“Now if Christ is proclaimed as raised from the dead, how can some of you say there is no resurrection of the dead? If there is no resurrection of the dead, then Christ has not been raised; and if Christ has not been raised, then our proclamation has been in vain.”
[I Corinthians 15.12-14, NRSV]
Every year, Hollywood releases faith- based films. To be sure, they are not attempting to share the gospel of Jesus Christ with the world but to gain profits from a Christian audience. They use our faith to make financial gains. We are a segment of their market. Lent and Easter are just a slice of the pie.
Risen is just one of the films being viewed in theaters across America. This does not count as a Bible study as the storyline is not a sermon. The writers, directors and actors are not only using the Holy Scriptures in their production but imagining what will make for a great action sequence and interpretations of how this story would occur today with the use of green screens, stunt actors, make- up artists and casting directors.
I am reminded of a seminary colleague who wrote a paper on the life of Malcolm X based on the Spike Lee film of the same name. She didn’t want to read his autobiography; it was too long. So, she is included Shorty, a character played by Spike Lee, in her paper. But, there was no Shorty in the real life of Malcolm X and her grade reflected this inaccurate depiction.
I wonder how many of us are drawing conclusions and submitting conversations about our faith based on depictions and not the accounts recorded in the Bible. Yes, it is a long book. But, getting the facts wrong will cost you more than a bad grade. Note: There is no Shorty in the Bible.
Christ is risen! This is not a Hollywood story but a holy story. It is our story and we don’t sit in our seats to watch it. We get up and go out into the world to live it. Christ is risen! He is risen indeed! Christ is risen in us!