MARK 8:36-37: “For what shall it profit a man, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? Or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul?” NIV
What WILL a man give in exchange for his soul? The age-old question Jesus asked 2000 years ago in Mark chapter eight has been answered by NETFLIX. A South Korean film production company has released a series called Squid Game on the network. According to this series, the price of a soul is about $40 million, depending on the latest US dollar exchange rate in South Korea. Nearly 200 million people have already watched the Game. The plot isn’t exactly ingenious. An aging and bored super-rich man joins forces with several of his equally bored colleagues and offers a $40 million prize to the winner of Squid Game. Exactly 456 entrants are allowed to accept the challenge. By the end of the first episode, more than half have been murdered in cold blood, their price of entry. Along the way, participants can opt out or continue for the mega million prize. Unbelievably many decide to continue risking their lives for a chunk of cash to escape poverty and financial failure. In the process they squander their moral equity by conniving to escape death and win the squid lotto. They have also effectively sold their souls in pursuit of the prize. But that is fiction. What’s real is that millions of viewers have risked opening the door of their souls to demons by watching the cursing, inhumanity, violence, and bloodshed.
The screen writer based the idea on a childhood game named Squid. I know nothing about the origin of this youthful pastime in Korea, but I can tell you this. In the marine spirit-world the squid is a powerful demon. It is another form of the Leviathan spirit, along with the octopus spirit. Is the success of squid game due to the violent zeitgeist in which we live? Or is there serious demonic intentionality in developing and promoting this bloodthirsty, streaming series. If demons devised it, can you get a demon by watching it?
Here is the risk. Those watching without an understanding of spiritual warfare may become desensitized to the biblical view of life’s sacredness. I watched the first two episode so that I could do primary research and speak authoritatively. But afterwards I felt somewhat defiled and had to pray out of my mind the images of bloody bodies senselessly slaughtered. Some may see the squid game as nothing more than a social commentary on human selfishness. But Squid Game’s promotion of immorality and greed makes this series more than entertainment. It is ideologically demonic and capable of being a door of demon possession.
Since the 1960s, for nearly 70 years, doctors and psychologist have studied the effects of watching violence, especially how young minds are affected. Here is what researchers have concluded. When observing inhumane acts of aggression, especially murder, three things happen to mind seeing too much mayhem: 1) There is less sensitivity to the suffering of others. This lack of empathy results in less restraint on personal acts of violence. 2) Society at large seems more frightening. Seeing too many senseless acts of violence creates anxiety which increases stress levels affecting mental and physical health. 3) The mind overloaded with bloodshed and gore is less likely to be restrained from personal acts of harm toward others. We see this with road rage, street rioting, and senseless acts of aggression. Consider the recent instance in which a woman on a subway was raped and passengers watched and did nothing to stop it. At least one person filmed it on their phone camera.
Jesus said in John 8:44 that Satan was a murderer from his beginning. Murder is not war, self-defense, or restraint of criminal activity. Murder is unlawfully killing someone with premeditation. In Squid Game, it’s even worse. Murder is methodical, systematic, intentional, and organized. It’s like standing in a Nazi death camp and watching Jews machine-gunned and thrown into open pits.
To watch something like this for a cheap adrenalin rush is to deliberately open the door of one’s soul to Satan, the original murderer. Don’t argue that it’s only make-believe. So is pornography but viewing lust can poison the mind and damn the soul. Jesus said so in Matthew 5:28. If you are a Christian and have watched all or most of the Squid Game episodes of gratuitous murder, you need spiritual cleansing – maybe deliverance.