“Should I Go Clubbing?”

9 Jan

This article was  written by Jonny McCollum and was first published as the sole part of what appears to have been The Messenger Magazine’s shortest ever series. Thanks to Jonny for allowing us to reproduce it.

“I want to witness to my non-Christian friends. Should I go clubbing with them in order to get closer to them?” One of our chief responsibilities is to tell the lost about Jesus Christ. If we spend every last moment in “holy huddles” with Christian friends, this is almost impossible. It is right that we should befriend non-Christians and that we should spend time with them and get to know them. Unfortunately, non-Christians often spend time in places where we are uncomfortable, such as nightclubs. This presents us with a dilemma – should we go with them to these places in order to better befriend them and hopefully have opportunities to share the gospel? While the Bible doesn’t speak specifically about clubbing, it does present us with important principles. Some are adamant that no Christian should even touch alcohol and thus to go to places such as pubs and clubs would be sinful. Others condemn this as legalism. What does the Bible say? It is clear from scripture that alcohol itself is not inherently wrong (1 Tim 5:23). It is equally clear that drunkenness is (Eph 5:18). While we could go out and simply not get drunk, will our friends assume that by visiting places such as Kelly’s & Mclub, where drunkenness is the norm, that we condone something that is forbidden by God’s law? If they do assume this then how will it affect our witness? If we choose to attend nightclubs, we will be bombarded with temptation. In order to avoid falling into sin, it is vital that we do not underestimate our enemy. Imagine you are about to embark on a journey across the Indian Ocean. You plan to sail past the coast of Somalia, and before setting off you are warned of pirate attacks. If your view of pirates is based entirely on cartoons, you will picture men with big beards and parrots, who spend their days drinking rum and shouting “Arr!” (the pirates, not the parrots!) Perhaps you decide to pack your trusty cutlass (admittedly few readers are likely to have one lying around), confident that it is enough to ward off a group of drunken men with eye patches and wooden legs. Now imagine that your boat is attacked by real life, Somali pirates. But these men don’t look like Captain Pugwash or Jack Sparrow; they’re professional and they have dangerous, modern weapons. Your cutlass wouldn’t look quite so impressive when faced with a gang armed with assault rifles and rocket propelled grenades! If we are silly enough to underestimate the danger we will face serious trouble. Often our view of Satan is just as misconceived. Far from being a figure of fun with hoofs, a tail and a pitchfork, Satan is devious, determined and dangerous. And while we are unlikely to be attacked by pirates, we come under assault from Satan and his angels each and every day. Satan is incredibly cunning. He disguises himself as an angel of light (2 Cor 11:14). While we may go out with friends with the hope of sharing the gospel, Satan will use the opportunity to barrage us with temptation. Perhaps you can resist the temptation to get drunk, but will the revealing clothes worn by others lead you to think lustful thoughts? (Matt 5:28) We dismiss the dangers posed by Satan at our peril! We should be wary and vigilant (1 Pet 5:8). It is impossible to escape temptation altogether, but this does not justify putting ourselves in the firing line. Perhaps some do not struggle with these temptations. But they are a problem for most Christians, and we ought to take others into account. Will a weaker brother/sister who is likely to fall be more inclined to go to clubs and thus put themselves in danger because they know you attend? The very ethos behind nightclubs is in stark contrast to our calling. God calls us to be self-controlled (Gal 5:23). People are attracted to nightclubs because the free flowing alcohol, accessible drugs and hypnotic dance tracks are designed so they can ‘lose themselves’. Clubbing is not about socialising or making friends. It is about losing control. And what about the very people we are trying to witness to? What if they become Christians? Will we warn them of the dangers of going clubbing? Our example tells them that nightclubs are a suitable place for new Christians to hang around. They aren’t! The intense temptations associated with clubbing, and the messages sent out by attending, mean that even if our motives are good, it is surely best to avoid these places. It would be far better to witness to our friends in the places we already go with them, besides, if we aren’t able to tell them about Christ in the classroom or workplace then why should a bustling nightclub be any different?

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7 Responses to ““Should I Go Clubbing?””

  1. Amy January 9, 2010 at 12:03 pm #

    Thanks for posting this, very useful to have answers to the question ‘why not?’!

  2. Adam January 9, 2010 at 7:36 pm #

    Very helpful, thankyou:)

  3. Benjamin P. Glaser January 10, 2010 at 3:25 am #

    Amen.

    Even worse are the supposed “Christian” clubs that try and mimic the worst the world has to offer all in the name of “evangelism”.

  4. lostbutf0und January 11, 2010 at 2:35 pm #

    Nice post!

    I wouldn’t go “witnessing” in a club. It just ain’t the right place.It’s too loud, so you can’t really have a good talk and the points you made sum’s it all up.

    I do think going to a nice pub is a good alternative.

    Thanks for your post!

  5. David Duly January 17, 2010 at 4:43 pm #

    Yeah, I know my weaknessess and we all should be more vigilant in making sure we dont cause anothers stumbling.

  6. David McCrea January 23, 2010 at 5:17 pm #

    ‘clubbing is not about socialising or making friends. It is about losing control’ – well said.

  7. Joseph Akande April 27, 2010 at 12:46 pm #

    A Nice post, but i’ll like to object to the statement ‘clubbing is not about socialising or making friends. It is about losing control’.

    I don’t club often because apart from the workload i have at university, my priorities have switched to more relaxing and maybe thought-provoking activities. I club either to celebrate with a birthday with a friend, or because i choose to, so as to getaway from a usual routine.

    You are right in every sense that a club does predispose christians to sin, but i feel it’s become a stereotype that everyone, or i dare say, 50% of clubbers are drunk, high or simply out to lose control. A club still remains an avenue for people to dance, enjoy music, and socialise.

    I bare in mind i have more questions myself than answers, but i will like to think i can be as good a christianin the club, and a better one outside of it without tarnishing my ideals.

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