There’s an old song who’s chorus reads, “Sign, Sign, everywhere a sign, locking out the scenery breaking my mind. Do this, don’t do that, can’t you read the sign?” Sometimes it feels that way, especially when you look at the medians of our roads. Everybody wants your attention. There’s a sign telling you about “This neighborhood from the low 200’s.” Or there’s always the “Yard Sale” sign that is three weeks old. There’s a guy who sells firewood at the entrance to our neighborhood and he’s got signs everywhere. We’ve got signs that rotate, signs that flash, signs that capture our attention and signs that irritate us. Inasmuch as we are barraged with information on signs, there is a much more intrusive part of our culture giving us much more than information.
AC Nielson reports that the average American watches 4 hours of television each day. In a 65-year life, that equals 9 full years in front of the television. It is also reported that 66% of households watch television during dinner. By the time an average child finishes elementary school, they have seen 8,000 murders on television. By age 18, that same child will have witnessed 200,000 acts of violence on television. A study released by the Kaiser Family Foundation found that the number of sexual acts on television has doubled since 1998 and that nearly 70% of all television shows have some level of sexual content. And it is this form of media that we spend hours in front of each day?
Have you ever wondered what the spiritual consequences are from all of this? What is the toll that it is taking on our families, our marriages, our children? Is it possible that we have desensitized ourselves to the real danger that is posed by filling our minds with this form of media?
When David saw Bathsheba bathing on the roof, he immediately called for her to come to the palace. By doing so, he set into motion a series of sinful events that would ultimately result in the undoing of his family. Unfortunately, this is not what we see on television. We never see the destruction of families or the ruined lives that are the result of intimacy outside of the biblical framework of marriage. We never see the disease and the damage, only the fun and fascination. What our culture has deemed to be entertaining, God has deemed to be an abomination.
David’s sin with Bathsheba is a stark reminder that sinful choices have very real consequences that are overwhelmingly unavoidable. David would go from a man with wondering eyes, to a murderer in a very short amount of time – all because he took a second look at the beautiful woman on the roof. Unfortunately, this sight would be rather benign on television nowadays. Truthfully, what David did on the roof that night is really no different from the things that are piped into our homes every night that we turn on primetime television, whether we are watching the frolicking doctors of Grey’s Anatomy or the Desperate Housewives of Wisteria Lane.
As Christians, we must guard our hearts against the deception portrayed in our culture. Sinful behavior has consequences and we must not forget that. Men especially must guard themselves against the second look. With the first look comes temptation, with the second look comes lust, and at that point we have begun to tread down the same loathsome pathway that David started on the roof that evening.
Guard your Hearts,