Gaming disorders ∙

Gaming disorders

Don’t you realize that you become the slave of whatever you choose to obey? – Romans 6:16

John 8:34 Truly, truly, I say to you, everyone who commits sin is the slave of sin.

Romans 6:16-23

 16 Don’t you realize that you become the slave of whatever you choose to obey? You can be a slave to sin, which leads to death, or you can choose to obey God, which leads to righteous living.

 17 Thank God! Once you were slaves of sin, but now you wholeheartedly obey this teaching we have given you.

 18 Now you are free from your slavery to sin, and you have become slaves to righteous living.

 19 Because of the weakness of your human nature, I am using the illustration of slavery to help you understand all this. Previously, you let yourselves be slaves to impurity and lawlessness, which led ever deeper into sin. Now you must give yourselves to be slaves to righteous living so that you will become holy.

 21 And what was the result? You are now ashamed of the things you used to do, things that end in eternal doom.

 22 But now you are free from the power of sin and have become slaves of God.

 23 For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life through Christ Jesus our Lord.

In May 2019, the World Health Organization added a new disorder to its list of addictive behaviors and substance abuse. The 2019 version of the International Classification of Diseases now has “gaming disorder.” Gaming disorder is defined as an excessive and irrepressible preoccupation with video games, resulting in significant personal, social, academic, or occupational impairment for at least 12 months.

It is no secret that video games are designed to be addictive. Videogame developers encoded their games using psychological techniques. The virtual fantasy world they create is quite enticing. As a result, they engender an insatiable, almost unquenchable craving for more.

Video games are no longer merely a form of electronic leisure. Rather, they provide a sense of self-worth, purpose, and accomplishment. Videogames reward effort. There are no real-world consequences for failure. Players often are unable to obtain the same in real-world relationships, activities, or work. “Video games have done far more than change the way we entertain ourselves. They have changed how we communicate, how much time we spend with friends and family, and how much time we invest in active, real-life pursuits” (Meghan Vivo). Videogames often impede the development of face-to-face social development.

Research published in the Journal of Youth and Adolescence, “More Than a Just a Game: Video Game and Internet Use During Emerging Adulthood,” January 10, 2009). The results suggested numerous negative outcomes for both men and women.

The more time students spent playing video games, the worse their relationships with peers and parents became. Digital relationships are simply not the same as physical ones. In many cases, video games provide represent make-believe personal and family relationships. In some cases, they become a surrogate occupation.

In the real world, fallen people are easily enticed. Potential addictions are lurking all around us. An addiction is a state of being enslaved to a habit or practice or to something that is psychologically or physically habit-forming. Unrighteous, impious, addicting activities have a simple label in the Scripture, sin.

Sin is an unseen master that enslaves us.

Romans 6:16 Don’t you realize that you become the slave of whatever you choose to obey?

John 8:34 Truly, truly, I say to you, everyone who commits sin is the slave of sin.

REFLECT & PRAY

If someone who is blind leads another who is blind, both will fall into a ditch. – Matthew 15:14

Father thank You, that You made it possible for children of the King to be free from sin and addictive behaviors. Encourage us to make the best possible choices and live in freedom.

INSIGHT

Being enslaved to a master is somewhat of a paradox. Often, we think we are most free when we are most enslaved. Because we are born in sin, we are born enslaved to sin. Being a slave is what we know, it may be all that we ever know. We may have some choice regarding the brand and model of our sin, but it is still sin.

Thanks be to the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ who have provided the path to freedom.

John 8:36 So if the Son makes you free, you will be free indeed.

John 8:31-32

 31 You are truly my disciples if you remain faithful to my teachings.

 32 And you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.

Freedom from the addictions of sin comes through choice. Because of the Lord Jesus Christ, we can now choose freedom. We can exchange masters. For those with gaming disorders, their master is the video game. The gamers are its slaves.

Freedom is possible through understanding the truth of the word of God and making a choice to be free. When we choose to let the Lord Jesus Christ be our master, our former master loses its power over us. We no longer have to obey its commands.

The apostle Paul is a perfect example of this. He was enslaved to self-righteous arrogance. He would go on rampages searching out the Father’s children to imprison or worse. He brought havoc and devastation wherever he went. And Paul loved it. A major intervention was needed to turn things around.

Paul’s raging, ravaging behavior came to a sudden halt. His addiction ended in a moment. All it took was one brief, but a rather tumultuous and devastating encounter with the Lord Jesus Christ. What irony, what Paul had sown, he reaped. The devastator was devastated.

Acts 9:3-5

 3 As he was approaching Damascus on this mission, a light from heaven suddenly shone down around him.

 4 He fell to the ground and heard a voice saying to him, “Saul! Saul! Why are you persecuting me?”

 5 “Who are you, lord?” Saul asked. And the voice replied, “I am Jesus, the one you are persecuting!”

Paul instantly knew that he was in the presence of one a messenger from the Father. Paul calls Him lord. But this was no ordinary messenger. This was the Lord Jesus Christ Himself! He was flabbergasted and astonished. He was literally blinded. Paul was toast. He turned 180°. Instructions soon followed.

Paul was the Lord Jesus Christ’s chosen instrument to take His message to the Gentiles and kings, and the people of Israel. From that moment on, He served the Lord Jesus Christ. Paul immediately began preaching about Jesus in the synagogues, saying, “He is indeed the Son of God!”

Paul found real freedom and ultimate satisfaction through his new Master. Paul had a favorite personal designation. Paul repeatedly self-identified himself as a slave of the Lord Jesus Christ.

Mick Jagger never did, at least, so he sang.

I can’t get no satisfaction, I can’t get no satisfaction

‘Cause I try and I try and I try and I try

I can’t get no, I can’t get no

When I’m drivin’ in my car, and the man come on the radio

He’s tellin’ me more and more about some useless information

Supposed to fire my imagination

I can’t get no, oh, no, no, no, hey, hey, hey

That’s what I say

I can’t get no satisfaction, I can’t get no satisfaction

‘Cause I try and I try and I try and I try

I can’t get no, I can’t get no

¯\_()_/¯ 1-17-2

© Dr. H 2022

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