This post last updated on September 14th, 2022
When I was a kid, we had horror movies, of course. There’s Freddy, Jason, Chuckie, and don’t forget Poltergeist. Not wholesome by any stretch of the imagination, but surprisingly tame by today’s standards of what “horror entertainment” looks like.
Desensitized to evil
And yet, there are enough examples of horror movies from my day that could be categorized as outright frightening and evil. Still, not many could match today’s blatantly demonic media. Even The Exorcist, as terrifying as it was, had a subject and a plot that told an actual story. It wouldn’t surprise me if it were labeled as merely suspense or drama by today’s standards.
In fact, what you can watch on network television today is more graphically evil than many of the horror movies from not long ago. Not to mention the blatantly evil celebration that we call Halloween, further enhanced by the entertainment industry.
Would you agree that we have been desensitized to graphic displays of violence and evil?
It’s like the line that represents shock factor is constantly being crossed and re-drawn. The entertainment industry, and horror movies in particular, seem to be an effective way to cross that line.
You don’t have to go far to find that shock factor, either. I’m amazed at the visual trauma presented just on the television commercials for some movies!
This week alone, I’ve seen 3 ads that are, in my opinion, the definition of what I’m going to call spiritually dangerous media.
Not so imaginary friends
One advertised television show has children communicating with “imaginary friends” who turn out to be not so imaginary. These “friends” turn out to be a manipulative enemy whose goal is to destroy humanity. A suspenseful story and probably very entertaining to some people, but spiritually dangerous nonetheless.
What’s more, this story line is not so far off from the reality of the supernatural world around us.
The Bible calls this divination and God forbids His people from messing with it in any way. In Deuteronomy 18:9-14, God sternly warns Israel against falling in step with those who practice these things.
When you come into the land that the Lord your God is giving you, you shall not learn to follow the abominable practices of those nations.Deuteronomy 18:9
In Acts 16:16, Luke writes that he, Silas, and Paul encountered a slave girl who had a spirit of divination. She used fortune telling to make money for her masters, but this spirit recognized Paul and his group as followers of Jesus and harassed them for days. Paul eventually “became grieved” that the evil spirit was controlling the girl.
So he cast it out of her.
Paul, having become greatly annoyed, turned and said to the spirit, “I command you in the name of Jesus Christ to come out of her.”Acts 16:18
Fortune telling, consulting stars, tea leaves, horoscopes, or anything else is spiritually destructive and we have been warned against it.
More than a ghost story
Another movie ad shows the remaking of a high school play that a student died in 20 years earlier. In an attempt to honor that death, present day high school students resurrect more than a badly written play. In this one, the alleged ghost of the dead student returns to go on a horrific murder spree.
Yeah, you’re able to discern that much just from a commercial.
Hey, ghost stories are thrilling, I loved them as a kid. As an adult however, I understand that ghosts, like the one in this movie, are not the wandering souls of the departed. Rather, they’re demonic forces playing the part. It’s not out of the question for a demonic agent to replicate something, or someone from the past.
It’s actually quite a normal practice for demons to do just that.
Spiritual Warfare for Every Christian by Dean Sherman (YWAM) is one of the most instructive, eye-opening, and easy to understand books I’ve ever read on the unseen realm and spiritual warfare. I strongly recommend this book to all Christians. (affiliate link)
The Bible explains that while we are in our earthly bodies we are physically away from the Lord. It’s at death, when we depart from our flesh, that we’re in the presence of God (2 Corinthians 5:7-8). Even more to the point, Hebrews tells us that every person is appointed one death followed by a judgement.
Not a second chance, and certainly not an aimless wandering.
And just as it is appointed for man to die once, and after that comes judgment…Hebrews 9:27
Ghosts and hauntings can make for wildly entertaining stories, no doubt about it. Yet they are most certainly not an accurate representation of our existence following death. Plus, they ultimately lead people to believe in something else other than the reality of an impending appointment with our Creator.
What would bring the demonic enemies of God to more satisfaction than to convince you of false things about death and the afterlife?
Hope beyond the grave
There’s one more television show that triggered my red flag. It’s a series based on a wealthy man who is dying that offers a surgeon a ton of money to explore what comes after death.
This surgeon apparently probes cases of hauntings, near-death experiences, and reincarnation. That, of course, is the Eastern mystical belief that we get do-overs and multiple chances to “get life right” and to ultimately “find God.”
Or perhaps even become one according to some cults.
Unfortunately, the demonic new age belief that this series represents are more common among American Christians than you might think.
Mankind has always searched for some evidence of hope that death is not final. I’m afraid that this show falls entirely short in finding that hope. Sadly, many viewers will be left with less hope and more questions than before.
Jesus taught many times during his earthly ministry about hope beyond death and the grave. You’ll find one of his most direct conversations in John’s Gospel.
In my Father’s house are many rooms. If it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, that where I am you may be also.John 14:2-3
Horror movies are entertaining, so what’s wrong with that?
My aim isn’t to ruin people’s fun and simply bag on horror movies or anyone who watches them. If you like them, that’s your call. I am, however, questioning those who confess Christ as their savior yet find joy and entertainment in a genre of media that is openly demonic.
Especially when God has a commandment against any form of evil.
If you’re a Christian, you have to guard against things that are spiritually dangerous. For the Christian, I’m looking to 1 Thessalonians 5:22 for instruction.
Abstain from every form of evil.1 Thessalonians 5:22
I’m also concerned about the minds and souls of people who don’t know Christ. People are being deceived by an unholy assault of media that, as horrific as it has become, pales in comparison to the actual spirit world that is at war around us, completely unseen.
For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places.Ephesians 6:12
Totally agree!! Thank you for speaking out and calling attention to this.
I have personally been convicted of most tv shows as well
My rule of thumb is if it doesn’t glorify God, should I be watching it?
Gene S. Whitehead
You’re right. Sometimes I’m convicted by your example with music, movies, tv, books…everywhere I turn there’s something I like that isn’t glorifying God.
Thanks for reading and for commenting, I’m glad you like this post!
I whole heartedly agree, when our girls were home as children, we did not let them watch anything like this, We told them plainly this a way of Satanic forces to open portals in the mind to get in and destroy thier souls, even today we do not watch things like that , matter of fact we don’t have cable anymore, nothing on positive, except Christian programming, this needs to be preached more, because like you I see to many people that say the are a child of God watching and letting thier children watch these things and it really bothers my heart, Thank you for the post!
Gene S. Whitehead
You said it, Connie! It is very troubling to the heart to see people fall for any flavor of evil and call it entertaining. I commend you for being open and straight forward with your girls. That leadership parenting in worldly matters is desperately needed. Thank you for reading and for your encouraging words!
You are spot on! The Scripture are specific to each scenario and movie identified. Nothing to question.
Gene S. Whitehead
Hey Tina, agreed…those movies are in direct opposition to what God’s word tells us. And 100% opposition to Scripture can only come from one source! 😉
Don’t forget fortune cookies. ?
Gene S. Whitehead
😀 😀 😀