When the 2018 fall TV season began, I was excited about some of the new shows. One show, “God Friended Me” in particular caught my attention. There are two main story lines on the show. #1) The main character Miles (played by Brandon Micheal Hall), is an atheist who has a podcast where he promotes atheism. His father Arthur (played by Joe Morton), is a Reverend. The two opposite world views will obviously put tension between the characters. Ali (played by Javicia Leslie), is the sister of the main character Miles. She seems to have it as her mission in life to mend the broken relationship between her brother and her father. All of the characters on the show are loveable, and there is great chemistry between them.
#2) On the first episode, Miles gets a facebook friend request from God. Of course, since he is an atheist, he doesn’t actually believe that the request came from God. So he sets out to investigate who is actually behind this. But every time he investigates, he comes along someone who needs help. And he helps him/her. There seems to be some “higher power” behind this, but Miles doesn’t ever seem to get this.
When I saw episode one, I was impressed. I am an evangelical pastor. I certainly won’t get my theology from a show like this. But in general, I found it positive and uplifting.
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Then came episode three. Out of the blue in the opening scene, it is revealed that Miles’s sister Ali is a lesbian. And although the scene was certainly not graphic, it wasn’t subtle either. I turned off the show immediately and will not be watching it any more.
I have been asking myself, “Why have you stopped watching this show when you continue to watch some shows where the main characters are, at times, immoral (i.e. having sex while not being married)?” From a biblical perspective, is fornication (sex before marriage) any less evil than homosexuality? The answer to that question is “NO.” Sin is sin. So I’ll answer my own question in a couple of ways:
First, if I concede that my TV preferences are inconsistent, from a Christian perspective, I can best solve that by turning off ALL TV shows that display immorality. I think it ridiculous to say that in order for me to be consistent, I need to watch ALL forms of immorality.
Secondly, there are only a few ways this particular story line can play out.
- Ali’s father can eventually accept her for “who she is” and will cease to say anything negative about her lifestyle. If this scenario were to happen, he will be portrayed as a character who has grown. And homosexuality will be shown as an acceptable (even moral) lifestyle.
- Ali’s father NEVER accepts her lifestyle. If this scenario were to happen, he will be depicted as a closed-minded bigot.
- Ali eventually repents of her sin of lesbianism. DOES ANYONE EVEN SEE THIS SCENARIO AS A POSSIBILITY???
As I watched the beginning of episode three it no longer felt like I was being entertained. It felt like someone was trying to indoctrinate me to accept as moral a lifestyle that the scriptures condemn. So I turned the channel. “God Friended Me” has been officially unfriended in our house!