this.  Then we can live a life that is more pleasing to God.
The only regret that I have is that I only have one life to live for my God.

Pearson

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Re: Is Watching Television A Sin?
« Reply #42 on: July 21, 2011, 10:09:08 PM »
[Soapbox mode on]
Thanks billnjune, that's a real good start. Unfortunately, no one seems to listen to either good teachings or good advice anymore.



Just My two cents

[Soapbox mode off]

Melanie

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Re: Is Watching Television A Sin?
« Reply #43 on: July 22, 2011, 03:00:55 PM »
 Who are we kidding? 90% of the time, watching TV is a sin. Based upon what is on, and what it does to us.

 The liberal ideas, sex, violence, homosexuality, Godlessness, evolution, pride, immorality of every kid, love of money, vanity, gossip, dishonor of parents, exalting sin, sloth, discontentment, voyeurism, the list goes on and on. We are lucky if 10% of TV is not sinful. And that's being generous. I turned on the TV yesterday and saw a program  where Parents were dressing their 6 year olds up like street walkers, putting makeup and lip stick on them and letting them get on stage and do a dance patting their butts and saying how sexy they are. And everyone laughs and says how cute they are. I feel like an alien, because I think I was the only one in the group who seems to be offended by such behavior of Parents. Now that's child abuse, not spanking. And this is typical TV stuff.

 The problem is just as Tony Warren said in his article. Not that this isn't true about TV, but that we just don't want to give it up because we are addicted to it.

Yeah, watching TV is a sin in the same way that watching porn is a sin. Vicarious participation.


Reformed Baptist

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Re: Is Watching Television A Sin?
« Reply #44 on: July 23, 2011, 07:32:13 AM »
Not that this isn't true about TV, but that we just don't want to give it up because we are addicted to it.

Yeah, watching TV is a sin in the same way that watching porn is a sin. Vicarious participation.


I'll say Amen to that. I admit that it is an addiction. But like any addiction, it is very difficult to break the habit.

"For, brethren, ye have been called unto liberty; only use not liberty for an occasion to the flesh, but by love serve one another".
 Galatians 5:13

We should not serve the flesh, but serve God in the spirit. But TV is such an integral part of everyone's life. Should we go back to living like Quakers with horse drawn carriages? I don't think so. So there has to be a happy medium. I just don't know where it is.

 


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