As an adult, you have the freedom to watch whatever you want, but as Christians, we are called to guard our hearts and minds against sin (Psalm 19:14, Proverbs 4:23). We love things that aren’t good for us as fleshly humans, but we should desire God instead of sin (Psalm 37:3).
When you watch an adult-rated movie, you open yourself to explicit language, sex, and possibly violence. You can enjoy the content as just entertainment but beware of the influences those things can have on your heart. You can want what you want as long as it doesn’t cause you to sin.
I already established that you can watch R-rated movies if it doesn’t lead you to sin. Now here are a few signs that you personally shouldn’t watch R-rated movies in particular situations.
1. If you can’t handle profanity. R-rated movies are filled with curse words. If you’re someone who can’t handle an excessive amount of f-bombs, then I recommend you not to watch R-rated movies.
2. If you struggle with lust. Many R-rated films have scenes where the characters do sexually explicit acts. Many Christians (especially men) tend to be easily distracted by women in revealing clothing. I don’t have an issue with women in more revealing clothes in terms of being tempted, as long as it isn’t full-blown porn; however, I have to be my brother’s keeper, so I wouldn’t watch anything that he would find too explicit (Genesis 4:8-9).
3. If it causes your brother/sister to sin. It’s hard enough to keep ourselves on the right path; let us not be the ones to led others astray. Watching R-rated films may not be wrong for you, but it may be too graphic to others. Be mindful that everyone isn’t where you are spiritually, so it’s important to recognize that some people are more sensitive than others. You can bring one friend to a movie, but another may see it as too traumatizing (1 Corinthians 8:3, Matthew 18:6-7).
In movies, just like any form of entertainment, you have to mix the good with the bad. The question is, is the movie (or TV show) causing you or others around you to stumble?
‘”I have the right to do anything,’ you say—but not everything is beneficial. ‘I have the right to do anything’—but I will not be mastered by anything.”
– 1 Corinthians 6:12 [NIV]