Reflections on the Jesus Revolution Movie
By Dwayne Moore
Recently my wife and I went to our local movie theater to see the new Jesus Revolution movie. When we arrived (a bit early), the theater was completely empty, but as the lights dimmed more, then more people began to filter in. Several had come to see this new movie. Apparently, many sets of “several” have come out to watch it around the country since its release. According to the film’s Twitter feed, Jesus Revolution has now passed $40 million, “to Become Lionsgate’s Highest-Grossing Film Since 2019.”
I can certainly see why the movie is experiencing such commercial success. It is very well-produced, rivaling the cinematic quality of many Hollywood films. The dialogue and story line are engaging and intelligent, and the acting is superb.
The greatest impact of the film for me is its gripping message of hope and revival and its repeated emphasis on “Good News” about “The Way.” While the producers were careful not to shove Jesus down the throats of the audience, so to speak, the message of salvation in Christ was nonetheless crystal clear throughout.
The greatest impact of the film for me is its gripping message of hope and revival and its repeated emphasis on “Good News” about “The Way.”
I especially loved the scene when Greg Laurie was baptized at Pirate’s Cove. Before he was dipped into the ocean, the camera captured him saying a brief but powerful prayer asking Jesus to come into his life. That was so refreshing to see! There is a push among some denominational leaders and pastors against being led in a prayer for salvation. This film, however, clearly shows this proven approach is how pastor and evangelist, Greg Laurie, came to faith. (I have no doubt that many watching the movie have now been inspired to pray a similar prayer for their own salvation!)
Here were my personal takeaways…
- I was overjoyed by the clear and non-compromising presentation of the Gospel throughout the movie.
- I was reminded of my own salvation experience as a child and the pure joy I felt back then.
- I was moved to tears every time someone placed their faith in Jesus in the film and decided to follow Him.
- I was inspired to live out my own faith and walk closely with God in a more personal and intimate way.
- I was convicted not to make ministry about me. A big emphasis in the film is on how success and popularity in ministry can sometimes corrupt and disrupt leaders and churches. Through tears, I prayed for God to reveal my true motives and rid me of any selfish, self-serving desires.
- I was cautioned against a pharisaical attitude toward others. When Chuck Smith, the featured pastor in the movie, began to welcome “hippies” into the congregation, a few people actually got up and walked out of his church. But Christ called us to love all people, even those we don’t understand or like. May I never grow comfortable within my own little circle of Christian friends and fail to also intentionally be a “friend of sinners” to the outcasts and outsiders–like Jesus was.
Dwayne Moore is a best-selling author and a sought-after, international speaker. He’s the founder and president of NLW International, Inc., a ministry committed to providing quality worship discipleship resources to believers and churches.
Dwayne has written many books, including the award-winning book, Pure Praise: A Heart-focused Bible Study on Worship. His latest resources are HE. WE. THEY. The Life-Altering Formula of the Lord’s Prayer and HE. WE. THEY. A Church-wide Prayer Campaign. Other books include Creating Space, Pure Praise for Youth (foreword by Mark Hall of Casting Crowns), Heaven’s Praise: Hearing God Say Well Done, WorshipLife Journal, Building Strong Worship Leaders, and the church-wide campaign, WorshipLife: Honoring God in the Everyday .
Dwayne lives in north Alabama and is happily married to Sonia. They have 2 sons, Stephen and Justin.