reel grace: gospel shadows in today’s movies

our church has started a new series for the month of august called “reel grace: gospel shadows in today’s movies“, highlighting several current movies and how these cultural stories connect with the gospel.  now, i am not usually one for topical sermons.  i prefer straight teaching from the scriptures rather than choosing a topic and applying scriptures to it.  just my preference, thats all!  but today’s first part in this series was really fun.  definitely more casual than our normal sermons, but a fun change, too.  as pointed out by our pastor: at the heart and center of our world and our very existence is a beautiful & true story… God’s gospel story.  the story reverberates throughout our world and our soul.  He has made everything appropriate in its time.  He has also set eternity in their heart… (Ecclesiastes 3:11)  because God’s story is embedded in our souls, the stories we tell ourselves in books and movies reflect and echo God’s Gospel story.

every once in awhile i highlight a sermon and notes from our pastor, and i thought this would be a fun one! (you can listen for yourself here)

today’s we saw the gospel’s shadow in disney’s frozen.  my kids were pretty stink in’ excited about this one! *sidenote: our kids are in church with us every week.  family worship is strongly encouraged.  we do “big church” together then the kids do sunday school while we do an adult class.* until last night, i had never watched the movie with the kids, but i had heard the songs more than i ever wanted to!


 3 ways Frozen points us to God’s true Gospel story…

1. Frozen reminds us we are all fixer-uppers.

common cultural lie Frozen is challenging:

i’m ok, you’re ok.  humankind is basically good.  we don’t need fixing.

God’s Gospel story says:

there is no distinction, for all have sinned and fall short of the Glory of God. (Romans 22-23)  in other words, WE ALL NEED FIXING!  we are a stinkin’ mess without God!

2.  Frozen reminds us of our connectedness to and need for one another.

common cultural lie Frozen is challenging:

if it feels good, do it.  freedom and happiness are found in expressing yourself and indulging yourself.  your life is your life.

God’s Gospel story says:

“let it go” is a disaster.  it leads to great harm to yourself and your community.  while elsa was off finding “happiness” on her own, the rest of her community was struggling to survive.   For you were called to freedom, brethren; only do not turn your freedom into an opportunity for the flesh, but through love serve one another.  for the whole Law is fulfilled in one word, in the statement, “you shall love your neighbor as yourself.”  (Galatians 5:13-14) 

3.  Frozen reminds us that true love is sacrificial love.

common cultural lie Frozen is challenging:

True love is romantic love.  romantic love is the greatest of all loves.

God’s Gospel story says:

Greater love has no one than this, that one lay down his life for his friends.  (John 15:13)  as the melting olaf said, true love is putting the needs of someone else before your own.  happiness is found in sacrificial love, not in wealth or status or romantic love.

at the heart of God’s true Gospel story is the ultimate act of sacrificial love.

in this the love of God was made manifest among us, that God sent His only Son into the world, so that we might live through Him.  in this is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins.  (1 John 4:9-10)

so, how do you get that love of Christ?  how do YOU get to experience that ultimate act of sacrificial love? john 11:25:  Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life; he who believes in me will live even if he dies, and everyone who lives and believes in Me will never die.  Do you believe this?”


  1. 1

    This is great. I’d love to hear what other movies you guys study.

  2. 2

    This is very interesting! I can’t wait to listen to the sermon. Thanks for sharing!!

  3. 3

    Thank you for sharing this with us. Our church has a similar program in the summer for the kids. It is called Dinner & a Movie. They show clips of movies and point out how it can relate to their walk with Christ. It is such a great way to have kids think about their favorites in a different way.

  4. 4

    And it’s ok to “Let it go”. Wish our church did such series. This is great, since our world today has limitations on movies that have real meaning anymore and a fresh attempt to teach God’s message. Absolutely love Frozen..such a good message in it. Thanks for sharing and yes, please continue to share more of this Reel Grace series.

  5. 5

    Loved this post! And, yes, I do believe!

  6. 6

    Love this! This is the reason I love this movie-it really does have a lot of biblical principles, whether intentional or not. That’s the beauty of art-God loves creativity and He enters into art by believers AND non-believers.

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