Star Trek: Discovery is No Longer Family-Friendly

Funny…if you’d told my ten-year-old self that, one day, a Star Trek series would be running and I wouldn’t have the faintest desire to watch it, I’d have laughed at you.

I usually try to keep my blog away from culture wars and “Christian boycotts”, because I believe we’re likely to get better evangelistic results by talking about what we’re for (i.e. loving God through Christ alone) than what we’re against. But today, it’s a PSA (public service announcement) for anyone considering watching Star Trek: Discovery.

I watched the first five episodes of Discovery, the seventh series in the franchise and the first to air in 12 years. I didn’t continue because the series is part of CBS’s All Access project and I thought it stupid to keep paying for a subscription unless the writing was top caliber. Discovery’s wasn’t. Muddled and excessively Nolan-ized (i.e. characters are horrible and we’re supposed to care because it’s “dark”), the show was strongly performed but wasn’t sure why it even existed. It didn’t have that immediate mystery-grip that Lost did.

Then, with its midseason finale, the show made a hard-left turn into mature-rated cable content. Not just the much-ballyhooed gay kiss (a first for the franchise), but a flashback sex scene featuring nudity. (I was ambushed by a Youtube clip.)

Not only does it all feel done just “because it can”, but it pricks my conscience as a Christian. I grew up on Star Trek: The Next Generation. It was never a bastion of Biblical thought even then, dripping with Gene Roddenberry’s yes-we-can humanism and contempt for religion (how can one work in the LAPD, of all things, and come away with a rosy picture of human nature?), although he deserves great credit for promoting racial diversity in his casts. But Trek for the most part remained harmlessly family-friendly. Deep Space Nine had its LGBT dallyings, but they remained wrapped in sci-fi trappings. We still stopped watching it as a family.

Well, now it has to be edgy, and has also (along with a blink-and-you-miss-it moment in the recent feature film, Star Trek Beyond) given the LGBT community the victory for which they have clamored so loudly  over the decades.  I am not the first to note that they think it discriminatory if any entertainment product omits an LGBT pairing these days. Such is the direction this show has turned, seemingly for no reason except to further normalize those lifestyles.

I leave it to you to decide whether to invest in Discovery, and I pray we will all practice good discernment and shine like lights in the darkness. But I will not be further investing.

4 Ways to Snag a Christian Mate with your Facebook Feed

How your Facebook feed can "sell" you like anything else.If you rely on Facebook to find your prospects, you might want to reevaluate things.

But sometimes Facebook just ends up being part of our first impression. It’s the world we live in. You meet someone, you sneak in a brief chat, and then go home and…friend each other. Hopefully in that order.

And in that moment, our Facebook feed can say a lot about us. Just like clothing or mannerisms can. File this entire post under the category “Like it or not”. As in, like it or not, Facebook has become a separate domain of our existence, right alongside “work” or “home”. It reveals our witness, and it sells our character in more ways than you might think.

Assuming you’re looking to do your part in finding a Christian spouse while God does his part, and assuming you’re out for his very best, here are a few ideas to flag down the kind of person you’re looking for.

(If you’re the kind who doesn’t post much on Facebook anyway and just uses it to keep track of friends, consider yourself excused from this.)

 

1. Show evidence you’re a Christian

You might have heard the question, “If you were arrested and put on trial for being a Christian, would there be enough evidence to convict you?” The point being, Christianity is not something to be kept on the down-low.

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For the Martyrs of Roseburg, Oregon

(I couldn’t decide which was more pretentious: thinking that my words were apt for the suffering believers in Roseburg, Oregon this weekend; or pressing on with my next post without honoring them. I decided to risk my words.)

A question arose in our small group this week: “Why do you think people don’t read the Bible more?”The reward of Jesus

I think most people don’t see the Bible as good news.

We see it as a list of rules and expectations, a litany of warnings and harbingers, and endless reminders of our inadequacy and our need for God.

Honestly, those are part of the deal. There is a price tag when we launch out to follow Christ. “Don’t begin until you count the cost,” He warns in Luke 14:28 (NLT). He’s not a Savior to be tailored, streamlined, or optimized to meet our user preferences. We’re the ones who need to be tailored.

But look what we’re getting in return!

Be faithful, even to the point of death, and I will give you life as your victor’s crown. (Revelation 2:10b)

Today, as the nation mourns with Roseburg, God indeed offers good news.

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