Remodeling Your Living Room Part I

by Tad Lindley

If you have an average American living room in your house, it’s time to remodel. I’m talking about a living room that has a couch and some chairs and perhaps other furniture. Hopefully there is a bookshelf with books on it, including the Bible. Perhaps there is a phone sitting on an end table. There may be lamps. Picture this living room in your mind. All of the furniture in the room points to one object in the living room that I have not mentioned. What is it? (If you don’t know, you either grew up in a very strict home, or without electricity).

If you haven’t figured it out yet, imagine people coming into the living room and sitting down on the couch and the chairs. What are they facing? It is probably not each other.

The American idol 

When I lived on the north side of town I used to walk through Housing on the way to work. I would be greeted by the smell of bacon and windows glowing with the blue light of their television sets. It was there that it first occurred to me. When archaeologists dig up ancient pagan houses they sometimes find a room in the house where everything is focused on a single part of a room. The general assumption is that these are rooms for religious worship. What if a volcano erupted and buried your house with ash? Would later archaeologists digging up your house uncover the living room and make this same assumption? “Ah ha,” they would say. “These primitive people worshipped large boxes made of glass and plastic. We keep finding the same thing in house after house.”

A living room, or a dying room?

Americans are slowly killing themselves sitting in front of the television eating corn chips and drinking soda pop. But there is something far worse than the obesity epidemic that is taking place in the living room. 

God told Cain, Sin is crouching at your door, and it desires to have you (Genesis 4:7). In the case of many Americans sin has gotten past the door, and is in the living room. I know all you watch is Discovery Channel, History Channel, and Learning Channel. It’s the other guy that is watching beach volleyball and cage fighting. Keep reading though.

Guilty as sin

Most readers will never commit a murder. Most will never lead a homosexual lifestyle. Most will never steal an automobile. Many will never commit adultery. Most female readers will never be topless dancers. Most male readers will never be gangsters. A few readers will not have sex before marriage. That is good. According to the Bible, all of these things are sin.

Did you know, however, that to watch someone else do these things for our own entertainment is sin? …they which commit such things are worthy of death, not only do the same, but have pleasure in them that do them (Romans 1:32). As a Christian, I have no desire to commit murder. When I get entertainment from watching NHL players beat each other bloody, I am in sin. You would never cheat on your spouse, but when you watch adultery in a soap opera, you are having pleasure in watching someone else commit adultery.

When TV becomes a problem

I realize that air traffic controllers need TV monitors to watch the planes approaching the airport. As a teacher, I occasionally use video in my classroom. In moderation, it can be a useful tool for education. Unfortunately not everything that is on TV is educational or edifying (edifying means it makes you a better person).

Do these following scriptures apply to your television watching? I will set no wicked thing before mine eyes (Psalm 101:3). Are ungodly things appearing before your eyes while watching TV? 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 (Philippians 4:8). Are the programs and movies you watch showing the fake, the dishonest, the unjust, impure, ugly, or things of a bad report? If the answer is “Yes”, then it is time to remodel your living room.

Reverend Tad Lindley is a minister at the United Pentecostal Church in Bethel, Alaska.

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