4 People Most Likely to See Christian Movies
As I was watching God’s not Dead, I was thinking about who will really benefit from it. It’s obviously a movie which attempts to make some convincing arguments about the existence of God, so you might think it was created as an evangelistic tool, hoping to win over non-believers. I am not sure that that will be the primary accomplishment of this movie. Here are the people who (I suspect) are most likely to see the movie, and how (I think) they will be affected. And frankly, I suspect this applies to most Christian films…
1. Committed Believers – I would first and foremost expect believers to see the movie and support “one of their own” so to speak. They will probably go hoping to not only be inspired, but also to find in it a tool, something that they can encourage others to see, hoping that the movie will make a difference in their lives.
- Speaking as someone in this group, and judging by the response in our theater, I anticipate believers will come away inspired and encouraged to take a stand for their faith. The movie shows that taking a stand is costly, but it also shows that it is rewarded.
2. “Nominal” Believers and Fence Riders – I think a large majority of the people who see this will be those who like the idea of faith and want to call themselves Christian, but their faith is more of a Sunday thing. I’m not saying they don’t believe in God, but they may not know what is to actually follow God or truly put their life in His hands. They will go because, again, they like the idea of faith, that and other believers encourage them to go…they’ll go because it’s in vogue for Christians to see this movie.
- I’m actually excited about how this movie might affect this group! I’m hoping it will be a good challenge for them, an inspiration to truly follow Jesus, even into risky places. I hope they will be encouraged through it to live boldly for Christ. I truly believe the movie’s most positive impact will be on this group of people.
3. The Seekers – I have no doubt there will be some people who will be tempted to go because they are truly curious and seeking God. I just read of one such person on a message board who was asking if it was worth seeing because they are “seeking God”. Unfortunately, the people on that message string were haters and strongly discouraged it, suggesting alternate “religious” movies (like Life of Pi).
- If a person comes to this movie truly seeking, I cannot but think that it will give them much to think about. I also believe that if they are seeking, the Lord promises He will be found by them. So, whether or not the movie gets it right or botches it in our humble opinions, let’s not discount what the Holy Spirit can do no matter how meager the offering. When a person is willing to hear, God can speak through anything.
4. The Haters – There will be those, I’m sure, who see this movie for the sole purpose of hating on the movie and the Christians who support it.
- Who is to say how it might affect them?! It may fuel their fire, but it also may be something God uses to prick their heart. Let us pray for the latter! As we see in this movie, sometimes those who appear to be haters are often just seekers in disguise.
No matter where a person may be in the spectrum of belief, Christian movies can have an impact on their lives, but that impact is affected by me and you, for better or worse. If we focus on our critiques of the movie, we may lose the opportunity to make use of the shared experience and common ground created by the movie. BUT, if we re cognize what a tool these movies can be and focus on the real issues they present, whether it be forgiveness or suffering or (as God’s not Dead did) belief in God… then we are making the most of a golden opportunity and doing our best to help extend the reach and the good of what’s been done by the Christian filmmakers. The choice is yours.
 Jeremiah 29:12-13, for starters.