"Rescuing" Disney

by Mary Stephens
March 4, 2017

Colossians 3:2
Set your affection on things above,
not on things on the earth.


This week there has been a big blow up over Disney including "inappropriate content" in a recent cartoon and in an upcoming movie. Frankly, this concern and protest is over 70 years too late.

Perhaps the first really disturbing cartoon that Disney produced was Fantasia, his third feature length animation. It included a lot of animation set to well known pieces of music and was perhaps most famous for the Mickey Mouse short of The Sorcerer's Apprentice which was included. But there were many other things in this cartoon - sorcery, magic (some of it being extremely powerful), nudity to various degrees (including full upper body nudity of "female centaurs"), mythical creatures from heathen religions, a nature "goddess", various "spirits" and devils, people apparently falling into hell, and more. And that isn't even mentioning some of the suggestively sexual incidents. Altogether it is a grotesques and very evil presentation.

Fantasia was released in 1940. You read that correctly - 1940.

I am sure that there were Christians back then who had something to say about those things! But, I don't understand why Christians ever got sucked into the "trusting Disney" mindset after that, let alone some of the other things that followed later on. I am not going to say that every single thing that Disney ever made has been evil, but the unprecedented level of trust that has been given to this worldly company by Christians, especially North American Christians, is beyond all reason.

The idea that Christians need to "rescue" Disney at this point in time is absurd. The thing was corrupt from the early days. Some Christians much later on have even made the decision to completely abandon it based on the Fantasia cartoon alone, and this isn't surprising if one looks at the imagery and considers the content and meaning of it. [Go to YouTube and search for yourself if you don't believe me.]

A wise man once said that if you start buttoning your shirt wrong at the top it will be wrong all the way down. A company that was founded on evil is not going to suddenly become good. The only thing that can make evil things good is the Lord Jesus Christ and His power, and that only transforms people when there is repentance and faith. A company cannot be "saved", only people can, so a company can only be changed if the people who run it are changed. With a tendency toward the occult, nakedness, and witchcraft in the very beginning, it was not likely that there would be intentional change and there has not been. There has been restraint in order to retain the conservative viewers ($$$), but this has been mistakenly thought of as "victory" by many Christians. No, it was the love of money, and it led to the very real evil of Christians allowing their children to watch things that contain very questionable content. 1 Timothy 6:10 For the love of money is the root of all evil...  [Photo: SteamFan, WikiMedia Commons.]

People are horrified that a "gay kiss" showed up in a cartoon and that a "gay scene" is in the new live action Beauty and the Beast. I am not sure why this is so surprising.

In 1984 Disney CEO Michael Eisner began the process of pushing the company into more lewd markets while still trying to maintain the "family values" image that Walt Disney had built for his company (despite his own early deviations from decency). Besides expanding the brand considerably, Eisner pushed for Disney's first "R" rated movies and rock music production. Later ABC was added to the Disney corporation and was the place where Ellen DeGeneres "came out" on T.V. By 1995 Gay Day at Disney World had become an accepted by the company and they also announced that they would start offering "domestic-partner" benefits the next year - this was at least in part a response to demands by employees with same sex partners. Some of the more sleazy entertainment companies that Disney acquired during this time were not publically identified with Disney in order to protect their "family friendly" status. [Source - disclaimers definitely apply to this article.]

On a Southern Baptist web page we read, among many other wretched things, "According to monitoring by American Family Association, Disney has been one of the top sponsors of pro-homosexual TV programming." And also, "In the May, 1995, issue of Buzz magazine, contributing editor Steven Gaines writes, in an article entitled 'Disney Comes Out of the Closet,' that Disney has the 'largest lesbian and gay employees organization in the entertainment industry.'" That is a pretty significant claim, friends. That same year Disney also allowed the organizers of Gay Day at Disney World to portray Mickey Mouse and Donald Duck as homosexual and Daisy Duck and Mini Mouse as lesbians. [See this Southern Baptist page for a lot more details on the grubby side of Disney.]

Why would we be surprised that they would take advantage of the present moral climate of the U.S. and openly include sodomite material? 

More - why do Christians think it their responsibility to "save Disney"? Is the American church so far gone that it cannot live without Disney? In a word, Yes. In two words, Many are. I know that the Southern Baptists took a stand against Disney some years ago, and good for them. They should. I don't know where they stand on it today. But, many individual families in the Lord's church have embraced this company as "family friendly" and as producing "good, clean stuff" that is "safe for kids to watch." This in spite of the fact that various people have been pointing out subliminal messages and images in Disney's productions for years now. I don't even feel it necessary to offer examples. If you really want to know you can do a search on YouTube. It's there. Then get out your own movies, if you have them, and check to see if they are there. Don't say you weren't warned. [In 1999 3.4 million copies of The Rescuers were recalled because the animators had slipped in a briefly seen image of a naked woman. Source. But it wasn't "slipped in" in Fantasia.]

I think it would be interesting to look at all the verses in the Bible that command us to force our beliefs on worldly organizations.



Yeah, that's right. There are none.

I do not entirely understand why, but many American Christians (and probably some others as well), have gotten the idea that it is their job to moralize and sanitize the world without getting it saved and washed in Jesus' blood. I believe this idea comes from what Jesus told us about being the salt of the earth.

Matthew 5:13-16 Ye are the salt of the earth: but if the salt have lost his savour, wherewith shall it be salted? it is thenceforth good for nothing, but to be cast out, and to be trodden under foot of men. Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid. Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick; and it giveth light unto all that are in the house. Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.

"Salt preserves," we are told. "We should be making our presence felt in the culture." The problem here is that we don't actually have any examples in scripture of Jesus Christ or His apostles forcing Christian standards upon the heathen world as this interpretation implies. Lights shine. They don't force others, who are not lights, to shine. Hello? And, our shining before men is supposed to be good works which will bring glory to our Father in heaven. This really doesn't sound to me like trying to force unsaved, ungodly, unregenerate people to live by Christian standards. It sounds like making the truth manifest.

2 Corinthians 2:14-16 Now thanks be unto God, which always causeth us to triumph in Christ, and maketh manifest the savour of his knowledge by us in every place. For we are unto God a sweet savour of Christ, in them that are saved, and in them that perish: To the one we are the savour of death unto death; and to the other the savour of life unto life. And who is sufficient for these things?

Salt has a savor as we saw in Matthew. Our savor in this earth is supposed to be making known the knowledge of Christ in every place, both to the saved and the perishing. We will be the savor of death or life to them depending on what they are. It is not about making "them that perish" act like they are saved when they are not. It is about showing them Jesus Christ.

2 Corinthians 4:5-7 For we preach not ourselves, but Christ Jesus the Lord; and ourselves your servants for Jesus' sake. For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ. But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us.

God has given us His light in our hearts "to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ." There is that thing about spreading the knowledge of Jesus again. That is what we are supposed to be doing. Not "making Disney good again." (You can't make something "good again" that never was good to begin with.)

Ephesians 5:5-6 For this ye know, that no whoremonger, nor unclean person, nor covetous man, who is an idolater, hath any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God. Let no man deceive you with vain words: for because of these things cometh the wrath of God upon the children of disobedience.

So, that pretty much covers the issues with the Disney corporation. And, God's wrath is already on them.

Ephesians 5:7-9 Be not ye therefore partakers with them. For ye were sometimes darkness, but now are ye light in the Lord: walk as children of light: (For the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness and righteousness and truth;)

In order to not partake with them, you need to separate from them. This means dropping Disney. Yes, you can get along with out it. Think how many Christians have over the centuries. This is not a "special case." You're supposed to be in the light of the Lord now, not darkness. That means walking as children of light - without the darkness. (And, truly, that is something we all need to think about in various areas of this life with so much "dark" entertainment and activities available these days!)

Ephesians 5:10-13 Proving what is acceptable unto the Lord. And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them. For it is a shame even to speak of those things which are done of them in secret. But all things that are reproved are made manifest by the light: for whatsoever doth make manifest is light.

Stop and think about this. Do you think that it is acceptable to the Lord to watch cartoons that have  idols, devils, demonic activity, nudity, etc. like Fantasia? What about all the other Disney productions which have various types of subliminal messages about sex and evil in them? (Hopefully you have informed yourself on that.) Do you think stories that are based on fairytales with plots that include magical powers are acceptable to the Lord? I know there are people that will immediately answer, "I don't think He minds." You don't think He minds that you are filling your children's minds with Satanic things, with nudity, with evil? Have you talked with Him about that? Or is He your spare tire that you only take out and use when you have a problem in life? Do you insist on making Him think what you want Him to think, or are you really willing to give up things that are contrary to the light - in other words dark things? Because you can't make dark things light by just saying they are light. John 1:5 And the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not. 1 John 1:5 This then is the message which we have heard of him, and declare unto you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all.

Ephesians 5:14-17 Wherefore he saith, Awake thou that sleepest, and arise from the dead, and Christ shall give thee light. See then that ye walk circumspectly, not as fools, but as wise, Redeeming the time, because the days are evil. Wherefore be ye not unwise, but understanding what the will of the Lord is.

You see walking in the light of Jesus Christ is about understanding what the will of the Lord is. It is about being wise and redeeming the time in these evil days. It is about walking circumspectly and not sleeping when we should be spiritually awake.

Now, someone may say that Ephesian 5:10-13 talks about reproving the unfruitful works of darkness and making manifest with the light, so that means we should rebuke Disney and other like companies. May I just point this out? Reproving is not the same as forcing those who are in darkness and under the wrath of God to act like they are in the light. The only way they can ever be truly full of light is to be full of Jesus Christ. And, that, friends happens one soul at a time through conversion; by individuals coming to the Light of the world and so becoming children of light. We can expose the works of darkness, but cannot make them light if the people who are involved are full of darkness.

Matthew 6:22-23 The light of the body is the eye: if therefore thine eye be single, thy whole body shall be full of light. But if thine eye be evil, thy whole body shall be full of darkness. If therefore the light that is in thee be darkness, how great is that darkness!

Someone might ask how light can be darkness. Well, 2 Corinthians 11:14-15 says, And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light. Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also be transformed as the ministers of righteousness; whose end shall be according to their works. If the light that is in them is darkness, how can you expect to make it light? You can't. And if you do compel them to imitate light without salvation you are only making the darkness greater because you have not introduced the true light - Jesus Christ - into their darkness. To use another metaphor from Christ, you whitewashed a sepulcher. It may look nice and shiny on the outside to you, but inside it will still be full of darkness and death.

2 Corinthians 6:14 Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness?

I realize that what we are talking about here is not really a yoking together for most people in the usual sense. But, what communion hath light with darkness? How can we mix the things of darkness with the things of light and expect good results? I have observed people who were obsessed with Disney movies and had incorporated a lot of things into their lives, and one could almost guess it by looking at how their daughters presented themselves. They looked like they were trying to be Disney "princesses." What do you suppose those young ladies thought their value was in? Their pretty faces and clothes, their fluttery manner and sparkly jewelry? I wonder sometimes.

But, of course, even worse than the message of female value is the idolatry and demonic aspects that we've already mentioned. Why have Christians thought that these things were OK to have in their homes for generations now?

John 3:17-21 For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved. He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God. And this is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil. For every one that doeth evil hateth the light, neither cometh to the light, lest his deeds should be reproved. But he that doeth truth cometh to the light, that his deeds may be made manifest, that they are wrought in God.

Jesus Christ came to save the world, yes, but He came to do so for "he that believeth," not to save corporations, nations, companies, para-Church organizations, publishers, etc. He that does not believe is "condemned already" and the wrath of God will come on him as we saw already. Men love darkness. They LOVE darkness. Reason - their deeds are evil. When men or a company produce a cartoon like Fantasia or a film like Beauty and the Beast, it is because they are in darkness and they like it there because their deeds are evil. They don't want to come to the light of Jesus Christ, in fact they hate it because they don't want their evil deeds to be reproved (there's that word again). But, those who want to do truth will come to the light, the Light of the world, because they want to be in His light and do His works - good works that glorify God in heaven.

Once years ago my family was visiting in the home of another family. There was a book case full of VHS videos (back then) and one of my brothers went over and looked at them. The lady spoke up and said something like this, "Oh, are you looking at my sin collection?" They were mostly Disney productions. She knew there was a problem with Disney, but she was violating her conscience and keeping them because she liked them and she wanted them. She professed to be a Christian, but she wanted a little dark corner in her life "just for fun." She was willfully keeping a dark spot, and over time we saw that grow and affect her family in ways that were not good.

Christian friend, we can't willfully harbor the things of darkness in our lives and not be affected by it. James tells us in James 4:4 Ye adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God.

It is really disturbing that so many Christians are determined to be a friend of the Disney corporation despite their manifold darkness. To say, "We can't get along without Disney," to act as if it is a shocking and heinous thing that they would do what they have always done, is in essences saying that this worldly, dark company is your friend.

Will you be the friend of Disney? Will you hold on to them at all costs? Will you invest your time and effort and emotion into trying to force a company that is full of evil to act a little bit Christian so that you can salve your conscience and keep telling yourself that it's OK?

1 John 1:5-7 This then is the message which we have heard of him, and declare unto you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all. If we say that we have fellowship with him, and walk in darkness, we lie, and do not the truth: But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin.

I am not going to go out on a limb here and say that anyone who loves Disney is not saved. But, these verses truly make me fear for some people. All I can say is, "Thank God for 1 John 1:9, If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness." I dearly hope that more Christians will put this to work for themselves regarding their love of Disney. It should never have had a place in our affections.

Colossians 3:1-3 If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God. Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth. For ye are dead, and your life is hid with Christ in God.

Romans 13:12-14 The night is far spent, the day is at hand: let us therefore cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armour of light. Let us walk honestly, as in the day; not in rioting and drunkenness, not in chambering and wantonness, not in strife and envying. But put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make not provision for the flesh, to fulfil the lusts thereof.

graphics by Mary Stephens