Wednesday, April 1, 2015

(Updated) Why I won't be watching the miniseries A.D.: The Bible Continues (And I hope you won't be either)

Two years ago I wrote "Why I am Not Watching History Channel's 'The Bible'. That was the hugely popular, smash-hit television series produced by Roma Downey and husband Mark Burnett broadcast on The History Channel, purporting to show major biblical events from Noah to the Crucifixion of Jesus. In ten hours.

The series writers "took many artistic liberties to compress the story lines while hoping to remain true to the story. A public relations manager for the project described the liberties to me as “extra-biblical but not contra-biblical," CNN Blogs reported.

What people fail to understand is extra-biblical IS contra-biblical. Anyway, we don't need to rehash all of that, except to remark that the duo's movie theater version of biblical events called "Son of God" was equally atrocious. Now the duo is back with a continuation from 2013's televised cable series. This time the series will be on regular broadcast TV, on NBC. It will begin on Easter Sunday.


In 'A.D. The Bible Continues' the story presented to the world has admittedly even less content taken from the actual bible, and admittedly is even more human-centered rather than Jesus/Gospel focused. The following quote is from an Associated Press story whose title is 'A.D. The Bible Continues goes beyond the biblical epic'.
This new series, however, goes for a more gritty and human approach that tries to understand the characters as humans caught up in the politics of the day. Only about half of the material comes from the Bible, with the rest from historians of the period.
Downey said,
"If anyone comes to it expecting to see only the Bible, they will be interested to see that we have created a much larger and historic and political contest to set that story in, ... I think what it does it allows you to have a fuller understanding of that story because when you see the oppression of the times that they are living in, when you understand that danger lurks in every alley, and the inhumanity of the times."

So we have already see the following strikes:
  • The show's writers and producers are pagan and not Christian, therefore they have nothing to say to us about spiritual things (1 Corinthians 2:13, John 14:17)
  • They chose to destroy the sufficiency of scripture by adding extra biblical material, thereby 'improving on God', (Genesis 3:1-2)
  • They shifted the focus from Jesus coming to atone for sins to Jesus' sent ones coming to help the oppressed in their inhumanity (WHY are we inhumane? We sin, something the show divorces from the reason for Jesus' coming and the Apostles' going),
 And now this reason:

Feminism

The article reports,
The series has several strong female roles in it, including Leah, the ambitious wife of High Priest Caiaphas (Richard Coyle), who pushes her husband to amass more power.
Phew. I'm glad that the writers rectified what was obviously a glaring omission in the bible of strong female roles and invented a few so we wouldn't have to take up our pitchforks or fire off 'strong' emails. Dorcas, Lydia, Phoebe, Anna, Mary, Susanna, Mary Magdalene, all the mothers who raised the Apostles, Elizabeth (mother of John the Baptist), Candace, Rhoda...etc were obviously either not women (lol) or not "strong" enough for the writers' tastes.

The bible of course records the story of Old Testament Leah. Biblegateway synopsizes her story, "The Woman Lacking Loveliness Was Yet Loyal, Scripture References—Genesis 29; 30; 49:31; Ruth 4:11". Deliberately naming a fictional woman in a New Testament tv show the same as a famous Old Testament saint is duplicitous. I notice that the writers also created a fictional male character and chose to name him Boaz. Doing this sows confusion.

Anyway, the wife of Caiaphas is not named in the bible nor is she even mentioned. The reference is in John 18:13, and only to introduce the fact that Annas and Caiaphas were linked through marriage. That's it. She as not named nor did she have a role in the New Testament, but she gets screen time, unlike REAL women in the bible, who won't get screen time. The quote from the article continues,
The role of Mary Magdalene is also central. While she doesn't quite attain the status of head of the nascent church given her by Dan Brown's "The Da Vinci Code," she is clearly one of the key members of the group as it tries to figure what comes next after the crucifixion.
But here is the revealing reason women are given such prominence in the series. It is sickening and is one of the many reasons I won't watch the show
"Our interpretation is that while many organizations are fronted by men, women were the ones that kept the cogs moving," said Chipo Chung, the actress that plays Mary
Aha. So while the chosen and called male apostles, prophets, and disciples risked their lives, glorified God, suffered and died grisly deaths, these men were only front men while the women did the real work.

So you see, it only takes a moment to read up on the background to the show, investing a bit of time to see what their agenda is. Their agenda is-
  • not to tell the story of the Gospel as spread by the ambassador Apostles and the early church
  • not to glorify Jesus and His monumental work of building the church composed of Jews and Gentiles and enduring persecution and staying strong despite man's puny political machinations,
  • not to accurately and with integrity share the stories of the men and women who laid the foundation of the faith.
Their intent is obviously to:
  • twist the bible to conform to fleshly, cultural, world tastes (Psalm 56:5, 2 Peter 3:16)
  • deny the sufficiency of scripture (2 Timothy 3:16)
  • reduce the message of Jesus from Deity atoning for our sins to nice guy helping the oppressed recover their humanity (2 Corinthians 11:4, Galatians 1:6)
  • confirm feminism and vault women to roles and political/cultural stature that proportionately reduces men in stature (Genesis 3:16)
So? Do not watch. The bible commands it.

I urge you, brothers and sisters, to watch out for those who cause divisions and put obstacles in your way that are contrary to the teaching you have learned. Keep away from them. (Romans 16:17)

PS: Remember, this is the show that Dr David Jeremiah is promoting and broadcasting on his Turning Point channel. On Easter.


UPDATE. And the agony continues-

This Hollywood Star Is Reportedly Set to Play the Apostle Paul in Major Motion Picture
Actor Hugh Jackman, who has starred in a plethora of well-known films, including “Les Misérables” and the “X-Men” series, is set to reportedly add yet another major motion picture to his resume: “Apostle Paul.” Hugh Jackman will reportedly play the Apostle Paul. The faith-based project will center on Saul of Tarsus...Following the announcement, Jackman’s own religious views were given some attention. As noted by the Guardian, he told Parade Magazine back in 2009 that he follows the School of Practical Philosophy, a belief system that focuses in on the power of wisdom, though it appears that he has some evangelical Christian roots. His told the outlet at the time that his father took him to see famed evangelist Billy Graham when he was a child. “[My dad] takes his religion very seriously and would prefer I go to church. We’ve had discussions about our separate beliefs,” Jackman said. “I just find the evangelical church too, well, restrictive. But the School of Practical Philosophy is non confrontational.”

Well he's a perfect person to play the fierce and confrontational Paul.(1 Corinthians 4:21, 2 Corinthians 13:2). Not

13 comments :

  1. Cue the "...but it might make an unbeliever interested in God" comments. I am bracing for that line of reasoning in my circles. *sigh*
    Thanks for another thoughtful post, Elizabeth. I appreciate you.
    Jennifer

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  2. It's hard to imagine how anyone could fail to see the fruitlessness of these films and stay away.

    Except for sheer ignorance. I remember that from when I was a nominal believer throughout my middle-high-school days. I would have undoubtedly gravitated toward these films and watched them, although I wouldn't have been so naive as to fail to recognize departures from the Biblical text. What scares me, though, is the stuff that I wouldn't have been inoculated against, the stuff I wouldn't have recognized for its subtlety, that would have slipped in.

    I'm still shocked, given what I know now, when I reflect, that I once looked favorably on statements such as "all religions have a little bit of truth in them," "Islam is almost just like Christianity," "abortion is acceptable in specific cases," "homosexuality is weird but letting them marry isn't a big deal."

    Stuff that various 'regular people' undoubtedly also believe, in this culture. The scales have yet to fall from their eyes. How I grieve over the vulnerability of the unwise masses!

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  3. I've noticed the song used during the promos is the one written by a homosexal about the loss of his homosexual lover!

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  4. Seems to me if you respect the BIble you would actually capitalize it since it is the title of a book and not a generic thing.

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  5. Then I guess between the errant lower case 'b' and your super-skills of detecting respect vs. disrespect in the heart of Christians far away on the internet you have valiantly uncovered my hidden scorn of His Word for all to see. Good job.

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  6. You know Elizabeth, normally I would agree that generally Christians should avoid things they know in advance are not going to be Biblically accurate. Scripture not only tells us to stay away from evil but to stay aware from even its appearance.

    However, we both know that millions of people will be watching AD and some percentage of them will take the opportunity to ask questions. I just believe that strong and mature Christians like you should watch programs like AD because you have the discernment and the Biblical knowledge to field questions from those who might be influenced by what they see.

    And yes, I understand that it might not be necessary to watch in order to address the false teachings arising from such a movie but it sure would add to your credibility if you are able to say you watched.

    It also would give you an opportunity to address the problems on your blog which could very well be to the benefit of those who might not know enough to ask for clarification.

    I spent a great deal of time witnessing to JW's and Mormons and had I not known what they believed I would not have been able to be an effective witness.

    Anyway, those are my thoughts and I hope you might consider them:)

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    1. That's the sad irony: those with discernment are less likely to be affected negatively by falsehood, but also less likely to voluntarily subject themselves to it. And those who lack discernment and are vulnerable to falsehood also don't know better than to allow it to influence them. A tragedy.

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    2. I agree. I have some atheist friends I know that will be watching this and it is good for us to know how to correct the errors they are seeing in this. I assumed there was a hidden agenda in this series and it didn't disappoint. As soon as the part where Thomas showed up I somehow knew that after he put his fingers on Jesus' wounds he would not say the version from the Bible. Instead of saying "My Lord and My God", they only scripted "My Lord" This is their subliminal way of trying to tell everyone that Jesus was a great teacher or magical guy but not God himself. God bless

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    3. Interesting notion but is it biblical? Do we really need to know everything about everything false in order to reach people with the truth? The gospel is the power of God unto salvation Romans 1:16-17. Not men's logic and reasoning. It is vital to have a solid understanding the truth and some basic knowledge of what the false teachers teach. But you don't have to watch a blasphemous mini-series in order to address all the false. Give them the gospel.

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  7. Not only do movies, books, etc. like these mislead the masses, but definitely can pollute the true Christian as will. I absolutely refuse to subject my heart and mind to anyone that purports that something may have some good in it, and then one can spit out the rest. “Take heed lest you fall”, “abhor what is evil and cling to that which is good”, “a little leaven leaveneth the whole loaf”-these are just a few of the many passages from scripture that come to my mind.

    How many people read Henri Nouwen for example, and then quote him in the affirmative and profess to know and follow Christ alone! I have no appetite for anything that the ungodly propagate in their movies, books, and false sermons!

    Perhaps, to know something about one’s false religion may be found helpful as the redeemed come up along the Lord God in our evangelistic efforts, but more importantly is know Biblical Truth and lovingly proclaiming it. I believe that this is entirely different than subjecting oneself to demonic lies.

    I side with Elizabeth on this one, and only because it is my conviction from my authority - the Bible!

    Remember Mel Gibson’s movie “The Passion”? Like John MacArthur would likely say, I wonder how many people were given a false assurance because some one watched the movie and then “prayed the prayer (easy believeism”.

    Rick
    Metro Atlanta

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  8. I agree. I have many atheist friends who will watch and be curious. There is a satanic agenda behind this series that I need to point out to them. The most glaring line I noticed and predicted was when Thomas says "my Lord and my God". Of course they conveniently left out "my God". This is their subliminal way of trying to convince people that Jesus was a great teacher with some magical powers but he is not God.

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  9. I have been watching the show and I was wondering why they're telling stories that's not on Scripture and in the little times that they do, still don't show what's on Scripture. Then I noticed they kept showing Peter as being the apostles' leader and kept showing Mary which are not biblical, so I researched and found that the producers/directors are Catholic and rely on Catholic 'historians'.. What I got from this is this is Catholic propaganda. I'm afraid the millions that watch this that don't read the actual Bible will think this is what's on the Bible. I just deleted this show from my DVR. The devil is working really hard these days to stray people from God's Word. I just hope and pray people educated themselves before believing what people on tv want them to believe.

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  10. To Gates Collins; in addition to scripture telling us to "avoid the appearance of evil," it tells us "do not give the devil an opportunity." And if we think we can stand up to that which is contrary to scripture because we may be mature Christians, I would remind them of the scripture which reads, "if any man thinks he stands on his own let him take heed lest he stumble." We're told to fight evil with good, not evil with evil and I would suggest, if it's contrary to scripture it's out of the will of God and if it's out of the will of God it is evil though it may be clothed in sheep's clothing.

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