Friday, March 28, 2014

"Noah" the Movie

When I heard that there was a movie about to be released about Noah and the Biblical account of the flood I thought, fantastic, what a wonderful opportunity to declare not only God's judgment upon sin, but also the grace of God's deliverance. My excitement was short lived. From all indications this film is nothing more than another display of Hollywood's contempt for God and His Word. I have no plans to view this movie, which for some, denies me the right to speak about it. Actor Russell Crowe has referred to those who criticize this movie as "stupid." I will risk coming under this label. I don't pretend this to be a review; only some statements on how our culture is continuing its slide towards secularism and the denial of God's right to reign, or as Robert Bork described in the title of his book almost 20 years ago, Slouching Towards Gomorrah.

In fairness, the producers of "Noah" do not pretend this to be a Biblical movie. Director Darren Aronofsky has stated that "Noah" is "the least biblical biblical film ever made." Then why make it? The answer is twofold. One, in order to make a lot of money, and two, to deny our accountability to God. Apparently, in this movie God is not bringing judgment upon humanity because of their sin and wickedness, but because of their abuse of the environment, over-population, and perhaps the eating of meat. Actually, this isn't surprising. As Christians we shouldn't expect Hollywood to understand all of the spiritual ramifications of God's Word. They will often miss the significance of God's redemptive purpose. For example, "The Passion of the Christ" glorified the physical suffering of our Savior while failing to portray the greater transaction as Christ came under the wrath of His Father. The words, "My God, My God, why hast Thou forsake Me" cannot adequately be expressed by bleeding flesh on film. Still, the movie tried to express the Biblical account. "Noah," on the other hand, does not pretend to seek Biblical accuracy. It goes far beyond the "artistic license" the film claims in its advisory. It is a denial of the very essence of God's judgment upon the sins of humanity. It also denies the beauty of God's grace in His transforming work upon sinful men. The Biblical Noah is described in Hebrews 11:7, "By faith Noah, being warned by God about things not yet seen, in reverence prepared an ark for the salvation of his household, by which he condemned the world, and became an heir of the righteousness which is according to faith." Peter refers to him as "a preacher of righteousness." Aronofsky's portrayal of Noah is apparently less than a description of a preacher of righteousness. And, oh my goodness, talking about artistic license. Instead of Noah and his sons building the ark, Aronofsky has the ark being constructed by giant rock creatures who are supposed to be fallen angels. And to this add Tubal-Cain who is leading an army to hijack the ark for his own survival.

OK, the critics are exclaiming, "It's just a movie." Christians are again being described as "intolerant" or well, "stupid." We are being told to lighten up, "this isn't supposed to be a sermon." On the other hand, the Bible speaks with authority which must be given all due attention. Its words are not to be changed in order to appeal to the masses. I hope few Christians view this movie. What are we willing to sacrifice in order to be entertained? Do we need to be entertained by those who make a mockery of God's Word and deny God's demand for holiness?

No comments: