God’s Not Dead

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After the wife rented this movie and said she really wanted to watch it, I was admittedly a bit reserved about watching it. Not that I’m against religious movies, but that for the most part they seem a bit slow, a bit corny and the production is usually a bit sub-par. In other words, not very enjoyable to watch.

The problem is that movies dealing with religion usually don’t have very much action. Why is that? Simply put, the action to decide to follow Jesus is usually cerebral. So you get shots of actors trying hard to look like they are making a very important decision. This is really difficult to pull off successfully. Whenever you are thinking hard about something, what is your body doing? Just sitting there, not moving much other than maybe a furrowing of the brows, a few twitches of your lips and quite probably a few tears. In other words, watching someone decide to follow Christ on film is usually like watching grass grow. Boring!

However, after settling down to watch this movie, I was surprised that the time flew by so quickly. Very engrossing movie that really makes you think. The corniness factor was very minimal, and even then it was used to set up later scenes. The production was actually quite good. Very professional looking, which for a movie that was shot on a budget of only $2 million, shows that the producers got quite a bit of a bang for their bucks.

Secularists are going to condemn this movie as propaganda, in fact the only review of this movie on Imdb.com is a view that is clearly upset. Then again, I wonder if the reviewer actually saw the movie.

You know when a movie made by Christians is about religion, it’s going to demonize secularism. It makes out that Morality is entirely exclusive to Christianity and that without God, there is no point in being moral, which is just ridiculous. It makes every non-Christian look either evil or stupid, which is just insulting. It is just propaganda, no way around it, it’s trying to make Christianity look perfect when it isn’t and it’s trying to make secularism and any other religion look evil and immoral. It’s almost like this movie was made Christians who knew absolutely nothing about their own faith and of other beliefs. It’s a new low for cinema, it’s upsetting to think that this movie was allowed to be made.

Notice the last sentence of the review. “… it’s upsetting to think that this movie was allowed to be made.” To me that’s rank hypocrisy and even more so because the reviewer basically accused the movie producers of being hypocrites. Secularists, atheists and anti-theists continually harp on being able to do whatever they want to do. But when a thought, a deed, a movie contradicts that notion, they are upset that it was even allowed.

What makes this movie work and is pretty upsetting for secularists is that the producers have obviously done their homework on atheist views. But the point of the movie is not to convince atheists that they are wrong, but to show that there are choices that each of us has in life. It doesn’t push that you HAVE to be saved, but only that you have the choice to do so. That’s called free will, which to me is an important part about spirituality and Christianity.

The Sunday after 9/11, I was in an adult Sunday School class and naturally the topic was the Twin Towers. People were still in shock and questioning how God would allow such a tragedy and evil to happen. I was relatively new to the class and had not spoken up before then. After listening to quite a few questioning people, I felt the need to point out that God let’s things happen because he gives us a very important power. The power of free will. Was I a smart man back then? Absolutely not, I just used what I had learned from Alcoholics Anonymous about choice. When I stopped drinking, I regained the power of choice which if you have ever lost that power, it is invigorating to regain it.

The movie, God’s Not Dead, actually portrays the freedom of choice quite well. Not every character in the movie chooses to follow God. They aren’t shown being thrown into the pits of hell for not choosing God or shown that their life goes completely to hell either. Simply that they chose not to follow God. For that, I really liked this movie. Too often religious movies forget about the importance of choice. This movie did very well in emphasizing it.

Whether you are a die-hard Christian, an agnostic, an atheist or just someone who doesn’t take any side, give this move a shot. You may be pleasantly surprised. Your choice!