Friday, August 07, 2009

Isn't Using Movies in Worship of the Devil?

We have started a new series of messages at New Season Church called "God at the Movies."

Using movies as part of worship and as a jumping off point to talk about biblical principles, spiritual issues, and the sacred may seem a bit strange to some "and of the devil to others."

I believe we we can use parts of our culture to point us to greater truths about who God is, what God has done, and how we are to be obedient to God. Instead of hiding from the culture I believe we are to engage it and exploit it for God’s glory. This is called plundering the Egyptians, remember how the Israelites under God's command took the gold and other items of the Egyptians during the Passover but left that which was not useful. Make no mistake, many movies have little redeeming value. However, whether it is a movie, or a popular song, or a television show or most anything else in culture there is a sacredness to it if you will.

Here is what I mean. The Bible says in Psalm 24:1 “The earth and all that is in it belongs to God.” God pervades all things. As Creator, God is part of everything. This doesn’t mean as some mistakenly have said that God is for instance “a tree, a rock, or a turtle.” But that tree, rock, and turtle reveal the glory of God, were created by God, and point us to God. The same is true for many other things in life. There is a sacredness to them that if we might just scratch hard enough reveals God’s glory, point us to God, and help us to follow Jesus.

Movies, songs, or television shows are all part of a grander narrative. Almost all of these things whether they are love stories, stories of friendships, stories of struggle, stories of looking for the meaning in life, they all point us to the greatest story ever told and that is the story of God’s love for humanity perfectly made known to us in Jesus Christ. These movies, songs, and television shows are mere shadows of the one story that defines all of human history. They are attempts to tell the greater story. All of our art and entertainment, apart from the truly grotesque and abominable, are just attempts to tell part of the greater story.

It is interesting that when Jesus taught his disciples he used story. He used parables. He used every day things people knew about, like farming, to convey spiritual truths. The same is done by using movies, songs, television, etc. The truth is not found in first century farming principles and any more than it is in yesterday's summer blockbuster. Truth is instead found in the One whom those things point us toward. Those are just the tools.


SOON said...

This is great. I've been writing about this topic recently, at
Internet Evangelism Day, and would very much like to quote from this blog posting, but can't see a contact link on your blog in order to ask.



Robb said...

Thanks Tony and thanks for the link. Good stuff! You can quote away. Thanks for asking!! Blessings on your ministry.