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A Modern Parable   

Sluggish and a bit sleepy after watching an exciting dog show at the county fair - dogs who braved rounding-up bucking cows, no less - my partner and I stopped by the theater to watch Fireproof on our way home.

We knew this to be a nice, new Christian movie starring Kirk Cameron (star of the Left Behind series). We assumed it would be a "cute" little love story about a failing marriage, one that would turn better after God entered into the picture.

A Parable

But, what we saw was a gripping, modern parable fashioned perhaps after the prophet Hosea's determination to love his unfaithful wife - just as God told him that He loves unfaithful Israel.

Whether the writer and producer meant this to be an analogy to Hosea we don't know. But, it portrayed a striking similarity and a strong message of "Never leave your partner in a crisis." Our commitment to one another is because God loves us faithfully - not because of what we can get from a relationship.

As Christ Loves the Church

We also saw a parallel to Ephesians 5:25:

"Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself up for her, so that He might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word…"

Just as Christ lovingly sacrificed himself for His church - His Bride - so we must sacrifice ourselves for each other in the marriage contract and in our commitment to one another.

40 Days of Acts of Random Kindness (ARK)

This isn't just "dry teaching" from a sweet movie. Rather, the wife is wooed by positive attention from a co-worker. Her doctor friend and the world seem to offer her far more than her husband who has embarked upon a strange series of random "acts of kindness" directed at his slightly straying wife who now wants a divorce.

The wife persistently rejects her husband's kindness. But, her husband continuously showers her with little blessings day by day - consistently treating her with love through a formulaic method recommended by the husband's father.

It is the Dad's formulaic 40-day suggestions that little by little change the attitudes of a furious husband. Behind the scenes the husband's parents embark upon continuous prayer for the salvation of their son's marriage. It is, after all, a spiritual battle.

He Loves Us even when we Reject Him

The husband slowly begins to realize that marriage is a commitment requiring steadfastness and loyalty regardless of the partner's erring or neglectful behaviors. This loyalty comes not from one's own strength - but because of Christ's love for us even when we rejected Him first.

Don't Miss the Point

We recommend that believers set aside time to go to the theater or bring this movie into your church. Show Fireproof to everyone. Ignore debates about whether or not this movie is suitable for unbelievers.

Just forget or set aside criticisms about slightly "forced acting" by unprofessional actors. Cameron overcomes whatever deficiencies exist anyway. Just go see the movie and remember Christ's love for the church and God's commitment to his unfaithful wife (Israel) in Hosea. Don't miss the point:

"But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us."
(Romans 5:8)


Photos Courtesy = Sherwood Pictures
Photographers = Todd Stone&Haley Catt,

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