HOW TO USE THIS GUIDE To love another person, is to see the

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HOW TO USE THIS GUIDE To love another person, is to see the

Transcript Of HOW TO USE THIS GUIDE To love another person, is to see the

The epic musical based on Victor Hugo’s novel is a story of forgiveness, redemption and love. Les Misérables is filled with imagery, symbolism, and timeless biblical truths.
In this guide you’ll explore just a few of the many themes from the film. Use this guide to start a conversation about the issues raised here. Enjoy the conversation!
From the opening scene, we are introduced to the Jean Valjean, a former thief whose future seems bleak. Perhaps the most beautiful and powerful scene of the film is that of his encounter with a priest. You recall the scene: the priest shows great kindness to him, and yet Valjean steals from him. He flees, is captured and returned to the church. Rather than allow him to be jailed again, the priest assures his captors that no theft has occurred; the items in Valjean’s possession were a gift. This simple act of forgiveness empowers Valjean to turn his life around. He devotes his life from this point on to one of honesty, generosity and integrity.
Read: Romans 3.23, 24 (CEV)
“All of us have sinned and fallen short of God’s glory. But God treats us much better than we deserve, and because of Christ Jesus, he freely accepts us and sets us free from our sins.”
Consider what it means to be forgiven, and redeemed.

“To love another person, is to see the face of God”
– Jean Valjean
1. Has someone ever forgiven you for something you thought to be unforgiveable? How did it affect you?
2. Share a time when you forgave someone, and the difference it made. Have you ever withheld forgiveness? What have been the consequences?

The police inspector, Javert, has made it his personal mission to make sure Jean Valjean is put back behind bars for life. Javert doesn’t believe that people can change — once a thief, always a thief. Many times, he comes close to capturing Valjean, but is thwarted, giving Valjean the opportunity to kill him. Yet, each time he sets him free. His need to follow the law is so strong that Javert cannot see any other way to set Valjean free other than killing himself.
Matthew 5.38, 39 (GNT)
“You have heard that it was said, ‘An eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth.’ But now I tell you: do not take revenge on someone who wrongs you. If anyone slaps you on the right cheek, let him slap your left cheek too.”
Discuss this passage in light of the film.

1. While laws in a society are necessary, what did you think of Javert? Did he go too far?
2. Javert’s commitment to the letter of the law kept him from experiencing grace. What is your own relationship with law and grace?

God’s love redeems everything. From God’s love for his people, to a father’s love for his adopted daughter, to love undeserved the film expresses the difference that love makes.
The last line of the film as Valjean is crossing from death to new life is: “To love another person to see the face of God.”
What does this mean to you?
In the film, relationships demonstrate comfort, hope, and selfless love, symbolic of Christ’s relationship with us. The Bible says, “For God loved the world so much that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him may not die but have eternal life.” John 3.16 (GNT)
Valjean risks being shot by Javert to save the life of his future son-in-law Marius.
How does it make you feel knowing that God gave up His only Son so that you could be redeemed and be with Him?

1. When the priest frees Jean Valjean from certain imprisonment, he shows God’s love for someone “undeserving.” Have you ever experienced, or given, this kind of love?
2. Jean Valjean rescues Cossette from the innkeeper and his wife, and demonstrates to her what a true father’s love looks like, giving everything to keep her safe. Is there someone you can show sacrificial love to?

ConversationGuidebroughttoyouby: © Copyright American Bible Society 2012

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*Theimpactofmovies,televisionandtheateroncultureisprofound,shapinghowmillionsperceivesocialandmoralissues.ABSbuildsresourcesformainstreamreleasestofacilitateculture-reaching conversations,invitingviewerstousethemespresentedtoexploreaneworrefreshedrelationshipwithChrist.Thisshouldnotbeperceivedasdirectendorsementoranyparticularmediacontent.