“Recently the World Health Organization added ‘Gaming Disorder’ to the 11th International Classification of Diseases (ICD-11)3 — a tool for diagnosing diseases. Combine this with the many parents dismayed by their children’s obsession with the video game Fortnite, and it seems that the game industry’s darkest demons are being exposed. More than two billion people play video games worldwide and in America there are 221 million Americans who play video games. This is where God calls believers to be salt and light. We cannot responsibly exercise this calling to reach all kinds of people (including gamers) with the truth of Christianity without honestly striving to understand gaming. As image bearers, what place do video games have in our lives? Hundreds of studies in recent years have attempted to ascertain a connection between aggression and violent video games. Despite all this effort, there is no real consensus among researchers on the impact of virtual violence on aggressive behavior. So should Christians play or allow their children to play violent video games? And if many video games, when played in moderation or played socially, can have a positive impact on our lives, how do Christians encourage responsible, age-appropriate engagement so that we might capitalize on the best that games have to offer?”

 

This Postmodern Realities episode is a conversation with JOURNAL author Drew Dixon about his Postmodern Realities feature article in Volume 41 #5 called “Virtual Violence, Video Game Addiction, and the Kingdom of God.”

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