Thoughts on The Hunger Games : To Everyone, But With a Student Slant

I used Facebook as a medium to ask others’ opinions on this topic last week and got some very interesting discussion. In fact, there’s been much discussion throughout the blogosphere, the twitterverse, and every other social media platform out there in these days! So what do you do when everyone in the free world blogs about a topic? Well, you blog on it too of course! But this blog will have a little different trajectory than the ones I’ve run across up to thispoint.

Before I get started, let me encourage you to read up on The Hunger Games first. I’m not asking you to read the books (I haven’t), but to check out some of the summaries that are out there.

Here are a few links to get you started: (Thanks to those who responded with links such as these!)

Now, let me get to what I really want to communicate. I’ve already been asked for my opinion on the book series and the movie quite a few times, and well, if that’s what you’re looking for I’m about to leave you wanting! I feel that the Holy Spirit has led me to a different place. So despite those who may be pleased if I either publicly endorse or skewer the “Games”, here is what I feel led to share with my brothers and sisters in Christ and what I feel most sure of.

1- Follow the Spirit’s lead.

If you discern that the Spirit of God is saying “no”, then you have to listen to that voice! I don’t care who else sees it, reads it, or is an extra in the movie, listen to and obey the Spirit. Don’t let any peer pressure, intellectual reasoning, or justification keep you from walking in step with your Father in heaven, because He has a purpose for saying no. Period. (1 John 4:1-6)

2- Respect your authority.

You may be under the authority of a parent, guardian, or even church leader regarding your decision to watch the movie and/or read the books.  Maybe the Spirit didn’t tell you no directly, but if a spiritual authority in your life did, then God has spoken clearly, and you need to be careful to submit willingly. Just know that this is pleasing to God! When you obey the authorities in your life, you are in direct obedience to God, and vice-versa! And no, you have no moral authority to make your own choice in this circumstance just because it seems right to you.

Now the church leader thing probably is giving some a little trouble, so let me clarify a bit. I would think it wise as a functioning part of the body of Christ and in a microcosm of it (the Body) in the local church, to submit to the local spiritual authority in your life. For instance, your pastor or youth pastor comes out and advises not to take part. What do you do? I would classify this as a possible freedom that you could sacrifice (See: 1 Cor. 10:23-33) for the sake of the conscience of other men (namely, others in your youth group or church) and for the unity of the Body.  (Romans 13:1-7, Titus 3:1-11)

3- Love your brother even if you disagree.

The rhetoric I see both inside and outside of the church today concerns me greatly. We use our differing opinions to slay each other in a different form of violence than many of us condemn in the movies. Keep your speech frank, honest, and clear, but always with a motive of love. In fact, if the motive of your heart isn’t to build up, then you probably shouldn’t say anything at all, and the Body will be better off for it.

Before you speak think…
1. Is it true
2. Is it needful
3. Is it kind

I hope I did justice to those three rules in this blog post! So there you have it. I just don’t feel like God called me to tell you what to do in regards to The Hunger Games other than those general principles that apply across the board. I sit here even at the time of this writing not knowing how this will be received and just asking God to build up the Body a little through it while not to producing further division. By the way, to those who responded to my original Facebook post, thanks for keeping it real and keeping it clean. May we set a trend that will continue as we pursue sanctification!


In summary:

Eph4:11 And He gave some as apostles, and some as prophets, and some as evangelists, and some as pastors and teachers, 12 for the equipping of the saints for the work of service, to the building up of the body of Christ; 13 until we all attain to the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a mature man, to the measure of the stature which belongs to the fullness of Christ. 14 As a result, we are no longer to be children, tossed here and there by waves and carried about by every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, by craftiness in deceitful scheming; 15 but speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in all aspects into Him who is the head, even Christ, 16 from whom the whole body, being fitted and held together by what every joint supplies, according to the proper working of each individual part, causes the growth of the body for the building up of itself in love.


Ritchie Johnson
Director, Transform Student Ministries

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[…] reading this post and  my last blog on The Hunger Games, you may be tempted to think I’m always going to present you with a bait and switch, using a news […]

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