What we were watching was a minute-and-a-half commercial featuring the latest version of a popular video game, Halo 4. Let me start by saying I am not a gamer; I know very little about video games, other than it is estimated by an industry insider that a video game can make upwards of $345 million .... per year. Approximately 60 games are released annually, so industry-wide sales are around $30 billion each year! Microsoft announced that they have sold 55 million XBox 360 consoles over the last six years. So that should tell you what an influence this form of entertainment has on our culture.
Admittedly, I'm not of the generation that grew up with entertaining myself in front of a computer, but that kind of sales power must mean there are an awful lot of kids (and many adults!) spending too many hours addicted to imagery that creates an identification with fictional characters and fantasy worlds. But is that all it is?
I began to wonder after I saw the commercial for Halo 4. Here are just some of the voiceovers describing this game.
"An Ancient Evil Awakens"
"An Ancient Hatred"
"Confined For Millenia"
"Unleashed In A Moment"
"Humanity Stands As the Greatest Threat In The Galaxy"
"The Forerunners Have Returned"
Now, if you're not a Christian, maybe these proclamations don't raise an alarm. But since I have just spent the last year and several months engaged in a deep study of the Book of Revelation, let me tell you that they made me sit up and take notice. Especially when I delved into who "the Forerunners" are.
At first glance, you think these voiceover proclamations are speaking about the Devil and ancient Evil. But when you start looking deeper, you realize that the game promotes the ideology that Mankind is responsible for Hatred, Evil and Destruction.
The following is a detailed description by the game maker of who this fictionalized group is: (Warning: you're going to have to try to think like a "gamer" and get into role-playing and seeing yourself existing in these make-believe worlds.) The Forerunners were a very advanced civilization which came into existence after overthrowing another race known to them as Precursors, who were believed to be responsible for their creation. Only one Precursor known as The Timeless One survived and was locked in a time bolt on Charum Hakkor. After becoming the dominant species in the galaxy, their empire spanned over three million fertilized and inhabited worlds. The fact that the Halos were scattered all over the galaxy hints that the Forerunner Empire covered most, if not all, of the galaxy.
The Forerunners originated from the planet Ghibalb in the Orion complex. Their civilization was based on the Mantle, a belief that it was their responsibility to protect all life in the galaxy. They presumably monitored the evolution of all other species in the galaxy, intervening in their evolution when necessary to make sure that they followed paths of peace, free of conflict. One such interference was the transfer of power from the original human race, due to it being considered a violent species. The Forerunners themselves were a race without conflict and were at a point in their history where they had reached disarmament. This disarmament was the main factor that weakened the Forerunners against the Flood attack.
Humans are seen as a continuous threat against the Forerunners and a war ensues. The actual reason for the war was determined to be the Flood. To find replacements for Flood infected planets, humanity had encroached upon Forerunner controlled parts of the galaxy. The Forerunners saw humanity as a threat to their principle of Mantle and after defeating them, the Forerunners destabilized humanity and exiled it to its home world Erde-Tyrene (Earth).
Are you getting the picture here? If you are a student of the Bible, you can see the obvious symmetry in this imaginary scenario. Most church-going Christians will be unaware of the stories within Scripture that depict fallen angels (who rejected God and sided with Satan) who come to earth and intermarry with human women. It's really there! Read Genesis 6. This polluting of the human race results in growing wickedness until it covers the earth. And because of this corruption of the human race, what does God do? He brings on the Flood! But if I am understanding this popular video game correctly, they have reversed the roles of Humanity and Evil.
In the Bible, the Flood is a cleansing of God's universe from evil-doers, designed to give humanity a new and pure beginning. In the video game, Humanity is the bad guy trying to defeat the peaceful Forerunners, who just want to promote disarmament and a harmonious world. The Forerunners realize that the Flood could return and so create an array of galaxy-sterilizing super weapons as the ultimate defense against such a threat. The storyline is too complicated and complex to go into in this simple post, but if you want to make up your own mind, then read this wikipedia explanation.
My whole point in deciding to write on this subject is my concern that millions of people are being led into a blind obsession with this game, in which they become so intoxicated with role-playing that they can't tell the difference between reality and fantasy. How easy would it be for the Great Deceiver to use mind-altering games like this to convince humanity to follow him and his "false covenant"? It certainly seems plausible that mush-minded gamers could be convinced that mankind is destroying the planet, needs to be disarmed and that the "Force" behind the Flood needs to be eradicated.
With the increased wickedness we are seeing on the earth, I think it is a safe bet to say that more people do not see God as the center of their lives. And with church attendance down, fewer are being exposed to His message. The millions of people, of all ages, who get caught up in living these videos will have no foundation to counter the message being delivered from the high-definition, three-dimensional screen they've come to love so much.
I just want to make you aware that this is a real threat to our youth, our culture, and our nation. Please take some time and do your own research. If I'm way off base, then I'll admit to my ignorance. But that still small voice in my soul is telling me I'm right on target.
Job 11:11-12 "Surely he recognizes deceivers; and when he sees evil, does he not take notice? But the witless can no more become wise than a wild donkey’s colt can be born human."