God’s Not Dead: One Offensive and Embarrassing Film

Since Christians are very self-righteous and self-assured that they have the 100% complete truth, not open to debate, and everyone else who disagrees with them is wrong, you would think they would be able to convey this vast superior knowledge they hold into the art of filmmaking, right?

Yet every Christian movie is full of character inaccuracies and contrived scripts that pull the viewer into one agenda – offering very little differing opinions and beliefs – and when they do show counter beliefs, they have to downplay and whitewash them to make the Christian viewpoint look superior by comparison.

There are objectively good atheist movies. Religulous by Bill Maher is good filmmaking, for example. Yet Christians, who claim to have this vast superior knowledge and moral greatness, can’t even convey this knowledge they claim to hold into film. If a Christian can’t even disseminate how great their knowledge is into a film without it coming off as contrived, corny, and campy – how do they expect to have any credibility when they claim it’s the truth in reality?

“God’s Not Dead” is a recent Christian propaganda film I’ve seen.  It is hardly an exaggeration to say Superman is a more realistic film.  The film sets its bias early on, never looking back, and paints its “atheist” characters as lost hopeless.

Kevin Sorbo portrays an “atheist” professor, for instance, who’s really not an atheist at all, because he later claims to “hate God” because he lost his mother to cancer at a young age.  Here, the movie wants its viewers to think that all atheists hate the idea of a deity existing, rather than a sincere, indifferent disbelief in one.

When Josh, one of the professor’s freshman Christian students, refuses to admit God’s Dead in the classroom,  the professor gives him an ultimatum – he must convince the class God exists via a series of presentations in front of the classroom.

Josh then acted surprised and shocked when the atheist professor showed that he had read the Bible by reciting scripture.  This movie assumes or wants its viewers to think that all atheists haven’t read the Bible before. Then, the shocked student, seeing his professor skilled in biblical verse – assumed something bad happened to him in the past to drift away from Christianity.   The reality is, many atheists have read the Bible before and are well versed in it; not necessarily for Christian purposes, but because it’s a piece of popular historical literature with vast influence on a Westernized society, like the Constitution, the Declaration of Independence and the Emancipation Proclamation.

That aside, certainly a philosophy professor, regardless of religion or lack thereof, is expected to be highly scholarly in not just the Bible, but the Koran as well.

And what is with Josh’s overly fancy powerpoint presentations?  We are supposed to believe Josh put together a powerpoint that detailed in his spare time? And then when the professor had a rebuttal to Josh’s point, prophetic Josh conveniently had the answer awaiting on the next powerpoint slide.

Also, philosophy professor would encourage open discussion in his classroom. He would never say, behind the scenes, that the kid is making a fool out of himself, but a real professor would likely commend Josh’s efforts and bravery for sticking to his ideals. No professor would act as unprofessional as Sorbo did in this movie.

Perhaps the most offensive scene in the film for me is when the camera pans to the back of a woman’s car, and viewers see environmentalist and “meat is murder” bumper stickers.  Then, this woman is shown to be lost, hopeless, and in need of faith.  Apparently, as far as this film is concerned, if you’re vegan and care about the environment, you must be morally bankrupt and on the wrong path in life.  Because everyone knows, it’s not the rapists and child predators society about whom society has to be concerned, it’s those dog gone hippie tree huggers.  As a vegan myself, I found this to be quite offensive.

Christian propaganda films try to hard to convey what they believe is the truth by lessening the reality of the world.  In order to make their beliefs seem superior, they have to lessen the intensity of alternative opinions and beliefs.

Perhaps Richard Dawkins should write the atheist dialogue for “God’s Not Dead 2” rather than a bias Christian screenwriter with a preconceived agenda.  After all, if what they claim is the truth, they have nothing of which to be fearful.

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One thought on “God’s Not Dead: One Offensive and Embarrassing Film

  1. I doubt that you were surprised by the dearth of quality Christian films. Creativity is not something that they value. Slavish devotion to the faith is what gets valued by these guys. Besides, we have Bill Maher, and Richard Dawkins, who made that excellent two parter for the BBC which in 2006 was re-released as the ‘God Delusion’. Who do they have? Mel Gibson, Kirk Cameron and bad films from lousy novels (I’m thinking the “Left Behind series”) Even going way, way back- what did we get? The Robe? The Ten Commandments? They really did not make for particularly great cinema.

    And you are right, no decent professor would have acted in that way. Good professors want spirited debate and critical thinking and don’t expect their students to just swallow whatever they say to be swallowed whole. He’d commend the kid for putting up a fight on the subject. Nice post.

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