Friday, January 13, 2006

"End of the Spear": homosexual activist plays Christian martyr in movie

Boy, have I been around and around on this. I was deeply moved by Steve Saint's presentation at Desiring God's 2005 conference, Suffering and the Sovereignty of God. I'd never heard of Steve Saint before, though I'd certainly heard of Nate Saint. And in hearing of Steve Saint, I hear of the forthcoming movie "End of the Spear" enthusiastically promoted.

Later, I go to the movie's very slick web site. It certainly looks as if it is going to be an emotionally moving film. I then read about the cast, of whom I'd never heard. Then I notice that the man who plays two lead roles (Nate and Steve Saint) was involved in producing a play called "Corpus Christi." I raise an eyebrow, as my memory starts twitching. Wasn't that a play representing Jesus Christ and His disciples as homosexuals?

So I research further, and find that this actor, Chad Allen, is indeed an activist homosexual. I read some lame rationalizations the production company made about selecting him for this role. And then I start debating whether or not I want to blog about it.

I'm glad I didn't, because Jason Janz at SharperIron has done an excellent essay on the subject, better than what I had going. Lots of documentation, good suggestions on how to proceed, and some good following interaction from Steve Camp and others.

The foolishness of Every Tribe Entertainment has put the Christian community in a bind.
  1. If we go and support the movie, the pro-homosexual-agenda-driven MSM will report this as our "reluctantly growing" in our acceptance of homosexuality. It will be used to marginalize the concerns we express about this destructive sin, and decaffeinate our call to repentance and regeneration. Particularly (if reported accurately), Steve Saint's gushy acceptance and embrace of Allen will be messaged as acceptance of his homosexuality.
  2. If we protest and stay away, we'll be shown up as knuckle-dragging haters, and once again Steve Saint's own embrace of Allen will be used against us. Why can't we be more enlightened, like Steve? After all, it's him and his dear dad that Allen is portraying. If it's okay with Steve, and Steve embraced Chad just as he is (as reported), why don't we? Our protests will be used to highlight the film. And here's the really nasty, biting irony: the "martyr" will be seen as Chad Allen... not Nate Saint.
  3. If we do not support the movie, a message taken will be, "See? Christians don't even support Christian productions. Better get back to putting out filth."
  4. If we do support it, expect to see Chad Allen preaching all over the place. Hint: he won't be preaching the Christ who Nate Saint died proclaiming.
Now previous Christian reaction has been characteristically mushy. "What -- do you ask your plumber if he's cheated on his wife? How many actors are living holy lives? Who is without sin?" This kind of shallow thinking is always disheartening. As a matter of fact, if my plumber presented himself as Bud Adulterer, and told me that my use of his services would be leveraged to display Christian embrace of adultery -- then yes, I would take my business elsewhere.

And so here is a Christian (?) company that knowingly and deliberately hires a homosexual to portray a man who literally gave his life to preach Christ to the lost. Not a repentant, born-again homosexual; an unrepentant, practicing, activist, advocate homosexual who sees this movie as an opportunity to lower Christian objections to his sin of preference.

They say he's just the best. Evidently there simply is no practicing Christian actor of any quality these days. Not one! (Now, there's a topic for an essay, all by itself.)

As I say, we're in a bind. Like Colson's embrace of Roman Catholicism, like Mouw's/Eerdmans' embrace of Mormonism, the tens of thousands of Biblically-committed voices may be about to be drowned out once again by one loud mouth.

UPDATE: Jason Janz gives a heads up that Chad Allen will be discussing (what else?) homosexuality on Larry King tonight, with Al Mohler, Janet Parshall, and a homosexual mayor. See whether any or all of my predictions start to come to dreary realization. Pray for Mohler to speak the truth in love, and neither buckle nor cave.

UPDATE II: Tim Challies has a great discussion developing the concern expressed above, that this movie will provide an effective platform for Chad Allen to preach the"badspel" of homosexual libertinism.

UPDATE III: see how my predictions, above, are doing, HERE. Is Allen already using the platform this movie company gave him to spread the bad news that there is no hope for deliverance from homosexual desires -- or the corrollary Badspel of denial (i.e. immorality is moral)? Check it out.

1 comment:

LindaStargazer55 said...

I know that the tone of this message may seem a bit harsh, but it's the truth. And as we both know, the truth hurts. What I have to say has to be said, so bear with me.

Daniel, it's a shame that you, a professing Christian, are uncomfortable with the casting of a gay activist in "End of the Spear." While I agree that homosexuality is a sin and that Chad needs Jesus Christ, I do not support the hateful words that have been spoken and written by you and by those who agree with you. Not only that, but I do not believe that his homosexuality has any affect upon the movie. Furthermore, I believe that it is hypocritical to complain about the fact that Mr. Allen is in the movie. I say this because it seems as though you and your fellow complainers have forgotten that Jesus Christ died to save ALL sinners, INCLUDING homosexuals. The way you guys are acting, it's like you believe that YOUR sins can be forgiven, but that practicing homosexuals will NEVER be forgiven. You must remember that there is only ONE unforgivable sin, and that is blasphemy against the Holy Spirit. I am greatly disturbed and embarrassed by the hateful comments you and others have made, and I pray that you will repent and seek forgiveness from God.

I didn't even know Chad was gay until I came across a thread on the CBN.com message board. I don't believe that his homosexuality has done harm to the film. In fact, this sin isn't even MENTIONED in the film. Not only that, but I truly do believe that God allowed Mr. Allen to be cast in this movie so he would be given the opportunity to hear the gospel and to learn about the love of Christians, as well as the love of our Lord and Savior. The mere fact that Chad accepted the role after he learned that he'd be playing Christians is, to me, a miracle. I truly believe that God is tugging on Mr. Allen's heart, and that He began doing so on the day when Chad was offered the roles of Nate and Steve Saint. God always places us in situations, either directly or indirectly, where we are given chances to hear the gospel. Perhaps that's what He did with Mr. Allen. Personally, I am more concerned about Chad's SPIRITUAL FATE than I am about whether or not a gay actor should have been cast in a Christian film.

The only problem I have with Chad being in the movie is the fact that he was cast in dual roles. I don't understand why he ended up playing both Nate and Steve. What's up with that? I listened to the narrator, and I knew it was Chad Allen. But I didn't understand why he ended up playing Nate AND Steve. Very confusing. In any case, I thought he did an excellent job playing both roles. Very moving performances by all, in fact.

I believe that it is important for all Christians to watch this movie, because it is a sobering reminder of the sacrifices that we may have to make as we serve our God. Granted, most of us will probably not be martyred. But who's to say that our loved ones will be spared? I believe this movie is incredibly important, and it's a shame that certain people are allowing Chad Allen's homosexuality to prevent them from watching a film with such an important message. In fact, I plan on telling my Christian friends to watch this movie. Not only that, but I have been given permission by one of the church elders to show this movie at a youth group meeting, so long as I do some background research first.

YOUR COMMENT - 1. If we go and support the movie, the pro-homosexual agenda-driven MSM will report this as our "reluctantly growing" in our acceptance of homosexuality. It will be used to marginalize the concerns we express about this destructive sin, and decaffeinate our call to repentance and regeneration. Particularly (if reported accurately), Steve Saint's gushy acceptance and embrace of Allen will be messaged as acceptance of his homosexuality."
MY RESPONSE - But do you know this for certain? No! You don't. Even if homosexual activists make such an accusation, Christians who watch the movie know the truth: They're watching it because it contains an important message about faith, love, and sacrifice. Quite frankly, the homosexual community can say whatever they want about why I watched and will continue to watch "End of the Spear," but I know the truth and so does God. Now, I don't know about you, but that's good enough for me. I am convinced that you and your fellow complainers need to do a little more PRAYING FOR CHAD ALLEN and a LOT LESS complaining about the fact that he was cast in a Christian film.

YOUR COMMENT - 2. If we protest and stay away, we'll be shown up as knuckle-dragging haters, and once again Steve Saint's own embrace of Allen will be used against us. Why can't we be more enlightened, like Steve? After all, it's him and his dear dad that Allen is portraying. If it's okay with Steve, and Steve embraced Chad just as he is (as reported), why don't we? Our protests will be used to highlight the film. And here's the really nasty, biting irony: the "martyr" will be seen as Chad Allen... not Nate Saint.
MY RESPONSE - How do you think your comments are being interpreted by the homosexual community? Do you really think that homosexuals are reading your comments and thinking, "Wow! This person really does love us"? I highly doubt it. I believe that your comments are being used by homosexual extremists against ALL Christians, because they believe that these opinions come from hatred for the homosexual community and not just for their actions.

YOUR COMMENT - 3. If we do not support the movie, a message taken will be, "See? Christians don't even support Christian productions. Better get back to putting out filth."
MY RESPONSE - I doubt it. I really doubt it. Hollywood will continue to put out trash, no matter how well a Christian movie does.

YOUR COMMENT - 4. If we do support it, expect to see Chad Allen preaching all over the place. Hint: he won't be preaching the Christ who Nate Saint died proclaiming.
MY RESPONSE - Only God knows that for certain what Chad will and will not be preaching.

YOUR COMMENT - Now previous Christian reaction has been characteristically mushy. "What -- do you ask your plumber if he's cheated on his wife? How many actors are living holy lives? Who is without sin?" This kind of shallow thinking is always disheartening. As a matter of fact, if my plumber presented himself as Bud Adulterer, and told me that my use of his services would be leveraged to display Christian embrace of adultery -- then yes, I would take my business elsewhere.
MY RESPONSE - First of all, "shallow thinking" and "characteristically mushy"? Since when did preaching the truth -- that we are ALL sinners -- amount to "shallow thinking" and "characteristically mushy"? Secondly, if you truly believe that no sinner should be involved in Christian movies ... well, then I guess that according to you, there should be no Christian movies. To me, you're not coming across as a concerned Christian. You're coming across as a self-righteous person, who needs to remember that he is a sinner as well, and that his only duty is to love and pray for Chad and other people like him. Leave the judging to God, since He's the only one who's qualified.

While I believe that you are entitled to your opinions, I refuse to support your view in regards to the casting of Mr. Allen in this movie. I love you, but I feel that you are just plain WRONG! If you truly believe that no sinner should take part in a Christian film ... doesn't that mean that there would be no Christian films? Also, have you forgotten that God uses ANYONE for His purposes? If He chose to use Saul/Paul, someone who was responsible for the death of an untold amount of Christians, why can't He choose to use a homosexual? What if this was truly an act of the Holy Spirit? What if He was involved in the casting of Chad in this movie? What right do you or anyone else have to question it? So what if God "stepped out of the box," so to speak, and played a role in the casting of Chad? He's been known to "step out of the box" before. If I'm right, and if the Holy Spirit did play a role in the casting of Chad in this movie, then you and your fellow complainers are guilty of quenching the Holy Spirit, because you are trying to get in the way of His work. Just let Him do His job. Your only duty is to love Chad and to pray for Him. Let God take care of the rest.