Conspiracy Theory. Reformation Theology. Those involved are Martin Luther, John Calvin, Jerome and Augustine of Hippo to name a few. Were these men really involved in a plot to detach Israel as God’s chosen people? Did they truly believe that everything God said in the Old Testament regarding his everlasting love for Israel was overruled by the formation of the New Testament church?
Let The Lion Roar opening September 19th starring Kevin Sorbo, John Schneider, Eric Roberts, and Steven Baldwin begs to solve that mystery and bring completion to the Reformation.
Sonoma Christian Home recently spoke with Kevin Sorbo, aka Hercules, Professor Radisson in the box office hit God’s Not Dead, Soul Surfer and a host of tv star appearances too numerous to count. SCH Editor at Large Suzanne Niles reports.
In his latest film, opening September 19th – Let The Lion Roar, Kevin plays the Reformation patriarch, John Calvin, who frankly had some disturbing views when it came to the Jewish race. But first, we had to backtrack a little since this reporter just watch the amazing film God’s Not Dead and was dying to tell Kevin how she “loved” to “hate” him in the role.
SCH: Kevin, obviously we are here to discuss your new docudrama Let The Lion Roar, but I have to say you were amazing as Professor Radisson in God’s Not Dead. What is your view of how our education system influences the faith of young people today?
KS: Well, you know I never experienced it, but I have nieces and nephews, friends whose kids have. It has really exploded, not only is it in our universities, but our grade schools up to high schools where teachers should just be teaching but instead are pushing their philosophy and are persecuting students if they believe in God. What’s the big deal? If you don’t want to believe in God, fine, but what’s wrong with letting other people believe in God?
Why is there so much anger and hate towards something they don’t believe in…..it is just amazing to me. They claim that God is dead but they invalidate that with their intense arguments and hatred. Why hate someone you don’t believe exists? They don’t like that there may be someone, “God” who actually created everything and may be watching over how they live their lives. They want to be able to do what they want to do.
SCH: In Let The Lion Roar we are made aware of a “deception” that has been perpetrated against the Jews and has deceived the church. Can you speak to us about that “deception”?
KS: This has been going on for centuries when you think of all the persecution the Jews have suffered, they have definitely had more than their share, there is no question about that. It is incredible to me, you have so many people blaming them, screaming at Israel “genocide against the Palestinians” and I’m saying “wait a minute, I mean these guys do everything possible to not have war and yet they have been surrounded by people that all they want to do is have war against them”. Don’t they have a right to protect themselves? We have a president that is telling Israel, just relax, be calm, talk and be reasonable. Is that how we should be with all the terrorists out there?
There are 300 million of them and a Muslim following of 2 billion and they want to destroy the western way of life and we are suppose to just talk with them? There’s no talking to them. I know people stationed overseas in Saudi Arabia who have had open conversations with these people, one of these being my brother who was stationed over there for a year. Every single conversation they have had with these people, they say that we have to become Muslim or we have to die.
Where are we off in America? How can we be asked not to have any negative feelings towards Muslims and look at it as a peaceful religion when there is nothing peaceful about it whatsoever! And then you have Israel in the middle of all this saying, hey guys can’t we just live in peace but no one will let them live in peace.
SCH: How did you prepare yourself for playing the part of John Calvin?
KS: I was very interested in portraying John Calvin and just being a part of the process. I was only in for a day, it was a cameo, but I loved what the film was saying and what Vanessa Frank was doing with it. I was exposed to Calvin and his involvement with Luther via Cliff notes as a kid. I researched his beliefs online. I think that is most people’s encyclopedia today, browsing the Internet. I utilized it to see what the drawings were of him, what he looked like. He had some strong views about the Jewish population.
I like to mix it up in my roles. I have played everything from a serial killer to a Pastor in the last nine years. It has been an interesting ride for me. I want to spend my time not necessarily doing all faith-based projects but definitely family friendly ones. That is kind of what I have done last year and this year as well. I have two television pilots I am doing, a romantic comedy for the Hallmark channel and a faith based television series. We want to bring quality television back to our homes.
*So we got off on a rabbit trail a bit, but I have to say I thoroughly enjoyed the detour and will share some thoughts with you that Kevin and I discussed that I hope will influence you to pray for those Christians in Hollywood who are living out their faith.
Me: You know, I have to say that since I have been involved in the entertainment community for the last three years I have learned something that I would never have thought was true. There are so many wonderful committed Christ followers in the Hollywood community. I don’t think that mainstream Christianity thinks that is the case, but that the entertainment world is primarily filled with unbelievers. I have seen a strong core of believers who are in the trenches trying to make a difference for Jesus Christ.
KS: You know we are trying, but you get banned in Hollywood. I am viewed as a conservative Christian in Hollywood and I get doubly dinged for it. Yes, we think we have freedom of speech but they don’t give it to you if you disagree with anything they have to say. It is quite amazing to me that there is such a strong backlash in the industry just for saying you are a Christian There is a blacklisting that they would never admit to. I am working, but not in Hollywood. I used to read for four or five series a week. Hercules still has a large following on Netflix and Andromeda has been all over the place. There is a definite backlash….it’s there.
*Back to “Let The Lion Roar”
SCH: There are comments in Let The Lion Roar that were made by Luther, Calvin and others about the Jewish race that were quite shocking to me. How did those comments affect you?
KS: Well, they certainly didn’t affect me in a positive way. I felt the same way, as in “you’ve got to be kidding me”, I mean you look at these things and there is always going to be racism, there is always going to be bigotry. You can’t control these things. We are so divided in this country and I think we have a president who has made things even worse. He has used racism as an issue to have an agenda, which is sad to me.
This country is divided and is starting to divide even more, I mean we are breaking up and I fear for what is happening, what is going to happen over the next 50 years in this country. I certainly don’t want to be conspiracy theorist, but I wouldn’t be surprised if there was civil war down the road in the future of this country. There is more anger; more hatred; more envy; so many negative things. Our country was founded on God and we are putting God out of it. We were founded on freedom of religion and now our forefathers are probably rolling over in their grave.
SCH: Calvin is still so well respected and there are many whose beliefs are based on his teachings, but tell me, how do you think he can claim to be a Christ follower and have such hatred in his heart for Israel?
KS: You know that is a good question. I wish someone would answer that for me. You know I just don’t get that either. It’s like I said earlier, how can people, ie; atheists have so much hate for something that they don’t even believe in. It could just be that none of us are perfect. We all do and say things we regret later and say to ourselves, ok, do we really believe that way? I think a lot of it is learned. If you are raised in a terrorist country and taught from birth that you are to hate Americans, then you are going to hate Americans.
I really think it comes down to what the child is being taught, it comes down to the parents, the communities you live in, the churches you attend. I ask people all the time who go to church if they have ever brought anyone to church and the overwhelming majority says no. And I say, how are we supposed to bring this country back to a place that it should be that is friendly and helpful? We are living in such a selfish world right now. Things were getting better, but now they are getting worse. I’m thinking I’d just like to go back to the 50’s, you know, “My Three Sons” things like that, what’s wrong with that?
SCH: Has your involvement in “Let The Lion Roar” altered anything about how you see the church?
KS: You know, I have a friend who says “the church needs to get some balls”. There are so many churches that are kowtowing to the world, to the social morals of the world and saying, “ok, maybe we shouldn’t look at this like that, maybe we should be more open about this and more open about that”.
SCH: If someone asked you “how can I be saved, what do I have to do?” what would you tell them?
KS: I believe that you have to believe in God and that you have to believe in Jesus. You have to ask for forgiveness of your sins. It’s as simple as that. And be sincere and meaningful about it. Tell God you know you’ve made mistakes; you know you’ve been a sinful person. I know that God has forgiven me for the mistakes I’ve made, for my sins. I know he will forgive me for the mistakes I will make down the road. I think the toughest person on me is myself. I know there are things that I have a hard time forgiving myself for but I know that God has forgiven me.
SCH: Is it true that there is going to be a God’s Not Dead 2?
KS: Yes there is.
SCH: But you died? Are they going to bring you back?
KS: You never know…we will have to wait and see.
Please visit www.letthelionroar.com, learn more about the film and make sure you see it. This is a discussion starter and the jury is still out as to whether or not most will allow it to be a game changer for their faith. What will you choose to believe about the true identity of God’s chosen people?
See the trailer here: