Issue 28 | August 21, 2015

Issue 28 | August 21, 2015



What it is: A new way to experience God’s Word. Beautiful videography forms the backdrop for the words of the four gospels in four feature-length films.

How it’s good: Beautifully made. Has the most historically accurate Jesus yet. Brings the Gospel to life. Appeals to younger generations.

How it’s bad: It’s not!

Why it’s important: Reading words on a page can become boring and irrelevant, especially for generations that grow up with screens, action, and constant change. This project can really bring God’s story to life in a way students haven’t experienced before, which would help them see it as more than words on a page but as a narrative that affects every aspect of their lives.



What it is: Two new “super hero”/anti-hero movies that release in 2016. The first follows DC Comics’ super villains as they become the unlikely heroes, while the second follows Marvel character Deadpool’s transformation from normal man to “hero.”

How it’s good: They have the potential to show that good can come from the unlikeliest places and that one’s past does not have to determine one’s future. Can be a source of really good discussion about good, bad, redemption, heroism, etc.

How it’s bad: They will be very dark movies, especially for comic book hero film adaptations. The lines between “badness” and “goodness” may be blurred. They also bring up questions about what makes someone “unredeemable,” justice, how society should treat criminals, and media’s trend of making the bad guys more relatable.



What it is: A new slang term used to mean “have sex.” E.g. “Wanna come over and watch Netflix and chill?”

How it’s good: It’s not.

How it’s bad: It only means one thing, and it’s spreading through the Internet quickly. If your student is active on Instagram, Vine, Tumblr, Tinder (or any other dating apps), or Twitter, they’ve definitely heard the term.

Why it’s important: Constantly being in a state of FOMO is causing students to stay up late, lack sleep, drive poorly (can’t put the phone down in case something happens!), and live in an unending state of discontent.


Hailee Steinfeld is an 18-year-old actress who has made it big through roles such as Mattie Ross in True Grit, Petra Arkanian in Ender’s Game, and most recently Emily Junk in teen hit Pitch Perfect 2. She recently debuted onto the music scene with the release of her first single called “Love Myself” on August 14. Being touted by some as an anthem for self-empowerment, the song is gaining significant momentum.

A closer look at the lyrics unveils that she is most specifically singing about masturbation. ?“I know how to scream my own name” and “I’m gonna put my body first and love me so hard it hurts” ? are the most obvious examples. In the music video, she wears a leotard emblazoned with the words “Self Service,” while she and others dance in front of mirrors with #LoveMyself etched into them.

Though some might still argue that masturbation and “loving” oneself is a way to empower women to be self-sufficient and independent, this is a far cry from the empowerment that first-wave feminists imagined OR that God offers to us. Being a slave to one’s sexual desires is still enslavement, regardless of whether society condones it. Wherever you fall on the permissibility of masturbation in a Christian’s life, don’t miss the opportunity to talk to your students (especially the girls!) about what it means to truly be empowered.

Discussion Questions

How is this song empowering? How is it actually not empowering? Has feminism succeeded in making women equal in all aspects to men? Why or why not? How does this song support your answer? What does it mean to be fully empowered?

  1. "Straight Outta Compton" R
    Theme: Story of the rise of rap artists Dr. Dre, Ice Cube, Eazy-E, MC Ren, and DJ Yella.
  2. "Mission Impossible: Rouge Nation" PG-13
    Theme: Same as every other MI movie.
  3. "The Man From U.N.C.L.E." PG-13
    Theme: Spies in the 1960s.
  4. "Fantastic Four" PG-13
    Theme: Film adaption of the classic comic book series starring current teen stars.
  5. "The Gift" R
    Theme: Thriller about a mysterious man who won’t leave a couple alone.
  6. "Ant-Man" PG
    Theme: Superhero action.
  7. "Vacation" R
    Theme: Newest installment of the Vacation franchise starring an adult Rusty Griswold.
  8. "Minions" PG
    Theme: Prequel to "Despicable Me". Minions seek a villain for whom to work.
  9. "Ricki and the Flash" PG-13
    Theme: Aging rockstar who gave up everything for her career seeks to make amends with family.
  10. "Trainwreck" R
    Theme: Comedy about a career woman facing her commitment fears.