Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Silly Symphony: Music Land (1935) (Ephesians 4:1-16)

In 1935, Walt Disney studios released one of their best shorts in the Silly Symphony series. Music Land was a variation on the Romeo and Juliet story, a tale of two island nations that were defined by their differences. The Island of Jazz was defined by its bouncy beat and populated by brass instruments and ukuleles. The Land of Symphony, on the other hand was populated by stringed instruments living among the pipes of organs. Separating the two kingdoms was the Sea of Discord.

The children of the leaders of these two countries fall in love and cause a war of misunderstanding, but are nearly killed in the conflict. The near catastrophe causes the monarchs to see the silliness of their differences and they create a bridge of harmony to connect the two cultures.

This is a great illustration of the message of Ephesians. God’s plan, the mystery revealed in the new covenant, was always to reunited humanity together in Christ. This unity is not one of uniformity, but an understanding between all the rich variety of cultures and peoples in the Kingdom of God. It is especially poignant in using music to illustrate the need for tolerance, since the church has always tended to create walls of separation around musical choices. This is not the only danger area among God’s people, but one of the most visible.

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