"Easy A" and Christianity

A portrayal of the Gospel from an unlikely source

Last week, I went with a couple of friends to watch "Easy A."  It's not my type of movie to begin with, and I knew ahead of time that they would bash Christianity, but I went anyway because these were people I care about and I wanted to spend time with them.  So I went.

True to my expectations, this movie horribly bashes Christianity.  At the same time, I can't say that people using the "Christian" label haven't given the secular world good reason to bash us.  I'll get to it eventually, but an analysis of the portrayal of Christians in the movie is simply too easy of a target.  I'm sure there will be plenty of angry bloggers approaching the subject (not to mention very valid feminist issues), and I don't want to add to the fray.  Yet.

I want to do something different.

I would say "spoiler alert" at this point, but the movie is so emphatically predictable that there really isn't anything that I can say that you wouldn't be able to gather from watching the trailer and having a working knowledge of high school movies.  But for those of you who plan on watching (which I don't particularly recommend)- consider yourself warned.

The protagonist basically lies about having sex with someone, and the one lie snowballs into the creation of an entire alter-identity for herself in which people pay to have her lie about having sexual acts with them.  Her lies are only known "underground," but the rest of the school actually thinks that she has been doing these acts, even though she hasn't done them at al.  Along the way, she lies for the token gay guy, the token school "loser" and the like.  They get better reputations as her reputation gets worse- a fact that the movie harps on.  The turning point occurs when a token member of the Christian club comes down with syphilis and blames it on her (though in actuality he has been sleeping with the token school counselor who is married to the token English teacher.)  The protagonist first accepts the blame to keep the counselor's and the teacher's marriage in tact (he's her favorite teacher), but she later reneges.  She tries to undo all her lies- the gay guy comes out, but the others won't budge.  As a result, she produces a video diary (which ends up being the movie).

Of course, there isn't a 1:1 correlation and please don't AT ALL take this as a recommendation of the movie, but I think the protagonist (in an incomplete way) can be an example of what Christ did for us on the cross.  He took our sins and our shame and made them His own.  Not only that, but He also took our consequences.  He was ostracized in our stead.  He died in our stead.  He experienced the wrath of God in our stead.  He took on our adultery and homosexuality* and lies and murderous thoughts and gossip and even our religious hypocrisy- and took it upon Himself.  And we didn't deserve that.  Not only did we not deserve it, but our standing before God increased because of Christ's loss.  But though He had the choice (OK, some people don't believe this, but work with me here), he didn't renege.  He bore it all, and He bore it to the end.  He was the only one who could do that for us, and He fulfilled that role.  And because He did, and because the Father accepted His sacrifice, He's now alive, and those who trust that He did this for them can live with Him.  That's really good news.  That's the Gospel.  That's- dare I say it?- an "Easy A" for us.

*by which I mean lust and the actions that arise from it.  I'm using it in the same way as "adultery"