Christian Life

The Deception of Inception

I can’t remember the first time I saw the movie Inception, but I know it was some years ago, and, at that time, I remember thinking it was a decent movie, good for entertainment. I can’t recall if I’ve watched the movie again between then and
now, but I did sit down to watch it again for this blog series.

I know we’re supposed to be looking for ways we can see Christ in this movie, and I hope to be able to point to Him with this blogpost. That being said, in watching Inception this time, I was deeply unsettled. Something within me was disturbed from the very outset of this viewing, and I didn’t understand exactly what it was until sometime after I finished watching the movie all the way through. I even told my wife about my unsettled feeling and how difficult it was for me to watch the movie all the way through. In fact, it was so difficult for me that it took me most of a day to actually make it through to the end, as at certain
times, I would have to stop watching and get up and do something else to allow myself to be free of whatever it was that was disturbing me. It wasn’t until the next day, as I sat with the Lord, and specifically asked Him, why I was unsettled by the movie that I understood. “Father,” I said, “I am deeply troubled by this movie, yet I don’t understand why. Will You show me what about this movie is troubling me, and help me to understand why?” And just like the faithful Father He is, He opened my spiritual eyes and ears and began to show me the reality of this movie.

This movie is a deception from the very beginning.

We first come into the movie through what we learn is one of the character’s dreams, meeting Cobb and a couple of his team members, along with a gentleman who reveals that he is actually considering them for a job. Corporate espionage is the job, with one man being the “target”, but we don’t really find out much about him until later. A good portion of the movie is spent learning about dreams, what Cobb and his team does, watching Cobb train a new “architect” and bring on a “forger” to help ensure the team is able to do the job. Planting an idea in someone’s mind in such a way as to make them believe it is actually their own original idea, this is inception. But it isn’t an easy thing to do, and, as we find out later in the movie, a person can even be trained to protect their subconscious to be less vulnerable to such attacks.

As the movie continues, the viewer is sucked into the storyline, and eventually finds himself hoping the team Cobb put together is up to the task, rehearsing the plan along with the team to ensure everything is covered, and nodding in agreement as the team works the “idea” down to the simplest form so it can be planted in the subconsciousness of the target. And this is why Inception, the movie, disturbed me to my core. From the outset, the viewer is lead through this story in such a way as to believe that Cobb and his team are actually the “good guys”, the ones we, as movie watchers, should be hoping will succeed in their scheming, planning, plotting, deceiving and essentially bringing ruin upon another man and his real life hopes and dreams.

Saints, that is how things of this world operates. Every day we are bombarded by lies, deceptions, manipulations, schemes, and misleadings, all in an attempt to bring about confusion, destruction, and cause us to doubt Reality. Oh, but Christ, our Reality, is completely other than this world! Every day the mercies of our Lord are new! Every day He is loving and faithful. Every day He working all things together for Good for those who are in Christ Jesus, called according to His purpose.

Isaiah 5:20
“Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil; Who substitute darkness
for light and light for darkness; Who substitute bitter for sweet and sweet for
bitter!”

It is said the people who have the job of finding counterfeit money are trained by studying real money to such a degree that they can spot a counterfeit as soon as it is placed in front of them. It is not because they study counterfeit money, because counterfeit money is always being changed and produced in different ways. Instead, these people have spent their lives knowing real money, and they know it so well that a fake can be spotted right away.

Now, I know movies are designed for entertainment purposes, and I’m not saying this movie is “the devil.” But what I am saying is that as a follower of Christ, His life will never lead anyone to call evil good, substitute darkness for light, or sweet for bitter. It was unsettling to me to remember that when I previously watched the movie, I was hoping Cobb and his team would be successful in their plan, and that I didn’t have the slightest bit of concern for their “target” who was having to endure all of the deception, manipulation, and attacks they could throw at him.

This time around, as I watched it, the counterfeit was apparent to me from the outset of the movie. The deception was plainly out in the light and no longer had the ability to deceive. The thing I noticed though, is that I didn’t do anything to bring it out into the light. I was just sitting down to watch a movie for this series on the blog. The difference was knowing Christ in a way that I had not previously known Him. In a real, tangible way. Making time to be with Him, to know Him, to behold Him, to call on Him, to be in relationship with Him so that He may increase and I decrease. This was the difference. And in knowing Reality, the counterfeit was easily recognizable and no longer had the ability to deceive.

Hebrews 12:1b-2a
“…let us also lay aside every encumbrance and the sin which so easily
entangles us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, fixing
our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith…”

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