FROZEN: How Christians respond to social issues

The title of this article does not necessarily have to do with Disney’s latest sensation, Frozen. However, there has been a lot of discussion over particular scenes in that movie. As Christians, we are often faced with various issues that are contrary to what we believe. Movies that are made for children often have subtle themes that encourage lifestyles that are contrary to God’s Word and the traditional family. Other movies that have recently been made to portray Biblical events such as Son of God and Noah may not be Biblical accurate. We also see curriculum in our schools that teach ideals that are in direct defiance of the Christian faith. Laws have recently been implemented that have challenged many Christians on whether to obey the laws of the land or to obey scripture. How do we as Christians respond to such things? I am afraid that too often we are FROZEN. We are frozen not in the sense of not taking a stand against sin, but frozen in the sense that we are not engaging our society.

Sadly, the world often only knows what Christians are against. They rarely hear what we are for. They hear us complain about the way the world is. They see Christians who are quick to cast judgment. The world hears of Christians who threaten to boycott Disney. They see Christians who condemn the rest of society, yet they stay distant from society. In many ways, we are frozen. We are not engaging.

Recently, there have been a couple of so-called ‘Christian’ films in the theaters. Two of these films are advertised to portray Biblical events. I have not seen neither of these movies at the writing of this article. However, I hope to see them soon. There have been many negative reviews concerning the film Noah. Apparently, the writers of this film took a lot of liberties that seems to contradict the true account of Noah. So, how do we respond? Before we can consider how we should respond, we should note how we should not respond:

1. We should not boycott the movie industry or any other business for that matter. 

Boycotting a business rarely ever works. Plus it only adds fuel to the fire. Christians should not boycott Disney just because they do not agree with what Disney does with certain films. We should not boycott our local movie theaters because they show a film that distorts the Bible. Such a move is divisive and causes more harm than good.

2. We should not attack those who do not agree with us. 

In my 14 plus years of full-time ministry, I have learned that Christians can be some of the most divisive and hurtful people. This ought not be! We are to love one another and we are to love our enemies. We can take a stand for what we believe in without personally attacking those we don’t agree with. Yes, we should speak the truth. But. we must do so in love. Those who practice and condone sinful lifestyles are still people created in the image of God and they should be treated as such. 

These are two basic ways that we should not respond to various social issues. However, how should we respond?

1. Engage society rather than shunning society.

There are some Christians who will say that we should not go and see movies like Noah. They feel that by seeing the movie, we are somehow endorsing its content. I understand where they are coming from, but I am afraid they are off base. The Bible teaches us that God can take things that are meant for evil and turn them around for good. There is no doubt that a film like Noah was produce as an attack on the Bible and a mockery of the Christian faith. However, it is referring to a real account seen in scripture. Many will go and see the film and will be compelled to search the scriptures and see what the Bible actually says. Such a movie also produces talking points, and opportunities to witness. Though the content of the movie is not true to the Biblical text, that does not mean we as Christians should not go and see it. On the contrary, we should be able to intelligently discuss such films with those who ask of us. Too often we shun society, rather than engaging society. We should be open about our faith and not be afraid of good dialogue. We should use opportunities, such as the production of recent films, to engage society and share with them the truth of the scriptures. Don’t shun, boycott, or protest. Engage in honest discussions, using these opportunities to share what we as Christians really believe and not just what we are against.

2. Know what you believe and why you believe it. 

If you are basing what you believe on Hollywood’s portrayal of Biblical events, then you are going to be in a very confused state. As believer’s it is important to know the scriptures. Not only for our own benefit, but so that we can intelligently engage society. Our faith in God’s Word must be unshakable. Hollywood’s idea of the life of Noah is not going to shake my faith. Some so-called scientist who discovers some ‘smoking gun’ that disproves the Bible, is not going to shake my faith. I believe the Bible to be the final authority in all areas. Nothing will change that. Therefore, the making of a Biblical inaccurate film like Noah is not going to change what I believe nor is it going to stir me up to take up arms against the entertainment industry. If anything, it will cause me to search the scriptures even more so that I can be better equipped to discuss questions that people may ask. For that reason, I thank the makers of movies like Noah for giving us an open door to talk about God’s Word with the unbelieving world. However, as Christians, we must also guard ourselves from false teaching. Therefore, we must be students of the Bible. Know what you believe. Be confident in God’s Word. When you have such confidence, engaging society will be much more rewarding.

So, don’t be FROZEN. Engage society rather than shunning it. Use every opportunity to lovingly share the truth of God’s Word to the unbelieving world.

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