Archive for January, 2015

Exodus: Gods and Kings and a secularisation of the Bible

December 2014 saw the release of the latest rendition in the string of so-called Biblical movies. “Exodus: Gods and Kings” is director Ridley Scott’s ‘fictional retelling’ of the autobiographical historical and Biblical story of Moses and the Exodus.

The film industry’s re-telling of Biblical stories is nothing new. After all, the Bible contains the greatest narratives ever written so its no surprise when Hollywood and so forth use the stories to make a lot of money out of them. Every major cult and industry in the world has used the Bible to further their own agenda’s and no surprises, the Holy Bible is the greatest book ever written. So it comes as no surprise to me when I see secularists using the Bible to fire darts at faith.

So what then of Exodus: Gods and Kings? Well, I have a few thoughts on it, much of which echo’s what I have said a number of times.

I went to see Exodus: Gods and Kings with a fellow Christian and sadly, the film was as I expected it to be: ‘it was good… but not that good. It could have been magnificent‘.

As an actual film, Exodus: Gods and Kings was well made. Ridley Scott’s direction was mature and accomplished. The sets were magnificent. The audio and visuals superb. And so it should be, these people have been making movies for years. Likewise, the acting was excellent. Moses was played by Christian Bale, and although I do not think he portrayed Moses accurately toward the Biblical or Talmudic texts, I thought gave an excellent and dominating performance for what it was. Joel Edgerton played a brilliant characterization of Ramesses 11 and again an excellent performance. However, despite Exodus: Gods and Kings being somewhat of an accomplished film, it was like secularisation and new atheism: full of gaps.

I would like to point out that within the context of historical accuracy and Biblical and Theological insight, I thought the film positively slumped because of the script and its rejection of the grand Biblical text. The film portrayed God inconsistently according to the Bible, and even the Talmud and reason, and it insulted and attacked the foundations of Judaism and Christianity in a subtle yet obvious way.

Exodus: Gods and Kings presents a secularisation of the Bible!

I went to see this film in 3D at a screening almost devoid of people and watched the film intently. Unfortunately I left the theatre with a feeling that I hadn’t really seen anything purposeful. In other words I left the theatre wondering ‘what was all that about’? They missed a lot of the best bits out. But I guess that will happen when the Bible is in the hands of the secularists. They clearly have a problem with the Bible.

For the first half of the film, much of it worked. But there were problems right from the start, first of which was the inclusion of the Battle of Kadesh in one of the opening scenes.

These are a few of the problems.

  • The Battle of Kadesh occurred 1274 BC. In the film Moses was in the battle and saved Ramesses life. The problem is, Biblically and Historically it is doubtful that Moses was even there. The reason I say this is Battle of Kadesh took place under Ramasees 11, who could not have been the Pharaoh of the Exodus. Ramesses 11 reigned in the 19th Dynasty (1279-1213 BC) Moses lived either 1391-1271 BC, or according to Ussher Chronology Moses was born 1571 BC.

  • Thus, the Pharaoh of the Exodus was likely to have been Thutmoses 111 or Amenophis 11, certainly not Ramesses 11.

Sadly, as the film progressed it became clear that a covert Hollywood sewer was continuing to pump out its ‘Anti-Christian’ or anti-Judaic propaganda. They quite literally reversed almost everything. Continuing on in a long line of obvious messages like those found in ‘Lego movie’ and ‘Noah’, the script of Exodus: Gods and Kings presented new atheist mind seeds from an anti-religious lobby.

In fact, Christian Bale at a recent BAFTA Q & A claimed that ‘Moses and Ramesses’ were, at the start of the film “essentially, two atheists”. A claim which cannot be verified by any reliable historical source. Neither the Bible, Josephus or any Jewish historical narrative makes any such claim.

I am reminded of the words of the Psalmist: “Why do the heathen rage, and the people imagine a vain thing?The kings of the earth set themselves, and the rulers take counsel together, against the Lord, and against his anointed, saying, Let us break their bands asunder, and cast away their cords from us.” Psalm 2: 1-3

Like Noah and Lego Movie, each of these films have one thing in common: they all present their rendition of “the Creator” or “the man upstairs” or “God” as the bad guy. I think Exodus: Gods and Kings travels the same path. It presents God like a child who wants all his own way and unless he gets it, he will inflict pain upon people. This is not a correct character assessment of the God of the Bible. The God of the Bible punished people according to the law, not His emotions. The God of the Bible pleaded and pleads with people to repent, like He did with the Pharaoh who through Moses said “Let My people go” (Exodus 9: 1)

But in Exodus: Gods and Kings, Moses is the one who makes the demands and not while holding a staff, but placing a sword to Ramesses’ throat. Moses is transformed from a Prophet into one who does not believe in prophecy and, as I repeat, according to Christian Bale in the recent interview, was an atheist? In this film Moses was not a humble man, as is historically claimed, but rather one who refuses to be humbled. In Exodus: Gods and Kings the secularists have transformed Moses from what he was into a shadow of their own selves. Moses the atheist? A claim that is not supported in any historical account from either the Bible, the Talmud, Josephus or any other historical narrative.

In Exodus: Gods and Kings, God does not necessarily appear to have instigated the plagues, he merely knows they are coming and uses them to his own advantage. That is, if the film is even claiming that God actually exists? After all, apart from one fragment of a scene, where Moses is shouting at this god and yet he does not appear until Moses is walking away, I would doubt that God is portrayed at all in this film?

Silver Tea pot © 2014 Simon Peter SutherlandLike the Noah movie, with the inclusion of Methuselah drinking tea and serving it to Noah, the god-child in Exodus: Gods and Kings was likewise serving tea from an Arabic teapot to Moses. Very odd! What point are they both making there? Could it be communicating that Moses was at Sinai in Arabia? The problem is that we have no evidence of tea drinking in those areas and the ancient Egyptians drank water, beer, milk and wine. But Tea? Tea originated in China. What’s all that about?

The scene which began the tea drinking curio, was the scene that changed the feeling and meaning of the film. Moses can be seen following three lost sheep up onto Mount Sinai and falls victim to a landslide and gets a bump upon the head, knocking him unconscious. He regains consciousness and sees a boy standing near him. The boy does not look unlike a Tibetan monk. Moses by that time is fully immersed, only his face visible, in some form of a swamp and the boy will not help him out. Moses learns that this boy claims to be God in some way and the script includes a brief “I am”. The scene cuts and Moses has a damaged leg and is seen with his wife who tells him the experience was the result of his wounds. Moses apparently received a bump upon the head and saw God? Funny enough, he receives another bump on the head when he is swimming out of the closing of the red sea. Even stranger, Moses’ wife sounds like an atheist attempting to convince him it was a delusion and asks him what kind of God would take him away from his family.

Somehow, I am not that convinced the child in the film was a depiction of God. The kid could be a mere portrayal of a delusion or just some kid from another Country? Or someone who happened to know a Tsunami was taking place 500 miles away and just used Moses to play kids games? I don’t know, but whatever it was, those scenes are weird.

Throughout the movie the Biblical narrative was replaced with a lesser script and the obvious historical changes. The film stank of a secular and atheist attempt to re-interpret the Biblical narrative. Outside of the Miriam scene and the scenes where Moses was with his wife, there was no language or terms which made impact. The outstanding Mosaic plea of “Let my people go” was not present in this version. There was no “I am the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob”. Aaron was was not present with Moses and they replaced Moses’ staff with a sword. They even reworked and twisted Moses killing the Egyptian and almost ignored Joshua altogether.

It is also worth noting that in this film, Moses calves out the Ten Commandments on the tablets of stone.

The film is little more than a secular attempt to play about with the Bible and plant mind seeds into a whole generation of movie goers. But somehow, I think in our heart of hearts, we know this movie is not historically or Biblically true. Its just a movie and maybe little more than that.

Although I am not criticizing Ridley Scott as a director or the actors abilities, I am pointing out these issues purely from a historical, Biblical and Theological context. I don’t think the film mocks the Bible, and it seems to have degrees of respect, but it certainly is not a faithful rendition. Altogether, outside of the fantastic settings, clothing and look of the film, it was probably one of the most UN-Biblical, Biblical films ever made. Which is a shame. It could have been magnificent. If only they would have let go of the new atheist bigotry and embraced more of the Greater narrative.

So here we stand, at the gate of the secular palace and we speak once again for those in captivity and slavery to a secularisation of the West “Let my people go”.

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