The Chosen

How much of a threat is "The Chosen" series to the undiscerning church?

  • Negligible threat

    Votes: 3 7.3%
  • Possible threat

    Votes: 6 14.6%
  • Considerable threat

    Votes: 11 26.8%
  • Serious threat

    Votes: 15 36.6%
  • Masses being led astray

    Votes: 6 14.6%

  • Total voters
    41
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MyCrows

Puritan Board Sophomore
For those who haven't been following, the show has become wildly popular in mainstream evangelicalism. Besides it being a (what should be obvious, but apparently isnt) 2nd commandment violation, both the content of the show and the people behind it have received heavy and serious criticism.

According to one of the producers, the show has essentially been granted God's seal of approval, that God "wouldn't let him fail" in his task of showing people what Jesus is really like. This includes the details that the creators of the show fill in without Scriptural warrant.

A different producer, and president of the project, is a lifelong LDS church member. The heavy involvement of LDS in this project would make it virtually impossible for there to be an accurate theological presentation of Jesus' teachings, let alone who he is.

I typically don't bother much with this stuff, and just go my own way. Then the teachers started showing it in my kid's school. They started quoting the show in bible class.

People I know are becoming obsessed with it. Some of them are defending the show as if they were defending Christ himself.

While I'm not surprised, how can something like this, with this kind of cultish following, not be a danger to the people in the church? It's clearly being used as an ecumenical umbrella to collect the unsuspecting into fellowship with people who aren't even Christians.
 
2nd commandment issues aside (and that is by no means a small problem), there’s the problem of association. People see that The Chosen is made by “angel studios” and that other movie that was popular recently, and they assume that the studio must make biblical things, and start to consume LDS junk unaware. Or start to hear out Dallas Jenkins when he says things like “we all believe in the same Jesus”.” Same thing happened to kids in my youth group with Bethel and Hillsong.
 
I reckon the show does more damage to unbelievers who may be interested or nominal believers. Regenerate men and women who have otherwise solid doctrine and practice are unlikely to be majorly effected because they regularly see Christ as He really is in the scriptures. The biggest problem for them is likely getting the actor’s image out of their head when they read about Christ.
 
It seems to me that Angel Studios are competing with Marvel and DC with this series. Basically, “Jesus” is Superman, a man (not God, because no one can portray God, even if they tried) doing miracles and spreading the “gospel” that God loves us all just as we are. It is anthropocentric rather than theocentric. It is an appropriation of God’s Word for a humanistic agenda. I dared watch two seasons, at the time not realising the gravity of the 2nd Commandment violation (God forgive me), and could stomach no more. I suspect that sin will be downplayed, or defined as judging others.
 
2nd commandment issues aside (and that is by no means a small problem), there’s the problem of association. People see that The Chosen is made by “angel studios” and that other movie that was popular recently, and they assume that the studio must make biblical things, and start to consume LDS junk unaware. Or start to hear out Dallas Jenkins when he says things like “we all believe in the same Jesus”.” Same thing happened to kids in my youth group with Bethel and Hillsong.
The thing is Bethel and Hillsong do worship the same Jesus; as opposed to Mormons. And you cant really put Bethel and Hillsong in the same camp according to their errors, as Bethel is NAR, and Hillsong is Arminian, Egalitarian, semi-Charismatic. Also, I differentiate Hillsongs music ministry separate from their individual churches; which for instance, the expose' focuses on. Within those two, Bethel is far more "out there," but even so, Mormon theology is not to be equated with the shortcomings of them. We must also keep in mind that for some, any songs outside of Psalms would be considered heresy.
 
The thing is Bethel and Hillsong do worship the same Jesus; as opposed to Mormons. And you cant really put Bethel and Hillsong in the same camp according to their errors, as Bethel is NAR, and Hillsong is Arminian, Egalitarian, semi-Charismatic. Also, I differentiate Hillsongs music ministry separate from their individual churches; which for instance, the expose' focuses on. Within those two, Bethel is far more "out there," but even so, Mormon theology is not to be equated with the shortcomings of them.
If I am not mistaken, Bill Johnson of Bethel church heavily emphasis the kenotic heresy. It's what he uses to promote his teaching on miraculous healing.

Because in their reasoning, Jesus was just a man like us, although empowered with the Holy Spirit. So we, like him, can do these miracles by the power of the Holy Spirit.
 
If I am not mistaken, Bill Johnson of Bethel church heavily emphasis the kenotic heresy. It's what he uses to promote his teaching on miraculous healing.

Because in their reasoning, Jesus was just a man like us, although empowered with the Holy Spirit. So we, like him, can do these miracles by the power of the Holy Spirit.
I dont know. I purchased the only known Systematic Theology for the NAR by Eberle Harold some time ago, but havent had a chance to read it. But I can see the effects even in my community. We once had a local "town council" meeting about two years back, as there was a proposed "Gay Pride Film Festival" in out town, which would be the first of its kind; and there were all sorts of weird theological stuff coming out the wood works. Stuff like "petitioning the courts of Heaven," and drawing "blood lines." Which I think stem from NAR theology. I felt kind of uncomfortable. But we do also live in a small southern town. But sometimes I think people undermine the influence of this stuff. Bethel has also done some stuff that makes me step back. Stuff such as "grave soaking" where they visit the graveyards of dead saints and try to "soak up" their spiritual powers. And one of the leading figures of the movement refusing to bury their dead child because they received a revelation that God was going to raise them again. But even so, I still listen to Steffany Gretzingers "Nobody Ever Cared For Me Like Jesus." Thats my jam. I also listen to a few Hillsong songs at times. But I have never listened to a sermon from either church, no read any of their books. I guess I sum the music up like some believers do who still listen to rock & roll or songs that may not be bad in itself, even though the musician may have made other songs glorifying sin, or, is an unbeliever themselves. I take it on a song by song basis.

For anybody seeking to research this further, this guy put out a lecture series based on his book found here. This should give anybody who is interested a good overview of what NAR is, and what they hold to. I dont hold to it in any way, yet, regardless, it is quite popular in other spheres of the broader church.
 
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About 2 years ago, a friend of mine from church asked me if I had seen The Chosen and said it was very good and totally Reformed. To this day I regret not being more "with it" in that moment, because I would have loved an opportunity to exhort him by saying "The Reformed confessions unanimously condemn any and all images of Jesus. How is this show compatible with Reformed theology?"

At any rate, I have never watched the show, and have no plans to ever do so. You won't convince me that aside from that "minor quibble" it's theologically sound.
 
We must also keep in mind that for some, any songs outside of Psalms would be considered heresy.
Not to derail, but, who among advocates of exclusive psalmody says that all songs beyond the Psalm are heresy? EPs don't reject hymns in worship because they are unsound in content but because only the psalms are commanded to be sung.
 
Not to derail, but, who among advocates of exclusive psalmody says that all songs beyond the Psalm are heresy? EPs don't reject hymns in worship because they are unsound in content but because only the psalms are commanded to be sung.
I read that and took it as an abbreviated way of saying that some would consider the singing of anything besides psalms as heresy - not necessarily a comment on the content of the hymns themselves.
 
I read that and took it as an abbreviated way of saying that some would consider the singing of anything besides psalms as heresy - not necessarily a comment on the content of the hymns themselves.
We should be careful though with how we use the term “heresy.” I can’t imagine an EP would view it as a practice that is leading people to hell, or condemn anyone who advocates for singing “A Mighty Fortress” as a heretic.
 
We should be careful though with how we use the term “heresy.” I can’t imagine an EP would view it as a practice that is leading people to hell, or condemn anyone who advocates for singing “A Mighty Fortress” as a heretic.
I was merely commenting on how I interpreted the post Chris was referencing.
 
I apologize, I meant to convey that some consider anything but the Psalms sung in worship as unbiblical, and since the position is considered unbiblical by them, that is why I mentioned it as heresy. Maybe heresy is too strong of a word.
 
I saw a clip of it inadvertently and didn't get the appeal. Didn't feel defiled by seeing it or anything though, tbh; it was their 2CV, not mine, and seeing it wasn't my idea. But anyway, what I saw was a guy in a robe "healing" somebody, then giggling like a monkey, while his followers minced and pranced behind him like a boy band.

Odd sort of presentation of Jesus, but I guess that's what people go for these days.
 
Also, I don’t know if this is their messaging still, but I do remember at one point online the show had a tagline that read “Binge Jesus.” Which I wasn’t a huge of for the same reason I don’t like people talking about getting “high on Jesus.”
 
We have the true life and words of Jesus in the Scripture, and the Holy Spirit brings that to life in our perception and hearts. The Chosen brings lying fiction, characters, and words to the minds and hearts of those who watch it. It is a counterfeit.
 
We have the true life and words of Jesus in the Scripture, and the Holy Spirit brings that to life in our perception and hearts. The Chosen brings lying fiction, characters, and words to the minds and hearts of those who watch it. It is a counterfeit.
I reject, more broadly, the current tendency to have to "fill in the gaps" where Scripture is silent. The Chosen is one example of this. Elsewhere, I've seen Bible studies and sermons devoted to lessons seeking to draw lessons from Jesus' work as a carpenter apprentice to Joseph. That's a problem for me. What is omitted from Scripture is omitted with the same degree of intentionality as what is included. We should be content with what is included and have faith that it is sufficient.
 
If I am not mistaken, Bill Johnson of Bethel church heavily emphasis the kenotic heresy. It's what he uses to promote his teaching on miraculous healing.

Because in their reasoning, Jesus was just a man like us, although empowered with the Holy Spirit. So we, like him, can do these miracles by the power of the Holy Spirit.
You are not mistaken. Here is a quote from Bill Johnson's 'When Heaven Invades Earth'.

Jesus performed his miracles “as a man in right relationship with God…not as God. If He performed miracles because He was God, then they would be unattainable for us” – Bill Johnson, When Heaven Invades Earth.
 
The thing is Bethel and Hillsong do worship the same Jesus; as opposed to Mormons. And you cant really put Bethel and Hillsong in the same camp according to their errors, as Bethel is NAR, and Hillsong is Arminian, Egalitarian, semi-Charismatic. Also, I differentiate Hillsongs music ministry separate from their individual churches; which for instance, the expose' focuses on. Within those two, Bethel is far more "out there," but even so, Mormon theology is not to be equated with the shortcomings of them. We must also keep in mind that for some, any songs outside of Psalms would be considered heresy.
Bill Johnson Quote:
Jesus performed his miracles “as a man in right relationship with God…not as God. If He performed miracles because He was God, then they would be unattainable for us” – Bill Johnson, When Heaven Invades Earth.
Is this the Jesus that we worship?
Brian Houston Quote:

“Do you know—take it all the way back into the Old Testament—and the Muslim and you, we actually serve the same God. Allah, to a Muslim; to us, Abba Father, God.”

Is this the God that we worship?
Jen Johnson (Daughter-in-law of Bill Johnson and lead song writer, who wrote a great number of the songs that everyone loves from Bethel. Oh, and she is also on staff as a 'pastor' at Bethel.) quote:

"The Holy Spirit is like the Genie from Aladdin"



Is this the Holy Spirit that we are filled with?
 
Bill Johnson Quote:
Jesus performed his miracles “as a man in right relationship with God…not as God. If He performed miracles because He was God, then they would be unattainable for us” – Bill Johnson, When Heaven Invades Earth.
Is this the Jesus that we worship?
Brian Houston Quote:

“Do you know—take it all the way back into the Old Testament—and the Muslim and you, we actually serve the same God. Allah, to a Muslim; to us, Abba Father, God.”

Is this the God that we worship?
Jen Johnson (Daughter-in-law of Bill Johnson and lead song writer, who wrote a great number of the songs that everyone loves from Bethel. Oh, and she is also on staff as a 'pastor' at Bethel.) quote:

"The Holy Spirit is like the Genie from Aladdin"



Is this the Holy Spirit that we are filled with?
Okay, but is Bill Johnson saying Jesus was not God, or is he questioning which attributes are from his divinity or were possible by a sanctified humanity? The Mormon I believe, believes we are all Gods, and that Jesus and Satan were brothers. Of course both are absurd; but, the former is not quite as absurd since many of the prophets who were not God, also performed miracles by the power of God as opposed to being God. Even the Jews testify to this when they say "Rabbi, we know that thou art a teacher come from God: for no man can do these miracles that thou doest, except God be with him." So see there is a belief that in humanity, with the assistance of God, miracles are possible; even if the reality was that the miracles of Jesus were to testify to his deity.
 
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A few of my young Sunday School students have been watching The Chosen. So far, I've not had a case where the show seems to be leading them into bad salvation theology or ideas about the person of Christ that clearly are way off. But they do end up assuming that details added by the show are part of the Bible account, and I've sometimes had to correct that. For this reason, I've wondered if I need to watch the show so I know what to address, the way I found it helpful (nearly essential, though grating) to watch Veggie Tales back in the 1990s.

Adults I know who watch the show tend to say it adds richness and context to the Bible account, helping them gain a deeper appreciation for Christ as he's revealed in the Gospels. But I'm skeptical that it really gives a richer appreciation of Jesus. I'm convinced it must be at best a shallow substitute, and at worst an idolatrous distraction, compared to looking more deeply at the actual Bible text, which is where true richness is found.
 
It seems to me that Angel Studios are competing with Marvel and DC with this series. Basically, “Jesus” is Superman, a man (not God, because no one can portray God, even if they tried) doing miracles and spreading the “gospel” that God loves us all just as we are. It is anthropocentric rather than theocentric. It is an appropriation of God’s Word for a humanistic agenda. I dared watch two seasons, at the time not realising the gravity of the 2nd Commandment violation (God forgive me), and could stomach no more. I suspect that sin will be downplayed, or defined as judging others.
So thankful the Lord helped you in realizing the seriousness of the breaking of the 2nd commandment! May he have mercy on us and open the eyes of many more.
 
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