Bad for movies, good for life

April 25, 2010

Most modern good guy/bad guy movies operate on this premise:  If the bad guy is bad enough then the good guys can do bad things to the bad guys.  I have only seen parts of them but the Bruce Wills Die Hard movies are a classic example:  Have the bad guys kill a plane full of people, then Bruce can pull out all the bad guy’s teeth without any anesthesia.  (or something like that).  If you make the bad guy bad enough you can do anything to him and audiences will cheer.  It’s a theme repeated over and over at movies I refuse to see, and it is in stark contrast to they way you and I are supposed to live.  “Do not repay anyone evil for evil.” (Romans 12:17a)

In contrast to the BW character, we have a different set of rules to follow.  The above verse, and its conclusion: ”  Be careful to do what is right in the eyes of everybody.” (Romans 12:7b)  Doing what is right is not necessarily beating up the bad guys and pulling all their teeth (with or without anesthesia).  Anyone can win a fight simply by out-bullying the bully.  We are called to love the unlovely and unlovable.  It’s harder, and it makes for boring movies, but it is the right thing to do, it is the good thing to do.” And it teaches a better lesson than any Bruce Willis movie.

What Jesus asks us to do may be bad for movies, but it’s good for life.

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