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Christians, Corrie and Culture


Christians, Corrie, and Culture

Soap operas – their popularity.
No one should underestimate the influence of the so-called ‘soaps’ on our society. They are widely watched (and listened to… After all one of the longest running ‘soaps’ is The Archers). I have become more aware of this in recent years, for virtually every time I have to arrange a funeral service, and I ask what interests of hobbies the deceased person had, someone will tell me that ‘he/she loved the soaps, loved watching Coronation Street, never missed an episode’. There is a huge swathe of society fanatically watching and listening, and all of them susceptible to moral manipulation by the producers and writers. Many of these viewers are at a tender age. The BBC news website discusses what it calls, ‘soap opera syndrome’ among children:

Nottingham teacher and ATL (Association of Teachers and Lecturers) member Ralph Surman said the survey showed the danger of what he called “soap opera syndrome”.

“Soap operas have tackled a host of important issues within our society,” he said. “Children may find fiction and reality hard to separate, and learn behaviours quickly. “The long-term effect is that behaviours are mimicked and not seen as unacceptable, but part of the daily routine of life. “I fear for the future of a responsible, caring society.”

Pushing the Boundaries
And make no mistake, those producers and writers have an agenda. They call it ‘pushing the boundaries’. It’s all about seeing how far they can go to challenge the prevailing moral mores in society. They challenge anything that is acceptable and settled and conservative, and this is particularly the case in the issues of human sexuality and ‘gay rights’.

The first ‘lesbian kiss’ that many people witnessed was seen on Brookside, back in 1994 on Channel four. The talk at the time was that Brookside’s viewing figures were falling and a jolt was needed to bring up the ratings, but that kiss became an iconic moment for the gay rights lobby, – so much so that it is shown as part of a montage of kisses at the opening ceremony of the London Olympics in 2012.

Even the ‘world construct’ of the soaps is swayed against traditional morality. Coronation Street has an openly homosexual bias, despite the denials of its producer, who is himself gay, – how many streets in the UK have such a high homosexual population? At one time the show was simultaneously running three separate homosexual story lines – which provoked criticism from Brian Sewell and Jean Alexander (Hilda Ogden). Stonewall have openly boasted of the influence they have over the soaps, using them as vehicles to promote their campaign issues.

The Soaps and Christianity
Of course homosexuals are generally presented on the soaps as balanced, sensible, reasonable people. Heterosexuals on the other hand are promiscuous, tortured, troubled souls. Their depictions of what are supposed to be Christians is even worse. Invariably they are worthy only of ridicule, fanatics or obsessive or drunks – objects of derision. Jonathan Wynn-Jones, writing in the Telegraph ( deplores the way Christians and Christianity are treated on soaps:

Outspoken criticism of Christian beliefs should be expected, but the stealthy attempts to make believers look absurd is much more damaging. Once faith has been made to look ridiculous, the attempts of believers to rebut the criticism will be met with deaf ears. And then the line between ridicule and persecution becomes even thinner.

The Christian Response?
Yet, and here’s the point, in some Christian homes, the family knows far more about the plots, twists and turns of Coronation Street than they do about the Bible, and more about the viewpoints of the soap writers than basic Christian belief. I’m no killjoy, but we need to be careful, especially where out children are concerned, for what they watch on the box is often a subtle invasion of the culture of the world into their lives, and Paul tells us in Romans 12 that we are not to be conformed to this world’s mindsets.

Galatians 5:19-21 reminds us:

Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies, Envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God.

All of these things are represented and promoted by the soaps. The soap lifestyle, which is rapidly becoming the accepted moral standard of the nation, is a sinful lifestyle. Soap culture is designed to invade the mind and influence the life, and the way of life of the soaps is not the Christian way. Remember that Jesus taught us that even to think about these things is sin.

Ye have heard that it was said by them of old time, Thou shalt not commit adultery: [But I say unto you, That whosoever looketh on a woman to lust after her hath committed adultery with her already in his heart. Matthew 5:7-28

My three year old Grandaughter has been learning a song…

Oh be careful little eyes what you see, there’s a Father, up above, looking down in heavenly love, Oh be carful little eyes what you see.

The soaps have an agenda. Lets make sure Christians don’t unwittingly fall into the trap.

From → Editorial

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