Question of the day: the theater.

I grew up in a home where the rules were fairly strict. In fact, when it came to movies in the home, pillows were used quite frequently. For example: when the prince kissed Cinderella, the pillow was thrown in front of the screen. Yes, I’m talking about the cartoon – my parents didn’t want us kids watching that “stuff.”

My family didn’t even have cable until a few years ago. Watching cartoons over at Grandma’s house when we were kids was a huge treat for us!

One thing my parents never allowed though was going to the movies. However, once the movie came out on video, we would rent it and bring it home if it was something that we wanted to see. So here’s my question…

Is it wrong for Christians to go to the movie theaters? Why or why not?

How is going to the theater any different from bringing the movie into your own home 6 months later?

What are your thoughts and opinions? Do you have any Scripture to back it? Leave a comment below with your thoughts!

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Posted on December 13, 2010, in Question of the Day and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 12 Comments.

  1. Going to movies, watching DVDs are some of many issues that Christians have to deal with on a daily basis. What TV shows to watch, what music to listen to, how deeply involved with sports, what type of parties are ok to attend…. the list goes on and on and on.

    Each Christian has to take upon himself the responsibility to seek God’s will about all of these issues.

    The only guidance I know to suggest when these issues come up is found in a few Biblical principles:

    1. Moderation in everything.
    2. Avoid even the appearance of evil.
    3. Be sure that the Lord is the only Master that we serve
    4. Be sure the Lord comes first, our families second, and others third in all that we do.

    When I am faced with these type of issues these are the proinciples I try to consider.

    May the Lord continue to bless you.

    • I thought Rob left a great answer. on a side-and sort of practical note: One thing about watching a movie in the theatre is if it turns out worse than you thought or has “bad parts” its pretty much impossible to stop it, skip or fast forward through the parts etc. Personally, I must admit we do that alot. So, if it’s a questionable movie: watch it at home.

  2. I am very intrigued to see the responses to this. I never really got the stand of most people i knew on this matter. I am all for setting a standard on what you watch, and sticking with it. That being said, I do not see anything different with seeing it at a theater, rather than renting it for viewing at your home. If it’s not something you would watch in your house, you shouldn’t see it on the big screen, but if it is ok to watch, then why not at the movies?

  3. I don’t go to the theater and the main reason is that it’s not abstaining from every appearance of evil. Just as I wouldn’t go into a bar to drink a Dr. Pepper. I don’t think you’re a sinner for going or any less spiritual if you do. Most of my “good Christian” friends do go on occasion. I also think that from a financial standpoint it’s a huge waste of money! And God calls us to be good stewards. I don’t rent them either. But I will get them from the library!:) So it doesn’t cost me anything above and beyond what is already taken from me in taxes! There are other reasons not to got after pay the theater, if something comes up that is bad, will you really walk out after paying ten dollars for a ticket? You obviously can’t use TVG at the theater so you sit through all the swearing, and can’t fast forward a scene that might not be enough to walk out of but is beyond what you want to put before your eyes. Also you are promoting and helping out the ticket sales of whatever you go to see and most of the time that is not a good thing as it helps a director and company that I am sure doesn’t support your values. I do not take it as far as to never watch a movie unless it’s made by Christians but I can understand when someone feels that the Lord told them to do that. I never think it’s wrong to give up much in order to live a cleaner life for our Savior after all HE gave his life for us. What’s a little sacrifice for us to give up a few of life’s entertainment pleasures?

    • Yikes I should have read what I wrote before posting. “There are other reasons not to got after pay the theater,” Should have said “there are other reason to not attend the the theater,”

  4. To me, there is no difference between seeing a movie at the theatre and seeing the movie at home. In both cases, the producers are getting money. To take this stand is nothing more than a big display of hypocrisy. If you take the stand that you cannot watch the movie at the theatre because of who it supports and the ideas it supports, then you must also stop shopping everywhere that serves or sells alcohol if you take a stand against it. That’s right, no Wal-Mart, no Kroger, no Food City, no to most restaraunts, etc… And watching the movies at home and not the theatre is even worse. That is like not consuming alcohol in public but only doing it in the privacy of your own house. If you are going to stand for something, do it all the way. Nothing is worse than picking and choosing your battles to be convenient for your lifestyle.

    • I thoroughly agree with you, John. If we are worried about supporting something we don’t agree with, where do we draw the line? no wal-mart? no driving cars because we don’t agree with the manufacturer or the dealer? I am not bashing, merely curious as to where the line is drawn…

    • couldn’t agree more, it is worse in your own home..

    • I would agree that you need to find what you believe and stand by it. I am pretty sure I was not attacking anyone in my post and I am sorry you took it that way. I live my life the way God has told me in my heart and through his word. Yes there might come a point when HE tells me no movies at all and I pray I have the heart and strength to listen when and if He does. I have friends who live by this as well as never go to a restaurant that sell alcohol etc… I greatly admire their choices and respect them for it. We are all growing at different rates and are at different places in our lives. I see no need to attack people who are more conservative or less for their beliefs, God works in us all at different times. I thought Heather was asking for a vote and I shared my thoughts as to how I live didn’t mean to attack anyone. As to where I go and where my money goes, you don’t know me you have no idea what I will and will not support, I do limit myself a lot based on the company and what they support. There are many places I do not go for this reason. As to watching movies in your home where you can sensor them versus in public where they can’t be censored you see it one way I see it another. 🙂 The Bible is clear about cutting of you right arm if it offends someone, if you’re in your own home there will be no cause for offense.

  5. that first comment i made was for John….

    Anyways..my opinion on this is very cut and dry

    If you preach against going to the theater then YOU HAD BETTER NOT HAVE a VCR or DVD player in your home!!!

    And you better not just TV guardian them either…because that’s worse!!

    …why? what was man’s first response to his sin? To cover it up, right? kinda like what you’re doing in your movie…their should be no fast-fwding thru bad scenes or muting the curse words out because the truth of the matter is that no matter what you do to cover the sin thats in the movie you’re still bringing it into your home, you’re still allowing on your television, and its still there…

    Now, am I against TV Guardian? No..lol that was just for people who think its ok to condemn theaters and then go home to watch filthy movies as long as TV Guardian sensors them…I want those pholks to know they have no respect from me on this issue and that i see thru their folly.

  6. In my opinion going to the movies shouldnt be the question as much as what you watch when youre not at the theater. The movie theater , just like walmart, the internet, tv and even the library, can be a good thing used in the wrong way. And as far as taking the movie home where you can fast forward that is still the appearence of evil. In my opinion me going to see tangled or dispicable me in the theater is much more acceptable then renting a movie from the library that has to be fast forwarded. God has to speak to each one of us individually and give us peace about our decisions. Is there anything wrong with stepping it up a notch and not going to the theater? absolutely not. I think upping your standards is a great thing… also Kenny and I go on Friday afternoons and its half price 🙂 Great date time.

  7. I don’t think God minds you watching any movies at all. They are exploring the human condition and therefore the language and content therein are merely forms of expression which you are heartily allowed to be exposed to culturally and spiritually.

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