Fantasy media – TV shows, Netflix series, and movies which dabble with the dark side of things – are raging in popularity these days, even amongst the Christian sector.
How should a Christian handle this type of entertainment? What is ok to watch or read and what isn’t? What should we do if we are facing conviction for watching or reading something that is more on the dark end of the spectrum? Is all fantasy bad? That is what we will be answering today!
4 Things to Consider About Fantasy Media
- “When in doubt, don’t” can be a good rule of thumb.
While you know how we feel about giving you a specific list of rules and regulations for anything (here at PI, we believe that walking by the Spirit rather than a legalistic man-made list of rules is so important!), there are some questions you can ask yourself as you are considering whether or not to partake in the darker forms of fantasy media.
For example, will the entertainment in question point you to Christ? Does it honor Him? Will it cause you to desire to be more like Christ or tempt you to be more like the enemy?
Consider whether or not it stands up to Paul’s litmus test in Philippians 4:8 – “Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—meditate on these things.”
If you’re just not sure, it may be wise to err on the side of caution. Sometimes we can get so focused on the fantasy world that we miss out on the amazing adventure that awaits us in Christ!
- Consider why you are hesitating.
We also have to stop and ponder why we’re hesitating to turn from a particular show, book, or movie if we are feeling the conviction of the Holy Spirit about it. Hesitation only reveals a waning confidence in what God has already spoken to our hearts and leads to our being less sensitive to His promptings in the future.
When God speaks with clarity regarding something we should or should not do, that means it’s time for a sound decision to be made in unwavering faith! If, after going through the questions above, you feel it is time to turn from a certain form of media or to not begin partaking in it in the first place, act decisively and head the Spirit’s leading! This is the safest thing you can do.
- Where is it leading your thought life?
If, after making the decision to abstain, you feel tempted to go ahead and go back to or start watching for the first time a darker movie or show or reading a book you had previously turned away from, start asking yourself a list of questions again that will serve as a reminder for why you stopped in the first place.
What would that series or movie cause you to think about? Would it lead you to love God and love others or to love ways that are contrary to Him? Would it fill your life with light or with darkness? Is it even safe to become involved in?
- There are great Christian alternatives.
If you are someone who loves fantasy novels or movies, the good news is that there are some great fantasy books/movies that are allegorical in nature but also still cause you to ponder the truths of Scripture. Here are some recommendations to get you started:
The truth is, our God is a God of intrigue, mystery, miracles, and creativity. Made in His image, there is nothing inherently wrong with being interested in stories that possess many of those same qualities.
Where the danger can come in, however, is when we meet that hunger for interesting, riveting tales with media choices that are dark, border on the occult, or would subtly and deceitfully lead us towards the lies and temptations of the enemy. This is why I’m thankful we have Christian alternatives when we’re looking to enjoy some fantasy novel or movie. If that describes you, definitely check out something from the list above, and enjoy!