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Theology, Hollywood Style

After years of watching TV shows and movies, I think I have finally gotten a grasp on Hollywood's theology and it's not a pretty picture (pun intended). It should come as no surprise to anyone that Hollywood's theology is vastly different from that of the average American. After all, Hollywood's morals and values are not representative of Middle America, so why should its theology be any different? Hollywood's theology is comprised of three basic tenets.

First, it is quite obvious that Hollywood has adopted some elements of new age and eastern philosophies, i.e., it believes God could be just about whomever or whatever anyone wants Him/Her/It to be. Hollywood's God could be some kind of benevolent spirit, floating around throughout the universe. If someone thinks God is just a man or woman, that's also valid according to Hollywood's theology. If someone thinks God is a bird, a tree, or a cloud, that's fine with Hollywood. If someone thinks a little bit of God is in everything living thing, that's great too.

However, I used the phrase "just about" because not every notion of God will pass Hollywood's politically correct litmus test. Not surprisingly, the Judeo-Christian notion of God - the one described in Holy Scriptures - doesn't qualify. God couldn't possibly be like that, according to Hollywood's theological standards. That concept of God is too narrow-minded for the Hollywood crowd.

Second, Hollywood holds that God couldn't care less whether or not we worship Him/Her/It. In fact, He/She/It doesn't care whether we recognize Him/Her/It or even acknowledge His/Her/Its existence, for that matter. Therefore, a person's belief system is rendered virtually irrelevant. Churches are only useful for weddings, memorial services, and funerals.

Instead, according to Hollywood, it is possible for an atheist to go to heaven. Hollywood argues that God is not jealous and has no sense of dominion or ownership over His/Her/Its creation. While Hollywood recognizes the fact that God does often intervene in the affairs human beings, it contends that He/She/It has no desire for any kind of permanent relationship with them.

Third, God does not demand that people obey Him/Her/It, nor is He/She/It concerned about certain types of moral values. Since obedience is not a requirement, repentance is never necessary. One's personal moral turpitude and how one relates to God are non-issues as well. For example, God doesn't really have a problem with any of the following: homosexual activity, sex between couples that aren't married to each other, profanity, or the use of God's name in vain.

Only the moral values governing a person's treatment of other people matter to God, according to the Hollywood gospel. For example, it's okay to be a complete hedonist as long as you give your fair share to charity and serve your community. The bottom line is that God's primary concern is that we do the best we can to be "good" people and model citizens. How we perform in that area will determine whether not we "make it" to heaven. Never mind the fact that this notion creates a theological imbroglio, i.e., how would you ever know how good is good enough?

What is this Hollywood-style theology based on? It is certainly not based on the teachings of the Holy Bible, although the Tinseltown brigade likes to selectively quote from it now and then. Obviously, this theology is based on the way Hollywood would like for things to be. Like many other entities and individuals, Hollywood molds the concept of God into something that fits in well with its own lifestyle and agenda.

True Christians know that, while Jesus (the only path to God) is always waiting for us with open arms, we must come to God on the terms that He has established, and not the other way around. I normally stay away from proselytizing, but that's just the plain old unvarnished truth.

About the Author

Terry Mitchell is a software engineer, freelance writer, and trivia buff from Hopewell, VA. He also serves as a political columnist for American Daily and operates his own website - http://www.commenterry.com - on which he posts commentaries on various subjects such as politics, technology, religion, health and well-being, personal finance, and sports. His commentaries offer a unique point of view that is not often found in mainstream media.

Terry Mitchell