The Human Right Partners on Movie
It could very well be a partnership made in heaven: Viewers of Do You Believe?, the new, star-studded movie from the makers of the hit Christian film God's Not Dead, also will be introduced to the Assemblies of God's The Human Right movement.
When the movie debuts Friday in 1,250 theaters nationwide, a new conversation will begin with viewers. Some will attend the movie and embrace the love of Jesus for the first time as the gospel will be presented and the path to salvation made clear with a printed card. Each attendee of the movie on opening night will be invited to learn more about knowing Jesus and making Him known at the movement's website.
Launched in July 2014, The Human Right movement engages millennials in a conversation pertaining to human rights and how they intersect in the person of Jesus.
"Right now, there's a conversation taking place around the world about human rights, and that's good," says Heath Adamson, Sr. Director of AG's National Youth Ministries. "It's an injustice to be sold into modern-day slavery, or for a child to die for lack of clean drinking water, or for mosquito nets not being available to prevent malaria. But the greatest injustice is for someone to live and die without knowing Jesus."
Adamson says justice, compassion, and human rights are important issues for the Church.
"But we also want to be sure the church doesn't forget that in Jesus justice, compassion, and the gospel all collide," Adamson says. "If we don't share and demonstrate the gospel, then we are just offering people a better brand of misery."
Adamson and other AG leaders described The Human Right initiative a few months ago in a meeting with Michael Scott, a managing partner of the Pure Flix and Troy Duhon, an executive producer for the Christian movie studio. The meeting resulted in an almost immediate connection, both relationally and philosophically, of how important it is for the gospel to create culture through media.
"I knew that the language of The Human Right would resonate well with moviegoers," says Sol Arledge, chief operating officer of the Assemblies of God National Leadership and Resource Center. "When Michael Scott reached out to see how we could partner, it started a long relationship in the film industry for us."
Adamson recalls that the conversation resonated with Pure Flix officials.
"They realized that The Human Right message was right on point for millennials: justice, compassion, and the gospel, all in one," Adamson says. "They not only want to entertain, but to add eternal value."
When Pure Flix representatives suggested the opening night card distribution, Arledge and other leaders enthusiastically embraced the idea.
"We're praying for countless of lives to be changed by this," Adamson says. "People all over the world will eventually see this movie, people who now are living lives of quiet desperation."
Do You Believe?, which will open in more than 400 more theaters than God's Not Dead did last year, features Academy Award winner Mira Sorvino, Sean Astin of The Lord of the Rings blockbuster trilogy, veteran actors Cybil Shepherd and Lee Majors, and several other familiar faces from movies and television.
The new movie tells the stories of a dozen different characters - young, old, men, women, black, white, rich, poor - as they move, sometimes reluctantly, toward faith.
Adam Hastings, vice president of marketing for Pure Flix, says Do You Believe? isn't a sequel to God's Not Dead , but does follow up on the 2014 film thematically.
"It deals with what you do, once you answer the question, 'Does God exist?' " Hastings says. "It's all about the Cross, the sacrifice that Christ made for us, and how impactful that is in the life of a Christian. The Cross drives us to our knees, and then to our feet, in action."