I have been a gamer since I was a child. As I have grown up, I have played every genre and rating, and have found that as a believer in Christ there are games that I choose not to play.
Does God approve?
Again, I chose not to support certain games, led by Holy Spirit in my choices. There are times where the game is a mature rating because of language or violence, but its part of the story, not explicit (like in a war movie for example, you expect blood, violence and death because that is war). As an adult, you need to make the right choices before you purchase, or if you’re a parent you need to choose wisely for your kids. If your young, be careful with what you watch and play because it will influence you, so give God glory in how you game.
I am not suggesting to get religious or legalistic when you buy a game, but if you are a Christian you want to worship God in all you do (1 Corinthians 10:31) so pick the games that you enjoy but won’t fill your mind with foul language, lust, violence and the demonic.
Lets go over some examples of two games that are very popular, are in the same genre but one is safe for Christians and the other would not be the best choice for a Christian (that’s my opinion, click “comment” to debate below).
A Tale Of Two Games
Here we have Mario Kart and Twisted Metal. Both are games that have to do with racing or cars, (I have played both) yet one is about winning a race and the other is about getting the devil to grant you a wish. Think I am kidding?
Another is the popular fps (first person shooter) genre. There’s Destiny which is a game about light versus darkness and saving the galaxy (only played the beta as of this writing), and then we have games like Left 4 Dead 2, Bulletstorm, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2, and more. These games use weapons but Destiny uses the light versus dark concept, while the others are full of violence and blood. This excessive amount of gore and bloodshed isn’t needed to support the graphics or gameplay, it’s just not necessary. Like I stated above, if it’s a game that can show it tastefully then I have no issue with it as long as you are at the right age and maturity (see game ratings).
What Video Games Should Christians Play?
I will list some practical tips you can use to find out if the game you want to play is safe as a Christian or just for children. This is useful for any gamer, believer in Christ or not.
- Check the ESRB rating. It tells you what’s in the game in regards to explicit content. Some games can be as explicit as pornography, so don’t let the cover fool you. If your old enough to play the higher rated games, then be sure your being guided by Holy Spirit when you play. If you feel uncomfortable in your spirit, then just stop playing and get a refund (I’ve done this with movies that I “thought” were ok, but after watching them decided they weren’t for me).
- Flip to the back of the games case and read what it’s about. The ESRB won’t talk about spiritual content, so a teen game could be filled with demonic game play, so make sure your comfortable with it.
- Go on YouTube, type the game title + trailer or + game play. You can watch the game instantly and see how it really is, compared to just looking at a rating.
- Download a demo of it on the PlayStation, Xbox or Wii networks and try it free! This has helped me many times discover some great gems that don’t affect my spiritual life negatively (again, if you are sensitive to this which most Christians should be not out of legalistic reasons but out of their honor to God).
I’m not bashing games in general here, but use this as a guide to purchasing games as believers in Christ. The game can be amazing, but could be one that will poison your mind with negative thoughts and actions.
Did these tips help you? How do you find games that you feel please God? Should Christians play explicit games, or avoid them completely? Let me know, I would like to discuss this with you! God bless.