Well, it's because I planned to when I first heard the movie was being made.
I bought all three books in the trilogy when it was first released and liked it so much that I even wrote about them on this very blog back in 2013. I’d be lying if I said I had no desire to watch it.
I even saw the trailer.
So, do I want to watch the Fifty Shades of Grey Movie that will be out on Valentine’s Day?
Will I watch the Fifty Shades of Grey Movie on Valentine’s Day?
Absolutely not. (I had no business even watching the trailer).
There has been much conversation in the Christian community recently about the movie coming out and whether Christians should or shouldn’t watch it. Some people have taken the stance that it’s “just a movie”, “no big deal”, and people should stop being so bloody “dramatic”. Some people have gone in the opposite direction and declared that anyone who watches the Fifty Shades of Grey Movie is a “heathen going straight to hell”.
I’m going to tell you my thoughts from my perspective – as a young woman with the desire to be a faithful CHRISTIAN in love and obedience to God’s Will.
The truth is that from an early age, I’ve always been attracted to romance/erotica stories. I mean I was reading Mills & Boon/Temptations books as a kid (which can easily be considered soft-core porn novels). Some of my favorite films growing up had extensive sex scenes – Fatal Attraction, Daniel Steel’s “Jewels”, Revenge, Basic Instinct, and more. I got exposed to porn at a young age and liked it. Some of my first short stories and screenplays were erotica stories for Pete’s sake! So, as you can see, a gal like me would naturally be 100% in support of the Fifty Shades Movie and would probably arrive at the theater 30 minutes in advance to get “good seating”.
The difference between yesterday and today in my life is that I had an EXPERIENCE in-between. I “experienced God”. I’ve talked a little bit about my bout with depression in 2012 and how I hit rock bottom in every area – my faith, finances, employment, relationships, etc. Well, in that “dance with darkness”, I found someone I wasn’t looking for – God. On one of the days when I was in a particularly heart-wrenching sea of sadness, I got a clear message from God that hit me in my spirit in a way like never before in my life: “You have no idea who you are. I’ve got you and I created you on purpose for a purpose.”
I wasn’t expecting that. Especially since I’m one of the worst sinners I know. I wasn’t prepared for such an earth-shattering message. I was filled with what can only be described as “…the peace that surpasses all understanding”.
And so, I got excited.
I wanted more of that peace. I wanted to get more loud messages like that from God. I decided to open up the Bible my aunt gave me as a gift years before, that I barely got any use out of, and started seeking HIS truth. And as I began to understand His ways, something scary began to happen – I started getting convicted by the Holy Spirit. (Not all at once but over a continued period of time; I am still getting convicted about things today.)
It’s like blinders were lifted from my eyes and I saw how ungodly and wicked many things in my life, and the lives of others, were. I started to see why certain things were considered sinful and how God viewed certain acts.
It was agony!
Things I previously said and did with happy ease were now so clear to me as hurtful and insulting to God. And I was no longer comfortable or happy hurting God like I was before when He wasn't on my mind.
One of the things that hurts and insults God is the blatant disregard for our bodies as the temples of His Holy Spirit through sexual immorality. Don’t take my word for it, here’s what the apostle Paul says in 1 Corinthians 6:18-20,
“Flee from sexual immorality. All other sins a person commits are outside the body, but whoever sins sexually, sins against their own body. Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your bodies.”
One could say that there’s no big deal in watching Fifty Shades of Grey - “it’s just a movie, jeez!”
It’s just entertainment.
The idea that anything can just be “entertainment” is an illusion, loves. Everything in life has purpose. Everything in life has impact. Whether we try to classify it as education or “entertainment” – it’s all EDIFICATION. Knowing this, I’m learning that I have to be careful what I allow in, through my eyes & ears, into my mind and heart.
And truth be told, I really can’t afford to let the Fifty Shades of Grey movie in.
No, I don’t have anything against sex. Like I mentioned in one of my previous posts, What’s the Deal with Sex and Christian Women?, sex is a GOOD thing. It was created by our GOOD God for a GOOD purpose with GOOD boundaries and GOOD enjoyment as a result. But, like I also mentioned in that post, for every beautiful gift that God created holy, there is a perverted and unholy version that exists. Look around you – there are MANY perverted and unholy versions of sex.
What constitutes a perverted and unholy version of sex?
Any version that is outside of God’s original intent for sex; sex outside of marriage, gay and lesbian sex, sex with oneself (a.k.a masturbation), sex with a married person, sex with animals, adults having sex with children, sex with dead bodies, etc.
All of which are much more prevalent than you probably imagine.
And why wouldn’t they be?
Our media and the porn industry do a terrific job of selling sex as something it was never meant to be – a god. “Everything” is about sex. Sex has been plastered over the films being churned out in the movie industry. Sex is the staple of most of our TV shows. Sex is all over our music. You don’t need me to tell you that the porn industry is beyond “booming” – it is a multi-billion dollar industry (no surprise there; I personally know how addictive it is). The porn industry is one of the most lucrative industries in the world, alongside human trafficking and prostitution – which happen to revolve around, you guessed it, the idolization of S-E-X.
As someone who believes sex is an important facet of life and must be discussed and taught by our pastors and caregivers in our homes, churches, youth ministries, and community outreach programs, I also believe that while the beauty of sex must be explained, the destruction that comes from idolizing and worshipping sex must be explained too.
It is NOT a god.
And movies like Fifty Shades of Grey (books too) portray sex as a g-o-d.
We’re so easily deceived in this world; Fifty Shades of Grey isn’t a “love story” like it’s being sold to the masses (the fact that it’s coming out on Valentine's Day is hilarious). Fifty Shades of Grey is a story about the perversion of sex through the glorification of asphyxiation, bondage, and torture with 100% disregard for God and His Will for sex.
And you probably can’t afford to watch it either.
You might say watching the movie is not a sin but whether we agree on that or not, we must remember that as Christians we are called to not only avoid sin but to also avoid occasions that lead to sin. Mat 26:41 says,
"Watch and pray so that you will not fall into temptation. The spirit is willing, but the body is weak."
No, it's not more rules to make your life less "fun" but godly boundaries to give you more joyful freedom and keep you from becoming a slave to sin. Watching this movie will probably inspire you to go ahead and call that random bloke you broke it off with months ago (since you had such a passion to honor God and your future spouse with your body) because you’re feeling lonely and you’ll end up having sex with him – sex outside of marriage a.k.a “sin”. Watching this movie will probably leave you “hot and bothered” and you’ll most likely end up masturbating that night – sex with yourself a.k.a “sin”. Watching this movie will imprint a plethora of sexual fantasies in your mind and you’ll probably go throughout the next weeks and months replaying the sexual imagery from the movie and it will probably consume your thoughts day in and day out (even in church) – the idolization and worship of sex a.k.a “sin”. The list of possibilities goes on.
I expect an unbeliever to easily watch this movie because they do not believe/respect God and have no desire to live in honor of the Will of God. This post isn’t for unbelievers and throws no attack their way – they honor their “lack of faith” quite well.
This post is for those of us that say we are “believers” and “Christians” yet find it easy to join along in the things that unbelievers say, watch, listen to, and do because it’s popular or we’re feeling horny or we want to belong.
Our allegiance to the way of the world and apathy towards our relationship with Christ is “scary”. How can we say we love and know God yet continue to do all the things in the world that look nothing like Him or His Will?
So, if you’re a Christian man or woman that has been on the fence about this movie; if you’re single and itching to watch it to get your hormones riled up and ready for post-movie masturbation night runs; if you’re a sexually frustrated married woman ready to watch this film to get all “hot and bothered” and indulge in a fantasy about someone other than your husband; if you don’t think it’s a big deal and want to watch it with your boyfriend for “kicks” and to get tips for your Valentine’s night sleepover session – I UNDERSTAND.
I really do.
I get it. The movie is tempting and will probably make you feel super “happy”.
And like I’ve said before, I can’t force you to do or not do anything; however, I would be remiss not to tell you that the fleeting satisfaction you (or I) will get from a movie like this is incomparable to the sweet joy and fullness you (or I) are capable of getting from Christ if you (or I) choose Him over your (or my) fleshy desires. I would also be remiss not to tell you that as Christians we cannot happily endorse the standards of the society we live in because they are rarely the same as God’s standards, they have negative repercussions that bring about calamity in our lives (have you heard of how porn addiction is destroying marriages? That's just one example), and when it comes to the Fifty Shades of Grey movie, I know it will do me more harm than help on my faith walk.
I believe it will have the same effect on you too.
And if you struggle (or have struggled) with masturbation, porn addiction, and/or sex addiction – this will definitely be one nail hammered into the coffin for you.
Like I said, I can't force you to do anything - I simply want to offer my position on the movie in hopes that it's of benefit to you. And so, I leave you with the words of the apostle Paul that convey my sentiments best (Romans 12:2):
“Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern the Will of God.”
And as Jesus Himself says over and over in scripture, “Whoever has ears ought to hear”.
So, as someone who wants to truly love and honor the beautiful and holy version of sex that God created, when it comes to the Fifty Shades of Grey movie I am choosing to be someone who has ears that hears.