Movies and the Gospel
Summer is the season of movies! Whether it's the experience of the theater or gathering everyone up on the couch at home, everyone loves a good movie. Movies tell stories that evoke strong emotions in us. Today, movies have special effects that wow us. In some cases, movies are a way we escape the reality of day to day life.
If we break it down to simplest terms, almost every movie tells the exact same story: things are normal, something goes wrong, the hero or protagonist overcomes the obstacle, and things go back to being normal. Whether it's a horror movie, comedy, romance, or sci-fi adventure, this is the overarching story that's being told. Yet we never get tired of watching this story.
What you may not have realized though is that movies are a great way to share the gospel with your friends or family members. Every movie must borrow it's overarching storyline from the true story of the gospel. This is why movies resonate so strongly with us. They tell (in some extraordinary ways) the story we all experience in our world.
Let's look at an example of how this plays out. Marvel movies are all the rage right now so let's take whatever Marvel movie may be your favorite (they all have the same basic story) and see how it directly connects to the gospel.
When we start our Marvel movie of choice, we meet the characters and enter a time that's relatively peaceful as the story is building. We find in the Bible that "In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth" (Genesis 1:1). We go on to find that God creates male and female, they live in a perfect garden, and all is right in the world.
In a Marvel movie, a villain emerges disrupting the peace and messing the world up. Chaos and disorder ensues. In the Bible we find, "Now the serpent was more crafty than any other beast of the field that the LORD God had made. He said to the woman, 'Did God actually say, ‘You shall not eat of any tree in the garden’?'" (Genesis 3:1). He goes on to trick Adam and Eve into disobeying God. Because of this, they are kicked out of the garden, separated from God, and the world becomes messed up.
Then we find that a hero emerges in the Marvel movie. He comes and defeats the villain and triumphs over evil. In the messed up world we live in, Jesus, God's only Son, takes on human flesh and comes to live among sinners. He unjustly is killed by crucifixion where He takes on Himself God's wrath for helpless people. After three days, He raises from the dead and defeats the serpent (satan) rescuing a people the serpent was trying to destroy. Jesus defeats the villain and triumphs over evil.
Finally, at the end of our movie, peace is restored and things are made right once again. The Bible tells us that we are able to have peace with Jesus by repenting of our sin and believing in Him as our only hope of salvation. Not only will we find peace through His Spirit in this life, but God is making all things new and one day we will live peacefully with Jesus in eternity where the world will be as it was supposed to be in that garden.
This is just one example, but you can literally tell this story with almost every movie. Movies are a great way to share with people about the true story of the gospel. This summer, let's all make it our aim to tell someone the true story that's better than any movie.