I was talking to a friend who is also in ministry the other day and the question came up about whether Christians should go see the movie “50 Shades of Grey“? I had been pondering the thought in my head since seeing the popularity with the book series and knowing that it was not all nonChristians contributing to it’s popularity.
Here are my five cents…
- Why are we discriminating against this one movie? It seems that there are a lot of erotica movies and books on the market yet this one has been targeted because it gained worldwide popularity with book sales. If we are going to hold Christians to a higher standard in their reading and movie watching, shouldn’t this apply to all genres that would seemingly conflict with the teachings of Jesus – including movies depicting graphic violence?
- Why not view the movie? Ok, I know you may be a little confused with that question but why not use the movie as a teaching tool to examine what has become acceptable in society, how this acceptance has contributed to some of the relationship woes in our lives and begin a constructive dialogue about fixing the problem.
- Is this a female centered issue? This deals a little with my thought in #1 but it seems that the chief complaint that many people have deals with how the woman is portrayed in the movie yet I haven’t heard as many complaints about the perversions within men with money and power.
- Does this movie appeal to some of our innermost desires? I have not read the books but it seems that the fantasy contained within the narrative may be something that many fantasize about – men having the money and power to seduce a woman thereby gaining complete control over her, women having a man with the money and power to persuade her to step outside of her comfort zone and try things that she never imagined. Has the movie/book gained so much popularity because of this appeal? Are critics mad because they refuse to acknowledge how this movie brings out desires they would prefer to suppress.
- Is it wrong to fantasize as long as we maintain perspective with reality? There is quite a bit of debate regarding some of the shows on television and whether Christians should watch them because they are not constructive in our Christian thinking and living. However, some question why they can’t just be entertained for a few hours of their day without the heaviness of judgement. Although many adults may fantasize about the lives they see on television and movie screens, most are mature enough to realize that they can’t carry those behaviors into their every day lives. So they question the harm in a mental escape for a few hours per day.
I don’t think that there will ever be a concise answer from all the Christians in the world but I would love to hear your thoughts in the comments below. I am sure you can tell that I am not opposed to those who want to see the movie seeing it. I know that I probably won’t go but I am in no position to judge the decisions of others. That may be their sin but sin is sin and I have my own sins to atone for without the luxury of judging the severity or even existence of sin in the next person.