Question:I read your article on dancing, and I was hopeful that you would have a complete sermon covering this topic. Our class, last night, was on Christian Strategies for Social Life. Yes, pretty much dancing was discouraged. But, and I knew it was coming, football games and cheerleading was not an issue. It was said if I personally have an issue then I should not go, but it does not bother many other Christians. I cannot see how my light would be shining or be set apart from the world if I am watching a football game and the cheerleaders are part of the entertainment. To me, we are condoning by attending. It was also said last night that if I am not part of worldly activities then my light will not be shining and I will become a hermit and never be able to leave my house because sin is everywhere. In addition, the church is always begging for people to visit the sick, etc., but they have no issue with members taking time to enjoy that football game.
I don't know which article on dancing you were looking at. There are a number on La Vista's web site. And there are also several sermons on the topic as well. You might be interested in the article on cheerleading: "That Suddenly Uncomfortable Cheerleading Uniform."
There is nothing directly wrong with watching a game. But there can be side issues that should cause all Christians to stop and think.
The argument that a Christian may attend events that don't personally bother them is a false one. Any person can become numb to the presence of sin. "Were they ashamed when they had committed abomination? No! They were not at all ashamed; Nor did they know how to blush. Therefore they shall fall among those who fall; At the time I punish them, They shall be cast down," says the LORD" (Jeremiah 6:15). Whether I'm bothered by something doesn't make it right -- though it can make it wrong for me on a personal basis. "Do you have faith? Have it to yourself before God. Happy is he who does not condemn himself in what he approves. But he who doubts is condemned if he eats, because he does not eat from faith; for whatever is not from faith is sin" (Romans 14:22-23). Others in your class were avoiding addressing whether what is going on at a football game is right or wrong.
It is true that we can't avoid sin being around us. "I wrote to you in my epistle not to keep company with sexually immoral people. Yet I certainly did not mean with the sexually immoral people of this world, or with the covetous, or extortioners, or idolaters, since then you would need to go out of the world" (I Corinthians 5:9-10). The question isn't whether it happens around us but whether we support it. Those who attend games have to ask themselves if their payment of the tickets is encouraging or discouraging the associated immoral activities that might be taking place. It can be a hard call, but it is something that needs to be addressed. Personally, I find the liquor sales at sporting events just as objectionable as the inadequate dress of some cheerleading squads. I don't like being around those things, so I use my time doing things I do enjoy.
Thank you so much. I found your sermons on dancing and I will listen tonight. The pushback on this I have already received is that, well, then you shouldn’t even buy groceries at the grocery store because they sell alcohol and you cannot purchase gas because they sell beer. What would your response be?
If you have a moment, I need a little clarity on I Corinthians 5:9-10. I assume he means sexually immoral Christians, like my daughter who has left the church, is living in sin, and is pregnant with my grandchild.
When I purchase gasoline at a service station, the funds I give the clerk go toward the gasoline. It does not fund the candy, drinks, and whatever else the service station might supply. Since such business determine what to stock based on what is purchased, my purchases that do not include alcohol are actually encouraging the business to focus on useful and morally correct products. In addition, if I am given a choice between a station that does not sell alcohol and one that does, I will usually give my business to the one that does not, even if it means paying a slightly higher price.
Now, because services stations sell alcohol and cigarettes, I choose not to work in such environments because I don't wish to sell things to people which are harmful to them.
The difference in a ballgame is that my ticket price does "purchase" the entertainment. While it doesn't purchase the alcohol, my attendance there forces me to be where alcohol fumes fill the air and at times deal with drunken people. Neither happens at a grocery store or a service station.
"I wrote to you in my epistle not to keep company with sexually immoral people. Yet I certainly did not mean with the sexually immoral people of this world, or with the covetous, or extortioners, or idolaters, since then you would need to go out of the world. But now I have written to you not to keep company with anyone named a brother, who is sexually immoral, or covetous, or an idolater, or a reviler, or a drunkard, or an extortioner -- not even to eat with such a person. For what have I to do with judging those also who are outside? Do you not judge those who are inside? But those who are outside God judges. Therefore "put away from yourselves the evil person"" (1 Corinthians 5:9-13).
There are two sets of rules being given. One covers those who have yet to become a Christian (I Corinthians 5:9-10), and the second covers those who had become a Christian but have returned to the world (I Corinthians 5:11). Your daughter falls under the second set of rules. The reason for the different treatment is that those who never became a Christian don't know any better. Those who had become Christians know what they ought to do but are choosing actions that are sinful.