Posts Tagged ‘entertainment’

Hollywood loves money, and the love of money is a root of all sorts of evil. But faith-based films typically do extremely well at the box office and they don’t seem to care. It doesn’t add up. What does Hollywood love more than money? Mockery, perversity, and rebellion perhaps?

If you haven’t seen the new movie, I Can Only Imagine based on the #1 song by Christian band MercyMe, make sure you bring enough Kleenex. It’s a true story of forgiveness and redemption, and one memorable line from the movie’s main character is:

“My dad was a monster, and I saw God transform him.”

It took Bart Millard ten minutes to write the song “I Can Only Imagine,” but as Amy Grant said at the time, “It didn’t take you ten minutes, Bart; it took a lifetime.”

Many people can relate to life’s ups and downs; in some cases, abuse; hurts, healing, fears and failures, broken hearts, and finding true joy and peace in God.

It shouldn’t surprise us when Christian-themed movies do well at the box office.

The most obvious example was the 2004 blockbuster by Mel Gibson, The Passion of the Christ. Starring Jim Caviezel, it holds the record for Christian films after bringing in nearly $84 million its first weekend! It grossed over $611 million worldwide and cost $30 million to produce.

The Christian blockbuster is the third highest-grossing R-rated movie of all time, and the #3 film of 2004.

In comparison, the #2 film from the same year was Spider-Man 2 which only took in a few million more than The Passion of the Christ (in the U.S.) but, get this: Spider Man 2 cost a whopping $200 million!

I don’t have time to get into the massive marketing budgets Hollywood feature films often blow through, but it’s pretty clear many Christian films are money-makers. Why do you think this is?

A lot of people are tired of the trashy, godless, profane products Hollywood typically puts out. Numbers indicate there’s an enormous audience across the country desperate for clean, positive, redemptive, God-centered entertainment.

Let’s look at three movies released on the exact same day just weeks ago: I Can Only Imagine has already raked in over $70 million despite costing only $7 million to make. (Did you get that?)

The movie is the fourth-biggest opening for a faith-based film, and it only debuted in limited cities, playing on only 1,600 screens. I Can Only Imagine came in third among movies with ten times the budget; movies playing in twice the number of theaters.

Critics raved about the openly gay-themed coming-of-age movie, Love, Simon, which has only made $37 million and cost $17 million to produce.

Thirdly, also released March 16 was Warner Brothers’ Tomb Raider which has grossed about $55 million at the box office, but cost $94 million to make!

Finally, the high-budget Hollywood favorite, A Wrinkle In Time, based on the book, practically bombed in theaters. It had star power and marketing, but producers replaced Christian themes that were in the book and put New Age, politically-correct ideology in the movie.

I agree with author and blogger Matt Walsh, who suggests Hollywood is choosing to leave lots of money on the table because unfortunately, they seem to hate Christians more than they love profits.

“A lot of people …have no interest in the raunchy stuff. And practically no one wants to watch a gay romance, no matter how much Hollywood insists…  Faith is the driving force in the lives of millions… and people like stories they find relatable.”

Also in theaters now is God’s Not DeadA Light in Darkness, and Paul, Apostle of Christ starring Jim Caviezel.

Spiritual warfare is escalating, sin is celebrated, and darkness seems to be increasing. People need hope! These are just signs of the times, but maybe a few of Hollywood’s’ out-of-touch decision makers will get the message from the success of Christian films at the box office. For now however, we can only hope for more inspiring, family-friendly content rather than all the soul pollution.

*originally published at Freedom Project Media

 

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chipped-flag-on-brick-wall-300x200The United States of America has been under attack – from within. Two things make this fact even worse: many people are oblivious, and the larger problem is others just don’t seem to care.

It is important we understand how we got to this point of corruption and crisis as a nation, determine who is responsible, and decide what we can do about it. You may know much of this information, but many of your friends do not; please share it.

In order to examine the spiritual, financial, and political condition of the United States of America, the epic prize globalists wish to conquer, it’s vital we acknowledge some brief history.

Pilgrims and patriots came to these shores to escape religious persecution, government intrusion, and to establish a God-fearing settlement that would flourish on faith and freedom. This great Republic was originally founded upon biblical teachings, Moral Law, and the Declaration of Independence. We know, however, this is not the same country it was one or two hundred years ago.

We now know – and many of these are interchangeable – atheists, communists, liberals, humanists, Marxists, progressives, and socialists have infiltrated our government and undermined the order and very foundation of our nation. They have infected our courts, the education system, our corporations, the entertainment industry, and unfortunately, many of our churches. (Read about the Emergent Church.)

Most of us would like to see this nation return to one in which people once again honor the Lord first, respect the Constitution, the Flag, and allow others to live their lives based on Judeo-Christian principles. But this may be wishful thinking because political correctness will no longer coexist with religious freedom.

For concerned Christians, there is a stark reality looking us square in the eyes: God’s Word (Bible prophecy) reveals some sobering truths about the future of our nation and this world. Things will become even darker, more chaotic, and people’s hearts will grow cold. The Bible tells us evil will appear to prevail in the days leading up to the Lord’s return, and nations will not only come against Israel, they will stand in defiance of God our Creator and King.

The question is how much time do we have in the United States of America? Obviously, no one can answer this specifically. Could we have a great spiritual revival and awakening in our nation? It is possible, but not probable. Have we become such stiff-necked, lukewarm, self-serving people we have already sealed our own fate? Perhaps.

The other day, our guest on Stand Up for the Truth, Julaine Appling said, 

“Law is always downstream of culture.”

It is true our culture drives politics and legislation in America. Just look at the powerful LGBT lobby teaming up with Hollywood and the liberal media! But what happened to the influence of the church? Christianity used to drive culture, but today, more and more churches, leaders, and denominations have become silent or have conformed to the world.

Anti-Christian, anti-American agendas are being carried out across the country with little concern or resistance.

Two evil, influential political philosophies have shaped the direction of our nation over the past 50-plus years, and we see devastating effects on Americans who are (for the most part) unknowingly embracing them.

  • Saul Alinsky’s “Rules for Radicals”
  • The Cloward-Piven Strategy

These two progressive, Marxist philosophies and their implemented agendas have been used together to bring our nation to the precipice of economic and moral destruction. First, a quote from: Rules for RadicalsA Pragmatic Primer for Realistic Radicals

“In the beginning the organizer’s first job is to create the issues or problems.” Saul D. Alinsky,

The Obama administration sure took that principle to heart.

…Chicago-born Saul David Alinsky (1909 – 1972) was an American community organizer who dropped out of graduate school at the University of Chicago to work as a criminologist. He was drawn to the world of gangsters and was a confidant of the Al Capone mob. Alinsky became a “student” of enforcer Frank Nitti, who took over the mob when Capone was sent to prison. An Alinski radical has one main goal – power.

His motto was, “The most effective means are whatever will achieve the desired results.” In 1971, the hard Left, progressive community organizer wrote a playbook of subversive tactics to empower an upcoming generation of change agents. A few notable adherents to the Alinsky method are: Bill Ayers, Bernardine Dohrn, Van Jones, Bill and Hillary Clinton, Jim Wallis, and former President Barack Obama.

Expert organizer, President Obama, didn’t miss a beat when he left office and according to reports is scheming to sabotage Donald Trump’s presidency. His army of agitators numbering in the tens of thousands will take orders from Obama’s command post in his new Washington home less than two miles from the White House. Not content to move on like other ex-presidents, Obama is actively working to fight against Republicans.

Having raised over $40 million in the last few years of his presidency with the help of former Obama aides and campaign workers, his network of leftist nonprofits led by Organizing For Action (OFA) with 250 offices across the country, added staff, and fresh recruitment of liberal activists. Not only that, but Obama’s close confidante Valerie Jarrett has moved into his new DC home, the nerve center for their plan to mastermind the insurgency against the Trump administration.

The Alinsky Game Plan:

  • Exploit the weaknesses inherent in the system, made weaker by pitting opposing forces against one another.
  • Oppose independent, morally strong, educated people because those individuals, especially in groups, can’t be manipulated easily.
  • They attempt to end-run constitutional rights with social contract and dialectic consensus methods. Engage in large scale social engineering, attempting to unfreeze a society using chaos, and to then refreeze it in a new predefined shape.
  • The dividing lines they polarize people on are most often racial, economic, religious and political.
  • Cause social instability through subversive and divisive rhetoric. One method is to control the outcome of the education system by lowering the standards of education so that it creates a dependent class.
  • Use their political platforms to overload a society with social spending programs and class warfare to the point that hatred and division cause social panic.
  • Once they’ve created a problem, they propose themselves as the answer and use wealth transfers and the trumping of rights as the method to bring about “equality.”

THE EFFECTS:

  • An overpowering Federal government bureaucracy that has violated the U.S. Constitution’s principles of limited Federal government power and control.
  • $20 trillion in national debt. Not even counting Social Security and Pension obligations:  Most estimates are the nation is almost $100 trillion in debt:  A system waiting to collapse.
  • An American public that has become addicted to government handouts.  More than half the population is on direct assistance from the government.
  • A laziness and narcissism with Americans where they look to government to provide instead of providing for themselves.
  • Massive Student Loan debt that will never be repaid because of a corrupt educational system that lured young people with lies and false illusions.
  • The only way to get out of this fiscal mess is a complete overhaul of the debt situation in the nation:  BANKRUPTCY, which leads to a Marxist State.

THE ALINSKY DOCTRINE:

8 Steps to Topple a Nation and Create a Socialist State.

Alinsky’s Rules for Radicals and The Cloward-Piven Strategy have been woven together by Progressive Marxist-Humanists to create a crisis so bad that the only “solution” is what they have wanted:  Communism.  Let’s look at the eight points where the two doctrines intersect.

*Read the entire post including resource links and a conclusion, “What Christians can do about it” at DavidFiorazo.com

 

Image credit: Tomohalloran.com

Religious Freedom in America

I’ve never done a list like this before, but after reviewing some articles that seemed to really resonate with people, I am encouraged to share them with others who may not have had the opportunity to read them when they were published. The ten articles listed here have been read by approximately 60,000 people; small numbers to full-time writers and national figures, but an amazing blessing to me. You never know who might be influenced by something we have to say!

It’s an honor and privilege to defend and proclaim the truth. My prayer regarding anything I write is that God is glorified, and that Christians not only be encouraged and strengthened in their faith, but that it will lead them to take action and bear fruit. For those that do not believe, I hope to point them to the love, light, and truth of Jesus Christ.

Due to the moral and spiritual confusion in America today, we must get back to the basics: the Bible must be taught and talked about like Christians used to do 50 – 100 years ago. Cultural issues are also important to discuss because as Christians, we see the world through the lens of the perfect Word of a holy God. He never changes! Our words and actions should both line up with a biblical Christian worldview rather than blending in with society and conforming to the world.

I posted about 50 articles and blogs in 2013 and judging by the numbers, those included here were the most popular. It’s very interesting to me that seven of the ten listed below are about individual people. The topics include abortion, biblical truth, media bias, religious freedom, Hollywood, immorality in American culture, racism, false teachings, homosexuality, and the silence of Christians.

I’m also very encouraged by the fact that four of the top six include excerpts from my book, ERADICATE: BLOTTING OUT GOD IN AMERICA. Let’s start with the most read and viewed article featuring Oprah Winfrey that reached over 15,000 people:

#1.  Learning From Oprah: New Age Spirituality, Racism, and the Influence of Celebrity

Sadly, millions of spiritual seekers have been led astray, and due to Oprah’s popularity, people have opened themselves up to all kinds of practices, religions, and teachings contrary to the gospel of Jesus Christ and biblical Christianity. We need to pray for her and for those who may blindly hang on her every word, or the words of any secular celebrity.  Oprah is not the enemy – she is deceived – but she obviously believes she has the answers regarding God, spirituality, and eternity.

#2.  Game On: Blotting Christ Out of Christmas – Already?

Activists successfully removed prayer, the Bible, and God from schools, but they can never take Jesus Christ out of the hearts of believers. According to a 2012 Rasmussen Reports poll, 82% of American adults voted in favor of celebrating Christmas on public school campuses, and 76% believe Christmas should be more about Jesus than Santa. Going directly against Jesus’ own words to “Let your light shine among men,” some [activists] are trying to get Christians to be silent and hide their faith under baskets.

#3.  America’s Culture of Death: We Need Abortion Control, Not Gun Control

Ninety-six. Remember this number. A baby is aborted at a Planned Parenthood facility somewhere in America every 96 seconds. In that same amount of time, Planned Parenthood receives about $1,056 taxpayer dollars. That equals eleven dollars a second and allows them to abort 910 lives every day. How did it get to the point in America where we kill our own and call it a choice? It sure did not happen overnight, but it does occur – Every 96 seconds…

#4.  Is This the Beginning of the End for Miley Cyrus? 

Most of us recognize a desperate cry for help when we see one. We shouldn’t expect secular celebrities to live according to God’s Word because Christian values are either foreign or offensive to them. As for the salvation of Miley Cyrus who claimed to be a Christian years ago, only God knows her heart. She and countless other celebrities need the love and forgiveness of Jesus Christ. No one is without hope, but the Bible warns us the Lord’s return is close…

#5.  Obama’s Ideology Propels Scandal-mania

Government has become an enemy of American citizens and this administration is very good at using the tactics of distraction and diversion. With more of us becoming outraged while the media protects this administration, it will be fascinating to see this epic drama played out. The sad truth is many Americans today don’t care that prior to his election, Obama’s handlers concealed information about his college years and no official records were ever made available – a first in our history. No college transcripts, published records, or papers had been released. What were they hiding?

#6.  Cotton Candy Christianity: Joel Osteen’s Gospel of Neutrality and Omission

So let’s clarify here: Pastor Joel Osteen feels it is not his calling to get deeply into the Bible or to talk about sin. He also prefers not to think too much about other religions, but he believes Mormons are Christians. Maybe you’re a fan of Joel Osteen. You may have read his books and have watched him on TV and are having a tough time accepting this. I strongly encourage you to pray about everything he or anyone teaches. If you sincerely seek God’s truth, He will reveal it to you. Osteen pres­ents a kind of self-help program under the guise of Bible instruction. There’s nothing wrong with optimism, but pastors [and teachers] need to stick with the Word of God.

#7.  Ducking the Issue of Sin: Should Christians Be Silent?  (Duck Dynasty, A&E, GLAAD, and Phil Robertson)

If we love someone, we’ll tell them the truth. If we believe Jesus is the only way to salvation (Acts 4:12) and we fail to warn others, we don’t really care about them. The way Christians demonstrate their love for non-believers is by addressing sin so they can repent and receive the grace God offers which leads to everlasting life (Ephesians 2:8). Less than 4 % of the U.S. population is LGBT (Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgender)

The problem has been diagnosed. The moral decline in America is evidence we cannot rely on church leaders because people are obviously not getting the message. If Christians fail to speak about the Bible, Jesus Christ, and the issue of sin; our society will only grow worse, the battle more intense, and the hostility more volatile. One thing is certain: silence never saved anybody.

#8.  Gay Marriage is not God’s Marriage

God created the heavens and the earth, and mankind is made in His image. God’s plan for marriage is woven through Scripture and has been implemented throughout history. Marriage predates kings and governments. By the intricate engineering of the male and female bodies, science also confirms we are uniquely designed for procreation and for the opposite sex.

The media has influenced public opinion to the point where more Americans are softening towards sin; this includes Christians. A recent Pew Forum survey on media coverage exposed the truth; in their reporting, the media supported same-sex marriage 5 to 1 hoping the public would soon think it is inevitable.

#9.  The Hypocrisy of Selective Outrage: Zimmerman vs. Martin (Graphic content)

Few in the media report on the travesty in many inner cities in America where black on black deaths continue to increase with the violent crimes. According to the FBI, 91% of black victim homicides are committed by other blacks. Few in the media report on the massive numbers of black babies being aborted at Planned Parenthood and other Gosnell clinics, especially in minority neighborhoods. Where is the public outcry over these deaths?

If you’re open to truth and are willing to research, you’ll find unreported stories similar to the following atrocious, disturbing tragedy: WARNING – GRAPHIC…

#10. The Anguish of Abortion: What They Won’t Tell You

Father Frank Pavone once said, “America will never resist abortion until America sees abortion.”

Thanks in part to advances in technology such as ultrasound imagery, it’s clear and easy to see a growing and moving fetus inside a mother’s womb which has raised awareness that an unborn child is alive, human, and abortion is murder. Americans have tolerated the evil of legalized abortion and have become so desensitized to violence and death that we don’t see eliminating innocent human life as a brutal or selfish act – or at least we don’t speak up about it enough. God have mercy on our hardened hearts.

(If one of the above links does not work and you’re really intrigued by the title, simply do a search for the article as they are often published on several sites.)

*Three more I recommend:

Gosnell Trial Proves Massive Media Malpractice  

Alfred Kinsey and Sexual Anarchy in America 

Media Forced to Report the Truth about Obamacare?

Religious Freedom in America