Trust Issues

Published 3/8/24

In the endearing 2022 movie “A Man Called Otto”, actor Tom Hanks does what he does best ~ brings humanity to the screen.  Tom Hanks is one of the most beloved, bankable stars in Hollywood.  Known as an all-around nice guy, he has captured the hearts and minds of his audiences for years.

Many people see Mr. Hanks as a wise man that you can trust.mother and daughter watching a movie at home in the living room

However, as with almost every entertainment medium today, modern, humanistic ideology is promoted in the film through Otto’s relationship with Malcolm ~ a girl who has decided to present herself as a boy.  Mild Spoiler …. Otto’s wife had been this girl’s teacher years ago.

At one point, Malcolm appears at Otto’s door at night requesting a place to stay because her dad kicked her out of the house for the way she dresses now and because she doesn’t like sports, etc.

Tom Hanks, wearing his Otto costume, looks at Malcolm and says, “Well, then he’s an idiot.” 

Often we worry about movies with objectionable content like sex/nudity, cursing, and violence, but there is also grave danger for Christians in these moments.  

“Well, then he’s an idiot.”  No long lecture or logical argument ~ just a quick comment meant to indicate an accepted truth.

This very brief interaction and the ideology presented by someone beloved and trusted like Tom Hanks can make a deep intellectual impression that those who won’t go along with whatever is accepted are fools. 

Many just accept this response as truth because it is presented so naturally by a trusted personality.

Romans 1:18-22 gives us God’s truth.  Tom Hanks and those like him who don’t regard God in their hearts or glorify Him as God are fools.  Even though we know this, it is hard to accept that this is true about a loveable, trustworthy guy like Mr. Hanks, but true it is.

In John 17:17, Jesus in his high priestly prayer to his Father on behalf of His disciples who He would soon be leaving prays, “Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth.”

As a teacher in training at PCC many years ago, I was taught to recognize the weight and import of textbooks.  Whenever you hand a student a textbook or a book, they innately give credence to what is printed in it.  Just as many tend to assume someone with a title like “Professor” can be trusted to speak the truth.

Allowing someone or something authoritative in our children’s lives that doesn’t speak real truth has immense consequences.  

This is why those trying to push a new ideal work very hard to get it accepted and included in textbooks, curriculums, pop culture, entertainment, and to have titled persons promote it.

Our ministry is committed to preaching the “whole counsel of God”.  We only promote Scriptural truth and lift up Jesus as the only unchanging truth in a world that strives for constant change.

Be careful who we listen to, who we allow to speak into our children’s lives, and always look to The Truth to know what to believe and follow in our lives.

God’s Word would ~ while showing love ~ remind Malcolm that she was wonderfully and fearfully made in the image of God and that God commands honor and obedience to the authority in our lives not because they are perfect and deserve it, but rather because we trust His word and desire to please Him in all things.  However, sin has marred the image of God in us and caused us to desire our own will more than His.  Only through repentance and faith in Christ can we find redemption to His perfect will.

The Truth would lead Malcolm to understanding that she is not the God of her life and that our feelings don’t trump God’s word and His will.

God’s word can be trusted.  God’s word must be at the center of all true education.