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DVD Review

I apologize for not being more active, but not having other reviewers or books to review, it's been a little difficult. However I want to let you know about this wonderful DVD "God's Not Dead." Working at the library I found it on our shelves and took it home. When I brought it back I raved about it. I wanted to take it out again, but it seems word gets around. It's always on hold for someone else. That's great.

The opening scene is in a freshman college philosophy class. The professor states he is an atheist, and asks that if everyone will sign a paper with 3 little words on it he can dispense of the dust and get to the subject. Those 3 words are "God Is Dead." One student cannot sign that. He is given 3 chances to argue the case of the existence of God before the class.

Fueled by hate on one side and a determined love of God on the other this is not your simple movie. The poor kid researches and goes off on a journey of his own to state his case. The end is nothing short of amazing. I guess telling people stuff like this is one of the reasons I can't get a hold of it a second time. It's really that good.

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May our Lord be with you now and always. Remember, God is in control, even when things look like they're crashing all around you. David

Thursday, October 09, 2008

HIGHER HONOR, by S.M. Kirkland

Day 5. It interesting to me to find individuals in this novel that I have come across just this following couple of weeks. There are those who know they are unworthy of God's salvation, and yet have accepted it because they also know that Jesus has made them worthy by His precious blood on the cross. There are those who have tasted a bit of the "religious life" but haven't really come to understand what Salvation really means. And there are others who truly believe that, because of what they have done, God will not extend His mercy to them.

Let's start with the first group. Michael and Mandy (I wonder if Sue intentionally had both their names start with "M", but that is neither here nor there). Michael and Mandy both know that they are unworthy, in and of themselves, of the love, mercy, forgiveness and peace that God gives. Yet, through faith, they also know that because Jesus took their place, paid the death sentence for them, they were worthy through the blood of Jesus. They found comfort and peace, even in some of the most trying times, because they didn't have to look at their own worthiness, but at the worthiness of Jesus Christ to understand their worthiness to God.

Maybe that doesn't make sense to some of you out there, so let me see if I can state it differently. Suppose you had done something worthy of death, like killed another person, or whatever. And suppose you lived in a country where only the punishment had to be paid, and it could be paid by anyone. Now, chances are not everyone would be jumping up for the chance to die so you wouldn't have to. We all understand that. Our survival instinct, the will to live, is one of our God-like characteristics, something we haven't lost since the fall. We just don't know how to achieve that past this life. So here you are, locked up in some dungeon in a foreign land, waiting only to be put to death. Then one day, the prince of that land comes before the magistrates. He talks with them and finally you watch in astonishment as they put him to death. You can't believe your eyes. Then while you are still trying to get over this, the jailer comes and opens your prison cell. "You can go now." "Go? But I'm to die for what I did, the judge sentenced me to death," you reply. "That sentence has just been paid," he answers.

Sound a bit drastic? There is nothing so awesome as what God did for us. For according to His Law we were to die, everyone of us. God became man in the form of Jesus, offered Himself up to die in our place. When I say "in our place" I mean that in the purest of forms. If you were the only one alive Jesus would still have died for your sins. Why? The closest answer I can give you to that question is because "God is love" (see 1st John 4:8). What I love is that God orchestrated this whole affair to teach us about His love. Look at what happened when Jesus was brought before the multitudes by Pontius Pilate. It had become the custom to release someone, convicted of a crime, because of the coming feast. Pilate gave this crowd a choice, Barabas, or Jesus. They chose Barabas. "What shall I do with Jesus of Nazareth?" Pilate asked them. "Crucify Him!"

You see, just because Jesus died in our place doesn't mean we will be set free. We have to chose Him. These people chose a criminal to be released instead. They said, "May His blood be upon us and our children." I often wonder what happened to Barabas that day. Here was a man worthy of death, standing next to the Giver of Life, and this Giver of Life was willing to die in his place. Don't think for one minute that Jesus was a victim here. Could not the Word of God defend Himself should He chose? Could not the One who spoke and created all that is, in fact, even told the storms to cease in full sight of His followers, could He not argue His case and win? There is no doubt in my mind that had it come down to a true case of litegation and Jesus did not wish to die, He would not have died. In Scripture Jesus tells us, "Think not that any man takes My life from Me." No, Jesus gave His life up freely for all of us, because none of us would be worthy to come before the Father without the payment of death for our sin. Jesus became that payment. Michael and Mandy understood this. They understood that without Jesus they didn't stand a chance, not in this world or the next. So they prayed, they received this gift, and prayed that their friends might also receive this gift. For no one is worthy apart from Jesus. Yet because of Jesus all can be made worthy. How glorious!

David Brollier

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The Writer's Cafe Press
S.M. Kirkland
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Susan said...

It was really hard not to call them M&M! That was a beautiful analogy to salvation, too. I never thought of it like that.

I tried to show them all in different places on their walk. I actually had theme songs for them all to help me find their place -- Michael was "What if I stumble?" by DC talk; Ryan's was "Dive" by Steven Curtis Chapman -- but later I changed it from him jumping in and never looking back, gung-ho, to wanting to be like that, but still struggling with his issues.

Cassidy and Chris had "If you want me to" by Ginny Owens and "Welcome Home" by Shaun Groves because even though they are quiet about their faith, there's alot of work God's doing on the inside. It amazed me when I looked back at the finished copy to see how alike Chris and Cassidy were.

If the sequel works the way I envision it, two of the five could have "Leaving 99" by Audio A as their theme song. I hope I have some rockers here to figure that out :)

Susan said...

ok, i'm experimenting

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