I DESPAIR for Hollywood. I've only been to about 6 movies in the last two decades, and half of them I wouldn't have gone to with hindsight.
I HATE the media drooling over "Star" misfits who propagate their own egos and garbage described wrongly as entertainment.
Not long ago, an actor from my country made a "ground breaking" movie promoting homosexuality. His name was Heath Ledger. The decaying media salivated over it and him. After it was released, his face seemed to be in every paper and magazine in this country, journalists saying what a marvelous talent he had and what a brave and great film it was. The "Gay" community of course said Ledger was wonderful, applauding a new champion of their perversion.
But every time I saw his face, I felt a little sorry for him, and feared for his future, knowing that on a world stage he had virtually shaken his fist in God's face, a God who condemns homosexuality.
Hollywood used Heath Ledger, a godless and gullible young man looking for fame and fortune, to promote its own sick, bottom feeding standards.
As I write this, God is still on His throne, Hollywood is grubbier than ever, and Heath Ledger is DEAD! ... Keygar
"Hollywood" be thy name
By Ray Comfort
Few could deny that Hollywood has become a modern day Sodom. It is an evil that has been responsible for destroying this country’s moral foundations. It is responsible for promoting alcohol, tobacco and illicit drugs, for mocking the gospel, aggressively promoting the homosexual agenda, promoting unspeakable violence, adultery, rape, blasphemy, lying, greed, and every evil possible.
Hollywood has set its own standard and become a law to itself. It answers to no-one and rules as the only potentate. Its says, Thou shalt commit adultery, lie, steal, kill, blaspheme and covet. It’s first and greatest commandment is Thou shalt have any other gods before the God of the Bible.
Jody Eldred is an Emmy-Award-winning producer-director. He said, “Did you know that nine out of ten Hollywood films lose money? Did you know that the vast majority of new television shows are cancelled because no one is watching them? Do you wonder why?” The obvious answer, says Eldred, is “because they’re mostly awful.” But why are they awful? “Because,” notes Eldred, “the people creating them are completely out of touch with the people they are creating them for! Their worldview is vastly different from the worldview of most Americans. We have a largely Christian nation, but Hollywood is largely un-Christian, and in many if not most cases, anti-Christian. They’re not just out of touch. They’re against you!” Biblical Christianity is anathema in Hollywood because those who truly love the God of Scripture will no longer show up at the box office to pay for movies that glorify that which is abhorrent to Him. Hollywood’s income is built on the things that it loves–lawlessness, adultery, lust, fornication, violence and greed, and as long as this world is kept from turning to God, it will continue to pay Hollywood its dues.
If an actor becomes involved in Scientology, Kabala, Buddhism, atheism or any strange religion, he or she will have Hollywood’s blessing. However, if he or she is genuinely converted to Jesus Christ, they have sinned in Hollywood’s eyes, and his or her career may face the death sentence. What should you do?
So, how can you make a difference? How can one person influence the powerful Goliath of the entertainment industry? The answer is in your own hands. You have a powerful sling that can hit the blaspheming giant right between the eyes, and believe me, it will leave a deep impression on his mind.
Make it your aim to never pay Hollywood to see sex and the blasphemy. Every time we give any money to see any motion picture we are lining the pockets of the producers. We are saying “Good work. Love it! Keep them coming!” That’s the message we send if it’s a good clean movie, and it’s the message we send if it’s a filthy, dirty movie
A few years ago, there was a movie called “The Time Changer.” It was about a Christian gentleman from a hundred or so years ago, who invented a time machine that brought him into the era of modern Christianity. He joined a contemporary church and found himself doing things the rest of the congregation did–he found himself watching a modern movie. But shortly after he entered the theater, he ran out into the lobby with a look of pain on his face, crying, “They blasphemed the name of the Lord! There must be a mistake! They blasphemed His name. Stop this"!
Many years ago I went with my daughter (when she was 14 years old) to see a movie that had been enthusiastically recommended by a Christian. Within five minutes of the beginning, the name of Jesus was blasphemed, so we immediately walked out.
What good did that do; we had already paid for the tickets? We walked out because I want to set an example for my daughter. If I sit through a movie that blasphemes the name of Jesus, I’m saying “It’s okay” to Hollywood and I’m saying to her, you can do what I’m doing. You can worship Jesus on Sunday and to sit through a movie that uses His name in place of a word used to describe human waste. That’s hypocrisy, and I would rather lose my right arm than have my daughter think that I’m a hypocrite. That’s my standard. Yours may be higher.
You say, “But if I had that standard I would rarely get to see a modern movie!” That may be true, and it shows how far America has fallen. But being a Christian means taking up the cross and denying yourself. It means denying myself the pleasure of entertainment, denying Hollywood income, and most importantly, honoring God.
So, what’s the big deal with using God’s Name in vain? Movies simply reflect culture, and that’s how people talk nowadays–it’s just a word. Not to God. Using God’s name in vain is more serious than a heart attack. The Old Testament gives the death sentence for blasphemy, and that same Law will be enforced on the Day of Judgment. The Lord will not hold him guiltless who uses His name in vain
Look at this news release from early in 2007:
ATLANTA (AP) — So much for God and country, at least during some in-flight showings of the Oscar-nominated movie The Queen. All mentions of God are bleeped out of a version of the film distributed to Delta and some other airlines.
Jeff Klein, president of Jaguar Distribution, the Studio City, Calif., company that supplied the movie to the airlines earlier this month, said it was a mistake, committed by an overzealous and inexperienced employee who had been told to edit out all profanities and blasphemies.
“A reference to God is not taboo in any culture that I know of,” Klein said. “We excise foul language, excessive violence and nudity.”
Airline passengers watching the movie hear “(Bleep) bless you, ma’am,” as one character speaks to the queen. In all, the word “God” is bleeped seven times. (At no time in the original movie is “God save the queen” uttered.)
Klein said he discovered the mistake after a London-bound Air New Zealand passenger complained. Jaguar has been sending out new, unedited copies to the airlines. Airlines routinely show movies from which graphic scenes and strong profanities are edited out.
The “overzealous and inexperienced employee” had been told to remove filthy offensive words from the movie. So he removed the Name of God. What does that say about him, and what does it say about Hollywood?
Hallowed Be Thy Name
God’s name is to be revered. It is to be honored. It is to be hallowed. But Hollywood doesn’t do that. It does the opposite. It takes it in vain. The definition of something that is taken in “vain” means that it is considered “worthless, empty, or hollow.”
If I went to a movie and for some reason the producer decided to have an actor say that my wife was a prostitute, I would immediately leave the theater. I don’t care how much I am enjoying the movie, I would not sit back and let anyone insult the good name of my precious wife.
Now let’s bring it closer to the issue. Imagine if, for some strange reason, the actor began to equate my wife’s name with human excrement? What a terrible insult it would be to her character if I was even tempted to sit there for a second, because I liked the movie! If I did so, you would be justified in questioning my love for her.
How much more should I be jealous of the good Name of the God who gave me my wife and gave me life itself? How much more should I esteem the Name of the One who suffered and died and the cross for me?
If a Hollywood producer for some reason decides to put the “f” word before the Name “Jesus Christ,” I don’t care how entertaining the movie is, I will not pay for that to listen to that, no matter how good the story-line.
Godly Jews won’t speak or even write the Name of G-d because they consider it so holy. Yet we pay Hollywood actors to use it in blasphemy for our entertainment and pleasure.
Christianity Today cited a study that looked at the movie-viewing habits of “religious” Americans. They found that when it came to watching R-rated films, “there isn’t much difference between the religious and nonreligious.”
With the advent of cable TV, now anyone can have R-rated movies pumped into their home. No longer is there the concern about someone from church or the workplace seeing you at a dirty movie. What’s more, these movies have no moral boundaries–“This kind of programming—a mix of violence, sex and sophomoric stunts—is bursting out all over basic cable, which is not regulated by the Federal Trade Commission and is therefore, theoretically, reined in only by concerns of cable operators and advertisers.”
Every Christian has his own liberty before God, but I’m curious to know how do they react when they hear blasphemy? Do they blush, not notice it, or just whisper a sincere apology to the Lord?
An actor friend of mine once called me and said that he had been offered a great movie deal, but he had a problem with one part of the script. The story line was wonderful, but as usual in a romantic movie, it included an intimate conversation and ended with a passionate kiss. He would get $100,000 for doing the movie, but he said, “I won’t kiss another woman like that, and besides, what would my kids think of me if they saw the movie?” He turned down the part because it could also be used to undermine his Christian testimony.
I greatly respected him for it. Think of it. Could you bring yourself to kiss someone other than your spouse for ten seconds—for $100,000?
The incident reminded me of a story I heard of an English Prime Minster, who during a dinner leaned over to the woman sitting next to him, and said, “Would you go to bed with me for a million dollars?” She said, “I would think about it.” He then asked, “Would you go to bed with me for one dollar?” She widened her eyes and said, “What kind of woman do you think I am!” He replied, “Madame, we have already established that. Now we are just negotiating the price.”
For what price should a Christian prostitute himself? What amount tempts us to compromise our convictions? $100,000? One dollar? An entertaining movie? God isn’t impressed with the cost, and neither should we be impressed with anything the world offers us. We are called to live out our convictions, not to be hypocrites.
Imagine your indignation if you found a peeping Tom peeping through your bedroom window at night. You would probably call the police and have the dirty pervert arrested. But if you have ever found pleasure by watching a sexually explicit scene in a movie, you are a peeping Tom—a lust-filled heavy breathing pervert. The only difference is that you pay a fee to peep through a window you call a movie screen. Remember that God says that if you even look with lust you are committing adultery in the heart.
So, if you and I are going to support Hollywood’s film industry, here’s our biblical Movie Guide: “Whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things” (Philippians 4:8). “I will set no wicked thing before mine eyes . . . ” (Psalm101:3). Why are so many who profess to be Christians feeding on R-rated movies that are filled with violence filthy language, blasphemy, and graphic sex scenes? Perhaps it’s because magazines like Christianity Today (despite Philippians 4:8 and Psalm101:3) actually promote them: The Number 23 is rated R for violence, disturbing images, sexuality and language. The Lord’s name is taken in vain along with all the big swear words. There’s very graphic, bloody and sudden violence—throats being slit and bodies dropping on pavement. There’s no nudity, but there are several sex scenes that show a lot of action—and degrees of perversion such as violent sex. The magazine kindly provides a “Talk About it–Discussion Starters” section–for after you have peeped at the ”lot of action” sex and listened to them blaspheme the Lord’s Name.
Hollywood producer Ralph Winter says, “I’ve made R-rated movies, and if I think that’s warranted, I’ll do it again, because sometimes you need to show the depravity of where people come from, to show how they can be changed into something else.” “Ralph is important to the Christian community of Hollywood, because he is a living breathing witness of what it takes for Christians to acquire power and influence here. He’s a wonderful combination of professionalism and integrity, and godliness. He has made it to the highest level in Hollywood, without losing his faith in Jesus, and without the kind of nauseating rationalizations that many Christians eventually make to achieve success here.” Winter calls himself a Christian and yet sees fit to produce films that blaspheme the Name of God and the Name of Jesus.
And Winter says that Christians better beware of hypocrisy when they judge their Hollywood brothers for making R-rated entertainment, because . . . believers must be going to a lot of those questionable movies, or those films would not make so much money.
It’s become popular for church websites to give a little insight into the pastor’s likes and dislikes, so that you can get to know him better and perhaps imitate him. On one site, when the senior pastor is asked about his favorite movie, he says, “Tough one; I’m a movie freak — used to be Lost Boys (vampire movie) . . . I like anything intense, brutal, mind-bending, etc.” His associate one-ups him. He answers, “Snatch with Brad Pitt and Benicio Del Toro. Great film if you can get past the 493 F-bombs!” He got past them without a problem. Actually, he was exaggerating a little when he said that the movie used “F” word 493 times. It was only used 156 times, and the name of Jesus was blasphemed 11 times.
It’s Not Okay
Every dollar bill that is given to the box office goes towards helping to feed the giant. But when we don’t pay them to produce movies that blaspheme the Name of God, we are saying to the producer and the script writers, “It’s not okay.”
Protesting with the wallet gets the attention of the entertainment industry, because it articulates the only language Hollywood speaks. Mammon is their god:
The studios learned an important lesson from Universal’s Walden-financed Oscar-winning biopic, Ray, which was previewed at churches. Congregations loved the film but objected to the word “God” being used as a cuss. Ray’s director, Taylor Hackford, who had already cut four-letter profanities to satisfy Anschutz, the Walden boss, insisted he would not edit the film further, but it cost Universal the support of some church advocates. As Hackford says: “People in Hollywood aren’t stupid. It flies in the face of what I believe, but you’re still working in the movie industry, not the movie art form.”
Hollywood’s love of blasphemy only cost them “the support of some church advocates.” But the Southern Baptist Convention, the nation’s largest Protestant denomination, for eight years had a policy of not going to any movie Disney produced because of its support of homosexual-themed events and movie subjects. Although Disney never indicated that their bottom line had been effected, look at what happened back in July, 2006: Famed family-film maker Disney is headed back to its roots, with confirmation yesterday of cuts of 650 employees that will include a phase-out of its R-rated movies.
It seems that Disney had already been feeling the pinch. A year or so earlier they took the drastic step of actually removing blasphemy from a script:
Peter Sarsgaard, co-star of the Jodie Foster Disney thriller Flightplan, had the exclamation “Jesus” removed from his lines of dialogue. “They said, ‘You can’t say that. You can’t take the Lord’s name in vain.’ I had to say ’shoot’, and that isn’t as good.”
Perhaps Mr. Sarsgaard should have used his mother’s name in place of human excrement. That might have been as good. Or if he wants to draw attention to the movie and himself, why doesn’t he consider using the exclamation “Mohamed!”? It may be a first for Hollywood, and would probably get him some free publicity.
So, why don’t we see actors blaspheming the name of Mohamed? There are probably two main reasons: 1. Screenwriters are aware that if they even draw a simple cartoon of Mohamed they could lose their head. 2. Mohamed’s name isn’t despised enough to use as a cuss word. That’s reserved for the Savior. He said that the world would hate Him, because He would testify of their deeds—that they are evil.
Hollywood’s Redeeming Features.
Perhaps you are consoling yourself with the thought that contemporary Hollywood has been bad, but it does have some redeeming qualities. In recent years it has gained some merit points in the eyes of Christians because it has produced good movies such as C.S. Lewis’s The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe. It was a great movie, but it had no clear gospel message. Only those with an keen eye for allegory would have found something.
Then there was the much awaited trilogy of Lord of the Rings. I sat through more than nine long hours, waiting for some sort of gospel message. There wasn’t one. Not even in the faintest of allegories.
Facing the Giants was a good Christian movie. However, it wasn’t a Hollywood production. It was produced by a church and the cast were church members. The Left Behind Movies were made by a Canadian company in Canada, with a Hollywood crew and cast.
Neither was The Passion of the Christ a Hollywood production. It was filmed in Europe. Mel Gibson financed it with his own money, and Hollywood hated it with a passion. They would be greatly offended it if was even slightly attributed to them. Despite its incredible success (it grossed well over $700 million worldwide), it was virtually snubbed at the Oscars.
Luther was a good movie, but again, it had no gospel message. Neither did Disney’s production of Prince of Egypt, The End of the Spear, etc., etc.
According to Gallup polls in recent years, 80 percent of Americans consider themselves Christian to some degree and 59 percent (177 million) attend religious services at least once a month. So it makes good business sense for Hollywood to pan for gold in the pews. However, Disney’s 2007 effort to do so with The Nativity Story didn’t yield any nuggets.
Here’s the problem. Hollywood’s moguls may give the Christian market movies that entertain, but they will certainly not make movies that promote what they consider to be “dangerous Christian fundamentalist propaganda”–what we call “the gospel.” You have about as much hope of that happening as you have selling the Temple Mount to Jews for an Arab Israeli bacon burger drive-through.
So don’t hold your breath for Hollywood to produce a movie that is going to present a clear gospel message. If anything of that nature is produced, it will no doubt come from independently from Christians within the industry.
The only time Hollywood itself is really happy to hear the name of Jesus, is in blasphemy.
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