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March 27, 2014 / Pastor George Fike

Anticipating Aronofsky’s “Noah”…


I don’t go to very many movies.  Don’t have time, and with the cost of tickets today, don’t have money.  I’m VERY selective about what I see in the theater.  My friends know I shiver with expectation when the latest Superman, Lord of the Rings, or Avengers movie is about to come out.  I save my pennies for the 1 movie that I just have to see, because I can’t see another one for probably 2 months.

All that to say: I am salivating about the opening this weekend of Darren Aronofsky’s noahNoah.  Yes, I am Captain America: The Winter Soldier-level excited!  Unless the previews have been cleverly contrived to veil the substance of the movie, I am expectant, as a pastor and a Christ-follower for the impact it can have on our society.  I believe it will be a tool that believers can utilize to speak hard truths in love to our prevalent culture.  I’ll outline some of my reasons for this hope below and others in a later post.

As I write this post, there is a maelstrom of controversy surrounding this production.  Some of the criticism has come from individuals I respect.  Yet, very few of them have even previewed the film.  One radio personality who claims to have previewed it said it portrays Noah as a murderous, merciless man.  And I know many people have criticized it that it embellished the story beyond the Biblical material.  As I told my wife, “If they used only the Biblical material, the movie would last 25 minutes!”  Give me a break! None of these people criticized the additional material used in Mel Gibson’s Passion of the Christ.

Perhaps in our politically correct world, we are now afraid of a movie that depicts a God of judgment, rather than a God who has finally grown up and has no problem with the ways we choose to live our lives.  In a world that suddenly “knows better than God,” it seems there is no longer a credible voice willing to speak up and call a chaotic world to repentance.  Perhaps Darren Aronofsky, through Russell Crowe, has dared to yell “Fire” in a crowded theater.

——————–

The events that take place in the story of Noah are pre-historic.  In that time, people no doubt were orally-linguistic.  Whether you date the flood at 11,000 BCE or at 3000 BC, those who lived at the time of Noah were certainly not more advanced.  There are no writings from that time.  But it is certain that there was a large-scale flood that severely impacted the world of that day.  It was so catastrophic that civilization had to be rebuilt.  Whether it was worldwide, with God supernaturally correcting the ecology in the aftermath, or confined to the Mesopotamian region, the Fertile Crescent from which all humankind began spreading throughout the earth, there is no doubt that there was a Great Flood.  Every culture has legends of it within their ancient writings.  Interestingly, the farther one travels from the Fertile Crescent, the more exaggerated and mythical the stories become.  The gods of those tales become more anthropomorphised and petty than the story presented in the Bible.

The villain of the movie is Tubal-Cain.  He was a descendant of Cain, and could very well have still been living in the time of Noah.  If the genealogies are strictly complete, he would be Cain’s great, great, great grandson. Genesis 4 outlines the significant descendants of Cain.  I have no doubt that Tubal-Cain was every bit as ambitious and murderous as the movie will portray him.  As we read the preliminary state of the world in Genesis 6, the leading cause of death in the antediluvian world was murder.  When you read the ages of the prominent men in Genesis chapter 6, you can see that longevity helped accelerate technology, but also gave powerful men a longer window of time to victimize others.  Because the ungodly had no doubt tipped the scales toward sin, God put in place a life-shortening measure (120 years; read Genesis 6:3) and ultimately decided to start humankind over.  It is my belief this drastic action was warranted, and serves as a warning for us today:

“Just as it was in the days of Noah, so also will it be in the days of the Son of Man.  People were eating, drinking, marrying and being given in marriage up to the day Noah entered the ark. Then the flood came and destroyed them all.  It will be just like this on the day the Son of Man is revealed.”  (Luke 17:26-27, 30)

Anthony Hopkins will be portraying Methuselah, the oldest man recorded in scripture (969 years!).  Methuselah’s “father” was Enoch, the prophet who was taken directly to heaven.  Prophetically, he gave his son a name that translates to “his death shall bring.”  It appears Methuselah died the year the flood came.  Perhaps, his murder at the hands of the ungodly is the remote detonator?  Hmmm?  We shall wait and see.

———————–

I will write my review of the movie after I see it this weekend.  Keep an open mind.  Below are some links to get you thinking.  I believe there is a definite reason this movie is coming out right now.  I will share more of my thoughts after I write my review.  See you later.

No Pope meeting for “Noah” makers

Will Evangelicals Miss the Boat?

Christians angered over “Noah” movie – warning: this is from an atheistic site and an f-bomb is dropped toward the end.

And here’s the trailer:

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