From health clubs to hair salons, or nail spas to barber shops, everybody is talking about ‘Empire’ and ‘Scandal.’ But is it wrong for Christians to watch, and enjoy, this kind of provocative programming?
I became intrigued by this question after the season finale of ‘Empire’ last Wednesday when EVERYONE I encountered somehow magically inserted something about ‘Empire’ into our conversation. And these weren’t people I knew. I’m talking about random people I just happened to meet out and about in daily life–people of all races, and of all ages. It started Thursday in the gym and carried on through yesterday, where it came full circle to my own family where my mother mentioned a song she loves from ‘Empire’ sung by Jussie Smollett, entitled Champion, which also features British singer and songwriter, Estelle. What’s controversial about Smollett’s character Jamaal Lyon? If you watch the show, then you know that Jamaal is the middle son, who is a talented writer, singer, and producer of music, but who is also gay. His father, king of the ‘Empire’, actor Terrence Howard, AKA Lucious Lyon, finds it difficult–to say the least–to accept his son’s sexuality.
This story line is just one of the many fascinating and intriguing topics that has had me glued to the show since it aired. But I know many people, especially Christians, who find this show sinful and downright blasphemous.
What do you think?
Is it wrong for Christians to watch shows like ‘Empire’ and ‘Scandal’?
Do fictional characters like Olivia Pope and Cookie Lyon glamorize adultery, fornication, and immorality? Has the church become desensitized and consenting to issues like this, or have Shonda Rhimes and Lee Daniels found a creative way to open the door to reach into the hearts and minds of America to help people think critically regarding tough issues?
If you want to know my answer, I say, “Yes, they have.” And to the second question, “No, I don’t think it’s wrong for Christians to watch these shows.” And I have a whole bunch of reasons why I believe this, which I’ll be happy to share with you.
But first, I want to hear from you.
What do you think?
One thing’s for sure: These shows have people hanging on to the words of these characters, in some cases, more than believers are hanging on to the Word itself. Maybe there’s something to be learned from the success of these shows…
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