TV Review: The Bible Finale
The final episode of The Bible is over and thankfully, the crucifixion and resurrection of Christ was mostly accurate. Notice I said “mostly,” which means there are those who would say it is still heresy.
I reiterate what I said last week. All viewers of this mini-series should leave the series being prompted to read their Bibles, even read Bible commentaries and subject themselves to regular solid Bible teaching. Yes, this mini-series had flaws in presenting an accurate depiction of God’s Word, but when was the last time you or your children were encouraged to read the Bible after watching Glee or Honey Boo-boo?
The show opens with the trial of Jesus. Peter denies Christ three times when it seemed there was way too much daylight. I would’ve thought the rooster would be done crowing at this point.
Jesus is tried by Pilate. Pilate’s wife pleads with him not to do this because of the dream she had. I liked the actor who portrayed Pilate because he showed confidence and annoyance with the Jews, which seems historically accurate. His meeting with the high priest was good, and I liked the scene that showed the high priest crafting how to execute Jesus before meeting. It helps answer common inquiries people have about why the Jewish leaders decided to get rid of Jesus in this manner, and it yields to the prophecy of how Jesus was to die.
I also appreciated the liberty the producers took in showing Pilate’s exchange with his wife after the trial. In a week, he confidently tells her, this all will be forgotten… or so he thought. As I mentioned before, and as history would report, crucifixions were grossly too common at this time. The Romans may have taken more thought to swatting flies than the number of crucifixions they performed. So this played well in the shock and amazement of what happened after Jesus’ death, and during the time of His resurrection.
I am under the impression the producers did not think they could spare the time needed to show how it actually went down with Thomas doubting the appearance of Jesus. The “No, it can’t be you, Jesus!” interpretation was a farce.
I didn’t like the Day of Pentecost scene either. I know the sound of a violent rushing wind came and filled the house where the disciples were staying, but when they were speaking in different languages, I understood this to mean they were in a public setting, speaking to the multitude (Acts 2). Plus they didn’t show Peter preaching his famous sermon — another disappointment.
The stoning of Stephen was weak, lacking much content. I didn’t like the actor they chose to play Paul. During the early ‘80s, there was a TV movie called Peter and Paul, where Anthony Hopkins played Paul. I realize the Oscar-winning actor may not have been affordable at this time, but someone of his physical characteristics would be more suitable for the role.
Of course, Paul’s baptism was incredibly weak. Dousing him with a pitcher of water after he’s healed of his blindness? C’mon, he didn’t win the Super Bowl!
I could go on and on with my disappointments in this show. They sprinted through the events of Jesus’ disciples and Paul’s adventures. There’s no mention of Barnabas or Timothy, though the show features Luke. Paul is shown quoting I Corinthians 13, the Love Chapter, but no mention of passages he wrote that have a greater focus on the Gospel.
Probably one of the weakest moments is when Peter and John were saying a formal goodbye to each other. Before John departs, Peter says, “Good luck.” After all the experiences they had over a span of three and a half years with the Son of God, do you actually think Peter would have the mindset to wish John “good luck”?
Overall, I think the very first show of the mini-series was the best. It seemed like the quality of the shows that followed greatly depleted. Showing Christ being crucified and rising again is great. I give kudos for this.
Hopefully, the best part of The Bible may still happen, which is the seeds of Gospel it may have planted.