This post does NOT contain spoilers or specifics about scenes from the movie NOAH.
About a year back, I remember being at the movies with my family when the previews began to play… I was mesmerized by the scenes flashing before my eyes, and then an intense montage of water, earth, sky, animals, and Russell Crowe flashed through followed by all bold letters that just said NOAH. Oh man was I excited… And I was continually excited for the release of this movie until my Christian friends on Facebook and Twitter began to tear the movie apart limb by limb.
NOAH is a movie that is obviously loosely based on the real Bible story about a man whom God saw to be blameless and so he chose he & his family to be responsible for building an ark and beginning life on the earth all over again. Now, we believe that Noah existed because of artifacts and possible ark remains that have been found that point to this being a real story. As a child, I was always fascinated with Bible stories, but it wasn’t until I was older that my heart toward them changed. One day the stories became less “myth and legend,” but, indeed, they transformed into real life happenings that I could learn from even 2000+ years later. God still works, teaches, and speaks through these stories, ALL OF THEM, and none are left untouched by the hand of the Father who wants to share His history with us.
Back to the movie… Noah is easily one of my favorite stories in the Bible, but I can’t say that this movie holds a candle to the story from Genesis. Now while the movie was highly riveting and brought me close to tears at points, the story strayed so far from the Bible that I left the theater feeling that, while the movie shares the simple plot-line and name of the Bible story, it is not the same story. I have watched plenty of movies whose plot-line is an exaggerated telling of a story like this: boy likes girl, boy chases girl, boy marries girl, boy & girl fight, they have a baby, and so on… IN THE SAME WAY, Noah was an exaggerated retelling of this: man has a family, higher power tells man to build boat, rains come down, floods go up, new world…
I find that I am left in a weird place after seeing NOAH. I am contemplative over symbolism throughout the movie, I am sad that it was so outlandish, yet I am entertained by the storyline, but most of all, I am so excited to see God work in the midst of all the reactions to the film.
On Twitter, I follow a pastor that I’ve heard speak a few times, Craig Gross, who wrote a great article that’s posted on the Fox News Opinion site. “A message for my fellow Christians:” As I read his article, I found my self nodding along, saying “yeah, you tell ’em.” And then I realized, it’s my job too. While I may not have the platform of 14.8K followers on twitter, I do have almost 300, and I can link this blog post to my Facebook and easily reach my 750 friends there too. My platform may be smaller, but my platform is still a platform.
As a leader with a local ministry that seeks to show high school kids the way to reach the foot of the Cross, I am reminded that this movie will beg questions from some of them. My friends that are anywhere from 14 to 19 will be asking about what they saw in this movie, and it is my responsibility to show them to the truth. To show them Genesis 6 thru Genesis 9, where the accounts of Noah are written in scripture, and tell them about the promises God gives us in this story. I hope that they will yearn to know what’s truth and what’s exaggerated. I hope that all people will yearn to know this truth: God’s heart was so broken by the actions of the people he created in His image, that He chose to start again with the only man on earth who was righteous, blameless, and walking with Him, Noah. God made a promise after it was all over that he would never flood the world again (Genesis 8:21-22), and that is what a rainbow represents.
While I could continue to write about how beautiful the Biblical account of Noah is, I wont. Instead, I will pray that you will choose to read the scripture for yourself and hold it in your heart.
The movie NOAH, while it is very loosely based on scripture, was a great story. But that’s all it is, a story. A man took the basic storyline of a Biblical story, took away some pieces, and replaced them with other things. All movies are built this way. You take apart one story to build a new one…
If you are still planning to go see the movie, here’s what I would suggest you do… Think back to the story that you know from scripture, go see the movie, and before you talk too deeply about it… READ THE SCRIPTURE. Dive into the truth and let God show you what you can take away from it.
If you don’t want to see it, that’s fine… but until you have a knowledge that’s NOT secondhand from your friend’s Facebook post & all the comments… don’t engage in conversation about the movie. Do not use other people’s rants about this movie to form judgement. Please, for the sake of other Christians, don’t go bashing the movie or the actors or the director. How can you lead people to the Cross when your words leave destruction in their wake? It doesn’t work like that…
I am really pleased to have now worked through all my thoughts about NOAH and I hope you have too.
Christians, we have a chance here, and in the upcoming days with other movies that will be released that are either heavily or loosely based on scripture… We have a chance to show people the magic of what the stories truly say. We can lead people to Jesus just by being kind, loving, and open about it. Don’t react harshly, don’t jump to conclusions, don’t bite people’s heads off because they went to see a movie… Let’s just talk about the truth.
If you have questions, if I got something wrong, if I hurt your feelings, or if you just want to talk… post a comment below.
I read all the comments and would be happy to respond to you.