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Noah, Lions, Tigers and Snakes, O My! Revisited

By March 26, 2014 11 Comments

“Noah” is Hollywood’s first Biblical epic in 50 years noah2and its creating controversy of blockbuster proportions.

It has already pulled off one Biblical-sized miracle – uniting Jewish, Christian, and Muslim leaders – in opposition to it.

REVIEW: I wrote the above before seeing the film. I saw “Noah” on opening night. Unfortunately, that experience is one of my life’s regrets. The film has managed to unite most religious and non-religious movie goers in opposition to the movie.

I’m not sure which Bible the producers were trying to stay true to, but it wasn’t the Bible I read. I am glad that one of THE major events in world history was addressed but sad that a huge opportunity was missed. My criticism has little to do with Biblical inaccuracy and everything to do with an epic fail as a production.

What could have been a fantastical representation of a world before the Flood was a disastrous mix of “Lord of the Rings” meets “Mad Max.”
Zero emotional engagement with any character.
One un-popped kernel of popcorn out of five.

When you’re presenting a pre-flood world – where people are living for centuries; where there was no rain and there were no rainbows; where giants and angels walked on the planet; where the world was created in six days – you’re talking about a universe that is very, very different from what we understand. You’re not in Kansas anymore, Toto.

To portray that as realistic is impossible. You have to enter the fantastical, but not the ridiculous.

Unlike “The Son of God,” “Noah” is not an evangelistic tool – but it could have had redemptive value.

Lots of people think they know the story of the Ark because they’ve been told a children’s version or have seen pictures in comics.noahs-ark

We had an Ark-shaped cookie jar when our sons were young. There was a giraffe with its head high above the other animals, cute lions, cute bears – it was a cute container for cookies. We have a Boyd’s Bears version of the Ark on the dresser in our bedroom. Every morning I see it. Its cute.

So even if people haven’t read the scripture, that’s what they tend to think the story of Noah is about. Cute. But actually, the Biblical story is brutal. That’s what get’s my attention about this film.

The Flood was God’s doing.

The Flood was the most traumatic, global, cataclysm in human history.

It was horrific.

Every living creature, save eight people and two of each kind of animal (including dinosaurs, but that’s another story) were destroyed in a life-ending nightmare of a Flood. Infants, seniors, invalids, pregnant women, the most innocent and the most wicked were commonly swept away to their death and into eternity.

Worse still, you get to the end of the story and Noah gets drunk. What do we do with that? To get that drunk — so drunk that you’re naked and have a falling out with your child and curse them. It’s the first mention of wine in the Bible, which is incredibly significant and makes all of us uncomfortable when you read it literally.

Since Genesis is an historical book, it needs to be read literally as recorded history.

I believe the Genesis Flood happened as the Bible records it.

The Flood was a universal, planet altering event.

We don’t think enough about the Flood…and Noah…and his family…and God’s judgment…and God’s mercy…and God’s salvation…and our future.

Noah had three sons: Shem, Ham and Japheth. Now the earth was corrupt in God’s sight and was full of violence. God saw how corrupt the earth had become, for all the people on earth had corrupted their ways. So God said to Noah, ‘I am going to put an end to all people, for the earth is filled with violence because of them. I am surely going to destroy both them and the earth. So make yourself an ark…’ Genesis 6:9-14 (NIV)

“God waited patiently in the days of Noah while the ark was being built. In it only a few people, eight in all, were saved through water…” 1 Peter 3:20 (NIV)

 

Bob Jones

Author Bob Jones

Pastor at North Pointe Community Church for 25 years. Happily married to Jocelyn for 36 years. We have two adult sons, Cory and his wife Lynsey and their son Vinnie; Jean Marc and his wife Angie and their three gorgeous daughters, Quinn, Lena and Annora. I love being a pastor and inspiring faith in Jesus through communicating, blogging, counseling and coaching. I enjoy running, reading, writing and ball hockey. Fan of the Esks and Pats. Follow me on Twitter @bobjones49ers

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Join the discussion 11 Comments

  • Jocelyn Jones says:

    I’m thankful that God placed the rainbow in the sky as a promise to us.

  • bob jones says:

    Brutal disaster…beautiful promise.

  • I have been doing a lot of Old Testament reading lately, and like Noah, there are a lot of hard things to read. It is easy to gloss over it and remember the children’s versions of the ‘stories’ and even think of them as stories. God’s story on earth is not always pretty, but he always brings the beauty. I am excited to think that one day I will see the whole story, as he wrote it. His story.

  • Tara Sinanan says:

    I look forward to seeing this movie. I have a beautiful cookie jar as well of Noah’s Ark. One of my treasures that reminds me of a righteous man who believed God. The people of his time probably through he was insane as he began to build the ark in
    In obedience to God. What a calamity it must have been for him. Last August, a beautiful rainbow stretched from South to North directly over my home. I could hardly believe it. Ran out on the deck then back through the front in awe. It was so beautiful
    That I stood still for long while thinging of God’s Love for us. I thought, He could have placed a black bow to remind him never to destroy his earth again, instead, he placed a rainbow in a spectrum of colours so that we could remember His promise. I look around at our world today at the violence and corruption and yes, like Jocelyn, I thank God for that beautiful rainbow.

  • bob jones says:

    Good thoughts, Kristen. I am glad you are reading the Old Testament. Some readers skip it for solely reading the New Testament. Thanks for posting.

  • bob jones says:

    Your thoughts on the Rainbow are awesome, Tara. Hard to believe that pre-Flood people would never have know what rain or a rainbow was. Thank you for posting!

  • Rebecca Simmonds says:

    I hope people can watch this movie and see it for what it is…entertainment….and not the truth according to God. Still I think it’s a good way to get non believers thinking towards the truth. Maybe after you go with your friends, you can offer them the real story according to scripture. Thanks for your review Pastor Bob!

  • Cynthia says:

    “God waited patiently in the days of Noah while the ark was being built.
    In it only a few people, eight in all, were saved through water…” 1
    Peter 3:20
    I am always touched by God’s patience. HE could have easily “Zapped” an ark,as HE was not happy with the people’s lives, but HE waited patiently for Noah to build it. I haven’t seen the movie. But I will just to see how they have presented it. It is really sad a great opportunity was missed by the producers and directors.

  • bob jones says:

    The longer I live the more I see God’s patience. His instantaneous works are what get out attention but his patient process of growing us little by little is an expression of love.

  • bob jones says:

    Thanks for reading the review, Rebecca!

  • Chris O'Hara says:

    Dinosaurs?? I want to hear more about that! #JurassicArk

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