Should Christians Watch Game of Thrones?

Game of ThronesGame of Thrones is one of the biggest shows on TV. The epic medieval fantasy show has everyone talking. It’s popular and engaging, with story lines that have people flooding social media with their love of the show.

But is it an appropriate show for Christians to be watching?

First up, it’s worth noting that here in Australia, Game of Thrones is an R-rated show. That means that the Australian ratings board have deemed it inappropriate for anyone under 18 years of age. And I don’t think anyone would be arguing that this is a show suitable for children. However, because of the content of the show, I think Christian adults should be thinking much harder about whether the show is appropriate to watch at all.

The main reason I say this is because of the high level of sex and nudity present in the show. Patricia Weerakoon, sex educator, researcher and therapist, has go on record to say that Game of Thrones should be considered pornography. And if anyone is qualified to say that, it’s her.

Here’s what she had to say:

To all you lovely people: I would class GOT (Game of Thrones) as pornography. Huffington post has 16 minutes of collected sex scenes from (I think series 1&2) It has full frontal nudity, gang rape, incest, lesbian sex, voyeurism & BDSM.
Think – just for a moment – is this the sort of gratuitous sexual activity you want your children to get their sex education from?
Of course we all make choices what we feed our brain and wire into our sexual desire pathways. And what we expose our children’s developing brains to.
I will continue to speak to Philippians 4:8 as a basis for what we should be feeding our brains and those of our children.
You are welcome to choose.

From the few episodes of Game of Thrones I’ve seen (the first two episodes of season one), I’d have to agree with her. In fact that’s the main reason why I stopped there and have not watched the rest of the show. In those two episodes there was more than enough sex nudity to make me say enough was enough. But that makes me wonder – why aren’t I hearing of more Christians saying that they have taken a similar stand? Every time I hear of my Christians friends watching this show, I wonder how they are not disturbed by this issue. Paul calls us to “Flee sexual immorality” (1 Corinthians 6:18) but I don’t see a lot of fleeing. I hear Christians justifying their viewing habit, saying “It’s a good story” but I wonder if that’s the equivalent of saying you read Playboy magazine for the articles.

I think Christians need to think a lot harder about watching Game of Thrones. And to be honest, that means I need to think a lot harder about other shows and movies I watch. At what point have I crossed the line into sexual immorality? I’m sure that I’ve crossed it too many times with my viewing habits and just written it off. 1 Corinthians 6 tells me I should be paying a lot more attention.

Last week I recorded a video on this topic. Keen to hear your thoughts. Let’s start the discussion – should a Christians be watching Game of Thrones?

 

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About Joel A Moroney

Associate Minister at St Luke's Anglican Church, Liverpool (in the Sydney Diocese). A very strange man, but he usually has Pez, so that makes it okay.

6 responses to “Should Christians Watch Game of Thrones?”

  1. lpp2000 says :

    I’m in full agreement with you. My wife was only reading the books and was compelled to stop for the same reasons. She said: “It’s every man’s fantasy!’ You have war, dragons, intrigue, and tons of gratuitous sex of EVERY kind. Yes, it is a very compelling story…but it is so sexually rampant you just gotta flee.

  2. Allan Foster says :

    I would have to its it is up to the Christians watching it as it say in the bible can not remember where as I have not read it the new testament for a few mouths if you think its good but cause your brother/sister to sin do not eat it with around them but I have heard used in this way before as it been past around at lot with videogames many GTA as I know some mates of mine who are Christians do not think it a good game to play but other say its ok if you know it will not make you sin then your fine but if it lead you to sin the do watch or play it as most of may game I play are violent killing games what start from M all the way to R18+ but it dose to effect how I see women for sex or make me to go out and kill people or robs shops

  3. Lolly says :

    Better they get it from GoT than from the church.
    You know there’s a reason that 50% of women get off on rape fantasies, right?
    … most of those women are Christian.

    It’s all about the loss of control, and not needing to acknowledge that one actually has sexual desire — allowing oneself to be “swept off one’s feet.”

  4. camgriff says :

    I find it wierd that anyone would even debate it- aren’t we supposed to be filling our heads with pure stuff?
    I wonder what justifications Christians are using to legitimate it? “Because I watch show x and that is not any worse than this show” or perhaps “it is showing some pretty terrible stuff but it is not like I am actually DOING it”. Both justifications are deeply flawed. Other justifications?

  5. Mike Southon says :

    Thanks Joel. Someone needed to say it. Now we need about a thousand more…

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