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24, Lesbians, and Brokeback Mountain

By heath - Posted on 17 May 2006

My dad has recently gotten us hooked on 24. Tonight we are taking a break, but we have watched probably 8 episodes in the last three days. That is a lot for a family that basically doesn't watch TV. In fact, we started watching with the first episode, and I have never even seen an advertisement before that. We are a little behind sometimes. However, there is a benefit. You only end up watching, reading, listening to the best.

One thing that amazes me about today's TV (Ok, we do watch a little) is how complex it is and how expensive it must be to make. I bet some TV episodes cost more to make than most movies 20 years ago. 24 even goes beyond CSI in the variety of camera angles and video editing and processing. In addition, the writing is much better than old series that I watch as a kid like, Hunter or The Fall Guy.

Another way many TV shows are like movies is the way they push the envelope morally. In the first couple of episodes of 24 you see two teenagers having sex (no skin, but you see movement), and you see two lesbians kissing. The latter is especially shocking to me in light of the recent controversy over Brokeback Mountain and the scenes therein. Now, I haven't seen the movie. This is mostly because we watch 95% of our movies on DVD and it only recent was released on DVD. It has been highly recommended by friends and I am curious to evaluate it for myself. I suppose the fact that the love scenes in BBM are between to men make them more shocking, but a TV show with women making out and unmarried teenagers having sex really is no better.

In some sense, I wish the church would shut up for a while with its criticism of worldliness in the world. Part of me feels like we've said enough for a while. I think we'd do better to listen for a while. Reflect on what we hear. Look to the Gospel to see how it answers the questions asked by the world and then present an all-encompassing answer that doesn't sound like a lecture. Why is it that "preaching" has such a negative connotation? If someone says they are "preaching" it is almost universally in the context of them needing to shut up. I don't think Jesus preached.

We should stop being so offensive so that the cross can be an offense. So often we offend because we don't listen or don't really care. When we do, people don't even hear the gospel--there is nothing you can do to commend yourself to God, but God has commended you to himself in Christ. Instead people here, "I am better than you." We offend with statements and attitudes that contrary to the gospel. We would do well to preach the Gospel to ourselves and let the offense soak in and disrupt the sin buried in our own hearts.

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