I Do Love Movies…BUT

I DO LOVE MOVIES…BUT             By: Pastor Dorothy Wilcox

You know already that I love movies; practically all movies.  I am familiar with lots and lots of movies.  And often I notice Christian themes (even when they might not have been intended!).

 You may have seen commercials already for a new movie coming in October and starring Nicholas Cage.  He says he made this movie because his brother is a pastor and really wanted him to do it.  I’m disappointed because I often like Nicholas Cage.  This time, though, I won’t see his movie.  It is a remake of “Left Behind.”

I have no credentials to evaluate or recommend (or not) a movie based on any of the usual criteria:  acting, directing, etc.  But in this case, I can tell you this:  it is complete fantasy.  It is not at all Biblical.  OK, some names may sound the same, but they are not portraying anything that is based on the Bible.  It is definitely is not telling the book of Revelation or anything in it.

 The whole idea of “The Rapture” developed around the time of the Civil War, and although the one person who developed the idea was European, the majority of people who embraced the theology were (and still are) Americans.  All major denominations (including, for instance, Roman Catholic, Lutheran, Presbyterian, Methodist, Episcopal,…) reject the concept as non-Biblical.

 Yes, we believe that Christ will come again.  We remember that every week when we proclaim our faith in the words of the Apostles’ Creed, a faith statement that unites us through generations and around the world through many cultures.  We believe that when the world ends, Christ will come to judge the living and the dead.

 We believe that Christ’s suffering on the Cross is enough.  There is nothing that we need to do to secure our salvation, our reconciliation to God.  And there is nothing that we can add to what Christ has already done. 

 Do you hear the good news?  We are broken.  We have strayed.  We have fallen short.  We cannot do better, and we cannot save ourselves.  And we don’t have to.

 Jesus loves you so much that he would rather give up his own life than to give up on you.

 See the movie if you want.  But don’t let it rattle your trust and confidence in the God you know or in the promises that God has made to you. 

 But if you want to find your relationship with God, if you want to explore your faith, if you want to embrace the gift of new life, don’t rely on bad theology in a movie.  Follow the faith practices you know:  pray.  God is listening; remember to listen to God, too, not just make a wish list; read the Bible, the Word of God (and in general, stay off the internet for interpreting what it means); worship so that you recognize God’s action in your life and respond; give so that you see beyond your own wants and your own self-sufficiency; serve. put your faith in action to make a difference in the world, even if it is just one person’s day.

 God loves you and Christ redeemed you.  Don’t let a movie take that away even for a moment

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