Like many Christians, my family anxiously awaited the airing of last night’s premier of The Bible mini-series on the History Channel. We had our DVR set, dinner dishes put away and our kids bathed as the time of its airing approached. The question is: did this particular dramatic interpretation of God’s Word do its source justice?
Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this blog post are that of the author, Lisa Strnad, and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of What’s in the Bible?
Fairly, I can’t answer totally–not yet, anyway. From my perspective, I see that there is a theme which the producers are going for, which is explaining God’s plan of Redemption. This started after the fall of man and is fulfilled through Jesus’ death and Resurrection. Unlike many other Bible dramas where the stories and characters are presented in a way that rarely ties anything together, leaving the viewer convinced that the Bible is nothing more than a “collection” of nice stories, there is a purpose in the way the characters are presented in this adaptation. There is a common nature in these iconic men of the Bible which we are just starting to see unfold.
In last night’s episodes we met Noah, who beautifully narrated the story of God’s creation, man’s choice to disobey God and fall from grace, and then the sinfulness which had consumed mankind since the fall. This led to God’s decision to destroy the earth and all living creatures, except those on the ark. While there was fear of the unknown, Noah was a man of faith. God was faithful in His promise to Noah.
We met Abraham, who was promised descendants more numerous than the stars. Lot, his nephew was also highlighted in last night’s episode, as was his angelic deliverance out of Sodom before the city was completely destroyed. We saw how Abraham’s faith in God and His promises grew over the years, and how God tested that faith, taking Abraham to the very brink of sacrificing his much beloved son, Isaac. We saw how God was faithful in all He said and how He provided Abraham with a sacrifice to take Isaac’s place. Such imagery. Such meaning…
We met Moses, who unlike the Charlton Heston character, was not glamorous. I think of all the iconic Bible characters who might need his own mini-series, Moses is the one! But, instead they covered The Exodus in about an hour, and while a lot of his story had to be left out, I feel they covered the most important parts of Exodus to tie into the theme of redemption. Moses trusted God, even when he couldn’t possibly understand HOW God would do what He said he’d do. God created the Law/ Covenant between He and the Israelites, and led them towards the land which He had promised. And again we see, God was faithful.
To interpret God’s Word and put it into a drama is tricky business. Adaptations of Scripture have always been met with both criticism and praise. It seems that this particular adaptation is not making it out unscathed. I’ve read comments on Facebook and Twitter saying that the story lines were Biblically inaccurate. Many picked on the angels who led Lot out of Sodom. They were truly depicted as warrior angels. I had never seen angels depicted like this before in a movie, but I do know that Michael is considered to be a warrior angel. So, why wouldn’t God send warrior angels to save Lot? I went to Genesis to read up on the angels, and right there it said, “They blinded the men” who were surrounding Lot’s home (and if you’ve forgotten what these men wanted to do with the angels, I encourage you to refresh your memory. These were not men with good intentions!) These angels also told Lot to leave the city because they were going to “destroy it”. So, yeah, these angels were probably more accurately depicted in last night’s episode than they may have been in any other.
We really enjoyed this particular adaptation of The Bible, and look forward to seeing the mini-series through to the end. I encourage you all to do the same. Follow the theme of the production, which the producers are trying to convey. The Bible, as we know, is much more than what some would call a collection of bedtime stories or fairy tales. There is a purpose for God to have breathed life into these Words. There is a reason why God inspired men to choose to include these particular books, letters and poems together, in the order and in the exclusivity that He has. This is His Love story for us all. This is His plan of redemption.
Did you watch The Bible last night? Perhaps you disagree with my perspective, please let us hear from you whatever your opinion. What did you think of The Bible?
Lisa Strnad is a weekly contributing writer/blogger to What’s in the Bible? and Jelly Telly. She has been a homeschooling mom of two, who works independently in Christian media in the areas of writing, promotions and marketing. She lives with her husband and children in Nashville,TN. Follow her personal blog posts on Talking Like A Girl.