By Lewis Willis
This is the first of a series of articles which will appear in Truth Magazine under the above heading. My daily newspaper arrives at 5:15 “a.m. and I read or scan it before I begin my day. Items which concern religion or morals are of special interest to me. I edit a local church bulletin for the Olsen Park Church and I have printed many of these brief articles, with my comments, for local distribution. The editor of this paper thought some of these articles might be of interest to his readers and, thus, this column is launched.
No claim is made that every point in one of these newspaper articles is reviewed that deserves attention. Partially this is true because of my purpose to keep these articles brief. Furthermore, some might even consider me “picky” about matters of minor concern. However, I have long’ been impressed with the effectiveness of a point which is illustrated with some of the extreme views and actions prevailing in our world today. If I am so presumptuous as to suppose that preachers who read this material will get any real benefit from it, it is because I think that some might find it useful in illustrating points that they are making in sermons. Those who do not preach might find it worthwhile to trace the steps of moral and spiritual apostasy that permeate our society. It is hoped that these reflections might help to guard ourselves arid our children from these departures from Divine Truth and Wisdom.
A time lapse of weeks, and sometimes months, will appear between the publishing of the newspaper article and its publication in this column. However, much of this information is “timeless” insofar as the principles involved are concerned. I will, therefore, submit them as I review them.
Occasionally I will refer to a news brief in a television newscast. But, as frequently as possible, I plan to print the news release in, its entirety, mistakes included, so that the context of some statement or action can be understood. Regarding lengthy articles, I will give as full a summary as practical. Because our liberal brethren have turned to newspapers and television for publicity, some attention will be given to their pronouncements. I trust you shall find this material worth reading.
Lancaster Denys Belief In God
LONDON (AP) – Burt Lancaster, who plays the title role In the movie “Moses,” says he doesn’t believe In God but thinks the Ten Commandments are all right-for other people.
“I don’t live by them, but I think they are good in that they can give other people something to live by,” the 62-year-old actor told reporters before the Monday night premiere of the film.
“I have certain ethics by which I live,” he said. “I don’t believe in a God or a hereafter.”
This brief article is rather revealing. It appeared in an April, 1976 issue of the Amarillo Daily News. It should serve as a warning to parents and children alike. We have our heads in the sand if we think we can sit at the feet of such godless people for our entertainment and not end up partaking of the moral and spiritual principles they espouse. Or, should I say the immoral and anti-spiritual principles they espouse? We become products of those influences on which we feed and under which we live.
Such pronouncements as this should sound a loud alarm to all God-fearing people, certainly with the Child of the Living God. David wrote, “The fool hath said in his heart, there is no God . . .” (Psa. 14:1). One might deny there is a God and an eternity for the soul of man but such does not change the fact. Parents and their children who are Christians had better be alerted! When we pay money that we have worked hard to earn, to constantly expose ourselves to the atheistic nonsense portrayed on the “Silver Screen,” we might just as well expect to one day reap the fruits of such folly. We are playing the part of the fool if we think we can constantly drink at this fountain and not catch the disease that festers there. Brethren, be it at the local theater or our own living rooms, we had better wake up. As an old preacher concluded all his articles years ago, “Brethren, we are drifting.” And, the direction in which we are drifting is the wrong one. “Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap. For he that soweth to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that soweth to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting” (Gal. 6:7-8). A time comes when parents and young Christians have to say, “No, I will not be a part of such wickedness and lose my soul” and mean it!!
With more and more movies being shown on television which require a statement to parents about the subject matter, there is increasing cause for concern. A lot of hours are spent by Christians in their homes watching things on commercial television that would never have been considered acceptable in years past. And, we seem to have developed the ability to sit there like dead fish and carelessly allow our children to drink in this filth like a bunch of guppies. Are we so deceived that we think they are unaffected by such gross degeneracy? No parent should watch many of these things! We are abdicating our roles as parents when we allow our children to be destroyed through unchecked exposure to socially acceptable sin. Furthermore, we will not allow this situation to exist with impunity. We are charged before God to bring up our children in the nurture and admonition of the Lord (Eph. 6:1-4). We shall one day give account unto God for allowing our children to be lost through their infatuation with men like Burt Lancaster and women like Liz Taylor. It may seem extreme to suggest it but it is about time for some Christians to get out of the “Lazy Boy,” turn off the TV and firmly announce that “this family will not watch such filth.” We might even find there is a bit more time available to us to spend in studying the Word of God with our families. But that is almost more than our constitutions will stand. One can almost hear some say, “Nobody is going to tell me how to use my time or what I can look at on TV.” No, brethren, you must make those decisions yourselves. But make them with a knowledge that they will be viewed by the Lord one of these days and He will tell us what we should have done about the matter. Only then it will be too late!
Truth Magazine XXI: 13, pp. 203-204
March 31, 1977