3.09.2004

I have many friends who have seen "The Passion" (or, as my good friend Jay calls it, rather disparaginly, I believe, "The Movie"). We talk about the film a lot, perhaps too much for some.

I have long since tired of the hype and the marketing, particularly among evangelicals. This week alone I received three marketing emails in relation to The Movie. I'm tired of the marketing and the hype, yes. But I don't know that I will ever tire of the conversations I've had and heard others have had after seeing The Movie. It's fascinating. Some hate it. Some love it. No one finds it entertaining. Some find it "life-changing" (heavens! even non-Evangelicals!) and others don't know exactly what to make of it. Whatever we make of it, we can't ignore it. My guess is, like it or not, The Movie will go down in history as some kind of turning point for spiritual experiences in film. It's great art (quibbling aside) driven by passion and faith and less by money (Am I naive? I don't think so.)

One of my favorite stories is of a theater full of invitees for a special evangelistic screening. The film kept breaking, apparently, and a couple of rows full of Pentecostals stood up and began rebuking Satan for his blatant attacks against the showing. A few rows displaced from the charismatics was a row of students from a comparative religions college course. They were cussing. Imagine, prayers against the devil and cursing all at once. What a show! That pretty much sums up all the responses to The Movie. You hate it or you love it. But hey, it's art. Isn't that what art should do?

Some aren't happy that it doesn't tell the fuller story of Christ. I say, let the film be the film. It ain't Scripture, after all. No one said it should be. I mean, it was never intended to be the whole picture, just one very important slice of the story.

Besides, if we get nothing else out of this film (and I think we will), thank GOD it has finally pushed all the attention off of The Da Vinci Code! Can anyone say, "Amen!"?

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