Finally! Some quality content with some actual depth! (I told you it would pass.)
A discontinuity of thought that has been niggling at the back of my brain for the past couple of weeks finally came to the forefront of my mind tonight as I was driving home from school. It has to do with the now infamous Janet Jackson incident and the outrage that followed. The outcry of condemnation that I heard on every front was one of shock, embarrasment, and even disgust that such a thing could happen during family programming. What I wonder, however, is why anyone was even surprised. To be honest, immoral acts run rampant in our culture today, in everything from music to art to television and on and on and on. So, I wonder, when we fail to deal with the existence of immorality everywhere else, why we are surprised when it spills over into family time, into that “safe” zone. I wonder why we condemn one ‘minor’ act of immorality while overlooking more blatant displays of the same. I wonder why we are surprised, let alone shocked and outraged, when the snake on the path that we have been ignoring suddenly strikes out and bites us on the foot.
Tsk, tsk, people. You can do better than that……
This whole business with Janet Jackson and Justin Timberlake’s performance at the Super Bowl this past weekend has sparked huge controversy internationally (even the British are marking remarks). Did they violate obscenity laws? Is TV becoming too lewd and crude? What is it really that big of a deal?
The whole problem with this discussion is that one side of the argument insists that morals are a human construct, and that, subsequently, morals change, even ‘evolve’. On the other side of the argument is that side that declares that morals are constant, that they haven’t changed since the Ten Commandments were handed down (to use the words of the notable Rush Limbaugh). As Christians, we stand on the moral absolute side, yet sometimes I wonder if we don’t forget that we are often talking to people who don’t believe in moral absolutes. We know right from wrong because it is clearly spelled out for us in the Bible, and we need to remember that we are talking with people who, just because they weren’t offended by the display (and by continuing downward spiral of morality on TV), don’t believe it to be morally objectionable.
In the long run, the goal is the same as it always has been. Win souls to Christ. Encourage the saints. We aren’t going to change people’s minds about morals without first introducing them to the One who established morals in the first place.