Fred and I rarely watch movies unless we plan a special family night with the girls. Adult-themed movies are not at all appropriate for them, and Fred and I don't have much time apart from the girls. PG-13 movies are still off-limits for them, and it's slim pickings for any quality PG or G movies.
We were returning home from a marriage seminar at our church and stopped to get books from the library. I asked Fred if he wanted to get a movie to watch with the girls that night. He said yes and came inside to choose one. Immediately he picked up The Book of Eli, rated R. Of course the girls couldn't watch that, and I didn't know when he'd find time to see it, but he got it anyway.
It turned out Liana went off to a friend's house and Arielle was curled up with a book, so Fred and I had a free afternoon together. I had sewing I wanted to do, but since we just came from a marriage seminar, I decided the right thing to do was spend time with my husband. So we put the movie on. It looked to me like just a "guy movie" with guns and violence and lots of things blowing up. Boring...doesn't interest me at all. This movie takes place in some post-apocalyptic time so the landscape is dull and barren. Yawn... But the movie grabbed my attention soon. Denzel Washington, Eli, is on a mission from God to deliver a special book to some people "out west." That's all you know in the beginning. There is a lot of violence that accounts for the R rating, but this was an excellent movie! The plot is so good that I explained it to both the girls later. The movie presents the power and the value of the Word of God--used by people for good or evil purposes--in a time when people have no Bible. The ending was very satisfying and a great surprise. It makes you want to cheer.
At the very of his life, Eli quotes II Timothy 4:7. "I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith." Isn't that what we all would want to say at our end?
I recently found a video clip filmed in some remote place in Indonesia. Hundreds of people are singing and dancing and obviously celebrating some special event. Soon a plane lands, and people excitedly clap and shout. They are receiving their first Bibles in their own language. The Bibles are unloaded from the plane and many people begin to weep. Then the packages are carefully and tenderly carried off to the village as if they hold the most precious treasure on the face of the earth. An older man quotes John 1:1, "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God." They believe it is God himself coming to them through his Word.
Do we believe that? We Americans so much take the scriptures for granted. We have always had them. Maybe we won't really know their value until we have them no more.