The Real Console War
Our gaming consoles are battlefields for our minds.
In one sense, a console war is simply a competition for dominance in market share between gaming console manufacturers. Memory prominently lists Microsoft, Nintendo and Sony as they've been the companies to expand over the years and compete even during this explosion of technology that promotes gaming outside of "traditional" means.
In another sense, it reveals the undercurrent of such competition—the hostility that fuels fans' interactions with one another over each others' preference of hardware (including PC gaming). Why is it that such an issue matters,? After all, isn't it preference? Well, consumerism is blind. There's a war taking place in homes, but that war is spiritual and said consoles are one of its theaters.
Light vs Darkness
Underlying every human activity is the influence of Light or Darkness, Heaven or Hell. Jesus graciously brought to prominence a truth that was laid throughout Scripture: there are only two sides in this war. This simple, yet powerful inference is made from Mt 4:17. If Jesus is saying repent to come into one kingdom, then the predicament is that individuals are citizens of the one He's saying to repent (completely turn away) from! There are only two paths: narrow and Heaven-bound and wide and Hell-bound (Mt 7:13-14). Jesus is the way, the truth and the life and outside of Him is eternal ruin (Jn 14:6).
And there's another wonderful truth for all those who are called by God and follow:
giving thanks to the Father, who has enabled you to share in the saints’ inheritance in the light. He has rescued us from the domain of darkness and transferred us into the kingdom of the Son He loves. We have redemption, the forgiveness of sins, in Him (Col 1:12-14).
Mediate on that truth! Holiness (preservation, uniqueness of and to God) is grand! Sin is deplorable and worthy of judgment. Whatever we play either leads us into further worship of God or leads us away from Him, tarnishing our view of His perfect value.
Battlefields of the Soul
Our gaming consoles are battlefields of our souls. Do we expand our worship by righteous things are do we indulge in sinful pleasures that degrade the worth of God? Oh, what you engage in matters! Paul, instructing the Colossi believers, says:
Therefore, put to death what belongs to your worldly nature: sexual immorality, impurity, lust, evil desire, and greed, which is idolatry. Because of these, the wrath of God is coming (Col 3:5-6).
On the basis of receiving Jesus as Lord and God, now by His power get rid of sin in your life! Sin is a beacon for God's eternal wrath—and it is coming. Why did he say this to Christians, who are supposed to be Heaven-bound anyway? The answer is to seek God's calling of you as certain (2Pt 2:10). He isn't signaling that a believer can be saved then lost. Rather, he's signaling to nominal Christians to repent and for Believers to live worthy of the calling of God. A changed life needs to be evident in heart and deed, for faith without works to follow isn't genuine faith (Jms 2:17).
Victory is for those who submit themselves to what God is saying.
Whatever we put our hands to reveals the content of our hearts. A plethora of games glorify and love what God is saying through Paul to do away with. Yes, what I'm saying is that sinful things do attribute to a person producing sinful activity in varying degrees and appearances. The lover of these things will receive God's wrath to come. So how are we to enjoy the gift of gaming in a way that glorifies God?
Weapon of War
You must put sin to death in your life. The only weapon that works in this console war, because He's sovereign, is the word of God—your weapon is the Bible.
If the ratio of your gaming to Bible study is like 10:1, you should be prepared to lose many battles in this war. How many of you are successful in any competitive endeavors with no foundation? In the same way, having no foundation for how to walk with God will yield poor results. How foolish it is to believe that successful is obtainable without life's instruction manual!
Victory is for those who submit themselves to what God is saying. Failure and hardheartedness is not how God wants us to learn of Him (Ps 32:8-10). He's recorded history for our sake, so we'd be able to know Him more fully—I pray all of us receive the desire of the word of God to savor and become intimate with it. It truly has the power to set us free from any captivity (Jn 8:32).
A Choice to Make
Joshua, a mighty warrior through God, faced a similar dilemma with the Israelites. Finally settling into the Promised Land that God promised their forefathers Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, the Israelites found themselves being driven further from God in the delights He allowed them to have. They loved things more than God who saved them.
They forgot Him.
So I say as Joshua said in Jos 24:14-15: God saved us. Let's walk in a way that reflects our love for Him loving us first, for finding him superior to our sinful pleasures. And if loving Him is unpleasing to you, then choose whatever game or console you will—it makes no difference. Without God the end result will be the same—emptiness. Those companies and developers and people who distort the beauty of God see you as a consumer anyway, take what you can. But as for me and my house, we will cherish and savor and enjoy and serve the Living God, Jesus Christ the righteous.
Let's fight together—we war for joy in Jesus.