John Piper has an interesting take on consumption of culture – particularly trivial culture – similar to Philip Jensen’s thoughts that I posted a while back, and quite different to Mark Driscoll’s. Mark Driscoll should get a comission from Tivo he talks about it so much… Piper says he doesn’t watch TV because it’s trivial – but if he does he takes the following position…
I have a high tolerance for violence, high tolerance for bad language, and zero tolerance for nudity. There is a reason for these differences. The violence is make-believe. They don’t really mean those bad words. But that lady is really naked, and I am really watching. And somewhere she has a brokenhearted father.
I’ll put it bluntly. The only nude female body a guy should ever lay his eyes on is his wife’s. The few exceptions include doctors, morticians, and fathers changing diapers. “I have made a covenant with my eyes; how then could I gaze at a virgin?” (Job 31:1). What the eyes see really matters. “Everyone who looks at a woman to desire her has already committed adultery with her in his heart” (Matthew 5:28). Better to gouge your eye than go to hell (verse 29).
This is one of those points where I come down on the Driscoll side of the equation – I think understanding culture involves understanding what people are filling their minds with. But I tend to feel the same way as Piper. Violence and swearing don’t really bother my Christian sensibilities.