This email is unlike those we normally send before a weekend. This time, I’m recommending you check out a movie in theatres now of all things! Even stranger, it’s a movie for adults. R rated, and described as “horror” but for me as a Christian, I’d call it more of a thriller.
I rarely recommend Hollywood movies but there have been a few over the years I thought were important and when the producers called, I was happy to help. Movies like Les Miserables, with Hugh Jackman and Just Mercy with Michael B. Jordan are examples.
We are blessed to work with our allies at the Family Leader in Iowa, who pioneered what is called the Church Ambassador Network. Now in eleven states, the Church Ambassador Network engages tens of thousands of churches each week.
Many of them are now using this film to prompt discussions in their small groups about faith and spiritual warfare. I have already heard from other very well known Christian leaders that they believe every pastor should try to see this film. It’s rare that a Hollywood movie is produced that is friendly to our beliefs as Christians and goes further by attracting not-yet-Christians in the door because they think they are just going to see a thriller movie.
So if you haven’t heard of any movies worth seeing lately (years for some of us!), I’d encourage you to check this out this weekend. And if you check out, share it on your social media too.
Below is a message from Church Ambassador Network telling more about this movie.
President & CEO
Dear Friend of the Family,
On April 14, a widely released new movie called “Nefarious” began to launch spiritual discussions across America – and likely within your church or small group.
The FAMiLY Leader was permitted to preview the film, and we want to inform and equip you for the opportunity this film presents.
“Nefarious” is based on the book “A Nefarious Plot” by Christian talk show host Steve Deace, which brings to light the devil’s dark work in destroying lives, written in a style similar to C.S. Lewis’ tale, “The Screwtape Letters.”
The “Nefarious” movie, however, wasn’t written for Christian audiences. It is a contemporary thriller, an R-rated film with a poster and marketing campaign targeting fans of horror movies.
But as Steve Deace explains, “Nefarious” isn’t just a scary movie – it’s a deliberate conversation starter. Some will see it as the kind of film to invite non-believing friends to watch, in order to follow up with a discussion about the merciless reality of evil, our need for a savior, and Jesus’ victory on the Cross.
TFL’s preview of the film revealed “Nefarious” was made with Hollywood-quality production values exceeding most “Christian” films – one of the reasons this movie will be widely distributed in thousands of theaters across America. Thus, this movie has the potential to penetrate deep into the wider culture and the conversations of the people all around us.
In fact, “Nefarious” isn’t advertised as a “Christian” movie at all. If you only watched the trailer or saw the film poster, you might assume it was anything but! The filmmakers’ goal is to avoid being limited to the faith market, but rather to bring faith discussions to a much wider audience.
TFL sat down with Steve Deace to ask him about why the movie is being marketed the way it is, why Christians will nonetheless want to know about it, and how the Church can make the most of this moment to talk to others about Christ’s victory over the darkness (John 1:5):
Watch TFL’s interview on “Nefarious” with the mind behind the movie, Steve Deace:
“Nefarious” was released widely on Friday, April 14! You can find theater locations and more here: https://www.whoisnefarious.com/
For the family,
Bob Vander Plaats
Church Ambassador Network