Piety vs. Legalisim … where’s the line?

My life has come under new scrutiny, from myself.  From what seems to be out of the blue, I’ve been questioning if I should be doing certain things. One of these has involved two TV programs I enjoy watching. To say these two programs glorify sin would be an under statement. Should I be watching such programs? Is it sinful? I know I can’t speak for everyone, but I’ve come to the conclusion that for me it definitely is. I cannot reconcile watching them with verses like Philippians 4:8 :

Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.

Nor can I reconcile it with the catechism question: 
Question: What is the chief end of man?

Answer: Man’s chief end is to glorify God and enjoy Him forever.

Watching a show that glorifies sin cannot glorify God, can it? As I ponder these things I worry about becoming legalistic. It can be a very hard balance to find, and one I struggle with quite a lot. 

 For my November thankfulness … I’m thankful for my darling daughters. Considering the lack of stability they’ve had during their short lives thus far, and all that we’ve been through, they are truly amazing girls. They never fail to amaze me with their unconditional love for me, their humble hearts, and desire for truth. I feel so blessed to be their mother!

Be Blessed,


7 thoughts on “Piety vs. Legalisim … where’s the line?

  1. Dear Hollie, Legalism will mean judging others severely for watching such and such TV show. J.C. Ryle said once, "we can never be too holy", so not watching a TV show might be part of our sanctification, part of becoming more holy like He is. Raising my voice with you today in praise!

  2. We went through the TV thing here a couple of years ago…I'm glad we gave them (the shows we liked) up and it has freed us up to concentrate more on Him, which has been such a blessing:)

  3. I've been so comforted by my own daughter. I agree with you, Hollie. It is a blessing to be a mom.BTW, we stopped watching TV ages ago. Mainly because we were occupied with other pursuits.

  4. I struggled with this for a long time over, "The Office." I stopped watching it for about six months because I, "felt," I needed to (weird that you should post your entry today on gut assumptions) and I didn't know if it was the Holy Spirit convicting me of it, or if it was over my own conscious. I decided to be safe & just not watch it.In those six months, I talked with Kortney over movies & we agreed that we're going to SEE and HEAR sin in our every day lives, but taking glory for ourselves in it is what was sin. For instance, I can watch a show like Criminal Minds because it doesn't make me want to go out & kill anyone. I can watch a show with cussing in it, because it doesn't make me want to cuss my parents out. Does that make sense?And while there should be restaints…I don't watch movies with sexual situations, because that WILL make me want to go out & have sex. I don't like repeated use of the, "F" word, and I won't tolerate taking the Lord's name in vain. (GD) In the end, I prayed about it & I can watch, "The Office," with no problem, now.

  5. I agree with you,Hollie. I don't think it's legalistic at all. How can it be? It doesn't mean you will go to hell for watching such shows,but why contaminate your mind with the junk? That's my arguement. Too many people justify watching it for their own lusts and desires. I stopped watching stuff that did not glorify God years ago. Including music,books,or magazines. That does mean we do not hardly watch any t.v. shows or movies. Oh I'm so deprived! 😉 Not really. I'm just trying to please my Lord and be a light to others. I commend you on obeying the Lord.

  6. My goal is to learn from the Psalmist's mistakes and put no worthless thing before my eyes (Psalm 101:3 and Psalm 119:37). I think you're right on with meditating on Philippians 4:8. I also think that the commenter that spoke of not judging others is on the right track. I would add that legalism has to do more with our heart than our actions. My understanding is that legalism has more to do with where we are placing our hope and trust for salvation (in ourselves and our actions).

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