Published on September 27th, 2007 | by Alex and Brett Harris

Powerful Gospel Skit

IMPORTANT UPDATE: A spirited discussion has sprung up in the comment section regarding the theological accuracy of the skit. This is good. We did not do our job providing appropriate commentary and so we are blessed to see our readers displaying more discernment than we did.

If we had a chance to do things over again we probably would still have posted the video but with the clarification that it is flawed — just like any human presentation of the Gospel can be flawed in its emphasis.

We would encourage you to use the same discernment when watching this skit that you should be using in evaluating any movie, article, book, etc. Abhor what is evil; hold fast to what is good (Romans 12:9).

We believe that the “good” and “true” parts of this skit are what impact our emotions so powerfully when we watch it. The strength and victory of Christ are what move you to tears, not the distressed arm-waving.

Starting at the 1:48 minute-mark we believe the gospel is presented in a powerful and largely accurate way. Jesus does die for the girl’s sins before she begins running to Him. The video clearly shows Him standing as if nailed to the cross and then falling to His knees in death.

The girl throws away the gun and begins fighting her way to Christ only after He begins to steadily draw her to Himself — arm-over-arm — in an inevitable tug-of-war. In our opinion this sequence “makes the skit” and was the reason we chose to share it with you.

We have seen many evangelistic skits but this one is special. Please take the time to watch it and then share it with family and friends. If you are not a Christian please take this opportunity to understand what Jesus Christ offers you. If you have already experienced the saving power of Christ, be reminded and inspired and moved to tears all over again. May God bless you all!

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About the Author

are the co-founders of TheRebelution.com and co-authors of Do Hard Things and Start Here. They have a passion for God and for their generation. Their personal interests include politics, filmmaking, music, and basketball. They are both graduates of Patrick Henry College in Purcellville, Virginia.



  • http://scia.wordpress.com Paul

    Thanks! Looks great, watching as I speak. Thanks for the link.

    Paul :)

  • Pingback: Gospel Skit « Blog of Dan

  • R.M

    I was really inspired by that evangelical skit… It made me think of a verse in Hebrews, where it says ‘…and without the shedding of blood there is no remission for sins…’ (Perhaps paraphrased a bit:) … My favorite part was when the girl, desperate and ready to commit suicide, threw the gun and tried to return to Jesus. When Jesus stepped in and later redeemed her, I felt overwhelming gratitude for what he also did for ME…. Anyway. Thanks for posting the skit… It was great! … On a sidenote, being somewhat new to this blog, I am really impressed– REALLY impressed with the character and maturity of Brett and Alex, and everyone else involved… This blog is spectacular, and I want to share it with some of my friends …

  • http://www.homeschoolblogger.com/bedazzled Amanda Bush

    That is great!! I have seen this video before. The message is so powerful. I have some people in mind that I can share this with. Thanks for posting it! God Bless!
    Amanda

  • Naomi

    Wow, that DID make me cry. So beautifully portrayed!!
    Thank you Jesus!!!

  • mo

    that is a powerful video. i was moved to tears by the end. Christ’s amazing love for us far more vast than we can ever know or describe, yet this preformance manages to capture some of that infinite mystery in a way that touches my soul. it’s amazing. i’ll have to show it to my family and friends.
    thank you, alex and brett, for posting this. what an encouragement!

  • Kelsey D.

    That was amazing! That would be a very powerful skit to do at my youth group. That is just so moving! Thanks so much for posting it!
    In Him,
    Kelsey D

  • http://chaliceofwonder.blogspot.com Becky

    My friend just emailed me this video a couple days ago . . . really good and very moving. Thanks!
    Becky

  • http://www.freewebs.com/the-twin-place-k Elisabeth Gruber

    This is such a strong reminder that we need to be so so so watchful that we do not get distracted by worldly things…but it is also an image of hope… if we are in that bad place, Jesus is right there to welcome us back with protecting arms.

  • L.E. Fiore

    Tears of joy rolling down my face. What a beautiful picture of God’s mighty, saving, beautiful Grace!

  • http://www.hannahsblog.jesusredeemed.us Hannah Michelle

    Wow…I knew I was going to end up in tears if I watched this! I’ve seen several different videos of this skit, and it gets my heart every time. The girl fighting to get back to Jesus is such a real portrayal of my own desperate cry to God against the distractions and temptations of the world…”You’re all I want, You’re all I need.” And Jesus not only calls with forgiveness and love, but fights the enemies who seek to destroy.

    Amazing love – how can it be?

  • http://www.maidenofhonor.blogspot.com Tai Sophia Polczynski

    That IS an excellent portrayal of our sinfulness and God’s redemption. Thanks for sharing.

    ~Lady Tai

  • http://www.elisabethartblog.blogspot.com Elisabeth T.

    Oh, my mascara is just running down my face, that was such a moving presentation. I cry every time I hear that song, but with the skit…wow. Is it from Bethel Church in Redding? I know the song is. Thanks for posting it.

  • Lindsey M.

    WOW! That’s an amazing, incredible, powerful and phenomenal skit!! A group from my church that went on a short term mission trip to India performed one for us almost exactly like that and I really enjoyed!! It’s fantastic getting to see it (or one very close to it) again. Thanks for the post!

  • DeeDee

    hope I don’t put a damper on this, but I’ve seen this before as well, and I see the beauty of it….but there is something that profoundly bothers me. That is Christ’s reactions on the side. He looks fretful and helpless….eventually He proves strong, but there is a lack of sovereignty in this skit that is bothersome to me. I have never visioned Christ on the side putting his hands on his head and looking up in a, “Oh, my gosh, what am I gonna do.” way that is portrayed here. And, I don’t believe the Bible portrays Him that way either.

  • Stephanie K.

    At first, I was struggling to get the allegorical picture, but when I began to understand, I was blown away. God’s grace is amazing. When we push aside the things of the world to press through to him–there is true peace. It kind of reminded me of the woman with the issue of blood, who had to push her way to Jesus. Often the closer you get to him, the fiercer the opposition, but what is on the other side–Him–is more than worth it. Whether we are pushing to get to him for the first time or just trying to get to him in the midst of our daily schedule and struggles, he is there waiting…..and he is all we’ve ever wanted or needed.

  • Matthew Waugh

    That was an awesome skit thanks for putting it on

  • Hannah Joy

    Every time I have seen this skit it has been at a point in my life when I really needed to be reminded of Christs everlasting and amazing sacrifice and Love! The part that makes me cry every time is when she finally stops trying to redeem herself and gives it up to him to save her, so true and simple, but hard to do! Thanks for posting!

  • Elisabeth

    Even though the skit was beautiful and once again, brought me back to the cross, I have to agree with DeeDee. It troubled me how they portrayed Jesus looking helpless like that. God is sovereign. Nothing anyone does, or doesn’t do, can change His plan. If that were true, he would not be the same God portrayed in the Bible. Does that make sense?

  • Lindsey M.

    I hadn’t really noticed it before but I completely agree w/Deebee’s point. The version I saw the “encouraging person” was portrayed as either an Angel or a Christian mentor. That worked better. I don’t think Christ is sitting and fretting while we go through the trials in life.

  • Jessie U.

    Though I think that it is an incredible and moving skit in many ways, I have to agree with DeeDee, Elizabeth, and Lindsay M. It seems like Christ is wringing His hands, wishing the girl would come back to Him…when she finally decides (on her own) to come back to Him, only then does He fight off the ones attacking her and finally reign victorious.

    Wish I could wholeheartedly say that I love it, but the fact that Jesus isn’t sovereign in the skit really troubles me.

  • Jordan Diann

    That was amazing, I went from shivers to tears in a matter of seconds. Thank you so much Alex and Brett, for sharing it with us. I can’t wait to share it with my friends.

  • http://jeffreyjr.net Jeffrey Hendricks, Jr.

    WoW! That was really good, despite the slightly erroneous depiction of Christ….
    What is the name of that song, and who sings it? I think I’ve heard it before, but I don’t know what it’s called.
    -Thanks
    jeffrey

  • http://www.hannahsblog.jesusredeemed.us Hannah Michelle

    DeeDee and everyone – Perhaps a better way to portray Jesus would have been as more grieved and longing instead of helpless, which He definitely isn’t! God IS sovereign, and yet He allows us free choice and doesn’t force us to come until we choose, but I believe He longs for us to come/return. (“Yet the Lord longs to be gracious to you; He rises to to show you compassion.” Is. 30:18)

    Just my thoughts. Alex & Brett may wish to address this better.

  • Kendi

    that is so awesome that you posted this video!
    I saw it about a month ago and posted it myself on my blogs I loved it so much!
    It’s a great picture of what Christ does for us.
    I think this video can really touch lives.

  • Megan Liz

    Man, that was really something! I’m crying now as I write. How awesome God is! Thanks for posting that, Alex and Brett. I really needed it right now.

  • http://unrelatedramblings.blogspot.com Sam

    I was also struck by the somewhat helpless depiction. However, when the girl does finally turn back, notice that it appears to be by Christ’s strength – he is shown as pulling a rope, pulling her to him. When he lets go of the rope at the end, to face the demons of sin himself, she collapses and is unable to continue. So I think that overall the emphasis on God’s power is there.

  • Stacie Eddy

    Wow! That was truly powerful! Thank you for sharing Alex & Brett!

  • Mark

    Note by Admin: We have since discovered that this comment was a joke by someone poking fun at the Rebelution and the Modesty Survey. Pay it no heed. :)

    I liked this video a lot. A little too much actually. I felt myself being tempted every time the girl turned around in her jeans. I do not know what to do, I love the message but I can not help but be tempted.

  • http://scia.wordpress.com Paul

    I agree with Mark on some counts, eg. the clothing of some of the participants wasn’t modest.
    I also agree with DeeDee. It’s not right that Jesus sould be fretting about our situation because He can do all His holy will. That can be the case though if that man is a mentor/older Christian.

    Even so, the video as a whole is wholesome and I’d definitely recommend it to my friends (same as I do the rebelution :D ). Thanks again for sharing, Alex and Brett :)

    Rating: 8/10 :)

  • http://poetforgod.diaryland.com Crissy Parker

    OH MY LANTA! That is so ironic that you just posted that because my friend Sha sent that to me a couple weeks ago (and she is the dance director at our church youth group), and told me she was going to talk to our youth pastor and worship pastor about performing that… and they just gave us the okay to do that! So sometime this year, we’re going to be doing that skit at our church! Isn’t that crazy? But amazing… have you ever seen the one “Locked in a Cage” by Skillet? Our church has done that one for many years also and I know that global expeditions performs that one a lot on their mission trips…

  • http://poetforgod.diaryland.com Crissy Parker

    Also – in reply to what many have said… YES God is sovereign… but at the same time, He does care about us and what we are going through. He longs to help us, but we have to let Him. In this skit, she has pushed Him out of her life and that is why it’s portrayed the way it is… God IS sovereign – but He gave us free will, He’s always going to be there even when we turn away. He cares about us and He longs to help us, but we have to let Him…

  • Lauren

    Wow……I like it a lot. It makes you think.

    A great music video on God Tube is Letters from War. I cried both times I saw it.

  • http://www.homeschoolblogger.com/Christsinstrument Sheila

    Very interesting! Thought provoking and a very good reminder of Christ’s sacrifice. My Mom made a good point though, we shouldn’t be leaving our youth with in that state of ‘Let’s stay and listen to rock music’ idea. It’s a starting point, but it’s a huge part of the ‘teen scene’ that we are all trying to get away from. It was very good though, don’t get me wrong. :)

    In Christ,
    Sheila

  • Stephen Field

    Wow. Great Video. Can I use that skit at my school?

  • Mary Katherine

    Wow. That was such a blessing. Thanks so much for posting it!

  • Mary Katherine

    (continued)…Though after watching it again and reading some of the comments, I have to aggree with DeeDee and the others…that part did bother me. Though it’s possible that it’s just trying to show that Jesus is saddened…but it did seemed more like they portrayed Him as ‘helpless’ (and Jesus is certainly not helpless). Other than that though, I found it great. :)

  • L.E. Fiore

    (continued) I didn’t like the part with Christ being kinda “helpless” either… However I think the skit (as a whole) was trying to say that the sins of the world pull us down, tempt us, and TRY to keep us from Christ- (not that they actually CAN keep us from Him/salvation.) -And the skit did have Christ pulling her to Him with the rope and holding back the girl’s tempters Himself (for she couldn’t.) Sometimes God brings us through hard times. In the end it brings glory to Him! Just because He isn’t doing anything about what is happening to us doesn’t mean He can’t or that He isn’t there.

    I didn’t like the immodesty either, however with the pink girl I think it made the point it was trying to make- and with the main girl- well- she was an average girl in a sin filled world, not yet mature in her faith…

    I truly enjoyed it! Thanks so much for having it posted!

  • kristin

    What’s this song called? Some of my friends find religion in music like this, and I know other kids in my youth group would love to hear this and share it.

  • http://www.prorege.org/papers01 Althusius

    While I really appreciate what Alex and Bret are doing in general with this site, I have to disagree with them on this call. This video is wrong for at least two reasons.

    DeeDee pointed out the whole God being helpless thing, which I definitely agree is a big problem. It looks like God is standing there thinking, “Oh, I wish they would listen to me, why won’t they obey me?” This isn’t true in the real world at all. God is completely powerful and sovereign over creation (Psalm 33). He chooses who He saves and who He doesn’t (Rom. 9:14-16). Yes, He begs and pleads with us through His Word, but He also guides us to Himself through His almighty power (Eph. 2:1). God is the opposite of helpless. We are dead in trespasses and sins (Eph. 2:5). Being dead, we are not able at all to seek to follow God. We have no desire to “let” God into our lives. It’s just the opposite, because Col 2:13 says God has to “make us alive in Him [Christ].” Once the Holy Spirit makes us alive, then we can seek God. God is in control; if He isn’t, then He isn’t all-powerful, which means he isn’t God.

    I also disagree with this video for another reason. This reason, unpopular as it is, is still in the Bible, so I don’t think I can ignore it. I find it strange that Jesus is portrayed. Plain and simple. God shouldn’t be made by men to look like a man. Only God has the power to become human, while still keeping His divinity. Now, pardon me if I’m wrong, but humans don’t have the ability to take God and portray Him as a man, while still keeping His awesome divinity. That just isn’t possible (Deut. 4:15-19). Not to mention, changing the “glory of the incorruptible God into an image made like to corruptible man” is considered foolish, sinful, and changing the truth of God into a lie according to Romans 1:22-23. If I remember correctly, the Second Commandment says something about making images of God too. Whenever you pretend to be God, things don’t turn out so well (e.g. Satan, Nadab and Abihu, Aaron, Nebuchadnezzar, etc.).

    I know you may not agree with my views here, but please read the Scriptures and see God’s glory and grace.

    In Christ,
    Althusius

  • Caleb

    wow very powerful and moving thanks

  • Michael

    DeeDee, Elizabeth, Lindsay M and Jessie U:
    I understand completely where you’re coming from, with your concerns about how Christ’s sovereignty is portrayed…though I was so caught up in the power and beauty of the picture that it really hadn’t even occurred to me until I saw your comments.

    But probably if you think back a little bit, you will remember experiences — or at least seen other people experience — where it *felt* or *seemed* like Christ was standing by idly or helplessly. Some of the Old Testament Minor Prophets are an illustration of that.

    Also, many books – Isaiah in particular – are full of ”pleas” from God to us to do something that is not in us to do; turn from our wicked ways and worship Him only. Much like the ”frantic” hand-waving and attention-getting attempts of the savior portrayed in the skit.

    So…I happen to find the depiction not very erroneous after all.

    As we learn, by God’s grace, more about Him and His characteristics, we learn a better way to interpret/understand this. But still, especially to someone who doesn’t yet fully comprehend these encouraging truths, without a doubt it can appear as though Christ is helpless / powerless.

    We cannot expect drama, or any art, to be scripture. Nor is it intended at all to be a substitute for the full truth of God’s written word in the Bible but rather a tool to point us to it. Any attempt we humans make at portraying the truths of scripture through art is going to be fraught with weakness and shortcomings.

    But we should not allow that to scare us away from venturing into art…nor should we become guilty of ”over spiritualizing” it beyond recognition. It is still a very powerful, God-given tool that can be used mightily. It is (and should be) often used to communicate very narrow and specific truths with great impact – as is the case with this skit.

    The gospel is a very simple message. Things like this skit that preserve the simplicity of that message and point people to the awesome power of Christ and what He did, should be celebrated. Certainly we don’t want our discipleship / sanctification to stop there, but it’s a great start!

    With all the philosophical / theological comments out of the way, here is a productive question:
    Is there a way that the savior in this skit could be portrayed that would better communicate the fullness of Christ’s characteristics, without detracting from the clarity or power of the message communicated?

    (This is not a loaded question; hopefully it will result in at least some meaningful discussion…)

  • Noah

    kristin and any others who have asked for the name of the song…

    It is “Everything” by Lifehouse. The video has “lighthouse” in the title, but that’s not correct.

    I’ve seen this video before, and I couldn’t finish watching it, because I was offended by some of the content and theological issues. I watched the whole thing this time, because Alex and Brett posted it, and I’m still offended. I can understand how many could perceive it as a powerful evangelistic tool, but I also can see how it could be confusing and even depressing for non-believers. It even depressed me, because it seemed to me that Jesus was only a little bit more powerful than the world, as if the world even had a chance against our Lord and Savior.

    Like I said, I can understand why many would be touched by this video, but I just wanted to share what I perceived its message to be.

    Noah

  • Mark Hutchins

    Wow! I really like it! Very well done.

  • R.M

    … I agreed with the responses of Crissy and Michael, who said what I wanted to say before I did… :) I recently finished reading the book of Hosea… There were many passages where God was warning his people, and then later expressing his desire for them to be reconciled. He wasn’t begging them, and he wasn’t forcing them. Though he loves and cares about us, he created us with the ability to choose– we have a free-will… He’s a perfect gentleman and won’t ever force us into a decision. The risk in love is that He gives us a choice to respond to it or reject it.

  • Megan H.

    Michael -
    Good question.
    I think that a better way to portray Christ in this instance is sorrowful, with His head bowed. This would show that He is grieved by sin, but not imply that He is unable to do anything about it.
    I do understand what you mean, though, and it makes sense in a way to have Christ ‘distant’, but maybe the savior should stand in one place, and the girl stray away. That way, it’s not that the savior left the girl, but she left him.

    Like you said, I hope people will contribute good discussion to this.

    Megan H.

  • mo

    good thoughts everyone. it’s helpful to think about things like this instead of taking them at face-value. i was incredibly blessed by the video and sent it off to a few friends right away. i do understand some of the concerns about Christ seeming helpless, however to me, he did not seem helpless. he appeared to be genuinely distressed over her condition and to be crying out for her to return to him. after she saw that she couldn’t return to him on her own, he began to pull her in. then he ultimately took the ‘sin’ on himself so that she could be free from it and once again enter into a relationship with him.
    megan h, i like the idea of a sorrowful Jesus for the skit, but i wouldn’t want him to simply stand there. the way he is waving his hands, trying to get her attention but is obscured by the world is to me an effective picture of Christ’s love for us.
    i do agree though, the hands-on-the-head thing didn’t seem accurate.
    i dunno, those are just my thoughts. if anyone sees something i’ve said in error, please point it out!

  • Megan H.

    Actually, mo, the waving hands thing to try to get her to come back to Him bothered me because if Christ wants to be seen or noticed, He will be seen or noticed. He doesn’t have to ‘try’, like we as humans do. Maybe just standing there isn’t the best portrayal, either. I’ll have to think on that. I do think that He can be obscured by the world, but He will reveal Himself when it is His time.

  • http://poetforgod.diaryland.com Crissy

    I can’t believe this!! Why do you guys have to be So darn critical?? It’s a SKIT for God’s sake… It’s something used to reach people and touch hearts of this generation. It’s meant as a “door opener” where then it’s open to pastors or whoever to explain it. Why do you have to analyze THEOLOGY in a simple skit?
    What is so immodest about a girl wearing everyday jeans and a t-shirt.
    This type of thing is what gives Christians a bad name.
    Just stop with the cynical remarks, the criticism, the rudeness and the theological debates.
    Look – I believe all that stuff, I’m a strong Christian…
    Does anyone not understand where I’M coming from? What kind of message are you sending to non-believers when you have to condemn the stupidest things?
    Get a life people. and stop judging others. It will only come back to you.
    Maybe you should try seeing things from someone else’s perspectives…
    like maybe someone like me who has been through everything that that skit portrayed. Thank you very much.

  • Talitha Piper

    wow. that is such a good picture of Jesus giving Himself up and then being so powerful.
    also you can see people trying to drag her into newest fashions,trying to kill herself …..
    thank you soooo much for putting that up for teenagers to see and steer clear away from people trying to drag them into sin,I know it is very hard to stay away from sin but Jesus will always be there for us and will always protect us if we call on his glorious name.

  • mo

    i see your point, megan h, thanks for pointing that out. this is an interesting thing to ponder, isn’t it? how best can we portray Christ’s reaction while people are running from him?

  • Rebekah

    Megan H,
    I’m not discrediting your comment by any means…it just seems to me that God allows us free will at GREAT cost to himself. Even though He appears helpless in the skit, it seems to me that the Jesus character is simply allowing the girl to live the life she has chosen for herself. A line in a Micheal Card song comes to mind: “…He simply speaks the sentence that they have passed upon themselves”.
    That being said, I do think that in a way it breaks God’s heart to allow us free will. Look at the ways free will has been used throughout history…Hitler… Lenon…abortion…Saddam…hooter girls…insane asylums…children raising other children because of AIDS (spread through rape a lot of times)…the list goes on and on. And yet this is the proof of love, that God in his infinite wisdom and power lets us choose. Though he IS in control, he is not a control freak. That He who spoke the universe into being would allow us to say no to him, knowing fully the cost.

  • Elisabeth

    Good question, mo. How CAN we best portray Christ’s reaction while people are running from him? I know that he wouldn’t be hovering in the back ground, “trying” to get her to notice him – like Megan H. said, when he wants to be seen, he WILL be seen. I think God sometimes lets people follow their own path and give them over to their own sin for a time so that he can glorify himself in an even more amazing way. But he wouldn’t be fretting over it, because he knows what he’s doing, and all that happens is all according to his perfect – if not mysterious – plan.

  • Pat

    i cried when i got to the part where Jesus was pulling the girl toward him, then fighting off the demonic spirits on her behalf – it just confirmed to me what IS taking place now, as i continue to pray for my children, who are young adults and have chosen to not follow him at this point in their lives. powerful, and i am going to email it to both of them right now.
    thanks for blessing me with this

  • http://www.marenkaj.blogspot.com Jessica

    It was definitely emotionally powerful, but the fact that 3 out of the 4 people portraying worldly elements were people of color left a sour taste in my mouth. Why do the dark sins of the world have to be portrayed by dark people? I wonder what kind of message that would send to an unbelieving person of color…

  • Amanda Howell

    Crissy, you saddened me by your reponse. I as far as I can see no one has been cynical or rude about the skit.

    Only a few people have commented on the girls clothes. It may come as a surprise, but to some people a girl wearing jeans is immodest and to others a stumbling block. I happen to be one of the people that think it immodest for girls to wear pants, but I’m not judging them because they decide to wear jeans.

    I also don’t think we have been judgemental, but concerned about some things in the skit. Of course this is what I’ve got out of the responses.

    This is a discussion among concerned Christian youths and perhaps a few adults and no one has gotten out of hand. I’m sorry that you think we are taking the skit so negatively and I believe that we all understand that it’s purpose is to be a “door opener”. I am speaking for myself, but I hope for others as well.

    You said that you had experienced the same as the girl in the skit and you may even have felt that God was standing aside helpless, but the truth is He wasn’t and isn’t.
    Most of the responses have expressed their concern about the way God was portrayed with perfect right, but not the message of the skit itself.

    Another thing that came across to me in your response was your accusation of us being judgmental. I couldn’t help but get the feeling that you were judging others for their concern about the skit. I have no desire to offend you and hope I haven’t.

    I hope I was able to get across to you and perhaps clarify things a bit.

    God Bless,
    Amanda

  • Elisabeth

    Thank you for your comment, Amanda. That is exactly how I I was going to respond. Chrissy – I am sorry if my comments and those of the others have come across as harsh or critical. I was not trying to condem the skit – I think its message was powerful and hopefully has brought many to Christ. I was simply saddened by the fact that someone would portray our beloved Savior as anything other than sovereign. As for “analyzing” the theology, I think you have been misguided. Discussing theology and doctrine is a healthy thing and, as long as our hearts are focussed on Christ, He can lead us to some awesome revelations about Himself. Of course, it should be kept at discussion level – and it has. It was not our intention to argue with the author of the skit or malign that person in any way. As for the modesty issue, I personally did not think the girl’s clothing was inmodest, but for some young men her semi-tight jeans could be a stumbling-block. I do not think, however, that this has been the main dicussion topic and it really shouldn’t be – it has nothing to do with the message of the skit.
    Jessica – I happened to notice the same things you did about the worldy influences. I doubt the author of the skit was trying to make a point by casting those people, and though I see how it could offend some people, again, it has nothing to do with the overall message of the skit.
    God bless,
    Elisabeth

  • Carly D.

    I thought the skit was cool…Thank you to whoever posted it!

    There seems to be quite a bit of debate going on…yikes! I think, like Elisabeth says, that we should remember the basic focus of the skit, which is really about salvation.

    Thanks again to whoever posted it–I think it is a powerful illustration, and a great idea.

    Carly D.

  • ariadne

    On the contrary, Crissy, I think it is helpful that the guys tell us what clothes are a stumbling block to them. Some guys have problems with tighter jeans. Thanks to the guys who told us this. You are very honest. I don’t want to be a stumbling block to anyone.

  • David Daniel

    As I watched the video, I felt very powerfully for that girl when she tried to run to Jesus. But I still don’t think it’s perfect. The trouble with skits like these is that they’re too limited and too imprecise, which means it’s going to lead to some theological issues:
    1. Was the girl a Christian at the beginning of the video, or a non-Christian? Only Adam and Eve began living with a deep relationship with God. If she was a Christian to start with, how is this supposed to be a evangelistic tool? If she’s supposed to represent all of humanity, then it’s untrue that all of humanity will be saved.
    2. Jesus didn’t somehow defeat sins with His strength, He suffered in our place. Personnally, I was expecting all those people who represented sin to beat Him to the ground and kill him. But they didn’t. So where’s the cross in this video?
    3. Is it right to represent God using a steorotype (robes, etc), let alone an actor?
    4. Would a non-Christian really understand the necessity of the cross and of repentance? Or wouldn’t they just think: God’s going to forgive me in the end anyway.
    I don’t think God was portrayed as helpless. God was distressed that her sins were seperating her. I don’t think the girl was immodest (ever since that modesty survey, that’s all we seem to comment about. Give it up!). And I don’t think God picks and chooses whom to save, or that humans have nothing to do whatsoever with their own salvation.

    Sorry to be so critical. It’s only because I genuinly care about this stuff. I honestly don’t know what I would suggest to the actors if they were right here in front of me. They obviously really want to share the wonderful news with everyone. So don’t stop. Keep on trying. It’s almighty God who touches peoples’ hearts anyway. We’re just tools.

    Plus, this video has put me in the mood to worship and marvel, at 10:00pm! Thanks for sharing.

  • Elisabeth

    David Daniel – I guess it’s really not my job to respond to everyone’s comments ;) but you said two things that are really disturbing. One – “I don’t think God picks and chooses whom to save.” Consider this passage from Romans:

    “…when Rebecca had conceived children by one man, our forefather Isaac, though they were not yet born and had done nothing either good or bad – in order that God’s purpose of election might continue, not because of works but because of his call – she was told ‘The older will serve the younger.’ As it is written, ‘Jacob I have loved, Esau I have hated.’
    “What shall we say then? Is there injustice on God’s part? By no means! For he says to Moses, I will have mercy on whom I have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I have compassion. So then it depends not on human will or exertion, but on God who as mercy. For the Scripture says to Pharoah, ‘For this very purpose I have raised you up, that I might show my power in you, and that my name might be proclaimed in all the earth. So then he has mercy on whomever he wills, and he hardens whomever he wills.” – Romans 9:10-18

    Seems like pretty harsh stuff. Look at it this way. No one is just an average, morally “nuetral” being. No one, on their own, “seeks” God. Since the fall, we are all, by nature, “children of wrath” – hating God and running from him. But God, in his mysterious mercy and divine wisdom, chose to reach out his hand and snatch back one. And another. And that one.

    We just have to remember “Lord, your ways are not my ways, your thoughts are not my thoughts!” We can never understand the “why.” And I am certainly not saying I understand it fully – whew! Really, these concepts make my brain blow fuses. But I DO know that God is indescribably more wise than us. So we can have peace knowing that he knows what he is doing.

    Sorry, I didn’t mean to preach. ;) I do hope that some of that made sense and that I didn’t offend you in any way! Please think about it, though. And God bless you!

    Elisabeth

  • Elisabeth

    Oops, I forgot #2! Secondly, I don’t see how you can really have a saving faith in Christ if you beleive we humans have something to do with our own salvation. But I think my first comment covered that topic, too. :)

  • mo

    excellent point, david daniel, skits can never fully capture all of the deep, profound doctrine of the gospel. however, they can do an effective job of painting a picture of the gospel’s simple message. whatever its shortcomings, this skit has put many people in awe of what Christ did for them, and has given you and i and many others a desire to worship. that is what i believe it is meant to do. not to be a full sermon on the gospel. i mean, i can’t even explain the meanings of ‘propitiation’, ‘expiation’, and ‘atonement’ in that amount of time, let alone portray them in a mimed skit! what i’m trying to say is that just because the depth of the gospel may be impossible to portray through drama doesn’t mean we shouldn’t attempt such portrayal.

    that being said, applause to the writer, director, and actors of this skit. way to bring glory to God and inspire people to worship!

    i’m sorry i’m posting so much, but this conversation has me intrigued!

  • Elisabeth

    Same here, mo. And sorry my last comment doesn’t make sense – the first one that goes with it is “awaiting moderation.” :)

  • http://reflectionsfromkt.blogspot.com Katie

    Wow… that’s so amazing that you posted this. Just this last week, this went around the BCM at my college. Everyone who saw it was so moved that they would pull someone else over to see it! Now we are making plans to do this as a skit of our own.

  • http://www.dorddefined.blogspot.com/ Jason M

    On the whole, I like the skit, and thought that the end was particularly moving. That being said, it’s good to see people want to be theologically discerning about the skit.

    As far as the “helpless God” concerns that some people have expressed, if I thought that was what the skit portrayed, I would be disturbed as well. But, having watched it several times now, my thoughts are similar to Michael’s — sections from the OT prophets came to my mind as well. The waving of the hands, etc., seems to me to be along the lines of the following from Isaiah 65:1-2:
    “I was ready to be sought by those who did not ask for me;
    I was ready to be found by those who did not seek me.
    I said, “Here am I, here am I,”
    to a nation that was not called by my name.
    I spread out my hands all the day
    to a rebellious people,”

    The part of this skit that has me puzzled is actually why the girl’s black shirt comes off when it does (in the middle of when she’s struggling against her enemies). The black shirt, I would think, is representing her sins (especially considering the shirt underneath is white), yet it comes off before Jesus is portrayed as coming and taking her place, and is, in fact, ripped off by her enemies. Does anyone have any thoughts on this? If you’ve seen other versions of the skit, is it possible that the shirt was inadvertantly removed during the struggle, and was supposed to come off later?

  • Melissa

    Elizabeth,
    I hope I don’t offend you or anything, because that is certainly not my intention, but what you said about God picking and choosing whom to save really bothers me. I do not believe God does that. Consider these passages of Scripture:

    John 3:16-18 “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that WHOSOEVER believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life. For God sent not His son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through Him might be saved. He that believeth on Him is not condemned, but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten son of God.”

    2 Peter 3:9 The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, NOT willing that any should perish, but that ALL should come to repentance.”

    2 Timothy 2:4 “Who (God) will have ALL men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth.”

    Isaiah 45:22, 55:1 “Look unto me, and be ye saved ALL the ends of the earth;” “Ho EVERY ONE that thirsteth, come ye to the waters,”

    Ezekiel 33:11 “As I live, saith the Lord God, I have no pleasure int the death of the wicked; but that the wicked trun from his way and live: turn ye, turn ye from your evil ways; for why will ye die, O house of Israel?”

    Titus 2:11 “For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared unto ALL men.”

    These verses clearly show that salvation is freely offered to ALL, not just the ones that God picks out. It’s for every single person! But we do have to choose to accept the free gift of salvation and believe in Jesus Christ. I hope the next few verses clarify this point:

    John 6:37 “All that the Father hath given Me shall come to me; and him that cometh to Me I will in no wise cast out.” (He won’t cast anyone out, but we have to COME!)

    Joshua 24:15 “…choose you this day whom ye will serve;”

    Acts 13:39 “And by Him all that believe are justified…”

    Matthew 11:28 “Come unto me all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.”

    Also Isaiah 55:1 and John 3:16-18 apply.

    Yikes, this is getting really long. I just really can’t believe that our loving God would actually choose someone to be lost. That’s awful! And if it were true, then we would have no assurance of salvation because we wouldn’t know if God had chosen us to be saved or not. No, I believe the Bible clearly says that salvation is for all who will accept it. I also don’t think that would be a right representation of God’s character for He says many times in His word that he is not a “respector of persons.” He doesn’t play favorites. Salvation is for ALL who believe As for the passage you quoted, I think it could be read that way if not understood properly, but I’ve made this so long already that I won’t try to explain it here. If you want me to share my thoughts on it, let me know. Again, I hope I haven’t offended you in any way. May God bless you!!

    As for the skit, although I did not like the music, I thought it was very moving. And I was also thinking, the skit is a human, imperfect portrayal of God’s infinite, perfect plan of salvation. So no one can accurately, perfectly portray that!

  • http://echoesofhislove.blogspot.com Wenslyn

    A beautiful, beautiful skit that I do not regret watching. It literally sent chills all over my body and almost moved me to tears.

    I wholly agree that the skit does not stand up to theological criticism in its allegorical portrayal. It is something told from “our” perspective, as some have pointed out. In application, it should be a pre-evangelistic skit rather than a presentation of Christian theology. The concerns are legitimate, but whatever was done was done beautifully.

    It is still a wonderful and powerful Christian work of art, even if not a perfect allegory.

  • Megan H.

    Crissy and Wenslyn -
    Thank you for pointing out that this skit should be ‘pre-evangelistic’ and ‘open to pastors to explain it’. I agree. But, the problem with the internet is that there are NOT pastors to explain it and clarify it. If this was shown in a church service (as I am interested in doing for our body), it would work wonderfully to have a pastor follow up on it. But the internet doesn’t allow that, therefore we need to be more careful in portraying the gospel.
    I’m sorry if this doesn’t make sense. If it doesn’t,please feel free to tell me.

  • Megan H.

    I need to clarify myself. I am not totally against this skit. Far from it, it gave me shivers, and I was about to cry at the beauty of Christ’s love. I just think we need to be very careful about how we give the gospel to the world.

    Like Elisabeth and mo, these comments are so intriguing (spelling?) that I can’t stay off. Thanks to everybody who is contributing to it!

  • Gracie Martin

    Seeing as I am one of the most pessimistic people I know, and I usually have to look around for a while before I see the good in something, this skit is one of the few things I truly enjoyed that had an obvious “bright side” that I didn’t have to search for. Thanks.

  • Josh Steger

    Wow, that was totally awesome!!! Praise the Lord, it just makes me want to screem and shout. That is such a powerfull message. That just shows so well how Jesus can and will save us from all our sins, and give us such a bright and awesome future. I hope and pray that this video will be viewed by millions of people, both Christian and non-Christian.

  • http://thepatriot15.blogspot.com Jennifer

    Wow. What a tear jerker! Thank you for sharing this.

  • http://www.xanga.com/jesus_allmylove Alicia B.

    WOW. That vidoe made me remember what Jesus has done for me! So powerful! Thank you JESUS!!

  • Nan M

    Wow… I had tears in my eyes as I watched it.

  • Emma

    Melissa, I was thinking about your comment, and I felt I had to respond. I just wanted to say that no one would ever come to Christ unless he had called them. Sorry if I’m misinterpreting your comment, but it sounded like you were saying that it is absolutely up to an individual human being whether they come to Christ or not. Without God’s divine mercy all of us would be lost anyway. And it is by God’s mercy *alone* that we are saved. Not by our own act. Please tell me if I was not clear in this!

  • Emma

    …..Continued…..about the skit, it looked pretty good, but my computer shows VERY bad quality in some videos, so I could quite make out whar was going on a lot of the time :D

  • http://www.therebelution.com Brett Harris

    Everyone: This discussion is good. Alex and I did not do our job providing appropriate commentary and so we are blessed to see our readers displaying more discernment than we did.

    If we had a chance to do things over again we probably would still have posted the video but with the clarification that it is flawed — just like any human presentation of the Gospel can be flawed in its emphasis.

    We would encourage you to use the same discernment when watching this skit that you should be using in evaluating any movie, article, book, etc. Abhor what is evil; hold fast to what is good (Romans 12:9).

    We believe that the “good” and “true” parts of this skit are what impact our emotions so powerfully when we watch it. The strength and victory of Christ are what move you to tears, not the distressed arm-waving.

    Starting at the 1:48 minute-mark we believe the gospel is presented in a powerful and largely accurate way. Jesus does die for the girl’s sins before she begins running to Him. The video clearly shows Him standing as if nailed to the cross and then falling to His knees in death.

    The girl throws away the gun and begins fighting her way to Christ only after He begins to steadily draw her to Himself — arm-over-arm — in an inevitable tug-of-war. In our opinion this sequence “makes the skit” and was the reason we chose to share it with you.

  • Elisabeth

    Melissa, you have not offended me, and I do certainly see your point. And Emma, thank you for your comment – that is how I was going to respond. I do beleive that God has predestined some to save. These are the ones who are able to beleive. NO ONE who beleives will ever be cast away, but they beleive only because the Holy Spirit has revealed himself to them, not on their own accord. Consider this passage from Ephesians:

    “And you were dead in the terespasses and sins in which you once walked, following the course of this world, following the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that is now at work in the sons of disobedience – among whom we all once lived in the passions of our flesh, carrying out the desires of the body and the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, like the rest of mankind. But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ – by grace you have been saved – and raised us up with him and seated us with him in the heavenly pleaces in Christ Jesus, so that in the coming ages he might show the immeasureable riches of his grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast.”

    Do you see what I mean? It is impossible for us to have faith unless God softens our hearts. Those whom he has not “chosen” wouldn’t want to come to him anyway. Their hearts are dead in sin. We can have peace in our salvation, knowing that we have faith because God has chosen us – we would not beleive otherwise. Sorry if I am unclear. It’s late and sometimes I have trouble getting my thoughts out of my head in an orderly way. ;) I hope you don’t take this the wrong way – I am not trying to quarrel with you or anyone else. God bless ya!

  • Jessie U.

    Thanks for mentioning Romans 12:9, Brett. This skit gives us a great opportunity to do both things mentioned!

    Thank you also (Brett and someone else earlier) for pointing out the fact that Jesus is drawing the girl to Himself—arm over arm—before she runs to Him. I think I must have been just focusing on the girl in the video (and trying to see past the tears in my eyes!), and did not see Him begin to do this. I know this seems like a small thing, but it’s so important, because we want to be careful to present Jesus as the initiator of our relationship with Him, because “while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us” (Romans 5:8).

    This has been an edifying discussion. Thank you to all of you, my brothers and sisters in Christ, for keeping this discussion lively and intense, but not mean-spirited or harsh. It is such a blessing to have a community of Rebelutionaries to “fellowship” (albeit online) with! Let’s continue to “sharpen each other” (Proverbs 27:17) in the future, to the glory of God!

  • Charlotte

    It is a great priviledge and joy to share the gospel with others, and I believe the intentions of those who performed the skit were good. Yet at the same time, we need to be careful to share the gospel in a way that is God-honoring. (1 Cor. 10:31).
    We must evangelize by the Spirit, not by the flesh. (1 John 2:15-17; Romans 12:2) We cannot use the things of this world to win people to Christ!
    Sadly, this skit pulled at the flesh by playing the world’s music (which sent a contradictory message and was distracting) and having immodest clothing (which made others stumble and clearly defies Scripture–1 Timothy 2:9).
    Since God commands us to spread the Good News, He will always show us how to evangelize in a way that pleases Him.
    We must share the Gospel by the power of the Holy Spirit, and in a manner that corresponds with God’s Word. There is nothing good in the flesh; leading souls to Christ is God’s work.
    Written in love by a sister in Christ.

  • a child of God

    Thank you for clarifying, Brett. I’m sure you’re right…after all, it’s always good to make sure that our media has good theology, etc.

    But ultimately, this is a skit. Like the parables Jesus used, it isn’t meant to be over-analyzed. Jesus told simple stories about farmers and fathers and other people his audience would be familiar with, to get a basic point across. That is the point of this skit…not the tightness of the girl’s jeans (there is, in all humility, a point where you just need to surrender your thoughts to God…this girl was covered) or the number of colored people (would it have been equally racist to use more white people than black to portray the “bad” characters? White people might have been offended…) but ultimately the simple, sweet story of salvation. And Jesus’ hand motions, as I saw it, were just dramatization of His sadness for the waywardness of His child…the whole skit was very dramatic (it was done in mime, the actors had to use excessive body language to communicate)…that was the point, as I saw it. Maybe I’m missing something, but I felt the theology was very, very strong for the simplicity of this little film.

    Personally, quibbling over details feels pointless to me. Here’s what I felt when I saw this story.

    I cried. Hard. I don’t cry very often over movies and songs, they move me, but I don’t openly cry. That is intense, for me. This five minute, wordless, simple little skit made me weep. Every time I think about it my heart aches. Because…I see myself in that girl. I see myself in the way she is distracted, discouraged, depressed…sometimes reaching out for Jesus, ultimately pulling away. Confused and lost. I see Jesus calling for her, reaching for her, weeping for her…and I understand how much He loves me, how saddened He is by my sin. I watch Him conquer the wrongs in her life and I know that He does the same for me. And I cry because I have been distracted from my Savior. I have been pulling away from Him, caught up in a swarm of consuming worldliness. And today God used a simple, perhaps imperfect bit of film to draw me to Himself. Maybe this movie, along with His word and some guidance from mentors today, was like the rope in this film. At any rate, I am being drawn to Him because I have drifted, and because He loves me.

    This movie has changed me. Thank you so much, Brett and Alex, for sharing it!! I want to draw closer to Jesus. I feel less afraid of what my peers think of me. I’m ready to do the things He wants me to. I’m ready to follow Him. I see some things He wants me to change and do in my life and I’m ready to do them. I want to read His word more and reach out to my lost friends.

    God used this movie powerfully to break down some defenses I’ve been building up…to cry tears of reconciliation…to see how I’ve been pushing Jesus away in my life in a lot of different ways.

    I’m not saying that this movie is sovereign or anything, or even perfect, but God used it in my life a little bit today to draw me closer to Himself.

    I’m tired of fighting. Let’s not be like the Ephesians in Revelations 2 who are so caught up in doctrine and rules that they have lost their first love. It is possible to be devoted to the pureness of the Word and how we share the gospel, while also being on fire for Jesus and seeing how dearly and truly and deeply He loves us. Discussing doctrine is good, iron sharpening iron. But fighting over little details is such a waste of precious time…and after awhile, it can harden you to the simple, pure beauty of salvation and the love of Christ which is fresh every time we see it.

    Please…don’t be offended by what I’ve said. I don’t mean to hurt anyone. I just want to share this with you.

    Thanks again, guys. I’ll be sharing this with a lot of people. I pray that the message will help them as it has helped me.

  • Melissa

    Emma and Elizabeth,
    I’m sorry if I didn’t make myself clear enough. It’s only by the work of the Holy Spirit that we are able to see our lost and sinful condition. We all have the ability to choose either good or evil, though. If, after God has opened our eys and allowed us to see the truth, we still choose destruction, He respects that. He’s not going to force anyone to do anything. Love can’t be forced, it must be won. But He’s calling everyone! He longs for everyone to come to repentance. He’s calling the whole world. Do you really think it would be fair of God to let someone be lost without giving them the opportunity to choose salvation?

    There are examples in the Bible of people who chose eternal death even after Christ had called them. I think the best one is Judas. There is no doubt that Christ called him, for He called each of the disciples to follow Him. Judas had the opportunity to be close to the Saviour for more than three years. But he still chose to be lost. He betrayed his Lord, and then hung himself. He was called by Christ, and had the chance to choose salvation, but he did not. Another example would be where Jesus said in Matthew 23:37, “O Jerusalem, Jerusalm, thou that killest the prophets, and stonest them which are sent unto thee, how often would I have gathered thy children together, even as a hen gathereth her chickens under her wings, and ye would not!”

    Also, God’s Word makes it clear that everyone is able to believe in John 3:16′s “whosoever” and in Romans 12:3, “…God hath dealt to every man the measure of faith.” I think to say that some are not able to believe would imply that the plan of salvation is not perfect because it doesn’t cover everyone. Why would Jesus say anyone who believes will be saved when some people can’t believe? And would it be fair of God to punish someone with eternal death simply because He had not “called” them and they could not believe? I don’t think it would be fair of God to call some and not others. He calls everyone; He gives everyone a chance to choose. But God’s free gift of salvation won’t do me any good if I don’t accept it.

    I understand that you don’t want to quarrel, Elizabeth, and that’s not my intention either! I’m glad that as Christians we can reason with each other without being unreasonable or mean! God bless! ;)

  • Elisabeth

    Your comments are thought-provoking, Melissa. Growing up in a Sovereign Grace church, I have always accepted the doctrine of election without a doubt. I still don’t doubt it – I beleive it is an inevitable and mysterious truth clearly displayed in God’s Word – but I have really begun to think about in a deeper level.
    I understand that many people struggle with this. Just because it is taught at my church doesn’t mean everyone IN my church has completely reconciled the fact. Our flesh’s main argument is this – “That’s not fair. MY God wouldn’t do something like that to people!”
    I agree with you. Salvation IS a gift offered FREELY to EVERYONE. Some will accept it – these are the hearts God has softened. But some will continue to kick against the goad and refuse to beleive. These God will give over to their own sins. Think about the example of the Pharisees. It’s not that God didn’t give them a chance. Hey, if anyone had a chance to see that Jesus was God, it would be those who lived around him. They always seem to be there when Jesus is preforming a miracle. All around them people are falling to their knees and accepting him. But the Pharisees just seem to get angrier. Yes, God gave them a free will to choose good or evil. But do you think while all these things were going on, Jesus was sitting there biting his nails and fretting “oh no! Are they going to beleive in me or not?” God knew ahead of time who would have faith and who wouldn’t.
    The Bible also clearly says that he hardens people’s hearts. Consider Pharoah. God is performing all these signs through Moses, and each time it says “but Pharoah hardened his heart.” But the last time it says “And the Lord hardened the heart of Pharaoh, king of Egypt.” He gave him many, many chances to accept God…and finally gave him over to his own sins.
    So, then, where is this all leading to?
    God has predestined those who will believe and those who will disbeleive. It is not random “picking and choosing” but neither is it because of anything anyone has done. All of God’s decisions point to his unstoppable plan throughout history and the future – to glorify himself. I know this is a brain-frying concept (it was for me too and I still don’t understand it fully.) Wether we like it or not, this is truth. To our weak minds this just looks like injustice. But God doensn’t change his plans according to wether or not we approve of his method. ;) It is mysterious, but we were not supposed to understand everything! We are not God!

  • Emma

    Melissa, I don’t want to argue with you, but I do want to continue this conversation on the basis of loving and kind discussion. :D

    Yes, God offers salvation freely to people, but it is ultimately He who softens or hardens their hearts. God is always in control, and everything moves by his sovereign plan, not by the independent choice of any individual person. If it was up to any person at any given moment whether they would accept Jesus or not, then really, God would not be in control! It is only by his mercy that any of us are saved at all, whether we call it injustice or not. And you are right, salvation is for all who believe, but it is up to God whether they believe or not. God’s plan is greater than anything we can comprehend!

  • http://www.princesskate7.blogspot.com Katie Cochran

    I am completely new here and I just read all the comments above and I have something to add :)

    First off, I want to say that I watched this skit a couple months ago at a church and I was in tears by the end because it’s absolutely beautiful how Jesus comes to the girl’s rescue. I personally agree with some who have said that the attire of some of the actors was innappropriate… But that wasn’t my main problem with it. There’s this song that I know from Sovereign Grace Ministries (I go to a Sovereign Grace Church) that kept running through my head while I was reading these comments about predestination and whether we choose God or God chooses us:

    “Dead in transgressions and sins
    Without God without hope in this world
    Then the glorious light of your gospel broke in
    The Father stood up from his throne
    Opened his arms as he called out my name
    Grace IRRESISTABLE drew me
    Opened my eyes to see

    (That) you are the way
    You are the truth
    You are the life, Jesus
    The only way
    The only truth
    You are my life, Jesus

    You are the source of new life
    The giver of every good thing
    Withholding nothing you lavish your kindness on me
    You emptied yourself became poor
    Humbled and poured out to death
    Now highly exalted above all
    Your name alone can save

    {chorus}”

    I think this song depicts what Jesus did for us, don’t you!? We were lying dead in our transgressions, and he gave us NEW LIFE. Praise the Lord… Man is not naturally good. We are naturally EVIL! (And believe me, it’s not easy for me to say that!) We would never seek God on our own….

    And this brings me back to my point: I disliked in the movie how Jesus was depicted as more than a bit helpless. I have been raised to believe God is sovereign and that he chooses his people, and this turned me off at the beginning (even though I STILL cried at the end!). God is outside time and space! He’s not limited by our feeble choices and our fickle nature! And thank goodness he isn’t… If he was, I’d be right where that girl was before she “went back to” Jesus because I cannot of myself CHOOSE God! How can something evil choose something good? It logically can’t happen. So God plants his seed in our hesrts, and we grow and thrive.

    Now, Melissa, something you said interested me very much. You said in the beginning of your above paragraph that “It’s only by the work of the Holy Spirit that we are able to see our sinful condition,” and that is correct; I agree whole-heartidly. But after that you begin to say that Jesus wants ALL of us to come to him. Wait a minute, you’ve lost me here. This is important…

    If Jesus wants everyone to come to him, AND he’s the one who shows people their sin, WHY DOESN’T HE JUST SHOW EVERYONE THIER SIN? Wouldn’t that make it pretty simple?

    (By the way, don’t think I’m yelling at you when I type in capitals; I only do that to make a point, not yell at anyone.) So the only conclusion I can come to on this issue is that Jesus chooses some to reveal himself to. Otherwise, if he’s sovereign, he’d just reveal himself to everyone, right? It can’t be both… Either God is sovereign, or he’s not. Either he chooses us before the foundation of the world (Ephesians 1) or he waits to see who will choose him.

    And here’s the beautiful part of all this: Knowing that God chooses his children, that he thought of you before you were even conceived and named you, that he loved you, that he picked YOU when he could have picked anyone; doesn’t that make you feel special? And it should be humbling as well… That God would choose that which is lowly to be his child–amazing! Melissa, you mentioned several times the word “fair” in your recent comments. What is fair? Hmmm. Well to me, fair is that we all go to Hell. I mean, that’s what we deserve, isn’t it? We KILLED Jesus, and every time we sin we crucify him yet again. So the fair thing for all human kind would be Hell…

    But no. We’re all, as a big group (humankind) heading to Hell (running there a thousand miles an hour, actually) and he stops some, gives them a GIFT, the gift of grace. Those who do go to Hell are only getting what they deserve! I know that sounds heartless (and believe me, I don’t want anyone to go to Hell anymore than you do!) but it’s true! Would you say it’s not fair to a thief if he goes to prison? We’re all thieves that deserve worse than prison (we’re actually murderers) and if God wants to place his pardon on some, what is that to the others? They won’t care, or even long for God. God will never place a longing in someone’s heart for himself and then say “Nope, didn’t choose you.”

    Those who go to Hell have no regrets. They didn’t know another way because God didn’t reveal it to them! And that is God’s sovereignty at work in this world… And it should make you that more appreciative and adoring of our mighty savior. He’ll do anything to bring us closer to him, and this is just one of the many things he does, he lets us know in his Word (Ephesians 1, Romans 9, Matthew 11:27 and many many more places) that he choose his people, and that causes gratitude, and that causes praise.

    I sincerely hope that I didn’t offend anyone as that was most definitely not my intent. I honesly love debate *smile* and I also want others to see this glorious truth, this amazing love… I hope and pray that I have glorified the living God with my above comments… God bless whoever is reading this.

  • Lydia D.

    I agree with everyone that the skit could have been better, but we must remember something, this skit was put on by humans and it won’t be perfect! I definitly agree with Brett about the fact that the victory of God should move you to tears not the “helpless christ”.

    A couple of things I think I should add, if your sharing this with a non-believer and they notice some of the stuff that is metioned in this blog, then address their questions. Kind of turn it into an object lesson on how we humans aren’t perfect, and how we need God’s help. Even if they don’t notice it then you might want to just lightly touch on the subject.

    Do you understand what I’m saying? Am I making sense? If anybody has questions about my comment then please let me know.

  • Elisabeth

    Katie, you summed that up in a much better way than I did. :D That is EXACTLY the point I was trying to make – those words were in my head and I just couldn’t seem to get them down in an orderly way. And I belive you did glorify God with your comments. Thank you.
    Yes, “fair” is that we all go to Hell. “Justice” is that we all go to Hell. “Grace” is a gift – literally “undeserved favor.” And God is not only sovereign, he is good and wise. What an amazing God we serve! Thank you Jesus!
    With that, I think our discussion is pretty well finished. Melissa, if you have any further doubts or questions, I would suggest you talk to your parents or your pastor about these issues. We humans often need a little help understanding doctrine. ;) At least I do. God bless you!

  • Emma

    Ditto! :D :D :D

  • http://www.princesskate7.blogspot.com Katie Cochran

    Elisabeth and Emma, I think your comments were great too! I really love discussing all this kind of thing :) Thanks for being a part of it. It’s so neat to find like-minded people! I hope we can meet each other sometime… Take care and have a joyful day!

  • Elisabeth Gruber

    (note: I am not the same “Elisabeth” that posted several previous comments)

    This is a really interesting discussion. Lately I have been really struggling with the calvinist vs. arminian, elect/not-elect, and free-will things…so this is quite a blessing to see this discussion taking place.

    I have read that part of Wayne Grudem’s book, “Bible Doctrine” where it talks about the elect, and I must say, it put me to tears to think that God might choose to purposely send people to hell, that God has not “chosen” some people to be saved, or that Jesus might not have died for everyone to come to salvation.

    I _personally_ do not agree with Calvinism, nor the elect, (although there are many scripture verses that point seem to point to the elect, there are many many that point to non-election) though Mr. Grudem poses an extremely convincing argument. I still believe that we are all given the opportunity to be saved, and God lets us choose whether or not we will accept Him.

    Melissa: that was an excellent post from Oct. 2nd… I had been looking for more verses like those.

    And to “a Child of God”: I am so glad that you have been immensely blessed by that skit. And I want you to know that you are in my prayers.

    ~Does anyone know of any other good books that talk about the elect/non-elect issue? I know of one or two, but if anyone knows of or recommends any, I would like to know their titles so that I can read more about both sides of that doctrine. ~

    God be with you all,
    Elisabeth Gruber

  • http://www.freewebs.com/the-twin-place Kirsten Gruber

    (I am Elisabeth Gruber’s Twin)

    ~I COMPLETELY AGREE WITH WHAT MY SISTER SAID. Also, I think what the entire point of this skit is that the girl was walking with God, then she fell prey to the world. Finally she realized what she was doing, and was trying to get back to Jesus. This was very difficult for her, because many things were standing in her way. She got to the point where she repented of her sins (thus the color change of her t-shirt from black to white), and Jesus came to the rescue, standing between her and the evil.
    This post was such a blessing; thank you SO much…

    In His Service,

    ~Kirsten A. Gruber

  • http://TransitionLifeCounseling.com Mrs. Joanie Gruber

    If you can stand one more comment from a Gruber, I would like to suggest a wonderful book for anyone who wants a thoughtful, intellectual (but not stuffy) and balanced discussion (similar in depth and approach to Grudem but with the opposite conclusion) as you wrestle with this subject. “Why I Am Not A Calvinist” by Jerry Walls (professor of Philosophy of Religion at Asbury) and Joseph Dongell (professor of Biblical Studies at Asbury). Blessings as you all deal with a topic that honest, Godly people have struggled with for centuries. It is nice to see the intensity without the acrimony. To quote the Moravians, “In essentials unity, in non-essentials liberty, but in all things love”.

  • Emma

    Elizabeth and Kirsten: I don’t know of any books that address this issue, but I am a Presbyterian, which is a Calvinist denomination, and I am going to put in what I think to be a verse which clearly states that people are chosen for salvation by God.

    Acts 13: 48

    And when the Gentiles heard this, they began rejoicing and glorifying the word of the Lord, and as many AS HAD BEEN APPOINTED TO ETERNAL LIFE believed.

    (note: when I write in capitals, I’m just trying to emphasize, not to sound like I’m shouting at you ;D)

    ~Emma

  • Laura

    I must say. . .this clip has really started a discussion-and a a good one at that. I believe the video had a powerful message. I think it was completely clear in its presentation of the gospel. Like many of you who commented earlier, I do not think that it was the best way to give the message. However, overall truth of the gospel was prevalent–and God will use His truth in the hearts of those who watch it.
    Realize, humans are fallible and that includes Christians. Perhaps there was immodesty, music that was offensive to some, and slightly confused theology (depicting God as helpless), but I think that the message here is more powerful than its portrayal. Just as God gave victory to the girl in the skit with His strength, His truth and gospel overpower the cons in this skit.
    But I do agree, we, as Christians should be careful on how we present the gospel, and we should be careful to let all that we do reflect the glory of God–rather than our own depravity.

    On the side, I would like to say where my view is coming from. First, my church would never perform such a skit, or this type of music. My church is fundamental and “high church”. We perform high church music–believing that it reflects the awesome glory, and holiness of God because He is worthy of our respect. At church we sing to God as a Supreme, Sovereign Being who chooses to love us. We do not sing of Him as if He is on our own level. The style of music in this skit would be considered to be just like someone singing of their boyfriend or girlfriend. In other words, my church endeavors to make it evident to onlookers and to ourselves who we, my church body, is worshiping–by making sure our music reflects the character of God.
    Now, having explained that, when I see a skit like this–aside from the message, it really confuses me in the area of worship. I am not saying that my personal beliefs (or that of my church) is something that I should be dogmatic about–I could be wrong, but isn’t our worship and music supposed to reflect God and not our personal taste, feelings and emotions?

  • http://www.growingvertical.com Brian

    Wow. If only the one portraying God had been triplets.

    At the beginning, the triplet #1 (Father) erects a cross where the triplet #2 (Son) is hanging. Triplet #1 points to the cross and starts the open call. Triplet #2 has his gaze fixed firmly on the girl. He died specifically for her. All this time, Triplet #3 (Spirit) is standing near the girl. When Triplet #1 begins drawing, Triplet #3 comes up behind the girl, encouraging her toward the cross. The crowd (World, original sin, whatever) has been holding the girl back all along. Triplet #3 sweep kicks the crowd away, picks up the girl over his shoulders and RUNS her to the cross.

    That would be the way I remember it happening.

  • http://Healing-Flame Tash Reneee

    Wow, as I sit here and read this discussion, and I am thankful to God that there are young people out there who are in earnest to know the scriptures.
    In reply to God picking and choosing who he saves, I think it is important understand this fully. As we DO know, the bible talks about a remnant.
    Romans 11:1-7 asks the question, “Hath God cast away his people?” It goes on to say that he does not, and that he has reserved… men who have not wobed the knoee to the image of Baal.. “even so then at this present time also there is a remnant…”
    So we can see that there is always a small group of people who have stood stanchly amid trials, carrying forward the truth to this day.
    I really like what Melissa says, in that the Lord never goes through pick and choose who will and will not be saved. Now don’t get me wrong, I know that many will not be saved, but the Lord has an open invitation to all to come to Him.
    Matt. 12:48-30 ” Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give ou rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.”

    2 Peter 3:9 “The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that ANY should perish, but that ALL should come to repentance.”

    The Lord is now interceding for our lives, but he has given us the gift of choice. We have to CHOOSE to serve him or not. We have to choose whether or not we will come unto to him for rest. He is longsuffering, waiting as long as he can before his second coming so that as many as possible can see his love, and turn to him for help. But sooner or later, He will not wait any longer, and will come to this earth to take his people to live with Him. Those who did not accept him, when given the chance, will not be saved. the bible says “…And every man shall receive his own reward according to his own labour. 1 Cor. 3:8″
    his OWN reward according to his OWN labour. Those who worketh iniquity shall reap death. Those who worketh righteousness shall receive everlasting life.

    But if you’re ignorant, and don’t realize your condition, the Lord will now leave you there, and send you to hell for not knowing, No. At some point, in everyone’s life, they’ll have the decision of choosing life or death.
    Luke 1:79 “To give light to them that sit in darkness..” so we see that He will give light to ALL so that they may choose.
    How else will they know what they are choosing if they don’t have light to understand.
    But those who know the bible says:
    “Therefor to him that knoweth to do good, and doeth it not, to him it is sin. James 4:17″

    Since everyone is given light to choose, now they know, and they did not do it – thus they have sinned and sin cannot live in the presence of a righteous God.

    It is an invitation. The Lord does not choose who will, and who will not be saved.
    God designed that all would be saved, but through the gift of free choice, it has been refuted. Praise God for his mercy! His longsuffering, interceding for us, and sending his Holy Spirit to touch hearts.

    I believe that EVERYONE has a choice to their salvation. It is scriptural. But don’t misunderstand me, you CANNOT save yourself, but you can choose to put the life jacket on.

    I hope I have not offeneded anyone!
    God Bless!!

  • lewsta

    Amazing discussion, everyone. I too, coming on lately in the game, noticed a few things about the skit….I did NOT appreciate the sense I got that Jesus was in despair, wringing His hands and carrying on as if He had “lost another one”. When Nicodemus came to Him in the dark, afraid of what “they” would think of him, Jesus simply told him”sell what you have and give it to the poor”. End of message. He left it ALL on Nic’s shoulders..and didn’t fret one bit. When One is truly sovereign, He needn’t fret over anything. And doesn’t.

    the other aspect of it that really bothered me is this, and it may help in the discussion over election, above. The entire perspective of the skit was that of man…”oh, ain’t it loverly the girl wan’t lost at the end”. The whole thing portrayed the salvation/lost tension as a duality…side A vs side B…a football match, a Star Wars..that sort of thing. The “forces of evil” were “holding her captive”, and Jesus had to “wrestle” them down, have possession at the end. No, not the way it really is. When Jesus stood outside Lazarus’ tomb, there was no contest. the “final score” had already been written…death , naught. Jesus, infinity. (as an aside, when I used to think I was the great, wise, brilliant, righteous one who had “chosen” to follow Jesus, the thing that undid me totally was seeing Lazarus as a type of ME…DEAD. Able to do nothing but stink on my own. Jesus came and said “come forth”…and life entered and never will leave more. As if I had anything to do with it). The world loves a contest, a match…because the outcome is not settled until the end, and we’ve a bit of suspense and excitement as we watch and see which side is the better, more skillful, more wary, and, perhaps, the most stealthy. Not the case at all with our God. Sin, and the world, have NO control over His elect….there IS no battle, except in our own selves. Will we settle for the here and now, temporary satisfaction that sin promises (and rarely delivers upon), or will we hold out for the long term, eternal rest? We KNOW the truth…and the Truth. The lie bears NO authority over us. Except what we render it.

    I’ve seen plays and skits similar to this…many variations on the same theme…that of the contest, the duality. I am waiting to finally see one that clearly and accurately portrays that the match is already won, and God’s “side” is, and always has been, triumphant. Even in those who will be damned for eternity, God’s power is shown…..that He is sovereign, even in the display of His righteousness in condemning those who He has chosen to condemn. Those who serve Him in this life are rewarded in eternal life, those who do not acknowledge His sovereignty –and the demonstration of His power, mercy, and judgement simply add to His glory. How to portray this in a short skit, though..now there’s the rub.

  • http://www.growingvertical.com Brian

    God doesn’t choose? Really?

    Ephesians 1:3-6: “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places, even as he chose us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before him. In love he predestined us for adoption as sons through Jesus Christ, according to the purpose of his will, to the praise of his glorious grace, with which he has blessed us in the Beloved.”

    Ephesians 2:4-10: “But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ—by grace you have been saved— and raised us up with him and seated us with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, so that in the coming ages he might show the immeasurable riches of his grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast. For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.”

    Romans 8:28-30: “And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose. For those whom he foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, in order that he might be the firstborn among many brothers. And those whom he predestined he also called, and those whom he called he also justified, and those whom he justified he also glorified.”

    2 Timothy 1:9: “…who saved us and called us to a holy calling, not because of our works but because of his own purpose and grace, which he gave us in Christ Jesus before the ages began…”

    Romans 9:16-18: “So then it depends not on human will or exertion, but on God, who has mercy. For the Scripture says to Pharaoh, ‘For this very purpose I have raised you up, that I might show my power in you, and that my name might be proclaimed in all the earth.’ So then he has mercy on whomever he wills, and he hardens whomever he wills.”

    As to 2 Peter 3:9, I suggest you study the Greek on that. In the meantime, I’ll let Spurgeon answer:

    “The whole world is gone after Him.” Did all the world go after Christ? “Then went all Judea, and were baptized of him in Jordan.” Was all Judea, or all Jerusalem baptized in Jordan? “Ye are of God, little children,” and “the whole world lieth in the wicked one.” Does “the whole world” there mean everybody? If so, how was it, then, that there were some who were “of God?” The words “world” and “all” are used in seven or eight senses in Scripture; and it is very rarely that “all” means all persons, taken individually. The words are generally used to signify that Christ has redeemed some of all sorts—some Jews, some Gentiles, some rich, some poor, and has not restricted His redemption to either Jew or Gentile.”

  • Elisabeth

    Those scriptures present a very convincing argument, Brian. I just pray that God will use them to reveal himself to those who struggle with the doctrine of election.

  • Elisabeth

    …whoops! Somehow I only submitted a couple sentences of my comment…weird…

    Anyway, I just wanted to remind you all that as we continue this discussion, to put on humility. Not that I am perfect in this (oh yeah, right) but because I have a tendency to flare up when someone disagrees with what I believe in. Lets remember – this is about God – not us or what WE believe or don’t believe. Let’s glorify God with our speech.
    The doctrine of election is a glorious truth. It is justice, and it is love. Who are we to question God in His sovereignty? To him be all the glory forever!!

  • Megan H.

    Elizabeth Gruber and everyone else –

    I know of a book that everyone should read who is intersted in Calvinism/Armenian/elect/non-elect. It is “A Journey in Grace” by Richard Belcher.

    When I read it, I was just establishing (of course, I still am) what my worldview is. I wasn’t even sure what a Calvinist or Arminian was. As I read it, it became clear to me that the elect doctrine was correct. This book is fiction, but it is extremely powerful. It opens up when a young theology graduate named Ira was asked by a church board interested in hiring a pastor, “Young man, are you a Calvinist?” This prompted him to research both what a Calvinist was, and what the Bible said about it. It has an interesting story line, with lots of Bible verses and right/wrong examples of Calvinists and what are known as hyper-Calvinists.

    I had better stop, before I give you the whole book in this comment.;-D

    I really encourage anyone and everyone to read this book.

    Oh, before I finish, I must say that I came to this book leaning toward Calvinism, because that is what my dad is agrees with. After I read it, though, I no longer relied completely on what he said, but recognized the truth in the Word.

    Hope this helps!!

    If there’s any questions please ask… I’ll try to answer!

  • Elisabeth

    Thancks for the suggestion, Megan. I am already a believer in the doctrine of the elect, but resources such as those are always welcomed. ;)
    Would you like to share what it was that convinced you that the doctrine of election was the truth? I would be very interested. But of course if it is too long to explain no big deal.

  • Emma

    Thanks for the recomendation! I’ll try to get ahold of it….

  • http://www.beautyfromtheheart.org Hannah

    Beautiful, beautiful. A friend showed me the skit a while back, but every time I see it, it gives me pause. What an awesome God we serve–that He’d pursue us when we’re so unfaithful!

  • Charlie Albright

    I have major problems with this skit. I do not have time to go in to the details now. But, to say the first thing that came to my mind, “And this is a good example why people are denying penal substitution these days.”

  • Pingback: In Case You Missed It… « From the Pulpit…

  • Charlie Albright

    “I encourage you to take off your theological caps and simply let your heart be moved”

    Um… Take off your theological caps, and be moved. In other words, Don’t really care if the god presented in this video is the true God. (Idolatry…is it that big of deal any way?) Just let your emotions be taken wherever this video takes them.

    I not so sure that the gospel is even presented in this skit! Where is the cross and resurrection?! All I caught was God the Father/Jesus (another problem) falling to the ground. Maybe this was representing Jesus’ death and burial? If it is the presentation of these esential truths is weak to say the least.

    My second problem with it is that only half of the character of God is displayed. Yes God loves us and is grieved by the sorrows that come upon us. Yet God is not just love, He is righteous and holy. Sin is an infinite offense against Him! His anger burns against the wickedness that is done in this earth. “For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who by their unrighteousness suppress the truth.” (Rom 1:18). God abhors the wickedness done before him and will not have anything to do about it: “You who are of purer eyes than to see evil and cannot look at wrong,” (Hab. 1:13a) When sin entered the world, we we not only walked away from God, but God (metaphorically speaking) walked away from us. God placed us under His wrath because of the sin that humanity was now apart of. These truths of God are as important as the wonderful, precious truths of God’s love and grace.

    My second problem with it is that only half of the character of God is displayed. Yes God loves us and is grieved by the sorrows that come upon us. Yet God is not just love, He is righteous and holy. Sin is an infinite offense against Him! His anger burns against the wickedness that is done in this earth. “For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who by their unrighteousness suppress the truth.” (Rom 1:18). God abhors the wickedness done before him and will not have anything to do about it: “You who are of purer eyes than to see evil and cannot look at wrong,” (Hab. 1:13a) When sin entered the world, we not only walked away from God, but God (metaphorically speaking) walked away from us. God placed us under His wrath because of the sin that humanity was now apart of. These truths of God are as important as the wonderful, precious truths of God’s love and grace.
    These truths are not shown in the presentation. The person representing God (an issue of itself.) in the skit is never shown to be angry at the rebellion going on before him. Just sadness. Yes God is saddened by our choices and God is the one that lavishness His grace upon this people by sending his Son to redeem them. Yet, it is idolatry to just worship and talk about his love and goodness! God is all that he is. All his attributes define His character. Not just the ones that we like to dwell upon.
    Then there is the issue of sin in this skit. In this skit sin is just problems that cause humans pain and misery here on earth. Now, those are bad in and of themselves. That is not, however, the Biblical definition of sin. Sin is a offense to God that angers Him and by engaging in sin one is placed under God’s wrath. God is the most offended party when we sin. Where is this in the skit? This side of sin is completely out of the picture!

    Half of God does not make a full God. These important truths are nowhere to be seen in this skit. This is why I reject it.

    So, here is an interesting question. Can the profound, wonderful mystery of God being both the offended judge and the gracious redeemer ever be shown in a skit?

  • Elisabeth

    Charlie Albright – Your comment sounded very negative and it saddened me. I understand that you disagree with some of the aspects of the skit – there were some things I disagreed with, too. We just have to remember that not every biblical and theological truth can be portrayed in a simple, five minute skit! Besides, one human man could not possibly portray all the attributes and doctrines of God’s character in that short amount of time. I believe you truly want to glorify God by defending him, but is it glorifying to God to judge others? I hope I have not offended you – of course it was not my intention. I just wanted to encourage you and warn you as another sister in Christ. :)
    God bless!

  • Charlie Albright

    “Your comment sounded very negative”

    Take this in kindness, it was suppose to be negative. I was not impress with the skit leaving such things out.

    “We just have to remember that not every biblical and theological truth can be portrayed”

    But what about the important ones? If the skit was trying to preach the gospel, which I believe it was, are things such as God, Jesus, his death and resurrection, doctrines that just can’t be fit in the time slot? (Don’t take what I am saying in a harsh way, I am just asking). Of course one is not going to explain the depts. of eschatology in a gospel presentation. But like I said before, removing half of who God is…Is that a small thing?

    “can be portrayed in a simple, five minute skit!”

    In that regard I for removing things that man has created that may distort the gospel. If a skit cannot say all that needs to be said I would reject it. Souls of men should not be lost because we can’t go another five minutes! So, I am not bound to use skits. What every is needed to faithfully and clearly present the gospel of Jesus Christ for His glory!

    “but is it glorifying to God to judge others?”

    What do you mean by this!? What I am doing is nothing other than what I have been told to do by the Lord. “but test everything; hold fast what is good. Abstain from every form of evil.” (1 Thess 5:21-22).

    Let me be clear, I am not saying that the people doing the skit indented to eclipse part of God. But I am discerning if the message they preached is faithful to the message pass down to us by the Apostles. Holding on to what is good and Abstaining from what is evil (wrong).

    Thanks for your concerns.

    I am sorry that my comment is hard to read. I pasted one of my paragraphs twice.

  • http://www.therebelution.com Brett Harris

    Elisabeth: Charlie might have been able to soften the tone of his post (or maybe the tone was appropriate), but I appreciate his passionate and thorough defense of the doctrines that this skit skews or ignores altogether. Thank you for your gracious response, but I want Charlie to know that I admire and welcome this kind of strong input from guys on our website.

    Everyone: I think it is a mistake to feel that you must either defend the skit as a whole or reject the skit as a whole. What is good is good. What is bad is bad. All of it must be weighed in light of God’s Word. For no other reason than this (in my opinion) extremely profitable discussion, I’m glad we posted the video.

  • Elisabeth

    I am sorry, I’m afraid I responded too quickly. *Sigh* Time to go read James 3 again! ;)

  • http://mattahearn.wordpress.com/ Matt Ahearn

    I should point out that what Mr. Albright responded to in the beginning of his latest comment was a trackback from my blog…not an actual comment that I made. :) I do not want to take this discussion off topic simply because of my trackback, so I thought I would clarify that.

    However, allow me to clarify since Mr. Albright did disagree with my trackback/post. Through my post, my only intent was to encourage those watching to see the power that Christ does have over sin, etc. and about His great saving power, regardless of theology, in our lives. That is why I categorized the video as “powerful.” By encouraging people to take of their “theological hats,” I was encouraging people to simply observe the “power” that the skit projects instead of missing that part due to being critical theologically.

    Thus, my point was not necessarily to endorse a theology, rather to state that I thought the video, regardless of theology, was powerful and moving.

    I really do not want to enter a theological debate. I’ve had more than my share of the election debate, but allow me to simply state that I do not believe idolatry to be a problem in this skit. Had Jesus been represented by a piece of stone or wood, I would not have enjoyed the video. However, I do not believe that idolatry is promoted in the video. If this skit does represent idolatry, then it would appear that we should not make any more Jesus movies. And, of course, I say that with the love of Christ, not in a sarcastic manner.

    Once again, I hope my clarification has helped.

    In the matchless name of Jesus Christ,

    Matt Ahearn

  • http://renewingthoughts.blogspot.com Charlie Albright

    Matt Ahearn: Let me make what I was getting at clearer. Sorry about the quick comment, what you wrote just made me tense because of the danger I saw in it. Hopefully you will see why I saw it as dangerous.

    We should never stop discerning things theologically! God should be part of ever part of our lives. When you say, “take off your theological caps” you are calling people to not care if Christ is accurately portrayed. Truth tells us what to be emotional about. Truth that God shows us in his word lets us see glories to be rejoiced in. But when you say, “take off your theological caps” you say (at least the way I heard it and the way you have explained yourself), don’t apply your mind to see if what you are beholding is the truth. Just kick back and let the emotions that will come over you by watching this cause you to rejoice. This is NOT worship! Worship is not about feeling good. It is about rejoicing, whether in word or deed, in the glorious truths of God. Yes, there are emotions (rejoicing) but that rejoicing is in the person of God. Who He is. If you are rejoicing in something other than Who He is, you are not worshiping. So, to state clearly the problem I had with your statement. We must make certain (always keeping our theological caps on) to the best of our abilities that the God we are rejoicing in is the same God that has revealed Himself in the Bible. And once God has shown His character to use, we rejoice in what we see. If we rejoice in something or someone different, it is Idolatry (Thus idolatry is not limited to stone or wood. There are many liberals that claim the name of Jesus. But the Jesus they hold to is totally foreign to the Jesus of the Bible. Thus, they worship an idol but just call it Jesus).

    Hopefully this makes things clearer.

    So, does this skit promote idolatry? I would say no as well. I do believe that it distorts the message of God’s redemption of mankind by not proclaiming God as the Just Judge and Holy. My purpose with bringing up idolatry is to point were such thinking of “taking off your theological caps.” will lead.

    Please take everything I say in as I was saying it out of love, because I am.

  • http://morepreciousthanrubiesblog.blogspot.com Lauren

    Charlie,

    Thank you for your clear, concise, bold, and considerate posts! The same flags went up in my head when I read that I needed to “take off my theological cap.” Everything must be interpreted in light of God’s Word; we can never just sit back and allow our emotions to define truth. Emotions are wonderful, but only if they are based solidly on the foundation of truth.

    Thank you again for your comments.

    In Christ,
    Lauren

  • Emma

    Yes, I also disagreed with the “taking off the thological caps” statement. Emotions are good, in many circimstances, but they can also be very dangerous things. A Christianity based on emotions would be distorted and hammered out of shape very soon, and really, I think the same applies to skits and the like. To just sit there and allow our emotions to carry us along can eventually lead to a loss of all clear doctrine and theology, which, bring a Calvinist, I see as VERY important. Worship God with a clear, thankful understanding rather than rioting emotions, and you will have a more calm and lasting joy.

    (My opinion; hope I didn’t offend anyone :D )

    ~Emma

  • Megan H.

    Elisabeth –

    What was it that convinced me of the doctrine of the elect?

    First and foremost, it was the Holy Spirit opening my eyes to the truth. He used several resources and people to do this.

    My dad had me read the book I recommended, “A Journey in Grace”. The amount of Scripture used in this book defending election and Calvinism was the main thing to start the convincing. I started wondering how God’s sovereignty could be sovereign if we got to choose whether or not we were His people. So, I finished the book, really thinking about what it meant. Then, in my youth group, there was a new teacher for the summer, and he was a believer in the doctrine of the elect. Continuing off what I had just learned, this helped me grow even more. When I went into my 8th grade year, the man who is now my worship/youth pastor started teaching. He also was a believer in this doctrine. In his Sunday School and youth group teaching, I am blessed to have a reliable [so far ;) ], Biblical source of spiritual food. Thank you, Pastor Jake!

    So God, over a course of two years or so, has brought me to conclude that the doctrine of the elect is correct. Using three different people in my life, a book, and His Word, He has convinced me of it in His great and glorious grace.

    Elisabeth, thank you for asking. I needed to be able to tell someone outside of ‘my sphere’ about why I believe what I believe. I am glad I got to ‘meet’ you here. Thank you again!

    If there’s anything else you want to know, or if what I said didn’t make sense, please ask me about it.

  • http://www.therebelution.com Brett Harris

    Matt Ahearn: This whole “taking off our theological caps” idea is dangerous — though I don’t think you meant it exactly the way it comes across. Don’t feel too badly, I got us into this whole situation by not putting enough thought into the commentary that originally accompanied this video. :)

    It reminds me of Hebrews 5:14, “But solid food is for the mature, for those who have their powers of discernment trained by constant practice to distinguish good from evil.” I don’t think we ever take off our theological caps — at least, if we are truly spiritually mature. Thoughts anyone?

  • http://mattahearn.wordpress.com/ Matt Ahearn

    Charlie, Lauren, and Brett:

    Allow me to once again clarify. I think my theological hats comment was probably misunderstood which is more my fault than yours. Allow me to make it quite clear that I am most certainly in favor of discernment and of testing the spirits as 1 John tells us. However, I was not encouraging anyone to take off their “discernment caps.” Had the video basically denied the basics of Christianity and promoted the idea that Christ does not save us from sin or had it promoted an anti Christian message, I would have been first to citicize it. However, when I spoke of the “theological hats,” I was mainly referring to the controversial issues we face in the church today, such as Calvinism and Arminianism, tongues, etc.

    Thus, I was not suggesting that we stop discerning truth, rather I was suggesting that, on occasion, we simply need to stop picking on theological issues and simply focus on the overall message and theme. However, under no circumstances should we ever stop discerning and stop “testing the spirits.”

    Allow me to present two examples. Had the skit gone showing Jesus leading the girl into a room and shown her that she could get to heaven trhough Buddha, then I would have rapidly criticized it. That would have been discerning and testing the spirits. On the other hand, I noticed the “tug of war” that Jesus seemed to be in as he appeared to be drawing the girl towards Him during the skit. As an Arminian, I could have immediatley interpreted this as clear evidence of a Calvinistic video (such as the doctrine of irresostable grace) and thus criticised it theologically and made it nearly impossible for me to see the simple message about the power of God over sin. However, in taking off the “theological hat,” though not a “discerning hat,” I was still able to see an excellent message despite theological views.

    As a result, my view of the film was not based on emotion as Mr. Albright suggests. Instead, it was based on the desire that Christian sometimes need to set theolgical issues aside and simply work to agree.

    Also, taking “off our theological hats” does not lead idolatry. Only a stoppage of discernment will do that and, as I point out, there is a difference.

    In the matchless name of Jesus Christ,

    Matt

    (Note: my apologies if the grammar is bad in this comment. I am experiencing a few computer problems so I wasn’t able to edit very well)

  • http://renewingthoughts.blogspot.com Charlie Albright

    Matt: When I talk about theological discernment, I am not just talking about spotting theological heresy. Obviously spotting heresy is important. But thinking over something theologically needs to span the whole spectrum of theological issues. All the way from heresy to minor disagreements among Christians. That is just good discernment.

    In regard to this skit, The disagreements and problems are large as I pointed out in my first comment. Not heretical, but red flags should go up to what is missing in this presentation. (Important attributes of God, possibility the cross and resurrection of Christ).

    So what you are saying with your “theological caps” phrase is that, watchers of this skit should not be concerned with minor theological disagreements but enjoy the main message of what is portrayed. Is this getting close?

    I, of course, disagree with you that this skit should be promoted. I think the bad out weights the good in the skit. Somebody standing up and lovingly, passionately preach through words and speech would do much, much more that what this skit attempts to do when it comes to presenting the gospel.

    “As a result, my view of the film was not based on emotion as Mr. Albright suggests.”

    I don’t recall or reread me saying that you, personally, did not think through the video. If I did my apologies. My problem was with thinking that you were telling other people to do that.

    “it was based on the desire that Christian sometimes need to set theolgical issues aside and simply work to agree.”

    I think that a uncrossable bridge we are having is that you see the theological problems as minor while I am seeing them a large. If the skit gave an interpretation of the end times and that was the only theological area of disagreement. Then I would have very little to say on this comment board. If the problems were minor, one should still recognized the areas of disagreement. But more flexibility should be given in rating the skit. But, I see big problems with the skit. So, this probably is interpreting what we say to each other.

    Does this help with Matt?

  • http://mattahearn.wordpress.com/ Matt Ahearn

    Mr. Albright:

    Thank you for your comments. I appreciate your response.

    I see what you mean about “theological discernment.” My main concern was not the fact that people might find fault with it theologically, rather that their theological problems would cause them to completely miss the powerful message of God’s triumph over sin. Allow me to present one example: Let us say that I am invited to a Sovereign Grace church and I go. As I listen to the sermon, I am thinking, “Man! This is good!” I’m listening and the Pastor is preaching a fantastic message that I am learning from and being challenged by. Then, 15 minutes in, the Pastor makes a few statements about God that I don’t necessarily agree with in my Arminian theology. At that point, I have two options:

    1. I immediately put on my “theological hat,” as I called it, and I begin to become very critical of the entire message and of the Pastor. I just went from totally loving it and learning to getting nothing out of it due to a few statements that are typically controversial within Christianity. This is what I wanted people to avoid while watching this skit. It was not wrong to recognize that you disagree. I was simply hoping that people wouldn’t allow disagreement to cause them to entirely miss the point on something we all agree on: God has power over sin.

    2. Or, I can do this. I can realize that I disagree, “take of my theological hat (thought not my discernment cap),” and continue learning from the message. Sure, I may have disagreed with a statement, but the Pastor can still teach an excellent message that I can learn from despite that disagreement. This happens at times in my own church.

    Do you see where I was driving at with my statement?

    However, it appears that our main disagreement is over how “big” the problems are in the skit. That is fine. We will have our disagreements. And, I think that disagreement is what is causing this discussion. You tend to look at the problems in the skit as much “bigger” problems than I do. Thus, I could understand the problem that you would have with my suggesting that we do not concentrate so much on our theological disagreements while watching this skit.

    Thus, based on all this, I think we see where each one of us is coming from. We obviously have different views on the importance of the theology in the skit, therefore, our views on how we should view it are much different.

    As far as the emotion thing, I probably thought you were accusing me of basing my thoughts on emotion due to this statement, “But when you say, “take off your theological caps” you say (at least the way I heard it and the way you have explained yourself), don’t apply your mind to see if what you are beholding is the truth. Just kick back and let the emotions that will come over you by watching this cause you to rejoice. This is NOT worship!” That is probably my fault. Had I looked closer, I would have seen that you didn’t say I was basing my thoughts on emotion, you were simply making a point. So, my apologies if I mis-read your statements.

    Yes, I think that helps. I hope that through this I have at least shown where I am coming from and I certainly see where you are coming from. Had I thought that the things portrayed in the skit were completely un-biblical, then I would have agreed completely with you! After all, discernment is VERY important. But, as we see, our disagreement is in how serious the “theological issues” of the skit really are.

    Thank you, once again! And, thank you for such a calm and God-glorifying discussion! :)

    In the matchless name of Christ,

    Matt :)

  • http://renewingthoughts.blogspot.com Charlie Albright

    I am glad we have got things cleared up Matt. May God keep you in his will and make both of us more discerning to the evils in this world.

    Soli Deo Gloria
    Charlie Albright

  • http://www.growingvertical.com Brian

    As many have commented on the “evangelistic” nature of this skit, I want to propose a question. A couple days ago, Charlie said, “If a skit cannot say all that needs to be said I would reject it. Souls of men should not be lost because we can’t go another five minutes!”

    I co-teach a class on evangelism at my church. In the upcoming weeks, I’m planning to address the relationship of the doctrines of grace with evangelism. Now, while I certainly have no desire to see any bad theology passed around, I do wonder if sometimes we miss the implications of God’s sovereignty in evangelism.

    When I first started to evangelize, I was not a Calvinist. And I was afraid! I was scared almost catatonic at the thought of sharing my faith – what if I forgot to share a particular verse, what if I understated or overstated something. What if someone went to hell because I screwed up an evangelism encounter?

    Now that I have seen and believed the doctrines of grace, I no longer have that fear. Now I see evangelism very differently. I’m not the one who is going to save them. God is. God has already chosen who will receive the gospel and who will not. God is the one who will regenerate a heart of stone and open ears to hear the gospel. All I have to do is obey Him in telling others the good news. Now, I do not want to be fluffy in my theology. Quite the contrary. I’m probably more concerned with accurate theology now than ever before in my life. But I feel a great freedom in evangelizing, knowing that one plants, another water, and another harvests. But God gives the increase.

    Okay, all that to get back to Charlie’s point: do you have to say “all that needs to be said.” I would agree that what you do say MUST be faithful to Scripture. I don’t want to see anymore of “God has a wonderful plan for your life” or “Jesus is better than beer” style of evangelism. I want to make sure the message gets a cross that God is holy and righteous and we are not. Biblical truth must be presented. But if I’m sharing the gospel in the waiting room of the doctor’s office with someone and they are called back before I can finish, should I really feel that it would have been more faithful to Scripture if I had never said anything at all to them because I could not say “all that needs to be said”?

    I’ve already stated that I think there are definitely problems with this skit. But I seriously question if “thoroughness” should be one of the concerns. I think if we look at the example of Jesus, we find that many times He himself was not “thorough.” His parables (probably the closest comparison to a skit) tended to address only one truth, only one facet of the big picture.

    Could we not write a theologically sound 5-minute skit that addressed one aspect of salvation and that skit count as seed or water? We insist that God is sovereign over the will of man in salvation. Is He not just as sovereign over the understanding of man in evangelism?

  • http://Healing-Flame Tash Reneee

    For Brian “God does not choose? really?”

    I appreciate all the verses you have given, and I hope you did not mistake what I said. I do not mean to say that God has not called us, but to say that since he has called us that does not mean that we can say that we no longer have to worry about works because we are saved. We are, as God’s chosen, instructed to labour. In fact, that is what this website is all about “Doing Hard Things.”
    Also, I don’t want it to be mistaken that EVERYONE is going to be saved either. I want to emphasize the importance of people choosing to serve God. Not that the Lord will say “you, you and you are saved, you, and you, are lost, etc.” Each person is called to be saved, but the majority, sadly have rejected that. WE all have free will of choice. God’s original plan that ALL would be with him. And that is what he wants. He “is not willing that any should perish, but that all would come to repentance.” I am glad that you have shown the texts that say that we are a chosen people. The people of God are those who “Keep his commandments and have the faith of Jesus.”

    So I am sorry if I caused confusion. But we can agree that there is a remnant of people for God, and that everyone has a choice in their salvation – they can choose to accept God or reject him, right?

    God Bless! I hope this clearify’s things a bit more.

  • http://www.growingvertical.com Brian
  • http://www.growingvertical.com Brian
  • Elisabeth

    Tash Reneee –
    I hope these scriptures put things in perspective. We must sit UNDER the Word of God, and let it speak to us its truths – not lsit ABOVE the Word, looking for scriptures that will support our “cause” – hearing what we want it to hear and not what God meant it to say. Of course or flesh does not think the doctrine of the elect is “fair” on God’s part. We want to believe that God is calling everyone and some of us by some inner light just decide to “choose” him. This is not true!! If it were, God would not be in control – He would not be sovereign.
    If God was “fair” by our standards…umm…where would we all be? In Hell. Yep. Because that is what we deserve. We killed Jesus. Nobody deserves to go to heaven – but God gives some a gift – the gift of grace. What is that to everyone else? They do not care anyways – they do not long for God because He hasn’t revealed himself to them. God will never place a longing in someones heart for them and then say “Sorry, didn’t choose you.”
    It is the Holy Spirit who quickens our hearts to come to faith in Christ. If it were up to us to “choose”, we would still be running a hundred miles an hour to Hell. Yep. Its a good thing God’s in control!
    So here’s the scriptures:

    John 15:16 – “You did not choose God, but I [Jesus] chose you…”

    Ephesians 1:4-9 – “Even as he chose us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before him. In love he predestined us for adoption through Jesus Christ, according to the purpose of his will…in all wisdom and insight making known to us the mystery of his will, according to his purpose, which he set forth in Christ…”

    Romans 9:11 – “…though they were not yet born and had done nothing either good or bad in order that God’s purpose of election might continue, not because of works but because of his call – she was told ‘The older will serve the younger. As it is written, ‘Jacob I loved, but Esau I hated.’
    “What shall we say then? Is there injustice on God’s part? By no means! For he says to Moss, ‘I will have mercy on whom I have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I have compassion.’ So then it depends not on human will or exertion, but on God, who has mercy. For the Scripture says to Pharaoh, ‘For this very purpose I have raised you up, that I might show my power in you, and that my name might be proclaimed in all the earth. So then he has mercy on whomever he wills, and hardens whomever he wills.’”

    Romans 8:29 – “For those he foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, in order that he might be the first born amonth many brothers.”

    God is so good to reveal even small portions of his heart in the scriptures. Knowing he has chosen US – when we did NOTHING to deserve it and when he could have chosen anyone else – but he chose US – should provoke GREAT gratitude. And gratitude causes praise. Which brings us back to the beginning – God’s glorious plan throughout history to glorify himself in the earth.

  • http://renewingthoughts.blogspot.com Charlie Albright

    Thanks for your comment Brian. I fully agree with you that the salvation of souls rests in the irresistible garce of Almighty God. Our eyes were blinded to the things of God becuse all we wanted to look at was things of the flesh. Then, the same God that called light out of darkness in creation, called light into our darkened hearts. And we beheld the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ through the gospel.

    I also agree that God can use whatever message of Christ we can proclaim in the amount of time God gives us with somebody. Lets say that I get on a bus and sit down next to somebody becuse of the crowd. I begin a conversation and move into the gospel. I, however, can only tell them of Christ’s love shown on the cross, (no resurrection, or explaination of the cross) then the bus stops and he gets off. Can God use that to work in the man’s heart? Yes! Did I fail in not being faithful in proclaiming the gospel message? No! So, there is no disagreement between us here.

    Now, do we (personally) have the right to determine if a short, limited gospel presentation is sufficent to work in someone’s heart? Or, to say it a different way, Can I purposefully make a short gospel presentation where a more complete presentation could fit in and count myself as being faithful to my calling? I would say No! Could God still use that incomplete message? Yes He could. But, I have no right to determine if He will. I am to do what God has called me to do.

    What I was getting at with the statement was, The skit was a failure on the presenters part in deminstrating the gospel. It should have presented more of God than it did. (then there is the question if the skit could have even protrayed God correctly.) Could God still use it? Yes, He is sovereign. Yet, we do not have the right to say, “I am only going to present the gospel that is light in content when I could go into more detail, I am just trusting God to use whatever I say.” That is sin! That is being unfaithful to God’s command to preach the gospel.

    To put everything together. We faithful present all the gospel we can in the time given to us trusting that Christ will open blinded eyes to see the glory of His Son.

  • Matthew Waugh

    I thought this was an awesome skit te bit when jesus comes in and saves her all ways puts
    my spine on its end.

  • http://TransitionLifeCounseling.com Mrs. Joanie Gruber

    We could play ‘dueling scripture’ for hundreds of years over this issue (oh wait, the Church has been doing that already!), so I will argue instead two points from reason:
    1) If election is as Calvinists portray, the scene of Jesus weeping over Jerusalem, “because you would not” (be gathered to Him) is hypocrisy. Why cry over what you yourself planned and executed? If He was with the Father in the beginning, and helped plan out that Israel would respond to Him thus, there is no reason to be disappointed or grieve when they act on HIS script!
    For that matter, ANY time Scripture records God being angry or sad at what a person or people group does is farce. They are doing EXACTLY what He intends, so what is there to be mad at? If He doesn’t LIKE what they are doing, as the author of the script He has the right to alter it. MAKE THEM do it differently. Even an earthly author has the power of re-write, how much more a heavenly one!
    2) It would be very difficult to get past the disappointment in the nature of a God who would create people He supposedly loves only to deliberately make it impossible for them to love Him back.
    It would also be very hard to overcome the apathy resultant from the ‘realization’ that your efforts to obey, to share with others the Good News, really to ‘do’ anything is superfluous. A fatalistic outlook about life would result… what will be will be.
    And as for living a holy life, well if I AM one of the elect, however I live is planned out so I am holy enough no matter what I do (and won’t miss heaven) and if I am NOT one of the elect, then no matter HOW I live it doesn’t matter so why be concerned about it- I ain’t gettin’ in anyhow!

    Leaving off interpretation differences, the RESULTS of truly believing the doctrine of the elect, predestination and eternal security, would seem to undermine the very PURPOSES of the Word.

    • Jill

      Wow. I could not have said it better. Really, what you have said is so true. We humans will never be able to fully comprehend God’s sovereignty and His will versus our will while on this earth. To try to put it in a neat, perfect box is incomprehensible. And really, scripture does not teach that Believers are only true Believers if we comprehend it fully, but rather: “By this, all men will know that you are My disciples – if you love one another.”

  • Adam U.

    Hey everyone,

    I’ve kind of skimmed over this whole thing, so I don’t know if I’m just restating what’s already been stated or not.

    My youth group just put on this skit for our Wednesday night outreach, so I’ve been watching this alot recently and talking with many people about it. My close friend’s mom agreed with many of you that this skit might not be an accurate description of Christ in that it shows him as Someone who may not have the strength to get to us, showing him with that look of “Oh no, what do I do?”

    But here’s my take on this; I’ve discussed it alot with my mom. I don’t think this is so much a description of Christ that says, “Well, he can’t get to us some of the time. He’s not that strong.” Here’s how I see this skit: a person who begins the skit in love with Christ, with a little bit of innocence to her. Then, she is introduced to the things of this world – boyfriend, friends, appearance, money, pleasure, depression, etc. Through this whole time, Christ is hurt that she has rejected Him; He’s still in complete control, though. Then, He dies for her sins, forgiving her forever. When she throws down the gun and begins her struggle to reach Him again, this is what I see: she wants to get to Christ, and Christ is fighting for her. But she hasn’t fully let go of the things of this world. I can relate to this; trying to reach Christ, knowing that I need to let go of my earthly desires, but not totally letting go and letting God.

    So this whole time, Christ is fighting for her soul, she’s trying to reach Him but still holding on to her wordly desires. When she finally rejects this world, THAT is when He gives Himself up to protect her from the things of this world that are still trying to get to her. Finally, she offers all of herself as a living sacrifice to Him, which is the point in the skit where He throws off all of this world’s sin. The end is what walking with Christ arm-in-arm looks like, which is what I’m trying to get to.

    I’m terrible with words, so I hope this description makes sense. Alex and Brett, thanks so much for being superstars for Jesus. You guys are such blessings and inspirations.

  • Stephen

    Thanks for posting this video. I have watched this version along with the several other versions of it that other churches have done. It moved me to tears. One thing though that confuses me is what exactly does the girl represent in this skit.

    1) Does she represent humanity, as in God creates man and walks in fellowship with him, then man strays and sins, separating himself from God, then God dies for man’s sins, and man comes to God and is saved (of course not all people will be saved) —thus the skit represents man’s overall condition and salvation

    2) Does she represent a Christian that has a close relationship with God, then gets caught up in some sort of sin, then realizes that God is all she needs and fights against the sin with God’s power and eventually truly repents and God welcomes her back and continues to show his power over sin as long as the girl depends on God to help her

    So that is my problem. Also I would not represent Jesus has in despair as He was in the skit, but I would show him as sad and praying for the girl as He truly does. It would be very hard to represent God/salvation/repentance perfectly in this skit, but God is using it mightily nonetheless.

  • Sarah S.

    Very powerful skit! A beautiful representation of what Jesus has done for us… Just this past summer when I was on a Mission’s Trip my small Youth Group did two skits a little like this one, except a little more simple… the first about a man in ‘bondage’ by his sin and breaking free of it through Christ dying on the cross and taking away the man’s sin, releasing him of the bonds that held him, and the other about two people; one who chose the Christian path and the other who was enticed into evil and went through something like the girl did in this present skit you showed here… there are many different renditions of that type of skit, but I have to admit this one up here was very powerful and nearly had me in tears.

  • Dani D.

    Hello there,

    I really liked the message of the skit but I found myself questioning its universality. Why is it that all the temptations (besides her white friend) were brown?? Of course the black angel I can understand for its simplistic use of black to symbolize death or evil but to use brown human beings as the other evils gives the wrong message. Why not have a brown Jesus Christ and the temptations all be white? Would this change the message for anyone? Just thoughts! I really don’t mean to offend anyone- its only something I have noticed. Otherwise, the skit was great.

  • Holly

    Hello,

    I was touched deeply by the skit, but when I went and watched it again, I also noticed that Jesus didn’t seem very sovereign or powerful in the skit. I think they should have tried to make it clear that she completely noticed Him, but tried to ignore him Him anyway until she realized she needed Him.

  • Miki

    I cried, not because I was touched or that it was beautiful. I cried because I was sad. The girl was reaching to Jesus and fighting with all her might, but the other people (“temptations”) were bogging her down. It was like the bad guys were more powerful than Jesus at one point.

    I don’t like this at all. The Jesus I know is all-powerful. In my experience, not one temptation has reached out to get me. I have never been a victim of it. It was always my choice.

    And it was always Jesus’s choice to rescue me. He pulled me out of sin, always.

  • http://ladies-in-training.blogspot.com Alyssa C.

    The first time I watched this skit was at an International Night of the floating bookstore, Doulos. It brought tears to my eyes, just like it did now, when I watched it again. :)

  • Betty Dodge

    What I love about this skit is that is shows clearly that we can have an overwhelming spiritual experience and even desire Christ by the power of the Holy Spirit working on our hearts — but it may not yet be regeneration. I could be wrong, but I think there is a message in the first part of the skit about that – if we are truly born again, we will cooperate with the Holy Spirit in killing sin, which her fight agains the flesh shows at the end. She is victorious in Christ.

    It’s hard to say everything about the Gospel in a 4 minute skit – but there are important lessons in this skit!

    Thank you for putting it up.

  • Robbie

    This skit has changed so many lives, there are so many different versions based off this original lifehouse skit. Here is the version from the Valparaiso University student body.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=00jPhRjcpL4

  • Skylar

    Wow i love this skit. My mom showed it to me when i was having a real hard time believing and it really helped me realize that God will forive me no matter what ive done or how many things i have put in between us. I hope it changed your life too!

  • Christina

    Elisabeth Gruber — In answer to your question about books on the topic of election, I suggest the following: First and foremost, Martin Luther’s “The Bondage of the Will”, which comes highly recommended by my husband. I also enjoyed “A Journey of Grace”, which is a theological novel that explores the doctrines of grace very thoroughly and helped me understand Calvinism. Some books that we have (which I have yet to fully read, but I believe would help you in your quest) are “What is a True Calvinist?”, “Grace Unknown”, “The Doctrines of Grace”, “All of Grace”, and “Lectures on Calvinism”. Hope this helps!

    I would also like to say how proud I am of everyone who has disagreed respectfully and in love on this discussion. You’ve been a true picture of Christ-like grace and patience. I have to commend y’all for relying on Christ to help you portray such a spirit! God’s blessings.

  • Caitlyn

    I saw a live performance of this skit and thought I might be able to give my thoughts on the critiscisms from some of the comments. When I saw it, it seemed that Jesus was not feeling helpless, but frustrated at trying to get the girl’s attention. This is sort of lost because the camera is focusing on the girl.

    Also, Mikki said that the temptations seemed more powerful than Jesus. I thought that it represented the conflict of surrendering her sins and returning to the straight and narrow. How often I struggle with “loving” my sins and wanting to live in sin and still serve Jesus! But if you notice, you can clearly see she’s not in it alone. You can see Christ is pulling her in starting at about 4:22, and as soon as she gets past her temptations, He rescues her. Again, this is kind of lost in the video.

    Let me add that I’m not entirely sure my analysis of this is correct, but that’s what it displayed for me. I really love this video for so many reasons. I was particularly convicted at how easy it is to be distracted by the world, yet I love the fact that in the end, no matter how badly I mess up, I always have a Saviour to rescue me!

  • Grace

    I agree that the theology was somewhat flawed, but I still had some serious shivers and tears. One of the best gospel skits I’ve ever seen.

  • Emily

    I adore this skit. Every time I see it I get shivers all up and down my spine. It also makes me cry……. Thanks to whoever found this.

  • Naomi & Grace

    WOW! Sitting here with my sister. No matter how many times we see this movie, we always get goosebumps! Amazing!!!

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  • Kara

    This DID send me to tears when I first saw it at a Christian conference. So beautiful and so absolutely true.

  • Katsmeowww

    First off I must say this is a VERY powerful skit.
    Second, I disagree with many of the posts. I believe God is sovereign despite of the choices we make but I believe he is not happy with every decision made. I believe his heart breaks for those who stray from him (Lk. 15:7) and that humans have free will (Gen. 2:16-17 & 3:22).

    When Jesus was on earth he did not have a “I am sovereign attitude.” In Matthew 23:37 Jesus had just the opposite reaction- he actually had the attitude of the “Jesus” in the skit,

    “…. Many times I have wanted to gather your people together. I have wanted to be like a hen who gathers her chicks under her wings. But you would not let me!”

    I believe it is a accurate picture of how Jesus feels when his children turn his back on him, or someone He loves who is still enslaved to the enemy. I believe Jesus’s reaction should also be our reaction for the lost and hurting.

  • MF

    It did seem at first that the world seemed more powerful, but once I think about it, once we come into agreement with sin, we become it’s slave, and though we may try to get to God, we may be addicted, and not able to give up the sin. Until we completely give up our sin, we are not able to reach Him. You also notice that when he “dies” he holds the sin back and triuphms. I believe this is an important point as well. When Jesus died, he triuphmed over sin, and we can freely come to him.
    Please comment, if you think I am wrong, I am open to learn, and I am not always right, I know. I just thought I might be able to share some insight.

    Thanks for reading!

  • Sarah Pena

    So, So powerful! I love when she is trying to get to Jesus and they are holding her back but he keeps on pulling her toward him. That is exactly how our God is. Pulling us ever toward him. He is so good!

    Sarah.

  • Renny P.

    Wow! That was great. It was an amazing example of how much God loves and cares for us. There were a lot more messages in the skit, but being trapped with earthly things is were I am at every single day… God help me. Great job of finding this great video!

  • David George

    Great video. This reminds me of a drama called Toymaker and Son. I was a part of a drama troupe that did this in churches and on the street up and down the eastern seaboard. I recalled many lives being changed. thanks for the memory…..

  • Ariana Jarrells

    I was first shown this skit by my mother and this skit describes me perfectly! I cry every time I see it and I just can’t get enough of it! God is truely a wonderful and powerful God!

  • Angela Charis

    Wow, what a lively, thought-provoking discussion!

    I remember the first time I watched this not really liking the style of the skit. However after reading all the various comments, I decided to watch it once more.

    I think that rather than the girl representing one man, she is representing mankind.

    As I watched the first scene with just God and the girls, I got the strong impression of life before the fall. The way He breathes life into her and shows her the wonders of the world is very similar to the creation of the world in the Garden of Eden.

    Then Satan tempts her and after she disobeys God, she is now separated from God by sin. The various temptations have all come up in various ways through out the History of Man. In History God intervenes, but ultimately, He is orchestrating His perfect plan to play out. Often, in the old Testament, it seems like God is standing back, waiting for the part of the plan that involves His perfect Son to take on the sin of the world.

    Near the end of the skit, this occurs. Mankind (the girl) struggles to free itself of sin, but only once Christ has taken our place, can we be truly free. Jesus filled in the gap that we could not cross with out the mediation of Himself. A pure mediator between sinful man and Holy God.

    Of course, the skit still leaves gaps, but as some have mentioned above, even the parables Jesus told don’t tell everything, once they are fully analysed. It is just an illustration of something greater and bigger, portrayed in a simpler, smaller way for us to understand.

    I know that even my description doesn’t even make total sense, but I think that it explains the question of whether she was saved or not at the beginning.

  • http://none mattias lavoie

    This reallly is an amazing skit that shows how God defends us from the world.

  • Bekka

    My dance team is doing this skit tomorrow night. I’ve seen about ten different versions of it and every time, it sends chills up my back.

    Regardless of where you stand theologically, this skit is wonderful for Christians. Everytime I watch it, I am amazed at what a loving and soverign God I serve.

    However, whether or not it is a great evangelistic resource, I’m not sure. I think it would be ok as long as a pastor or somebody followed up with the Gospel message.

  • Kristen Joy

    Wow, this is a really cool skit. It really helped me to be able to look back at the previous posts and see what other people think. It got ME thinking pretty hard about the theological side of the skit.

    My personal opinion is that, though Jesus did look a little bit helpless, he was portrayed as someone so powerful that he can overcome anything. It’s just a skit. People can try all they want but it’s imposible to show just how powerfull God is.

    If you look around our world today, you see so many people who have gone so low that they can’t get back up by themselves. That’s why we need Jesus. In the skit Jesus helped the girl get back up, something that she couldn’t do on her own no matter how hard she tryed. Something that no one in this world could do but Jesus. If this skit doesn’t portray Jesus as more powerfull than anything we can comprehend, then I don’t know what does.

  • Abby

    I saw the beginning and thought that it would be boring – but of course I was wrong. I got shivers when I saw the guy with blood down his arm, and began to cry when the girl started fighting her way back to Jesus. I cried even more when, even though all the forces of evil were out to get her, and He held them all back. I am definitely going to get my youth group to do this, but perhaps with Jesus waving his arms about, trying to get her attention – I’m not sure. Will work on it. But I want people to feel as moved by this as I did. \

    What is the name of this song?

    Thanks so much, Alex and Brett, for posting this!

  • eugentalovesjesus

    Powerful!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Thank you so much for sharing such a power skit. I will be sure to share it with the youth and the youth leaders at my church. And just for the record Jesus wasn’t helpless standing on the sidelines; he was sad that she turned away from him. He never gave up on her (as he does us) and continued to draw her back to him.
    That’s what’s so amazing about his grace and mercy.

    God Bless you!

  • Janae

    I was really touched by this skit. I saw it from the perspective of the girl representing a Christian who has strayed and become bogged down in the trappings of this world. As the sister of a “prodigal son” this skit represents the hope still available for my brother. When I watch this, all I can think of is the hope that my brother will come to the same realization that the girl has and come running home to his Heavenly Father. Thank you so much for posting this. -Janae

  • Stephanie

    I really love this skit. We perform this skit all the time at my church. The first time I saw this skit I cried. I wasn’t in drama then but that skit inspired me to join the drama team at my church. We perform other skits that we made our selves. The last time we performed this skit I was the model. It is a very difficult part to play, but in the end it was all together. The one who plays the girl always wears knee-pads during the skit because she lands on her knees so much. A couple of times she bruised her knees and they were hurting for awhile, but it is worth it when we perform in front of people. We feel great after the skit is over because we communicated the Gospel to hundreds of people. -Stephanie

  • Grace

    I really love this skit. We did thid skit for are youth service and it was really moving for the people who did it and the other kids, teenagers, and adults that were watching it. I remember crying after we did it because this is what are life is like especially at school and the people around us. Other people asked us to did it at there church and when we still do it or we watch it I have tear in my face. The one thing I relized is the Jesus is always there for us even if we fade away from him.

  • Josh

    This skit is amazing–it’s how I feel in this world. All the time I’m being pulled back by the things of this world…and I succumb to the temptation. Really great skit…

  • Chels

    Christ did that for me. Just read those words, and think it through. Christ died for you. Amazing!

  • LJBean

    So about Jesus looking helpless and fretful while the girl is turning away from him…

    Yeah, that’s not so great, it makes him look weak. But the way I like to think of it is that He does let us make our own choices. And those choices frequently upset him. Once she chooses Him again, He’s helping her…?

    That problem could also be solved if the actor playing Jesus altered his act slightly, so he looked more saddened than fretful.

    It’s a good point, but nowhere near a deal-breaker for me.

  • Alli P.

    That was kind of interesting, but I don’t think it portrays salvation very accurately. What’s with all the dancing and swaying at the beggining? Also, while God does give a choice whether or not we’ll accept His gift of salvation, honestly, He knew before we were born, and therefore, “technically”, the choice is His. We never would have come to Him without Him.

  • Robert Wood

    I actually had the chance to play Jesus in this skit on a mission trip to Chicago. Come to think of it, this really is the closest representation of salvation I’ve seen. There are details that can’t be portrayed by it, but I feel it displays the relationship between Jesus and His creation well, which is a key part of salvation. Obviously, we can never fully portray the true picture of salvation, but I think this is very powerful, and may be very effective in reaching certain people. I don’t really want to do it again, because I really don’t think I can do it well enough, but I certainly appreciate it.

  • Kay Morris

    WOW!!! There was a very heated discussion going on awhile back. I think it is very good that people are willing to really take the time to discern what they believe is good and evil as compared to the word of God. Too many people today just don’t care; they would watch it, read the comments section, and say “whatever, doesn’t really matter what I think, I’m goin’ to Heaven”. Anyway, even with its flaws I admired the skit. I have seen ones that I like better, but this one was still very touching. I would like to thank Alex and Brett for putting it on.
    ~Kay Morris

  • Kate Victoria

    Wow. I am not easily moved by videos but I was crying. What encouragement you bring to teens everywhere.

  • Connie

    We have a great dance/drama ministry in our youth ministry & we use this skit, but we have made a few changes to reach the lost when we do outreaches. We do not have an immodest girl come out in a dress, but a modestly dressed preppy acting girl like she is ‘all that’. Jesus ackowledges the fact that the girl decides she wants to go her own way, rejecting His love & guidance & he acts grieved that she made that choice, but He does not act helpless. He stands with His head bowed as if crying because He died for her & hates to see where her choices are leading her. This can be a very powerful means of evangelism if done right & we know that for a fact:) We have Jesus make the devil look like a wimp & it’s a great tool. We have ministered to many cutters, etc. that nothing else has touched them.

  • lorraine

    omg i sobbed god is so good i need to reach out to him more and more

  • lorraine

    i once again cried i loooooooooove this vid i really wish i could spend more time with god than i really do but i am so busy with sccool i cant get behind….sigh….life sux sometimes

  • Dillon Rogers

    Our youth has performed this skit in church. I was privileged in playing the role of Jesus. It is a great skit. For Christians. My youth minister carried two of his lost friends to a Christian concert, where this skit was performed. After the performance, the two friends stood dumbfounded. One of them looked at my youth leader and said: “Drinking and partying doesn’t make me want to go suicidal.” From the perception of a lost person, this skit makes no sense. I think it blocks out the fact that the bible says that sin is fun. Lost people don’t realize the regret they will have. For, not everyone is psychic. Sadly, the skit may even push away many of today’s ungodly youth. As a Christian, I absolutely love this skit! It’s my favorite of all time! But, reflecting on the days of immorality, I would’ve quickly shunned the presentation of pleasure being portrayed as regretful.

  • http://www.examiner.com/x-26406-Fort-Worth-Practical-Spirituality-Examiner Adam

    I really liked this video. My wife shared it with me this morning. I can see some of the things about Jesus’ actions that others have noted. However, I think we have to remember that we do sideline Jesus and make him “powerless” in a sense. He won’t barge into our life and force us to accept Him. He probably does watch us when we have fallen and think “what can I do to make them ask for my help?” He probably does “worry” about us when we’ve turned our back on Him. His overpowering love for us makes Him hurt when we hurt; makes Him angry when people hurt us. He wants to deliver us from all evil, but we have to let Him.

  • lorraine

    ohhhh who ever created this skit shouldv provided kleenex’s!!! i am literally mopping up my keyboard….this is an amazing skit god bless to whoever made it!!!!

  • sadie Y

    ive been going away from god for awhile now and this movie really really helped me alot thanks!!!!!

  • Katie

    my church did this skit and my best friend played the girl and jesus was played by her dad

  • Katie

    she was in tears when it ended :*)

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  • Lauren

    Chills everywhere. I never cease to be moved by this, it’s ridiculous. Everytime I need encouragement, I watch this. Gosh. Hah, tears :)

  • Michelle

    This is an amazing and very powerful drama!

    Praise be to God!

  • Juliethetwin

    I love that skit! i never really thought about the helplessness that some people noticed…
    he is trying in the beginning but the girl is not coming back. he cant make us do stuff even though he knows what we are going to do. he was simply waiting and he was pacing becuase it hurt him to see her going through that. or at least that what i got when i stopped and thought about it. just like God wated for the right time to send Jesus to earth. i really like how God stepped in and made a huge effort to bring her back. i love to listen to the corwd and i joined in cheering when she threw down the gun and the song says “your all i want your all i need your everything!”

  • Cailin Rogers

    Amazing! We did that skit at our church and I loved it!:)

  • lorraine

    oh gosh lord please oh please i nevr want to leave you like that please hold me close jesus hold me

  • katelyn wyant

    That skit is soooooo powerful! Even though there might be some flaws…the message is still there! I cryed! I didn’t cry sad tears, but tears of overwhelming joy!!!!
    God is awesome! (for lack of a better phrase) I can’t begin to express my love for him:)

  • Luke Kibler

    I love it! Dramas can be so powerful is presenting the Gospel of God’s love. We are in the process of putting together a drama team in our youth group, we plan to do this one.
    To comment on the “sovereignty of Christ” issue, I think that some are missing the whole picture of the message. It is meant to tell a story of the history of our salvation… from creation to after Christ’s redeeming sacrifice.
    The part where Jesus is looking on, and desperate for the girl to come to him is before he died for us. In a sense, we see a picture of the old covenant and how it was God giving man a chance to “earn” salvation by obeying the law on his own strength. And we do see that picture in scripture of how God longed for his people to come to him, but they would not and could not. But sin separates us from God, we could never reach Him on our own strength. We could never do it, despite that God was faithful on His part, we can never be holy enough and keep up our end of the bargain. And God never violates our free will. So then, Jesus had to step in! Praise God for that. So in that sense it is pretty accurate in portraying God’s desire to draw us to Himself, how he gave us a chance to prove to ourselves we couldn’t do it without Jesus, then He stepped in and saved the day and defeated sin and death once and for all!

  • Deadre

    Sends chills down my spine and moves me to tears…Awesome skit! Awesomely performed!!!

  • Jmok

    Way to many for me to read all of the comments, but my take on Jesus standing there is that when we stray Jesus is hurt and waits for us to repent, he doesn’t automatically pull you back to him, we have free will and therefore he stands where we left him sadly and waits til we repent, so I say it is accurate

  • Jessie

    I was able to be apart of this skit playing the part of the girl for the Sun Valley Indian School while on a work and witness trip, and again for my church family when our team returned home from Arizonia. Very powerful skit! It brings me to tears each time I watch or preform it.

  • Thomas

    I love it! It really shows the gospel and a striving loving Christian’s relationship with Jesus

  • Erin

    What I love about this blog is that people can disagree and still be respectful to one another. Too many times have I seen people discuss this very issue of the elect and be totally attacking in doing it. I myself find it hard to think of God planning people for hell. Just my thought.

    This blog is so helpful. Keep going with Christ and strive for excellence.

    God bless. :)

  • Joshua Golden

    This is a powerful skit that I have seen about 10 times, and it never gets old! I think it can be taken on a level other than individually. The girl represents humanity, and the others represent humanity’s fall. The first one represents taking sinful pleasure in the opposite gender. The second doesn’t only represent chasing after money, but other material possessions as well. The third represents partying, drinking, drugs, and the wrong company. The fourth represents not being happy the way we are or look, but wanting to change ourselves to the world’s standards, not God’s standards. The last represents not just the devil, but depression and suicide contemplation. I think the most powerful part of the skit is when Jesus dies as the girl places the gun to her head, then darts back to him resurrected as the music picks up. I think this represents more than suicide on an individual basis but also the gun called sin we put to our heads. When we accept Jesus and run back to him, then He comes and saves us from sin and defeats it, then we will spend eternity with Him.

    I’ve seen several versions of this, and some depict different parts better than others, but this one is my favorite because I feel it is more emotional than the others. I’ve seen one where Satan was also pulling her to him, so it seemed as he was in a tug-of-war with Jesus, but Jesus always prevails.

    Thanks for this blog, it has really impacted me. Keep it up! God bless!

  • key

    I love the skit, although I saw it before at youth rally in benntsville a few years ago, it is still very inspiring. Keep up the good work and may god bless your ministry

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  • Patty

    I absolutely love it.
    We are doing a VBS this year for teens and this has hit it on the nail. I would love to have the kids put this skit on for the church..can we?
    I think with what the teens face today this is a powerful message!

  • alex

    that was amazing! i was hold back tears. i think that brett and alex’s story has inspired me.

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  • AJ

    o wow i was crying and my sister almost cried

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  • Anya Daber

    That was a very moving skit. Thank you very much for posting it! I love the song that was used in the backround.

    Love In Christ.
    Anya Daber

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  • http://vonguntens.com McKenna

    That skit is just so real, everything worldly is calling us away from Christ, and we don’t see the harm it is until the very end.

  • http://vonguntens.com McKenna

    continued from above comment.

    That’s why we need to repent and follow Jesus, and keep going back to Him. It’s a daily thing, choosing whom we will serve. Whom we will live for. Jesus or satan?

  • http://mypieceoftheplanet.wordpress.com/ Sadie Grace

    I LOVE this skit but you said there were flaws and I didn’t see any. What were they? Because I totally believe in the same things you guys teach, but I am still growing. Could you please tell me, so I could understand what’s wrong with it?

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