(M) Directed by Will Bakke
Starring Alex Russell, Miles Fisher
by Mark Hadley
“Brothers, God may love you … but does He like you?”
– and what follows is a dramatic silence as Sam’s audience (and the audience of Believe Me) consider a question which is in essence the same one the serpent asked Eve in the Garden of Eden. But where Satan urged the mother of humanity to take matters into her own hands, Sam goes on to suggest that there is sure fire way of being sure of God’s good graces: giving.
Believe Me is about a group of college graduates struggling under mountains of debt. When Sam is confronted with an unexpected tuition bill he convinces his friends that their salvation lies in fleecing the faithful via a fake Christian charity. The gullible church crowds swallow the scam hook line and sinker, leading to Sam’s ‘God Squad’ gaining a national platform. Behind the curtain of Christian celebrity he discovers a world of fake enthusiasts and half-baked stars swimming in a sea of gullibility. But I believe Believe Me is resting on an uncertain assumption.
“Why do people give at charity events?” Sam asks his friends. “Because they want to help people,” Tyler responds. “Wrong! Because they want to feel like they’re helping people.”
This world struggles to believe anyone would consciously give away money because money is its god and it worships it fervently. It doesn’t reckon on the truth that there is a real wisdom at play here. Our riches cannot last and what Christians do is intentionally exchange this world’s baubles for riches in Heaven “… where moths and vermin do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal.”1
But, from the outside, the Kingdom this will always look like foolishness.