This week a movie entitled End of the Spear is being released. In fact it may be getting released today, though I cannot say that with any real certainty. The film is based upon the lives and deaths of five missionaries to Ecuador, including Nate Saint and Jim Elliot, who were trying to reach the unreachable for Christ. It's a moving story, so the fact that it was being made into a movie got me excited. Surely there would be things that I may not like about the film, after all Hollywood is trying to tell a story about reaching people for Christ.
Anyway, Chad Allen (best known for his role on Dr. Quinn the Medicine Woman) was cast as Nate Saint. So what? Well, apparently he's a gay activist. So there has been a lot of controversy over whether or not it is appropriate for a man such as him to be taking on the role of such a beloved missionary. People are quite up in arms about this.
It has been said on many blogs that he's been out and about for years, and his activism is widely known. However, before everybody and their mom starting making posts about this I was not aware, and I suspect a large number of people could say the same thing, though I do think that the producers of the movie should have done more research into the people they were casting.
So, here is what I find interesting. A lot of people are very excited about this movie and the possible outreach it could open up, similar to The Passion. And then there is the spectrum of people who really did not like The Passion and find it ridiculous that we need movies to attempt to reach the lost for Christ. We've gotten lazy in our witness to the world they say. And generally I agree with them. I think it's really silly to wait for a movie to come out to try and discuss Christ's saving sacrifice with people.
The problem here is, these people seem to be making a bigger stink of Chad Allen being a gay activist and playing Nate Saint than they did about Jim Caviezel playing Jesus. Quite honestly, I have more issues with people who don't have a relationship with Christ playing the role of my Savior. Why are we more up in arms over this than we were about who would fill the role of our Savior? This seems strange to me. Yes, I realize that Chad obviously doesn't have a relationship with Christ and therefore isn't a fantastic choice for the role, but really, was Jim Caviezel any better? I don't think so. Am I thrilled with the fact that he's a homosexual man with a political agenda playing this role? No. Is it the end of the world? Absolutely not. After all, we're not supposed to be waiting around for movies to come out to evangelize.