Another hurdle those in the holy huddle are going to have problems getting their PC-addled backsides over will be Sam’s use of a machine gun to kill the Sudanese freaks who are kidnapping kids from the district in which he labors.
To some Christians this poses a conundrum for proper Christian conduct in complex situations. The debates this movie is going to spawn among the brethren will be delectable. However, for me and the parents of the kids who had been kidnapped, raped, beaten and/or forced to kill at the kidnappers’ behest, Sam’s use of lethal force is not problematic but rather commonsensical: The wage of sin is death, and Sam’s there to inflict it if someone messes with his kids. Indeed, in Sam’s situation he asks not the question, “What would Jesus do?” but rather, “Whom would Jesus whip?” Good for him. Next.
Aside from Sam’s tale, powerfully depicted by Gerard Butler, we have his wife Lynn’s life showcased in a potent way as well. Lynn, a former stripper who came to faith before Childers and prayed Sam to his senses, loved him when most women would have divorced him or berated him into compliance. She supports him during the insane startup of his work in the Sudan and rebukes him when he wants to quit after the rebels blow his orphanage to smithereens. Cowabunga, baby. They don’t make ‘em like that anymore. Good luck trying to find a girl like Lynn, boys.
In my obnoxiously humble opinion, this non-preachy film is a game changer that breaks from the predictable puerile depictions of Christians trying to follow God in a jacked-up world and instead highlights the up and down reality of a bad guy, rescued by a good God, who out of love for God and man wants to save innocent children in a vicious part of the planet. And it does so without pulling punches in regard to language, lifestyle, or the means necessary to rescue the kids (nor does it attempt to downplay Childers’ brutal internal struggles in accomplishing this beautiful work).
Bottom line: This controversial movie kicks butt (literally) and is well worth the ten bucks for the ticket price.
For information and locations where you can see Machine Gun Preacher check out machinegunpreacher.org.
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