Perhaps I shouldn’t write about the now-concluded TV series, “The Sopranos.” I never watched an episode; I don’t have HBO on my cable lineup and don’t plan to add it. But when the series’ final episode this past week drew so much hoopla, it moved me to contemplate what its popularity might mean.
For those few who might not know, “The Sopranos” was not about singers in a choral group. Tony Soprano, the lead character, was a man who seemed to be an average guy, but was actually a Mafia boss. From what I’ve read, the show was filled with graphic sex and violence. The story line must have been well written, for viewers seemed to be addicted to each episode.
At the risk of revealing my age, I can’t help but compare popular TV series today with those of the past. “The Sopranos” is a long way from “The Andy Griffith Show”! What has happened to our society to bring about such a change? Is it a good change? Should we be concerned?
According to Jesus, we should be very concerned. His words in Matthew 6:22,23 pertain to this issue: “The lamp of the body is the eye. If therefore your eye is good, your whole body will be full of light. But if your eye is bad, your whole body will be full of darkness. If therefore the light that is in you is darkness, how great is that darkness!” (NKJV)
I don’t follow entertainment news, but talk about “The Sopranos” has been everywhere. From the front pages of Internet news sites to those who normally focus on sports, many were speculating, then evaluating, about the end of the series. Doesn’t this show that our nation’s “eye” has been focused on that which is dark?
And how many viewers were Christians? There’s likely no way to know, but it concerns me that any Christian would feel viewing such content would not affect them. According to God’s word, there is a link between that which we watch and the condition of our inner person.
David learned that viewing the wrong thing can lead to terrible consequences. Maybe that’s why he wrote this in Psalm 101:3: “I will set nothing unclean before my eyes; I hate the work of those who fall away; it shall not cling to me.” How could David be so sure that bad thoughts wouldn’t cling to him? By not viewing it in the first place. Wouldn’t it work that way today?
It is none other than Satan who has pulled us away from spending time in God’s word. Paul, in Philippians 4:8, tells us to “think on these things.” And the “things” to which he refers are not what are normally found on prime time television.
Christian, the direction in which television is headed is all too obvious. How much longer will we walk with such a worldly companion?
Do our favorite TV programs reveal our values?