I have written an e-book, Does the Bible Really Say That?, which is free to anyone. To download that book, in several formats, go here.
Creative Commons License
The posts in this blog are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License. In other words, you can copy and use this material, as long as you aren't making money from it, and as long as you give me credit.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Affirmation is important!

Titus 1:15 To the pure, all things are pure; but to those who are defiled and unbelieving, nothing is pure; but both their mind and their conscience are defiled. (WEB)

I found this verse in my daily Bible reading, a few days ago. I think it relates to current popular culture, which often seems to find nothing pure, nothing good, nothing worth emulating.

The biggest problem with many current TV programs, movies, books, radio, and much popular music, is not fornication and adultery, or violence, or misuse of God's name (all of which occur, unfortunately). It is that they don't affirm anything.

For example, I sometimes watch "The Daily Show" and/or "The Colbert Report" on Comedy Central. (The early evening re-runs are before my bedtime!) These programs are funny. They feature good writing, and skilled actors, plus various celebrities, mostly politicians, who are often not so skilled. But there's a big problem. They make fun of things, often things that should have fun poked at them. But they don't generally affirm anything, or anybody. They just tear down.

Another example is the comic strips. Doonesbury and Dilbert are among the most popular of these. Doonesbury often makes fun of current events, up to and including the President. (It has not made much fun of the President now that the office is held by Mr. Obama, much less than it did when George W. Bush was President.) Dilbert makes fun of the pointy-haired boss. Again, they are well written efforts, and usually really funny. But they only tear down. They don't affirm anything.

Many movies -- not all -- and much "reality" TV -- I make no claim to be expert on either of these categories -- seem to be based on watching someone make a fool of him or herself. Reality TV does sometimes reward genuine talent, or achievement, I guess, but not often.

And then there are the TV political ads . . .

There's something wrong with a society where no one is honored, nothing is respected, where virtue is considered to be fake, or unimportant, or both. Either there's something wrong with the institutions that are being mocked, instead of honored, or there's something wrong with the mockers, or both.

The Bible also says: Finally, brothers, whatever things are true, whatever things are honorable, 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 any praise, think about these things. (Philippians 4:8, WEB)

I don't mean to say that some things, maybe even some people, should not be opposed. The Apostle Paul, who wrote both of the scripture sections, was opposed to gossip, for example. But that's not our problem. We oppose too much, and don't affirm enough.

God help us concentrate on the good, the pure, the noble, and to be good, pure and noble.

In a subsequent post, I muse on misplaced affirmation.

No comments: