Online Gaming

Does your child play video games? Here are some things to think about.

  • ADDICTION. Children as young as 8 years old have displayed symptoms of addiction including day-dreaming, devising ways to return to games, and turning away from other previous interests. God tells us in the 1st commandment: Thou shalt have no other gods before me.
  • HEALTH PROBLEMS. Medical issues such as backaches, headaches, eye strain, obesity, and carpal tunnel syndrome have been linked to too much gaming. Gamers are known to play late into the night when they ought to be getting a much needed sleep.
  • FAMILY RELATIONSHIPS. Is more time spent on gaming then talking and engaging with the family? Is there a withdrawal from the family? Too much gaming has also been associated with lower social competence, depression, anxiety, and impulsiveness.
  • EDUCATIONAL PERFORMANCE. Exhaustion from late night gaming, inattentiveness, and lower test scores are all linked to excessive gaming.
  • LANGUAGE AND DRESS. Many video games contain words and actions that are irreverent, disrespectful, or take God's Name in vain. In addition many video games contain characters dressed in a very lewd and immoral manner. They often engage in wild alien-like behaviors. A steady diet of this has a devastating impact on a child’s developing conscience, and a deadening impact on an adult’s. In Psalm 101 David writes of keeping his house with a perfect heart and says: I will set no wicked thing before mine eyes.
  • COST. Americans spend $23.5 billion each year on video games. These funds could be better used to help various organizations. Proverbs 21:20 says: "There is treasure to be desired and oil in the dwelling of the wise; but a foolish man spendeth it up."
  • AGE. The average age of the most frequent gamer is 31 years old and has been playing for 14 years. A practice of excessive gaming established early in life becomes the norm for everyday living.
  • VIRTUAL REALITY. Many games provide an "escape" from the real world. The realities of life and death are forgotten and gamers can come to prefer the virtual world to their own. Psalm 119:37 says: "Turn away mine eyes from beholding vanity; and quicken thou me in thy way."
  • DESIGN. Many video games are clearly designed to allure and hold. Enticing levels and rewards keep gamers coming back. Modern man seems driven to fill his non-work hours with mind- captivating activities. Jesus said to Martha that one thing is needful. To know the saving power of God in Christ Jesus should be the all-consuming desire of our hearts. If that were true, our national and personal attitude towards gaming would certainly change.
  • VIOLENCE. Many video games involve bloodshed, mutilation and killing. Those who are killed can come back to life. Also, they often trivialize crime. All this desensitizes gamers to death and what really happens after death. Lord’s Day 40 tells us of Gods 6th commandment; the first part states: "That neither in thoughts, nor words, nor gestures, much less deeds, I dishonor, hate, wound, or kill my neighbor."

In addition: A newer online activity which is closely related to gaming is watching others play games. People stream or share videos of themselves playing games, which often includes added vulgarity. Sites like www.twich.tv, www.hitbox.tv and www.gaminglive.tv are suggested additions for our blacklists. 

Thanks to the New Jersey Modern Media Committee for the article (link).

Photo credit to https://theconversation.com/how-to-know-if-your-child-is-addicted-to-video-games-and-what-to-do-about-it-118038.