Beauty and the Beast: Why Christians Can Calm Down

On March 1st my newsfeed exploded with angry moms. Our beloved Beauty and the Beast is GAY.
Well, not exactly. And perhaps that’s where we should start. Is this a “Gay” movie? Or is this just another worldly movie made by worldly people with worldly agendas? Believe me, I’m upset, too. But there is an important difference here worthy of a second look. 
Al Mohler, at the recent Shepherd’s Conference, summarized this distinction well. He said there’s a difference between culture being infused into a movie and a movie glorifying a particular sin. Gay characters will be the norm in movies from now on. That’s the agenda. The question we should ask is: Does it glorify the sin, or does it discuss/portray an aspect of culture?
This is the culture God has appointed for us to raise our children in. We need to know how to live in it and interact with it. Our kids are watching us. Our response to this issue will shape how they live within this culture. As we respond to Beauty and the Beast there are two words that should not characterize us as Christian parents.
Naive
If we expect the world to act Christian we will always be let down. Many are crying out, “How could Disney do this!?” Maybe instead our question should be, “What took them so long?” Disney is not a Christian company. Disney is acting exactly the way it is supposed to act.
I think deep down we hope the evil in this world will spare our kids. But evil is no respecter of persons. When we see Disney peddling homosexuality as normal it’s like watching someone pass out candy-covered cyanide to children. We gasp in horror and say, “What’s this world coming to?” But we already have the answer. God tells us that “the world is passing away, and also its lusts; but the one who does the will of God lives forever.” (1 John 2:17) For the Christian there are no surprises – only evidences of God’s promises coming true. 
We should be angry at sin, but never shocked. Shock means we got too comfortable here. It means we made ourselves at home in the enemy camp and we were offended when the enemy tried to kill us in our sleep. It means we have forgotten that we are “aliens and strangers.” (1 Peter 2:11) 
Fearful
Have you heard about the gay character in Bambi? How about in The Lion King, Pinocchio, or The Jungle Book? These are just a few of the movies I have heard Christians crossing off their lists this week because of suspicious homosexual undertones.
We can train ourselves to see evil everywhere, but that is not the mark of a discerning Christian. It taints our joy and makes us fearful. This is still God’s world. He created music. He created color. As discerning Christians we want to teach our kids how to take the good and leave the bad.   
So What Do We Do? 
Christians can take comfort in the fact that a gay Disney character doesn’t change anything. Thousands of years before Walt Disney was born King Solomon said, “There is nothing new under the sun.” (Ecclesiastes 1:9) Sin has always been sin. Mankind’s basic need for a savior is still the same. The hope of the gospel is still the same. And as God’s people, our job is still the same as well. 
Yes, Hollywood has an agenda – but so do we. If Hollywood is trying to indoctrinate our kids then we must indoctrinate them first. You must speak of God’s word to your children “when you sit in your house and when you walk along the road and when you lie down and when you rise up.” (Deuteronomy 11:19) 

We must raise alien children – children who are not surprised by or afraid of this culture, but know how to impact it for the gospel. We have the beautiful privilege of praying for our kids what Jesus prays for us: “I do not ask that You take them out of the world, but that You keep them from the evil one.” (John 17:15)


Sara Wallace does a wonderful job of taking the practicals of motherhood and relating them to the gospel. I highly recommend this for moms who don’t have a lot of time to sit down and do a big Bible study.” – Jennifer
Get your copy of “The Gospel-Centered Mom” on 

130 thoughts on “Beauty and the Beast: Why Christians Can Calm Down

  1. I really appreciate everything you have said here, and it's a great reminder of where are true home is. What I wrestle with is – Do I go see the movie? I was so excited about this movie, and now I'm so disappointed! (I wasn't planning on taking my daughter until I had seen it myself, even before this came out.) What is your opinion on actually seeing the movie?

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  2. Yes, but my 3 1/2 year old granddaughter is not ready for that discussion. She loves the animated version, and will want to see this version. I agree we should teach out children the difference between the culture and God's ways, but she seems a little young to take in this difference

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  3. Hey maybe indoctrinating anyone is wrong – why teach children what to believe instead of allowing to grow up and decide for themselves? Christianity is 100% anti-intellectualism and things like this just pisses me off. Have you never had a gay friend? This is about stepping out of the hetero-normative narrative (which you christians peddle like candy) and into one that is more realistic. The gays exist, and ARE BORN THAT WAY. Time to do away with your crutch of a bible (which you no doubt were indoctrinated into believing, because no adult who has taken a biology course NOT FROM A CHRISTIAN COLLEGE would agree that the bible is relevant in modern times) and to actually stand on your own instead of using it as fuel to dissect harmless Disney movies. Feel free to delete this, and stick your head so far into the sand that all you can hear is the blood rushing to fuel your own delusion. Or is that the holy spirit? Anyway, enjoy your close mindedness. I'm going to keep the windows open and see the movie. If I had children, they'd be seeing it too and we would PROUDLY discuss the representation of the homosexual community.

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  4. Great question! I think the point we want to think about is, “Am I making this world my home?” Christians might see it for the wrong reasons, and might also boycott it for the wrong reasons. If we choose to see it, we should be alert to unbiblical themes so we can guard our minds and talk to our kids about it. If we choose not to see it, we need to make sure we are not fearful of the world, or trying to force a Christian agenda on the world so we can be more comfortable here.

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  5. Which probably means she won't “get” the homosexual agenda. We too often read our understanding into our little ones' minds. If our kids are old enough to sense there is a sinful portrayal of sexuality, then they are old enough to be instructed that this is, well, sinful.

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  6. Anonymous, there is hope of forgiveness and eternal life for every gay, straight, religious, irreligious, intellectual, and non-intellectual person who calls on Jesus for salvation. There is hope for you. There is hope for me. No person, no matter how they are born or what they have done, is beyond God's forgiveness. That is really, truly great news. If you have a Bible and you are open to hearing more on this perspective, take a look at the book of John.

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  7. Well balanced and in keeping with Prov 1:17. We do not hide our kids from every sinful aspect of the world, but give them age-appropriate guidance. No, I don't think we should put our kids in the lions' den to teach about lions. (Thus the error, I think, of submitting our children to public school – read anti-Christian – in the name of missionary activity or something similar. How can anyone who puts their children in public schools for 6 or more hours a day, 5 days a week, really think this portrayal of sin will make or break them? Priorities, friends, priorities!) We teach kids about lions outside the den, but with the goal of them being lion-trainers in the end. Guided exposure is biblical parenting. We don't simply allow our kids to learn the facts of life (and the perversion thereof), but bring them up in the fear and nurture of the Lord, which means pointing out the traps the world would set for them. Again, parents will make the call, but this is part-and-parcel of Christian parenting.

    I also think that sometimes parents don't want to handle a tough question. “Mommy, why was that man acting so oddly?”

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  8. Hi, Anonymous. You're position of “no indoctrination” is self-contradictory. You don't have any position to stand against if you want to say there is no position worth teaching and standing by. Your argument is for a position. There is no neutrality. We all will teach our children, and the anti-Christian (but pro-anything else) is anything but indoctrination-free.

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  9. Personally, I think Christians should be as concerned about all sins as much as they are about the sin of homosexuality. Why speak out on homosexuality anymore than adultery or idolatry? You don't have a problem with two people having sex, as long as it is not two people of the same gender. God doesn't approve of either. And I cannot find one occasion in the Bible where God gives anyone a pass on any sin; I only find forgiveness when a person comes to Jesus Christ in repentance, asking for forgiveness.

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  10. I, anonymous, was raised in the church. Confirmed, worked at a Lutheran camp, and read the bible. Yes, all of it. Feel free to question my knowledge but know that indoctrinating your children will not stop them from realizing that your diatribe is false. I appreciate the message of love, but your need to question something as natural as ONE gay character in a Disney film (in which children will not even notice, really, the gay character) is ridiculous.

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  11. I, as an irreligious person, do not want or need your deity. And with that, I'll stop commenting as this is your community.

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  12. Yes, Anonymous, much to agree with here. But to state clearly that homosexuality is sin does not mean that there's no concern about other sins. That doesn't follow. It's a straw-man. But yes, we certainly do agree that there is forgiveness in the cross of Jesus, “when a person comes to Jesus Christ in repentance.” And homosexuality is one of things for which we need to repent. By the way, this doesn't change my appreciation for Sara's post.

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  13. I think it's very interesting that parents seem to be very concerned about their children being exposed to the concept of homosexuality at a young age, but not the slightest bit concerned about exposing them at such a young age to the glorified concept of heterosexual romance that this movie and many other old Disney stories revolve entirely around. Why are Christian parents not at all concerned about raising their daughters to idealize romantic relationships from such a young age? By most conservative Christian standards, isn't a girl who gives away her virginity outside of marriage committing just as much sin as a girl engaging in homosexuality? If our agenda truly is to maintain our children's purity until they reach a more mature age, then perhaps we should reconsider the way we condition them to crave romance as well.

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  14. Anonymous, with respect, to say “Christianity is 100% anti-intellectual.” is to say that Newton, Pascal, Bacon, Boyle, Descartes, et al, were anti-intellectual. Are you really willing to go there? That's quite a leap. I can't help but suspect that the root of your frustration toward Christianity is believers like me who are, at best, deeply flawed many times an exceedingly poor representation of what the speech, thoughts and actions of a follower of Christ should, ideally, look like. I urge you, as the author wisely and graciously said in her comment, to alllow Jesus himself to represent who he is by reading his words in the gospel of John. Believers like me will often disappoint you; he will not. Grace, love, and peace to you. Thank you for being open and sharing your thoughts.

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  15. Yes but it's silently being ingrained into children's minds that this is normal…. especially because they don't sit there and realizing that there is the homosexual agenda there. It's Satan's sneaky ways of getting it into our heads that this is normal and no big deal… and innocent things like Disney movies are perfect.

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  16. I definitely agree that I find it all interesting. I'm very happy to see parents realizing there's an agenda here that they don't support and don't want their kids to be endorsed in… I'm so glad they are stepping forward… I just wish they saw it in so many other movies out there!

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  17. There is a verse in the Bible that talks about eating meat offered to idols. It says there's nothing inherently wrong with eating the meat if you don't believe in its power, but if the person offering the meat TELLS you it was offered to idols, you shouldn't eat the meat for the sake of the one who told. They specifically told us this was going to be in this movie for a reason. I believe they are testing the waters to see if the culture will accept this, if it will affect their bottom line, otherwise, why tell? Therefore, I don't feel ok watching it, even by myself, because I don't want to send the message to the company that I'm ok with this. I've seen plenty of shows and movies with gay characters, and while I don't support that lifestyle, I was certainly in no danger of changing my mind just because of that moment in that movie. However, none of those movies made it a point to inform me that there would be a gay character, as if they wanted to see how I'd react. Now that I've been specifically told by the producers, for the sake of the one that told, I don't feel I should watch it and make them feel that it is acceptable to me.

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  18. Sadly, the Lutheran church has produced lots of people who have “read” the bible, but never met the God who wrote it. Throwing knowledge at you doesn't mean you have the relationship, and without that, you won't ever fully understand.

    Homosexuality IS natural…. because sinfulness and degeneration of our world is natural. That doesn't make it a good thing. Disease is natural, but not something we want, or enjoy. Cancer is natural too.

    I do agree that it isn't worth flipping out over one homosexual character, but because that can be a teachable moment, vs trying to isolate kids forever. I woild rather be tge first to talk to them about that kind of thing, rather than the last.

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  19. Born that way…this is the substance for validity of what is called a lifestyle, a preference. How far can born that way go? At what point do we determine that born that way is no longer okay? How can it be okay for one group's preferences, but not another? Where does the line go? And under whose authority do we consult for that line? Do we need a line? We MUST see beyond our own feelings, because the implications of born that way are hopelessness and dangerous to everyone of us. A Believer is simply one who has acknowledged their faulty born-that-ways and chosen the Creator as the authority to determine where the line actually is because they long for individually repaired relationship with their Creator, which transcends any human relationship because of its purity. Many vocal Believers become judgemental toward non-Believers, forgetting that all are faulty, including themselves, and that would be the popular understanding of who a “Christian” is: a bigot. But just as that is plain bigotry, so is the perception that all Christians are judgemental. Actually, there is only one Judge. He has every right as the only righteous One to call the line, and those who plug their ears and scream born that way are not rebelling against the Christian, but against their Maker. So may the Believers not take offense, because they themselves are not the ones to set the line. And may non-Believers not take offense against Believers, because it is not the Believers' Word they have issue with.

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  20. But, also, this movie is as a wolf in sheep's clothing. We are becoming desensitized as the years pass on. Little by little..the devil is creeping in. In another 20 years, it won't only be a Gaston's admirer confessing his love for him in song…it will be an “innocent” little kiss, a “deeper” friendship between 2 of the same sex. Am I jumping too far ahead? No. It's called reality. There comes a time when we must simply no longer allowed our children to watch certain movies. In time..it will happen. Some day.

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  21. This is actually what disappointed me as well. I'm not surprised one bit by the gay agenda in Hollywood but I was genuinely let down that they actually changed a character from the original.

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  22. Why not teach children to critically think through complex religious and cultural issues instead of indoctrinating them? Seems like the best option.

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  23. Sheltering kids from worldly values without biblically preparing them creates a disaster when they leave the house. Seen it happen many times. This world is no more evil than since the days of Sodom and Gomorrah. Sin has just been suppressed at times, or considered taboo. Also no sin is worse than another; it all results in separation from God, with Jesus as the only source of redemption. So I'm not really worried about my kids as long as we talk through social issues and teach them why God says what he does. I am worried however about the mass of people who feel like they need to hide their kids from worldly values and never give them a chance to make constructive choices within a safe environment. We should be raising kids to be lights in a dark world. And today's world is no darker than it's ever been.

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  24. Anonymous you should look up lee stroble. He was an athiest journalist, highly educated NOT by a Christian college, in fact he was anti Christianity, and set out to prove God doesn't exist. I think you'd be surprised by his outcome

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  25. This is another thing that I don't understand why Christians are so shocked. Yes, they intentionally changed the original to promote homosexuality as normal. This is a worthy cause to Disney since homosexuality IS a normal thing of culture, yet so many homosexuals are VERY mistreated in being ostracized and bullied to the point of depression and suicide. So if Christian parents aren't going to educate their kids that this is, in fact, a part of our every day culture and that we should treat these people with respect anyways, who will? Disney. Disney will. I think they're tired of seeing Christianity hate and alienate homosexuals, so if they normalize it in popular classic kid movies, maybe kids who see it won't be so shocked or repulsed by it when they encounter it at school. As it is, most homosexuals in school are not only bullied for not being “normal” but they're termed as freaks and basically not treated like humans. It makes perfect sense to me that Disney would try to reach out to children this way because Christians are failing their kids in educating them on these topics and would rather just avoid exposure to the topic altogether. Hence why this movie is being boycotted by Christians.

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  26. Also not trying to say Christians should accept homosexuality as acceptable and pleasing to God or teach theirs kids that it's acceptable, just that we should be able to address it as a sin but still respect and treat homosexuals as people.

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  27. I think Disney was wise to tell the public about this beforehand rather than wait for everyone to buy their tickets, go see the movie, and then have Christians blow up afterwards yelling st Disney that they should've mentioned that they were including a gay character before they took their kids to go see it. They know his is a hated and hot button topic, so I genuinely think they were looking out for the interests and opinions of the public.

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  28. You mentioned biology class. I took one at a public college. Biology teaches the Law of Biogenesis which states that a living thing cannot come from a nonliving thing. All living things come from a living thing. You called Christians non intellectual, but their veiw is closer to biology and creation then the majorty who haven't studies science in detail.

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  29. Hi, Anonymous – I have to giggle a little at your idea that we shouldn't teach children anything but let them figure it out for themselves, particularly as I consider how that would likely play out with my kids and manners at my dinner table. With all due respect, that position is a little naive – we teach our kids whether we intend to or not. I am also sad that you see Christianity and intellectualism as incompatible because that says to me that you haven't encountered any thoughtful, articulate Christians. The reality is that historically there have been many people of sincere, deep faith who have contributed to their respective fields and did not see their faith and science as incompatible (e.g., Descartes, Galileo, Paschal, Handel, C.S. Lewis, Tolkien, to name just a few) – rather they saw it as a driving force behind their respective works. It seems only to be in recent years that we have tried to set up this false dichotomy between faith and reason. I do think you may have missed this author's point – mainly that Christians shouldn't be so reactionary around cultural issues such as homosexuality, and should be more willing to thoughtfully engage our kids instead of isolate them. And for me, thoughtfully engaging means that we always respond from a place of compassion and humility, and curiosity instead of judgement. Again, I'm sorry that hasn't been your experience with Christians but I would encourage you to set aside your own prejudgments that Christianity and reason are incompatible. Tim Keller's book The Reason for God may challenge some of your thinking in this area, if you are open to it.

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  30. Kevin DeYoung likes to say that “worldliness is anything that makes sin seems normal, and righteousness seem strange”. And that is exactly what Disney is up to here. Progressivism, on the whole, very rarely (almost never actually) advances by making arguments for its beliefs. It advances by demonizing people who oppose them (hater! bigot!), and by trying to make sin just seem normal.

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  31. But had anyone watched the the same critical eye, in the classic, the same characters were gay. It was always there, it just wasn't pointed out. With the live action actors instead of animation it becomes more obvious.

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  32. Your 3-1/2 year old granddaughter is not old enough to go to this movie. This is a live action scarey movie. It is not a children's movie.

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  33. Sarah, I appreciate your thoughtful article. I'm wondering if your thoughts would be different if Disney were promoting pedophilia?

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  34. Folks, please understand that we all can see that what this movie has done, based upon the reports of those that have seen it, is soft by many standards. But, please also understand that this is what is called conditioning. It takes time to condition someone to change their mind on a topic, or to nurture a mind to think a certain way. There is literally no reason to calm down on this agenda, and that is what it is, an agenda. Those promoting this lifestyle are doing it because they have no other choice – they can't reproduce – they can only recruit. I don't say that in a mean, nasty tone, just stating a reality. I also want to say that that this notion that if you object you hate homosexuals. I am sure that would be true for some, but not true for most. We can and should love homosexuals. But, there is a huge difference between loving and endorsing the sin of homosexuality. Friends, let's not be naïve on this. Hollywood is doing their best to draw a line in the sand… why don't we do our best in choosing a side. God is not silent on this issue.

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  35. Good article, great points. My question is rather “Will I financial support this agenda?” Yes, I want to see the movie (and can discern it's value to me as a Christian parent) but by doing so I stand with those who are willingly feeding this agenda machine. Buy a ticket (feed the agenda) – vs – Take a stand for traditional marriage and family (send $$ to Salvation Army). The first option satisfies the flesh, the other feeds the soul.

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