What should we do when Hollywood produces movies we don’t agree with?

We Christians tend to be a fickle bunch. We don’t put our money where our mouths are and we’re living to regret it. Let me explain.

We say we don’t agree with a lot of things: like premarital sex and adultery and divorce and homosexuality. The list goes on. Yet for decades now we’ve bent the rules. We’ve ignored our own “should nots” and justified our decisions to pay big bucks to watch whatever sort of entertainment is thrown our way. Simply because we’ve wanted to. We’ve wanted to be entertained. We’ve wanted to be amused in a land of make believe even if that land goes against everything we say we believe.

Little by little, like the culture around us, we’ve become desensitized to sex on the big screen. We’ve become jaded about nudity. We’ve become amoral when it comes to our entertainment choices.

What used to shock us during prime time now makes the list of our favorite TV shows. What used to ruffle our feathers is now regular fodder for office chat.

When 50 shades of grey came out, many Christians spoke against it. Our sensibilities were offended. Yet in its opening 3 days, 50 shades gathered a nice $81.7 million in over 3000 locations. Then came Fifty Shades Darker, which didn’t live up to its prequel in numbers, but still had an official trailer with 114 million views in the first 24 hours of its release online. That’s huge. Were those clicks evangelical clicks? We’ll never know for sure, but it seems to me that many might have been.

You might think I’m being dramatic, if not a little bit judgmental. You would never ever watch 50 shades of grey, after all. You have your limits. Yet you, like me, have stacked your Netflix queues with shows that you would never want your pastor to see.

Your pastor who according to Barca research has the same issues with his entertainment choices that you do. Most pastors (57%) and youth pastors (64%) it turns out, admit they have struggled with porn, either currently or in the past with over 21 percent of youth pastors and 14 percent of pastors admitting they currently struggle with using porn.”

The struggle is real.  

Barna polls also show that 64 percent of Christian men and 15 percent of Christian women admitted to viewing pornography at least once a month, compared to 65 percent of men and 30 percent of women who identified as non-Christian and said they watched porn at the same rate.

When it comes to our viewing habits, we who call ourselves christians are not that different from the rest of the world.

Enter LeFou and Gaston and the most recent Hollywood morality debate. 

What should we do when Hollywood produces movies we don’t agree with?

To protest on the grounds of Biblical morality sounds ridiculous if not hypocritical. To say nothing sounds wimpy and “safe”. But I wonder if we who call ourselves Christians are simply living out the repercussions of our own bad decisions. Perhaps we who call ourselves Christians should consider showing the world what we believe by simply putting our money where our hearts are.

Perhaps instead of pointing our fingers judgmentally at our non-believing friends and accusing them of offending our morals we should use our fingers to point to what we do stand for. One single dollar at a time.

Which might mean skipping a movie, or two, or even an entire Netflix subscription in order to teach our kids that what we value the most is not on a big screen. It’s in the pages of a book called the Bible.

Perhaps it’s finally time we switched the channel.

I wonder how big our impact could be if all of us who call ourselves Christians were willing to stand for what our God stands for. I mean really stand for it risking ridicule and not fitting in. I mean at the expense of our popularity and our cultural relevance. I mean at the expense of our own addictions and desires.

I wonder how big a dent we could make if we took our God seriously.

Which begs the question: where is your heart in this matter? Is it tethered to Hollywood, or is tethered to God and His word? 

Hey have you heard of Covenant Eyes? It’s an internet accountability and filtering system. I’ll be telling you more about it in weeks to come, but check it out here and get the first 30 days free! If you’re serious about holiness, you’ll want to do this! 

Here’s a great resource on purity for you from the archives:

podcast-purity

16 thoughts on “Beauty and the Beast’s Gay Moment: What Should Christians Think?

  1. As one drive-in owner recently stated, ” If I can’t sit through a movie with God or Jesus sitting by me then we have no business showing it.” The movie as a fairy tale alone would not make me uncomfortable watching with God in the seat next to me or with my children. Once you add the gay scene, then “put your money where your mouth is” means you support Hollywood’s acceptance of gay relationships both on film and off. It’s hard enough as a parent questioning whether I’m teaching my daughter correctly how to love herself just the way she is instead of society telling her she has to be beautiful to be loved. I don’t think adding this scene was necessary to the story and it’s disappointing they added it.

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  2. Well written!!! Thanks for speaking up! I think that entertainment is a subtle but very powerful means of changing our worldview, numb our minds and render us powerless as Christians. We have to watch what we watch or just keep away if you ask me!
    Also, thanks for touching on the real struggle of Christians with porn. It’s a problem we simply can’t ignore and have to learn how to address it and help people break free.

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  3. When I changed my viewing habits years ago, it was hard at first as I couldn’t join in conversations with others. But it didn’t take long to get over it. I was so excited to see the new Beauty and the Beast, but now I’ll stay away. Unfortunately, too many who claim to be Christians will not. Our dollars could speak loudly in many ways in this country, but we don’t want to give things up. That’s why boycotts don’t work. I haven’t shopped at Target since they loudly and proudly opened their bathrooms. But as I see posts from fellow Christians talking about shopping there, I feel as if I’m the only one. Who is going to listen if we don’t speak up? Are we content to let the rocks and stones cry out for us?

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  4. I have a lot more issues with the “fairy tale” than just the questionable homosexual element. The whole premise of kidnapping, then there is the aspect that implies that staying in a destructive relationship because you think you can change another person it just that a fairy tale and a horrible message….the fact that Gaston basically is lusting after Belle and trying to control her…yah, like there is so much to like about this…NOT. I agree, people who are all up an arms about the “gay” aspect introduced, will sit through many a heterosexual implication that is not pure either….SMH! Thanks Lina for calling is as it is!

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  5. I can say that I struggle in this area and covenant eyes has helped a lot in my struggles; at the same time though just because you’re not looking at it anymore doesn’t mean you’re clean. You have to deal with the issues cause you to want to look at it in the first place, it’s no different then any other drug.

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  6. So much of what we call entertainment God calls sin. It is so easy to get pulled into the lie that watching it is okay. Like another person said “We must be like Daniel and resolve to obey.” Thank you for speaking up about this issue!

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  7. Thanks for this post. As I think about what people are “protesting” I think that people hold a mixed standard. Do you boycott every movie with fornication (you wouldn’t be able to watch anything….), with gossip? with adultery? There are so many elements of “sin” in so much of our day’s entertainment. Are we showing a harsher standard towards the “gay” stuff than towards other things called out in the Bible? Just something to think about. My son has been asked to possibly do videography for a gay wedding. I admit I have mixed feelings about whether he should do it – but if I say he shouldn’t does that mean he shouldn’t shoot a wedding for people who have been living together? For say a Hindu couple? Would that mean Lina shouldn’t treat a “gay” patient? We’d say, of course not – she needs to treat everybody! I have no big answers but these are things I have been thinking about…..

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  8. One of the precepts I go back to commonly is the idea that we can’t expect unbelievers to act like believers. Of course they’re going to put in a gay character; that’s what they do. TV shows are going to have people living together or having sex outside of marriage, because that’s what they do. People are going to have affairs because that’s what they do. Only things like robbery or murder or the like are frowned upon. Sexual sin cuts deep into the heart of God because sex and marriage are a picture of our relationship with Him. I think that if sexual sin was portrayed in an honest way instead of glorified, it would make a difference. I’m disappointed with Disney’s decision, but I’m not surprised by it. Still grappling with whether to see it or not. My daughter has been so excited about it ever since she heard about it. We have some wrestling to do.

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  9. Yes to this: “I wonder how big our impact could be if all of us who call ourselves Christians were willing to stand for what our God stands for. I mean really stand for it risking ridicule and not fitting in. I mean at the expense of our popularity and our cultural relevance. I mean at the expense of our own addictions and desires.” As mentioned in your piece as well as some of the comments, there’s so much objectionable material in movies, not just Disney, but certainly including Disney. It seems the perhaps if we apply Paul’s words here, it might help; “Everything is permissible but not everything is beneficial.”

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