Halftime and holiness

While the Super Bowl is a recent memory, let me comment on several subjects.

The first is that it seems like it was a very exciting football game. I like American football but live in Spain where “futbol” means soccer. I didn’t see the game except for a few highlight touchdowns on the news the day after. I’m sorry I missed the football.

Second, it seems like the halftime entertainment either was the “best in years” or “terrible,” depending on people’s opinions. I didn’t see it, but apparently, it included some kind of a striptease. I saw a few seconds of women gyrating on the stage in a news clip. Frankly, that felt demeaning, and I switched channels.

There seems to be an appetite for this kind of lewd entertainment, especially at the Super Bowl. Many years ago, Michael Jackson was the halftime act. (Again, I live in Spain and had never seen Michael Jackson do anything, so I watched.) I thought it was pretty cool that when everyone expected him to be on stage, he appeared way up in the stands. But, after about one minute of his dirty dance moves, I was moved to turn off the TV in disgust. Since that year, there has been a “wardrobe malfunction.” Not too long ago, the featured songs included cop-killing lyrics, performed by a star in skimpy clothing.

Is there a demand for this sick and bawdy brand of entertainment? You betcha.

Franklin Graham came out with a statement about Sunday’s performance. He said the halftime show sent the message “that sexual exploitation of women is okay.” He added that “millions of children (were) watching. This exhibition was Pepsi showing young girls that sexual exploitation of women is okay. With the exploitation of women on the rise worldwide, instead of lowering the standard, we as a society should be raising it. I’m disappointed in Pepsi and the NFL.”

I understand that the actors were paid huge amounts of money to put on a show. They probably do similar—but less spectacular—things when they normally perform. I wouldn’t know.

It’s time for the Christian community to draw a few clear lines. They should not merely be, “Oh my! Can you believe what we just saw?” while still watching.

The Christian community (as well as society at large) needs a heart change.

When I was a child, we sang, “Be careful, little eyes what you see.” Never was that more needed than now.

The Psalmist said, I will set no wicked thing before mine eyes: I hate the work of them that turn aside; it shall not cleave to me (Psalm 101:3).

Job proclaimed, I made a covenant with mine eyes; why then should I think upon a maid? (Job 31:1)

Jesus said, Blessed are the pure in heart: for they shall see God (Matthew 5:8).

Paul admonished Christians: Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things (Philippians 4:8).

My purpose is not to rail against a performance that I didn’t watch. It is, rather, to encourage my fellow Christian women to be pure in what we allow ourselves—and our children—to view.

How can you set your own entertainment standards?

Ask yourself these questions:

  1. Is it pure?
  2. Does it promote pure thoughts and emotions?
  3. Is there good moral tone?
  4. Will I be more Christlike after viewing this?

Having therefore these promises, dearly beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God (2 Corinthians 7:1).

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