We have been reading "Worldliness", a book with several chapters written by different authors, about worldliness various areas of life. One of the chapters is entitled "God, My Heart, and the Media", and I thought it was very good and an interesting topic to discuss.
Christians have drastically different standards regarding media, and most of us tend to think that other peoples' standards that differ from their own are either legalistic, or too liberal.
I thought that C.J. Mahaney's explanation of legalism was a good one.
"Legalism is seeking to achieve forgiveness from God and acceptance by God through obedience to God. In other words, a legalist is anyone who behaves as if they can earn God's approval and forgiveness through personal performance. "
So, having standards is not the problem in legalism, but rather our motivation. This is a really important point, because otherwise, you can run around screaming, "No standards! Standards are legalistic, and we want our Christian liberties!"
I think personal standards for movie-viewing are important. It is very easy for us, because we have a ClearPlay filter. I recommend these very strongly, because there are so many movies that are good movies with good messages, but have random offensive things, which if you have a filter, just get edited out and you never even know they are there! You can visit their website HERE.
Language in movies is one the main things that some people don't seem to think is a big deal. ClearPlay is nice for that because when you you're watching a movie, you can't very well skip or mute every single bad word. ClearPlay just edits it out, and while you can still sometimes tell what they are saying by their mouth movement, I think it really helps to not actually hear the word. I think bad language can have an effect on people more than they realize. If you hear that kind of stuff all the time, it's going to be more ready in your mind to just blurt out when you're angry or something.
One thing that we have needed to be careful about with ClearPlay is that we don't just watch lame movies because there won't be anything bad in them. Some movies are just not worth watching because of a bad message, etc. And, we have to be careful when we recommend movies or say that we loved a movie, because if someone watched it without ClearPlay, they could be horrified!
Any thoughts on legalism connected to media? What are your standards?