This last weekend we had a Pirates of the Caribbean movie marathon night for our high school group and it was a lot of fun! We ate lots of junk food, stayed up late, laughed, and played pirate pictionary. I really like the great cast of Johnny Depp, Orlando Bloom, and Keira Knightly.
There was, as there are in many movies, certain themes and quotes that really stuck out to me as I watched these movies with students. One of them was the idea of basing the salvation of the people in the movie on their works. In the first movie, The Curse of the Black Pearl, Commodore Norrington says of Captain Jack Sparrow, “One good deed cannot redeem a man for a lifetime of wickedness,” to which Sparrow retorts, “Though it seems enough to condemn him.”
Redemption is a major plot line in many movies, but it was interesting to me to see how much of the redemption throughout these Pirates movies was based on the work of the whole group or individual person’s achievement. While I would say that in Christian theology that the work of salvation is enacted by God changing and transforming the human heart by his love and grace through the faith confessed in Jesus Christ by individual people, we must remember that. We must remember to continue to preach a gospel of grace and love through faith in Jesus Christ rather than resorting to a moralistic or works-based approach because that is biblical (Eph. 2:8-10). While it is true that our decisions matter in this life, it is also true that nobody is beyond God’s redemption and that we should always make a point of sharing the grace and truth of the gospel with all of those around us so that some may believe and be saved.
Another good review of Pirates: