About the author: John Kirkwood is a son of Issachar. He is a Zionist, gun-toting, cigar-smoking, incandescent light bulb-using, 3.2 gallon flushing, fur-wearing, Chinese (MSG) eating, bow-hunting, SUV driving, unhyphenated American man who loves his wife, isn't ashamed of his country and does not apologize for his C ... [read 's FULL BIO]

God's Not Dead

God’s Not Dead is an alarm for unconverted sinners and a wake-up call for slumbering Christians and that is why it is worth seeing, and seeing more than once. This is the movie for which the mall-churches should be buying out theaters and holding small groups; but you won’t see the world or the worldly church embrace God’s Not Dead because, frankly, it confronts them.

With only 780 screens the Pure Flix movie God’s Not Dead shocked Hollywood Box Office gurus by pulling in 9.2 million and a fourth place overall finish this past weekend. Raking in just under $12,000 per screen average, God’s Not Dead just may be the most popular top 5 movie that you’ve never heard about. The popularity of the film is being spread as the Gospel should be, by word of mouth from people who have seen it and been authentically touched by it.

Without the big budget or celebrity splash surrounding Son of God, this collaboration between Pure Flix and Freestyle Releasing has Variety and Entertainment Weekly hailing it as the “Biggest Shocker” and “Biggest Surprise” of the weekend. But this movie is a success for a different reason: It’s not ashamed of the gospel of Jesus Christ. On numerous occasions it shares that gospel in a direct and dramatic way.

Gods Not Dead 2

Starring Kevin Sorbo [Hercules] and Dean Cain [Superman] with appearances by Willie and Korie Robertson of Duck Commander and the Christian rock band Newsboys, the low budget movie challenges status quo dismissal of true Christianity and defuses many of the stereotypes. When college freshman Josh Wheaton is challenged to defend his belief in God by his atheist philosophy teacher (Sorbo), he finds that his struggle transcends the classroom and forces him to choose between discipleship and his most cherished relationships.

The plot was inspired by real life cases of religious bigotry on college campuses, 40 of which are listed in the credits at the end of the film. And to all those who take their faith seriously, there are some very familiar moments in this film. The unanswered question that the movie poses is “What do Communism, Atheism, Liberalism and Shiny-Happy Christianity have in common?” The stunning answer is that they all, with differing levels of hostility, oppose the true disciple of Christ.

I don’t imagine that this movie will cause legions of unbelievers to walk the sawdust trail, although I do think that many may come to Christ as a result of the seeds planted, but the true effect of God’s Not Dead will be on the life of believers. It is an absolute challenge to true discipleship. Many are missing that point. Not only is the gospel shared on multiple occasions but more than once we are reminded, “Whosoever therefore shall confess me before men, him will I confess also before my Father which is in heaven. But whosoever shall deny me before men, him will I also deny before my Father which is in heaven.” – Matthew 10:32-33

In a time when Churchianity’s biggest names are busy denying the real Jesus and apologizing for his Word, God’s Not Dead stands out as a challenge to the embarrassed believer to let the dead bury their dead and to take up his cross. And this is why it will continue to be provocative.

The controversy over the movie Son of God came from within the Christian community for its social justice theme and its watering down of the gospel, while the movie was embraced by everyone from the ADL’s Abraham Foxman to the High Priestess of New Age possibility, Oprah Winfrey. The controversy over God’s Not Dead will not come from within the Christian community at all; it will come from Muslims, atheists and embarrassed believers. And with a plethora of reviews coming out about the movie Noah; the buzz about God’s Not Dead is poised to push it to a second eye-popping weekend as it expands to 1100 screens.

“I have not posted comments about Noah because I haven’t seen the film,” wrote Todd Starnes of Fox News. “That being said, I’m a bit perplexed by ‘celebrity’ Christian leaders who are saying that Christians have a responsibility to see Noah – even if it’s contrary to the Bible. And a number of folks who’ve seen the film say it strays greatly from the Bible’s version of events. One ‘celebrity’ Christian leader went so far as to say Christians would hurt their witness in Hollywood if they did not support the Noah film. That’s a load of fertilizer, friends. If all these pro-Noah Christian leaders are so passionate about Hollywood making faith films – why aren’t they promoting God’s Not Dead?”

David Steiger, co-host of the Uncommon Show agreed: “Tell me, why it took a low budget group of virtual no names (apologies to Sorbo and Cain) to make so great a Gospel proclaiming movie, when Son of God could have and should have had that covered already? Where were the mega-pastors on this one – buying out theaters, telling their flock to skip church and go to the movie? Where are the “small group” books? Why are the mega-shepherds silent on what is easily the boldest Gospel movie in the last decade? I guess it doesn’t fit their narrative.”

These men may be too gentlemanly to tell you what everyone is thinking: that the makers of God’s Not Dead did not pay for “spontaneous” acclaim. They didn’t offer a taste of the profits to “Christian mouthpieces” that would push their movie; like construction companies offering Tony Soprano a kickback to get a piece of the Esplanade. It’s called integrity and yes, there are still Christians, even prominent ones that have it. And that is why you don’t hear the big names pushing this movie, there’s no Mammon in it for them.

Most of the “supporters” that I have talked to about Son of God had not seen the movie and yet they still scolded me, though I had seen it, for critiquing it. The supporters of God’s Not Dead have seen the movie and are going back multiple times and bringing others with them. And that’s how I feel as well.
God’s Not Dead takes on all comers – the new Atheists, Islam and even Communism. And it does so without a sniveling apology for our existence as believers or for Christ’s exclusive claims. How so very faithful. How so very refreshing.

If I had any criticism of the movie, it’s that some of the characters are almost a caricature; too severe in their nature and forging a thread worn stereotype, but they do have some basis in reality: Kevin Sorbo could have been portraying Ted Turner, a bitter man turned hostile to God because of the excruciating experience of losing his sister at a young age. Fortunately, it doesn’t get in the way of the most daring Christian movie since The Passion of the Christ.

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  • sha49tn

    When main stream Hollywood is involved in any Biblical movie, it’s usually not worth watching. (The exception was 10 Commandments) Believers who have read their Bibles, SHOULD know how the Bible tells these stories. However, nonbelievers don’t read their Bibles, so are ignorant when it comes to how things actually were told. So they CAN be led to believe a lie. Also some lukewarm Christians can be fooled into believing it also. From what I’ve read about this movie is as far removed from the truth as it can be. And, the same can be said about Roma Downey’s 2 movies. They had to ‘gussey’ them up, to make people want to see them, so they took license with the truth. This is where people get led astray.

    • txborntxbred

      I think you are talking about ‘God’ s Not Dead’, and if you are then you are far from the truth. I have been a Christian since age eight and attended church all of my life on a regular bases including Sunday School and still do. I found this movie right on the money, just like the author of this article wrote. I have two children that are in college now and while one hardly has any problems with professors being bigoted toward Christians (he attends a public university in Texas) the other one deals with it all the time (she attends a private supposedly Christian ‘mini-Ivey League’ in West Virginia). Her professors are from Harvard, Yale, Brown, etc. and even some from Cambridge and they don’t mind stepping on toes, if the student is Christian, but make sure they never step on any of the Muslims toes (for their beliefs)…quite a double standard. She received a B in Bible class because she wouldn’t back down when the professor wanted everyone to admit (in writing) that the Bible never says anything against the acts of homosexuality. She showed him verses in the OT and NT that of course showed this was not true; the acts are a sin. He said those verses didn’t really say that…how do you argue with such illogical nonsense. She took the hit, with the B, but told us that she just couldn’t let the Professor get away with it…there were a few students that took the hit with her.

      This movie was great and many college kids are seeing it, as word of mouth passes it on. For too many of them, they are living out the plot of this movie.

      • I agree wholeheartedly with all you posted here. Just want to point out that when you said “on a regular bases” the proper word to use would’ve been basis.

        This is by FAR the best and most important Christian or Faith based movie I have ever seen. http://www.kjv-truth-ministries.org

        • txborntxbred

          Well, I guess if we are wanting to be so grammatically correct…your sentence, “Just want to point out…” should have started, “I just want to point out…”

          • I don’t think so. Using or not using I in what is clearly a self referential statement seems optional and even superfluous to me at times.

            I never said I never make errors and I MAY be in error here but don’t think I am.. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Self-reference

            however, either way, since this was a conscious choice to leave off the I it is in no way comparable to improper word usage.

          • txborntxbred

            BASES is just the plural of basis…Merriam-Webster…meaning basically that I attended church often.

          • True enough the plural of basis IS bases but that still doesn’t seem correct within this context. There is no need for and in fact it would be incorrect to use the plural for basis in this context. “On a regular basis” is not the same as saying “so I have valid bases for”…

            Oh well. Doesn’t change the fact that I agree with you.

          • txborntxbred

            I see why your name is preacher…preach at people much over your stupid, mis-conceived notions?

          • Wow. No, my name is preacher because I am a preacher of the gospel and my family has a ministry site. http://www.kjv-truth-ministries.org My misconceived notions? I point out error wherever I find it and in PARTICULAR amongst Christian Conservatives as Liberals will use ANYTHING to try to make us look wrong, uneducated etc etc.

            I wasn’t a personal attack. I said repeatedly that I agree with you and for that I get a snarky and sarcastic comment? I can only imagine how you treat those with whom you actually disagree. Good day and god bless.

          • txborntxbred

            However, when I pointed out the error you made, you didn’t want to accept my critique and just blew it off (as a typical lib. would do). I showed you the word bases was the plural of basis and why I used it, which was far more valid then you not accepting my critique of your grammatically incorrect sentences. Just because you want to correct someone, when no correction is needed, and then not accept the obvious errors you were making, shows a strong lack of decorum on your part, and agreeing with my premises does not eliminate your lack thereof.

          • Are you a college English Professor? Why would I accept your critique without some evidence to demonstrate I was wrong? I already admitted you were right about the plural of bases and I will still admit that simply from a sentence construction basis I may have been wrong not to use I but I can find no evidence that I is actually needed in a self referential sentence (and word doesn’t show it as wrong either) nor is my sentence lacking a subject or predicate…

            Seems that you’re the one violating decorum by refusing to even entertain the notion you might have made a mistake.

            You wrote.. “I have been a Christian since age eight and attended church all of my life on a regular bases including Sunday School and still do.” When I pointed out that on a regular BASIS might be the proper usage you tried to justify it by saying you meant the plural of basis. Okay, well let’s unpack that. let’s substitute a synonym for basis as in frequency of occurrence like regularly.. “I have been a Christian since age eight and attended church all of my life on a regularlies including Sunday School and still do.”

            POT? Meet kettle? Your usage of bases was incorrect as it just doesn’t make sense. Even Word says “A noun and the words that modify that noun must agree in number. Some nouns can be used in either a singular or a plural sense. In these cases, consider how you are using the marked noun before choosing a modifier.” when asked about using bases and suggests on regular bases as the more correct potential usage.

            This is all useless disputings since you will not reason with me. I can ADMIT That I am sometimes wrong. I don’t think I was, and you SAYING I am doesn’t prove it. IF you can show me, as I have tried to do where I was wrong and why I will listen. You will not.

            Good day. If the tenor of your correspondence stays the same I will ignore it.

          • txborntxbred

            Basically you are once again a little liberal moron, as is evident by your continuing to change your argument over and over. Only liberals, I have discovered, do this sort of thing to try and win an argument they are sorely lacking the ability to win. You guys just keep the sands shifting and hopefully something will work to your favor, but this never happens, you just think if you are the last man standing…you win. Well, you don’t win and you never will. Grammar and punctuation doesn’t change just because someone thinks he is a know it all. So, do not post to me again and I will warn others to stay away from your low educated drivel.

          • You bear false witness and lie. I am a Conservative Christian who has never voted Democrat in over 20 years.

            Ooh, my typing a lower case g is “proof” I am not a Christian and I am the one lacking in education?

            I would challenge you to read some of my posts or visit http://www.kjv-truth-ministries.org to see if you could find ANY evidence I am a liberal or not a Christian.

            Why on Earth would I encourage people to go see God’s Not Dead if I were a liberal?

          • txborntxbred

            These are your errors from some of your post.

            Okay, well let’s unpack that. let’s substitute (no period after that)

            POT? Meet kettle? (This should be one sentence)

            Even Word says “A noun and the words (need a comma after says)

            when asked about using bases and suggests on regular bases as the more correct potential usage (yes, and bases was the word I used in my original post, so Word agrees with me)

            I don’t think I was, and you SAYING I am doesn’t prove it. (this sentence cannot stand alone…I don’t think I was…what?)

            IF you can show me, as I have tried to do where I was wrong and why I will listen. (once again, this sentence cannot stand alone…If you can show…what? A comma is needed after the word…why, and IF should be…If)

            Ooh, my typing a lower case (Ooh should be Oh)

            As you can (hopefully) see, I can show many errors that you are making and there are errors throughout your post. Maybe next time, when you agree with someone, simply tell them this and forget trying to nitpick, especially when you are wrong. As a preacher, you could use a little humility.

          • Okay,

            Basically, you’re right and I am wrong no matter what? Got it. It would’ve been good if you had told me that you were unreasonable and not open to ANY discussion or critique of what you write from the start.

            I rarely encounter someone who thinks free speech means you’re free to AGREE with me and that’s all.

            It is a sign of incredible immaturity. YOU WERE WRONG in your use of bases. You will not admit it nor will you argue the point honestly or provide evidence that your usage was correct.

            Instead, now you want to tell me I shouldn’t nitpick and then proceed to not only DO that yourself but then lie some more?

            You took my words out of context to pretend I had an improper stand alone sentence… In context and directly quoted I wrote “I can ADMIT That I am sometimes wrong. I don’t think I was, and you SAYING I am doesn’t prove it.”

            You’re intellectually dishonest, take things out of context, refuse to consider you might ever be wrong, name call, bear false witness etc.

            God calls us to peace and part of that is to be honest and open to any fair discussion. When one party is not conducting themselves honestly and is demonstrably NOT open to receiving any instruction, we need to be able to understand that our efforts and time are better served elsewhere.

            I will pray for both of us that the Holy Spirit would guide our hearts and minds to be in subjection to him and to humble us that we might be able to accept criticism without becoming defensive and to settle all things peaceably.

            God bless and good day. I will not respond again as there is no point.

          • txborntxbred

            Basically, you are just boring…yawn!

    • Gods’ not Dead is NOT a “Hollywood” movie pretending to be Christian. It is a fictional tale but is 100% accurate and correct scripturally. I challenge you to see it as it is by FAR the Best Christian or faith based movie i have ever seen. http://www.kjv-truth-ministries.org

  • Richard Diaz, Sr.

    When people don’t know the Bible and then see one of these Hollywood so-called religious movies, they don’t have a clue as to what is right or wrong on the big screen. Years ago, when that horrible movie came out called, “The Last Temptation of Christ” friends of mine were going to see it to see what all the fuss was about. I then asked them, do you know your Bible well? Their answer, “No, not really.” I replied, “Then, you won’t know that what your looking at on the big screen is right or wrong.” They agreed, I had a point.

  • Since the TV series called “The Bible” decided to rewrite the script, it’s no surprise that Son of God shows us ‘another Jesus’ than the One in Scripture. I need to see God’s Not Dead to get the bad Hollywood out of my mind and be refreshed. I had quite enough of the New Age and dabbling in the occult before God showed me his Truth. Thank you Jesus for being our Redeemer. We can pray for discernment for all those who might be deceived by the counterfeits, and for wisdom and grace to lead whoever will to the Truth.

  • Barbara J Power

    The real truth of the Gospel may be different than you think.