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Some thoughts on Roleplaying as a Christian

Updated on July 15, 2012

As a born again, fundamental believer in a risen, living and saving Jesus Christ (Christ here taken from the Greek word that means "Anointed One"), here are my thoughts on role-playing games. These thought are my own and should not be associated to any religious organization, church, or denomination.

First of all, the game itself is not "evil" per-se. The game can be used for evil, just as anything else can be (including organized religion), but there are circumstances when it becomes a sin to role-play in any form.

If the role-playing game comes between you and Jesus Christ, then it is a sin. The Bible says:

Exodus 20:3 through Exodus 20:7 (NIV)3You shall have no other gods before me. 4You shall not make for yourself an idol in the form of anything in heaven above or on the earth beneath or in the waters below. 5You shall not bow down to them or worship them; for I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God, punishing the children for the sin of the fathers to the third and fourth generation of those who hate me, 6but showing love to a thousand generations of those who love me and keep my commandments.

So, if the game becomes a god or an idol to you, it is a sin. Most of us though know it is only a game and the game would never become a god or an idol. You probably even laughed at the last reference thinking, “This could never apply to me.” Jesus said in his teachings that:

Matthew 10:37 through Matthew 10:38 (NIV)37“Anyone who loves his father or mother more than me is not worthy of me; anyone who loves his son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me; 38and anyone who does not take his cross and follow me is not worthy of me.”

Now, people who study the bible know that Jesus also taught that you must honor your mother and father, but this verse points out priorities. Jesus must be first in our lives. Nothing else must come before him. That means that you must be willing to give up role-playing for God. The real question is what is more important, God or the game?

Ok, so you say this does not apply to me yet. I don’t put the game before God, I don’t worship the game, I don’t make the game an idol, and so what could be wrong with it? Do the people you game with know you are a Christian? Are any of them Christians? Do any of them have the problems listed above?

1 Corinthians 8:12 through 1 Corinthians 8:13 (NIV)12When you sin against your brothers in this way and wound their weak conscience, you sin against Christ. 13Therefore, if what I eat causes my brother to fall into sin, I will never eat meat again, so that I will not cause him to fall.

If by role-playing a game you cause another believer to falter in his belief (that is to sin), you also sin against Christ. Also I would add that if by your role-playing you prevent an unbeliever from coming to repentance and salvation, you have also sinned.

Ezekiel 3:18 through Ezekiel 3:19 (NIV)18When I say to a wicked man, ‘You will surely die,’ and you do not warn him or speak out to dissuade him from his evil ways in order to save his life, that wicked man will die for his sin, and I will hold you accountable for his blood. 19But if you do warn the wicked man and he does not turn from his wickedness or from his evil ways, he will die for his sin; but you will have saved yourself.

Our actions may be the only witness or testimony (or as I read the only "Bible") that an unbeliever sees. I do not think that anyone would argue that if a Christain was going into an adult bar (where nude or partially nude dancers are) that our actions basically destroy any testimony we have. Everyone knows that Christians are not suppose to do that. Well, if an unbeliever sees us playing a games that has demons and magic in it, and says "Well, some Christian they are. Look at them flirting with all that 'evil'," it can destroy our testimony just as if we were visiting the very places we should not be (or doing things we should not be).

Now, I am not trying to tell anyone what they can and can not do. I am no judge, and I still play role-playing games. I am simply challenging you to consider what I have said and ask yourself "How is what I am doing glorifing Jesus Christ." If it is not, consider whether it needs to be in your life.

Consider what I have said, people. I would love to hear your comments on what I have written. I would love critisism even, though I must warn you that if you want to argue over Biblical references be prepared to back them up with the Scriptures. If I have intrepreted them wrong, show me examples that prove it. I would also love to just hear your comments on just the content of what I have presented, even if it is simply to say you disagree (though I would ask you to explain why you disagree).


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    • DarrynG profile image

      Darryn Glass 5 years ago from GRIFFITH

      Thank you Disappearinghead. You have actually hit on the main reason I wrote this article. I had heard for so long the Roleplaying games were evil and wrong, but the reasons people gave never made any sense to me (there are demon and magic in them). I can understand if I was drawing pentagrams in my bedroom and trying to read tarot cards or something, but it was a game where dice rolls determined the results (not unlike Monopoly).

      So I set out to determine if there was a illegitimate Biblical reason to not play the games. What I found did not apply only to Roleplaying games, but anything in our lives really. I have heard it said not to start the day without having planned the day out in advance. The idea being that we only have a limited number of hours each week, and to "spend" them wisely. I actually think it is a good idea to see how much time to you everything in life. Like money, how else can we know where we are not making the best use of our resources.

      I am curious though why you sat that measuring our activity based on how much it glorifies Christ would be joyless. I am not sure I agree with you on that one and would like to hear your thoughts on that.

      Thanks again for your well thought our comments. I look forward to more.

    • Disappearinghead profile image

      Disappearinghead 5 years ago from Wales, UK

      Why have you singled out role playing games? The world is full of activities that consume our time. How are you determining when role playing comes before God? Is it a case of people should note down the minutes they play the game and ensure that more time is spent in prayer study?

      Why would anyone think role playing was incompatible with being a Christian? Magic is mere superstition and since when was role playing evil? What evil acts are being conducted in the real world?

      If you want everyone to measure every activity by how much 'Jesus is glorified' then all that will result a joyless existence. A life riddled with self imposed guilt that not enough time is spent on bible and Church activities.