I was inspired this morning by our documentary Apostle Paul and the Earliest Churches. This is one of our core products; as it is the film that got our founder involved in Christian movies back in 2004. He co-produced this film about the roots of Christianity in Asia Minor/Anatolia/Modern-Day Turkey ( all titles refer to the same land mass in the North-East Mediterranean.) The film was made by Turkish Christians to introduce westerners to the biblical sites throughout Turkey, and to inform locals of the region’s Christian past.
The DVD takes you throughout Turkey using dramatized travelers following Paul’s footsteps, footage of archaeological ruins, 3-D maps, historical details, biblical accounts. All of these are combined in a narrative that makes history come alive.
This film is a great illustration of the troubles Paul went through to bring the gospel to the gentile (non-Jewish) world. I was especially moved by the account of Paul at the port of Miletus when he speaks with the elders from the church in Ephesus. He talks through how he’s lived his life and makes clear his willingness to lay down his life for the God he loves You can read the whole account in Acts 20:17-38. Here are some highlights.
“You know how I lived among you , serving the Lord with all humility and tears and trials that happened to me through the plots of the Jews; how I did not shrink from declaring to you anything that was profitable, and teaching you in public and from house to house, testifying both to Jews and to Greeks of repentance toward God and of faith in our Lord Jesus Christ…” He goes on to describe the reality that he may lose his life in Jerusalem, and then says… “but I do not account my life of any value or as precious to myself, if only I may finish my course and the ministry that I received from the Lord Jesus, to testify to the gospel of the Grace of God…”
As I heard those verses in the film, I was reminded of and renewed in my own desire to be used by the Lord to share the good news of Christ with those who don’t yet know him and to live a life that is constantly given over to the Lord and laid at his feet to do with as he pleases.
The DVD also comes with a printable Bible Study that can be used to follow Paul through the bible used in concert with the DVD.
I recommend Apostle Paul and the Earliest Churches to anyone studying Acts or the life of Paul, to people interested in archeology, or to Christians people planning a trip to Turkey. My parents and Aunt are planning a trip to Turkey this spring, and I’ll definately be recommending that they watch this DVD before coming.