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It is the first day of classes and Josh Wheaton is ready to start his great college adventure! He did not, however, expect it to start like this. Forced to choose between his God and his grade, Josh begins a battle that will pit his faith against philosophy. Will he find the strength and answers to stand? From Pure Flix Entertainment comes a story of faith in the frontlines—God’s Not Dead. Starring Shane Harper, Kevin Sorbo (Soul Surfer, Joseph and Mary, and Christmas Angel), and Paul Kwo, and with special appearances from the Christian band Newsboys and “Duck Dynasty’s” Willie and Korie Robertson, God’s Not Dead is sure to inspire and equip believers of all ages to boldly proclaim the word of God.
Josh Wheaton (played by Shane Harper), is a college freshman who seems to have everything together. He has his faith, a sweet girlfriend, and lofty dreams of one day attending law school. That was before he signed up for his humanities elective- Philosophy 150. . . with Professor Radisson.
Professor Radisson (played by Kevin Sorbo) is not just a grouchy, argumentative professor of philosophy. Instead he’s a grouchy, argumentative professor of philosophy who also happens to be a devout antitheist. On the first day of classes he makes each and every student sign a piece of paper with three “simple” words, “God is dead.” When Josh Wheaton refuses to write the words down, Radisson says that if he cannot agree that God is dead he will have to defend the opposite view. . .that God is not dead. What follows is a modern day story of Daniel in the lions’ den. Josh struggles to reconcile his faith with the things he hears in the classroom. He struggles to make an argument that can stand against his bitter professor’s angry arrows, while he watches the things he dreamed of most go sliding down the drain. As he discovers the answers to his own faith, however, he may also be effecting the lives of those around him. Especially the lives of those who need hope more than he can see. As you watch Josh struggle to reconcile his faith with philosophy and defend it in front of his professor you will be convicted and encouraged to stand strong for your faith even when you risk loosing everything.
The Bible is filled with verses calling Christians to be ready to give an answer, to walk as salt and light, and to speak truth to others. 1 Peter 3:15a says, “But in your hearts honor Christ the Lord as holy, always being prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you.” In a similar manner Colossians 4:5 states, “Walk in wisdom toward outsiders, making the best use of the time. Let your speech always be gracious, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how you ought to answer each person.” Unfortunately many believers are unsure what it is they believe. And if they know what they believe they are unsure exactly why they believe it. This is a real issues. If you do not know the reasons behind why you believe what you believe, how can you stand by it when the going gets tough? Hoping to address the growing doubt and silence in young believers today, especially those in the university setting, Pure Flix Entertainment created a film hoping to inspire young believers to seek out the reason for the hope that is within them. That film is God’s Not Dead. For once you know the reason behind your belief it is easier to stand and proclaim that belief with courage as Josh did.
While God’s Not Dead was written with young believers in mind, the story it tells reaches to a wide audience. A story that reaches out to believers and unbelievers from all walks of life and places in their faith, the characters in God’s Not Dead are as diverse as the audience. Weaving together different characters from different places, the film God’s Not Dead creates a story that will keep viewers from all backgrounds engaged. Ayisha is a young muslim student who struggles to find answers to her questions when her family blocks her contact with Christianity. Mina, Professor Radisson’s wife, struggles to reconcile her marriage with the faith she once knew. Amy Ryan, an angry news reporter, struggles to understand how a good God can let horrible things happen to people like her. Martin, a young Chinese student, is puzzled by Josh’s seemingly risky stand for a faith that seems strange. God’s Not Dead reaches out to the struggles we all face—rejecting God, following God, believing in God, and understanding God—and offers a nugget of truth for all who see it. God’s Not Dead will encourage individuals everywhere to reach out to the God who is reaching out for them.
A film of faith in the face of failure, courage in the face of criticism, and love in the face of laughter, God’s Not Dead will inspire viewers young and old to find an answer for their faith. It will inspire believers from all backgrounds to stand with courage and conviction in their faith, knowing God is doing something bigger than we can ever imagine.
God’s Not Dead has been rated PG by the MPAA for some thematic elements, brief violence, and an accident scene. In addition, while the theological and philosophical classroom debates may encourage, equip, and inspire older children and adults, they may confuse younger children. This film received the “Faith Friendly” award for ages twelve and up from the Dove Foundation and four out of five review from Focus on the Family’s “Plugged In”. As always, it is recommended that parents preview all content to determine what is suitable for their children, but the film 90 Minutes In Heaven is generally considered appropriate for most older audiences.
A young college student must make the decision between defending his faith and the convenience of fitting in.