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Is It A Sin To Play Video Games?

Many believers wonder can Christians play video games? It depends. There are no Bible verses that say we can’t play video games. Of course the Bible was written way before gaming systems, but it still leaves us with biblical principles to follow. Before we start, in my honest opinion we play way too much video games. Video games take people’s lives.

Is It A Sin To Play Video Games?

I’ve heard numerous stories of people who play all day, rather than getting a job and working hard.

We need more biblical men in Christianity. We need more men that will go out, preach the gospel, save lives, and die to self.

We need more manly young men who will stop wasting their life and do the things that older Christians can’t do.

 

Quote

“Most men, indeed, play at religion as they play at games. Religion itself being of all games the one most universally played.” – A. W. Tozer

 

If the game is filled with cursing, lasciviousness, etc. we should not play it. The most popular games are so sinful and filled with all types of evil. Will playing games like Grand Theft Auto bring you closer to God? Of course not. Many of the games you probably love to play God hates. The devil has to reach people somehow and sometimes it’s through video games.

Luke 11:34-36 “Your eye is the lamp of your body. When your eye is healthy, your whole body is full of light. But when it’s evil, your body is full of darkness. Therefore, be careful that the light in you isn’t darkness. Now if your whole body is full of light, with no part of it in darkness, it will be as full of light as when a lamp gives you light with its rays.”

1 Thessalonians 5:21-22 “but test all things. Hold on to what is good. Stay away from every kind of evil.”

Psalm 97:10 “Let those who love the LORD hate evil, for he guards the lives of his faithful ones and delivers them from the hand of the wicked.”

1 Peter 5:8 “Be serious! Be alert! Your adversary the Devil is prowling around like a roaring lion, looking for anyone he can devour.”

1 Corinthians 10:31 “So whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do everything for the glory of God.”

 

Will video games become an idol and an addiction in your life? When I was younger before I was saved my god was video games. I would come home from school and start playing Madden, Grand Theft Auto, Call of Duty, etc. I would come home from church and start playing all day. It was my god and I was addicted to it just like many Americans today. Many people camp all night for the new release of PS4′s, Xbox’s, etc. But they would never do that for God. Many people especially our kids are not exercising because all they do is spend 10 or more hours a day playing video games. Don’t deceive yourself, it does take you away from your relationship with God and it takes away from His glory.

1 Corinthians 6:12 “I have the right to do anything,” you say–but not everything is beneficial. “I have the right to do anything”–but I will not be mastered by anything.”

Exodus 20:3 “Do not have other gods besides Me.”

Isaiah 42:8 “I am the LORD; that is my name! I will not yield my glory to another or my praise to idols.”

 

Does it cause you to stumble? The things you watch and participate in does influence you. You might say when I play a violent game it doesn’t affect me. You might not see it, but who says it isn’t affecting you? You might not act it out in the same way, but it can lead to thinking sinful thoughts, bad dreams, corruptness of speech when you become angry, etc. It will always affect you in some way.

Proverbs 6:27 “Can a man take fire in his bosom, and his clothes not be burned?”

Proverbs 4:23 “Guard your heart above all else, for it is the source of life.”

 

Is your conscience telling you that the game you’re interested in playing is wrong?

Romans 14:23 “But whoever has doubts is condemned if they eat, because their eating is not from faith; and everything that does not come from faith is sin.”

 

In the end times. 

2 Timothy 3:4 “They will betray their friends, be reckless, be puffed up with pride, and love pleasure rather than God.”

 

Reminder

2 Corinthians 6:14 “Stop becoming unevenly yoked with unbelievers. What partnership can righteousness have with lawlessness? What fellowship can light have with darkness?”

 

Advice from Scripture.

Philippians 4:8 “Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is fair, whatever is pure, whatever is acceptable, whatever is commendable, if there is anything of excellence and if there is anything praiseworthy—keep thinking about these things.”

Colossians 3:2 “Keep your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on the earth.”

Ephesians 5:15-16 “See then that ye walk circumspectly, not as fools, but as wise, Redeeming the time, because the days are evil.”

 

In conclusion do I believe that playing video games with your friends is wrong? No, but we have to use discernment. We must pray to the Lord for wisdom and listen to His response, not our own response. Use biblical principles. If the game you want to play is sinful and it promotes evil, leave it alone. While I don’t believe playing video games is a sin, I do believe that there are way better things that a Christian should be doing in their spare time. Things such as getting to know God better through prayer and in His Word.

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22 comments… add one
  • Cade May 10, 2019, 6:48 pm

    I really dislike that you believe that video games are a sin and that “We need more manly young men who will stop wasting their life and do the things that older Christians can’t do.” This makes me sick. As a devout Christian that plays video games I can for sure say that I play video games for long periods of time, but that does that mean that I am a mentally disabled retard that does not respect the Creator of this universe. I would appreciate a take down of this article as I am really upset that video games are thrown under a larger category: violent. Have YOU ever touched the greatest game of all time: Minecraft? Probably not. A game where you build in a world where you fend off Monsters with a sword and a bow and arrow no blood, no violence and God has been mentioned in the game. Again I dislike this article yet am a devout Christian. Thank You. Sincerely, Cade

    • lisa Oct 7, 2020, 7:23 pm

      No, it means you give all your time to the video games not God. “Have YOU ever touched the greatest game of all time: Minecraft? Probably not” Yet while its literally the end times you say you play games for long periods of times, and act like its normal for a Christian, God deserves ALL the glory. Stop trying to make the video games sound so holy and amazing. It isn’t.

    • Abe Nov 4, 2020, 3:55 pm

      No offense friend, but your response and choice of words to the OP’s assessment of video games is anything but what I would expect from a fellow believer. As someone who grew up playing video games myself. I can say without a doubt that video games are one of the most powerful tools in the arsenal of satan. For one, you are using a single game to justify gaming: Minecraft. Violence is not the only criterion that makes a game something Christians should not play. Many games are engineered by “attention engineers” to make them as addictive as possible. Many games are designed to skew ones understanding of God and the Messiah, introducing gods and other high powers just throws our Heavenly Father into a soup of other gods, rendering many people to regard our Creator, our Father in Heaven as just another of many false created gods. In many games sorcery, alliance with demons, invocation, divination, satanic symbols, subliminal messaging all desensitize the player to the great evil that is satan and his angels. Moreover not only are these satanic powers present within the game, the character being role-played by the gamer is wielding these powers to fight enemies. It desensitizes the player into believing that it is okay to use demonic powers as long as the target of its use is an evil being. Whether or not it works on YOU is irrelevant! Such things desensitize and influence millions of players around the world. I was visiting my parents two weeks ago and saw my nephew watching my father play Baldurs Gate 3, and I felt sad when I saw my nephew say, “oh look Grandpa is playing with demons”. Apparently there is a demonic looking race in the game that has friendly relations with the human race. I told my father that this game does not glorify God. It hurts to let games go, because since child are part of our identity. Our brains are also gravely affected by gaming, Whether or not it has a significant impact on YOU is Irrelevant! Science and just basic observation will tell you that gaming affects the brain the same way drugs do. It becomes harder to focus on more “mundane” tasks for many. Even for myself, though anecdotal experienced these same problems. In 2011 I quit gaming cold turkey, two years later I entered university and was doing incredibly well, I would go to school during the day, work at night, and went home to study and do homework. in late 2015 I returned to gaming, and saw my ability to focus go down the tubes. I was no longer able to stay put, I had to either be gaming or doing some kind of physical activity. I beg you to consider all these things. That is not to say that I am not still struggling with spending time with the Lord, but at least I have done away with games, because they certainly were not helping, nor did they glorify our Lord.

    • Brandon Nov 20, 2020, 7:19 pm

      May I suggest that you re-read the article, Cade. The author did NOT say he thought playing video games was a sin. He clearly states that there are better activities we could engage in to further grow our relationship with God. I happen to love Minecraft myself, but if it takes away from the time I have in prayer or the time I spend reading scripture, then it is sin. Cade, I pray that you bring your heart before the throne of Jesus Christ and ask him to show you the answers you seek. The language you are using against a brother in faith does not represent the fruit of the Spirit of God. FACT: The church DOES need more young men to get involved in church, especially how the world is today. God Bless!

  • Fritz Chery May 29, 2019, 6:07 pm

    Hi Cade,

    Did you read the entire article? At the end I said I don’t believe playing a video game is sinful, but we have to use discernment. Video games can become huge idols. Also, there are better things that Christian men and women could be doing with their time for the Lord. With that said, if it’s a video game promoting sin and sex, then it is sinful.

    God bless,

    – Fritz

    • Jose May 17, 2020, 10:58 am

      This article was GREAT! Thank you for taking your time writing it down. I felt the need to comment after reading the other comments just to let it be known how good it was. You attacked the topic with wisdom and if one doesnt want to see that its on them. I converted 3 years ago and my whole life before that was video games. I wasted my years on them. The competiveness, the pride, the rage, isolation from everyone else, idolatry of it due to amount if time I dedicated to it, etc was all apart of what it did to me. After converting Ive always had the battle with self control and deciding which games to play. Most times it would mess with my conscience and affect my faith causing me to feel discouraged just like you mentioned. I was discourage because I felt that I would distract me from getting closer to God.

    • Daniel Jul 28, 2020, 1:12 pm

      Personally from what I see, Call of Duty isn’t that wicked. Of course there is violence in it but so does the Bible. It talks of wars etc. the story line of Call of duty is wars too. It’s not like they go around killing everyone and promoting it, you have an objective to stop the bad guy. But I don’t deny that they cuss but if I guard my heart I don’t think it’s sinful.

      • ruth Nov 11, 2020, 1:06 am

        Call of duty is not good either way. It’s addiction that actually matters, you shouldn’t put videos games and god on the same level. God is first and you seemed to have said that the obj is to stop the bad guy. Biblical war and gaming war is WAY more different.
        Gaming War is the addiction, competitive, that the gaming developers put to make it seem addictive. The bible war is the more that happened, and it was kingdom wars that happened. God has never wanted anyone to have wars or to fight, it was the kingdoms themselves

  • Matthew Olsen Jun 11, 2020, 4:47 am

    This is an interesting article, and I am currently caught in the middle of deciding which games, if any, I should be playing. I agree that games such as Grand Theft Auto and Call of Duty have contents that no Christian should be subjecting themselves to. Other games, however, are not so graphic. Some are even seemingly “harmless”, such as Minecraft or a sports game. That being said, I agree that it can become a problem and an idol if too much time is devoted to it.

    • Miguel Constantino Jun 13, 2020, 11:49 pm

      I feel at peace to know there are others like us who struggle with earthly stuff – which leads to sinful thinking. It is difficult to leave games behind because I have played them as a kid and, now, as an adult. Day-by-day, I will pray to God so that I will stop playing games too frequently and preach to other lost Brothers and Sisters.

      • Damien Sep 29, 2020, 2:33 pm

        Hello, thank you for the words..
        I feel you and i also really struggle with Videogames and Redeeming the time wisely..
        I wondered if some of you are interested in creating a groupchat somewhere, to stay in contact with eachother?

        • Luka Oct 21, 2020, 2:55 am

          Hey, Damien, we can talk and make a group together to win this problem together, email me at “aluka8954@gmail.com” so we can make a group on some platforms like instagram or facbook idk anything. Just let me know when you read this…

  • Vanlal Jul 5, 2020, 12:12 pm

    I hope more youths read this! Often as a Christian we forget our basic duty that is our Lord Saviour Jesus Christ! I feel more people should read this article
    I used to play PUBG ! A hardcore addict & now after I repented! The Holy Spirit has guided me in strong ways and now I feel all these addictions are unnecessary! Our only addiction should be the scriptures and praying!

  • Jose Jul 12, 2020, 4:36 am

    This is an interesting article, but i would like to address another aspect. I myself have played many video games over the years, and the two main types of games i play are football and racing games. Neither of these games promote anything evil, but as you said they can still impact your mind as you become a little invested in them. Considering the rise of the internet, and thus online multiplayer, i would sometimes find myself cursing at the tele, my online teammates, and as i became more toxic i realize that these games were in fact a detriment to my testimony. While i do still play games, i do it much less often and as soon as i feel myself becoming just a little upset, i know i should turn it off before i do or say something inappropriate. Most video games in and of themselves are not evil and do not promote evil, but temptation can arise in many forms and it is important that we remain aware of our surroundings at all times. Thanks for sharing your thoughts on the subject.

  • Jack Jul 18, 2020, 12:01 am

    This is a great article I was addicted to video games before I became a Christian. I do play them a bit here and there still Being around the online playerbase caused me to stumble a little bit. So much cursing, swearing, foul communication is a bit much for me I have been wanting to play them more casually however I know it could become an idol again if I let it. Even games that seem to be allright can be bad if you let it. I think if we pray on it and perhaps play them when all the days responsibilities are done and not waste away the whole day playing them or night then it is allright. If we do play we need to try to play them as a Christian should act in the real world. Perhaps it could be a place to let people know about the gospel through streaming, and online play, or through our actions even when people are not watching.

  • Alex Jul 26, 2020, 1:57 pm

    For me video games were always a way to spend time with my friends. If I didn’t have someone I personally knew playing with me it would get old fast. This is why games like mmos never held my attention for long. Never had any close friends playing.
    Now being 39, married, and 3 kids it’s just impossible to really get into gaming. My children are too young and at the same time we only let them play games which we can all play together. It’s all about that quality time. Once it becomes self centered it’s bad. The content of the game is also very important :P.
    Also it’s very important to remember to most games are self centered and take away from our Christian duty to love our neighbors as ourselves. And most importantly these games can take away from the greatest commandment which is love God with all our heart, soul, and mind.
    If we see ourselves drifting from God and towards games we should ask God why this is so. There is always deep motive. If we are all honest we know why. We are bored, lonely, or unfulfilled in some aspect of our lives so we want to fill the gap with a fantasy. If it’s to spend time with a loved one then I’d say it’s not bad. As long as the game is clean and not evil according to God.

  • Liam Dixon Sep 21, 2020, 4:46 pm

    Hi, thank you so much for this article. It allows me to understand what I need to do. Video games aren’t the problem(I don’t really play games like Call of Duty or Grand Theft Auto. My Mom did not let me and now I see that as a gift from God) The problem is idolatry and that I need to wrestle with. I need to put God first and put Him above video games.

  • Kyle Oct 9, 2020, 6:39 pm

    I have played world of warcraft (WoW) for many years and it has been one of the biggest stumbling blocks for me truly devoting my life to the Lord. The game requires so much time and makes you, and others around you, centered on self. I have mostly quit play WoW and started playing a hunting game (the hunter call of the wild) and while I am playing this I will listen to sermons on youtube or other things are good for me spiritually. I will also make sure that other things that need to be done are done first.

    Remember this, the Holy Spirit will often cause you to reflect on yourself and what you are doing and gently lead you in the right direction. God doesn’t hate video games or even games in general, but he hates sin. There are many video games that are sinful to play, some not. Anything, even good things, can become an idol if we let it. If you find yourself not praying, not desiring to go to church of hear of the things of God, then something is wrong and be willing to listen to the gentle voice of the Holy Spirit.

  • Anne mia Oct 19, 2020, 11:53 pm

    Hi thank you for this article, i have been currently playing a game, and i invited my cousin who lives in a different city to play it too, he instantly messaged me and told me that their pastor warned them about this game, he said that theres a bad spirit in the game, when i read his message i uninstalled the game and prayed for protection…
    you’re right, it takes your time from doing productive things or talking to God, when you play you dont notice the time.. thank you for this…God bless….

    • Emmanuel Oct 28, 2020, 7:53 pm

      Hi I was really intrigued by your comment and wanted to know what game it was so I could also avoid it. Thanks

  • Stephen Oct 26, 2020, 10:27 pm

    The subject of video games among Christians is definitely sensitive, as it is a worldly pleasure. I will admit that many are definitely promoting violence and immoral decisions. However I must bring up 1 Corinthians 10:31 “So, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God.”

    We are a witness to the world, not of it. Do not deceive yourself by playing video games and accepting the questionable acts the game may promote, as you do not want games to be your idol. If you play on any variety of multiplayer games, you can “try” to reduce toxicity or reach out to someone to make one realize that they may need to change their perspective on their habits on video games such as rage. Anything you say or type may as well come out of our mouths in God’s perspective, so if what you say won’t build a person up, then don’t say it.

    Single player games can be viewed as more of a topic of knowledge to effectively engage in conversations with others that have the knowledge of that game.

    With all this in mind, some people more than others may be safer to play ungodly video games in a godly way. You could be the one person in call of duty for example that encourages new players instead of yelling into the mic to “uninstall” regardless of other opinions.

    Anyways that’s my take on it, I play video games fairly often, but I balance it with studying, and working, and I don’t let video games affect my perspective on the world.

    • Stephen Nov 8, 2020, 7:10 am

      I’ll also add on to this. Playing games that promote violence or evil or immorality, or ones that get too much of your attention have no place in God’s kingdom, I know I used call of duty as an example, that’s because before giving a good thought about this topic, I was sucked in by the lusts that video games entice. Please don’t use this post to justify your gaming addictions and know where to draw the line on yourself, Satan is the father of lies and he would like nothing more than to blur the line between truth and deceit. You should always lean towards God on your understanding in scenarios like these and don’t secretly wish for an answer otherwise you have already decided for yourself.

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