Movie Overview: God’s Not Dead
College freshman, Josh Wheaton, reported for first day of classes, eyeing a future degree in law. A committed Christian, Josh expected to receive a higher education, not a tongue lashing, from his atheist philosophy professor about the first year student’s Christianity.
During his first lecture, Professor Radisson chided any professing belief in the antiquated God of the Bible. To kick-off the semester in Philosophy 101, Professor Radisson instructed the pupils to write “God is Dead” on a sheet of paper and turn it in, signed. With little or no forethought, the students, eager to please, signed the declaration….Well, all but Josh Wheaton.
The Professor expected absolute obedience, and when Josh refused to sign the statement denying his faith, Radisson assigned Josh the daunting undertaking of proving God’s existence.
The question looms, will Josh stand resolved as Daniel in the Old Testament or compromise his faith to secure a passing grade in the mandatory class?
The movie captures a predicament devout Christians across America are facing. As the credits rolled, cases argued/defended by the Alliance Defense Fund revealed that “persecution” of Christian students on university campuses is not isolated. In fact, as our culture continues to embrace a more tolerant view of lifestyles the Bible specifically lists as sinful, the pressure to live wholly committed to Christ will become increasingly difficult. As Christianity becomes more and more unpopular, the students who dare refuse to participate in spiritually compromising lessons and assignments face potential retribution from professors who see themselves as “god” in their own schools of higher learning.
Josh Wheaton, played by Shane Harper of “Good Luck, Charlie” fame, delivers a powerful and believable performance. His internal debate over compromising or “swimming upstream” is palpable. At one point, my wife leaned over and whispered, “I feel so nervous for him.” My heart raced with the same anxiety. Fantastic acting in this young man’s fledgling career.
Kevin Sorbo plays the part of Professor Radisson, the atheist. He, too played his role powerfully, causing me to be nervous whenever an encounter with Josh was imminent.
This film delivers a timely message and definitely deserves a rating of “family friendly.” I can’t imagine Willie and Korie Robertson (Duck Dynasty) making a cameo appearance in anything but…can you?