Over the past few days there has been an uproar in Evangelical circles about a homosexual storyline that will be featured between two characters in Disney’s live-action version of Beauty and the Beast. I am certainly not surprised by this, as our culture has been heading in this direction for a while now. Disney clearly believes that this move is marketable, and we, as Christians, cannot expect unbelievers to hold to our Christian values. So, how should Christians respond to this? The first inclination for many, after hearing about Disney’s plan, is to run and hide under a rock, taking our children with us so we can guard their eyes and ears from these “disgusting” gay characters. “We have to shelter them from this filth!” we say.
Well, you know what’s really disgusting? Our disgust with homosexual people is disgusting. Like all of us, they too are made in the image of God! Now, I’m not advocating homosexuality, as the Bible clearly states that it is an abomination to the Lord. I am, however, very disheartened at our tendency to be disgusted with homosexuality while we ignore our own sin. Why is it that homosexuality is so much more disgusting to me than my tendency to be self-righteous? It’s a lot easier to look at other people’s sin than it is to acknowledge our own.
And as much as some want to ignore this shift in our culture, gay people really do exist! And gay people need to hear the Gospel just as much as any of us. We can’t hide our kids under a rock their whole lives, hoping that gay tendencies won’t “rub off” on them. That’s ridiculous. Instead, let’s use this movie as an opportunity to talk with our kids about homosexuality rather than try to guard them from it until they go out into the world as adults and are then smacked in the face with it. And at that point, you, their parent, won’t be there to teach them otherwise. Please don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying that we should or shouldn’t let our kids watch this Beauty and the Beast movie. What I am saying is that ignoring homosexuality won’t make it go away. We all need the grace of God to change us from the inside out: idolaters, adulterers, thieves, greedy people, drunkards, revilers, swindlers, and homosexuals. “And such were some of you. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God” (1 Corinthians 6:11). Do we truly believe that the Gospel is the power of God unto salvation (Romans 1:16)? If so, we need not respond to the culture with fear and hate, but instead should respond only with the glorious Gospel of Jesus Christ, who died a criminal’s death on a cross, so that all who trust in His righteousness will be saved for eternity.
May we all use this opportunity to teach our children the truth and to show them that God’s grace extends to ALL who turn to Him in repentance and faith. His grace knows no bounds! Only God can change a sinner. I should know – He changed me.
For more on this issue check out:
The Secret Thoughts of an Unlikely Convert by Rosaria Champagne Butterfield
What Does the Bible Really Teach about Homosexuality? by Kevin DeYoung