"End of the Spear" Strikes to the Heart!
By Jason Carlson
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I just returned home from taking 26 students from my youth group to see the movie "End of the Spear". WOW! This is a great film and I highly recommend that you go and see it. It is a powerful, powerful movie!
Prior to seeing the movie I will admit, I had some reservations. I had heard some bad reviews, especially from some highly respected figures in the Christian community. I had heard that the movie doesn't clearly present the gospel. And I had heard that Christians should boycott the movie because the lead actor, Chad Allen, who plays the role of Nate Saint, is a practicing homosexual. Now, after seeing the film, I can tell you this, I am sure glad I didn't let those reviews and admonitions dissuade me.
For those of you who are concerned, let me assure you, the gospel is clearly presented in this film. No, they don't break out the Four Spiritual Laws, but throughout the movie it's hard to miss the gospel message. We hear the missionaries explain to their families why they're risking their lives, because the Waodani people "aren't ready to go to Heaven and we are." We watch as the missionaries explain "God's carvings" which reveal that "God sent his Son and the people speared him, but he did not spear back because he wanted them to live well." We witness the Waodani tribe come to "walk God's trail". We see the unconverted Waodani warriors pondering the change in the lives of their converted brothers and sisters; one even says, "It seems he's possessed by a Spirit and it grows stronger in him every day." Yes friends, the gospel message is clearly presented in this film.
As for some people's concern over the fact that the lead actor, Chad Allen, is a homosexual, let me make a few comments:
First, I do wish that the filmmakers had chosen a different actor to play this part. Why? Because I'm afraid that this actor's homosexuality is keeping many Christians from seeing an amazing movie; and even more tragically, it may be keeping them from taking their unsaved friends to this powerful tool for communicating the gospel. I wish the filmmakers had recognized that many Christians would have a problem with this, and that it had the potential to damage the impact of this great film.
However, in spite of the fact that this actor is a homosexual in his real life, God still uses him in this movie to clearly present the gospel message through his portrayal of Nate Saint. And as I thought about my brothers and sisters in Christ who have criticized the casting of Chad Allen due to his homosexual sin, I began to wonder, if he's not qualified to play this role then who is? I mean, if it's not a homosexual actor, it's going to be an actor who struggles with lying, or substance abuse, or cursing, or lusting, or pride, or greed, or you name it the list of sins that our actors struggle with is as long as the list of sins that the average churchgoer struggles with. I think we need to cut the filmmakers some slack here and realize that as Martin Luther once said, "God can strike a heavy blow with a crooked stick". Friends, I don't agree with the sinful lifestyle of this actor, and neither does God, but that doesn't mean that God cannot use him. God is too great to allow a sinful medium to hamper the spread of his gospel.
So, let me conclude by sharing these encouragements: First, go and see this movie! There is a lot of trash being shown in our theatres today and that will only change as Christians send a message to Hollywood by turning out to buy tickets in support of movies that promote our biblical values. Secondly, take your non-Christian friends to see this movie! This movie is an awesome tool, a wide open door for introducing someone to the gospel. And lastly, as you watch the movie, remember to pray for Chad Allen. Pray that God would use the influence of this film in his life to draw him out of his sinful lifestyle and to his Savior. After all, the same God who liberated the Waodani from the sins of revenge and murder surely has the power to liberate a man who struggles with the sin of homosexuality.
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