God's Not Dead: A Light in Darkness (2018) - full transcript

Pastor Dave responds to the unimaginable tragedy of having his church, located on the grounds of the local university, burned down.


KEATON: Sometimes
all it takes is a spark.

Something very small.

But the spark becomes a flame.

And if that flame spreads,

the power can be so overwhelming

it transforms
everything around it.

(crowd chatter)

with breaking news from

- Hope Springs, Arkansas...
- NEWSMAN: People are up

in arms, speaking out
against what they believe...

NEWSWOMAN 2: only religious
leader who refused to abide...

MAN: David Hill,
you're under arrest.

Contempt of court.

You failed to produce your
sermons upon court order.

Please put your hands
behind your back.

MAN: who feel the state
is overstepping its bounds.


(siren wailing)

WOMAN: A subpoena
of sermons is needless

- and unprecedented.
- MAN: This is a witch hunt

to silence religion...

(continues indistinctly, fades)

NEWSCASTER: We're seeing more

and more protests
around the city

since local pastor, David Hill,

was arrested for
contempt of court.

Hill refused to abide
by a controversial

government mandate
to turn over transcripts

of his sermons
to city officials.

And right now a
contentious and heated

free-speech debate is
threatening to boil over

while the pastor sits in
jail waiting for a ruling.

(footsteps approaching)

(lock clicking)


Let's go.

(buzz, click)

Appreciate it.

- Hey.
- Jude.

(both chuckling)

You want to get some waffles?

Of course I want
to get some waffles.

CROWD: Free Reverend
Dave! Free Reverend Dave!

Free Reverend Dave!

REPORTER: Reverend,
what do you have to say

about being released today?

I am grateful to the
court that they recognize

that this mandate
was unconstitutional.

I think this is more of
a human rights issue.

It's about our
right to seek truth

and to share that
truth with others.

considering your church

is associated with
a public university,

how do you define
"truth" exactly?

Truth is a person.

The person of Jesus Christ.

It's the one truth

- above all others.
- What do you have to say

to the people here
who are calling...

Christ is the one truth? Really?

This guy just can't
help himself, can he?

This guy is a pastor who
was jailed for his beliefs.

What if it was a Jewish rabbi
that said there was one truth?

- Or a Muslim imam?
- They have that right.

- Freedom of worship.
- In places of worship.

But Hadleigh is
a state university.

TEO: See, and that's
the question, y'all.

What's a church doing
on a state campus

- in the first place?
- We're seeing more and more

- protests around the city.
- Students are actually calling

for the removal of Saint James

from Hadleigh campus altogether.

As the battle rages
on in Hope Springs...

WOMAN: A historic
landmark that has

served this community
for over a century.

And now they want
the church gone.

This is what our
country has come to.

(crowd clamoring)

(distant siren wailing)

(gentle music plays on radio)

You gonna ask her out or what?

Excuse me?

We drive all the way
out here every week,

drop off all this food.

Why don't you
finally ask the girl out?

She feeds homeless people, Jude.

That's why we donate the food.

Yes, but she
obviously likes you.

No way.

What's a six-letter
word for "clueless"?


You're still working
on that thing?

I'm much faster
when it's in Swahili.

Fair enough.

WOMAN: This tab's
already been paid.

- (doorbell jingles)
- You guys enjoy.

- Hey, convict.
- Hey.

MEG: Just can't
stay out of the news

- these days, can you?
- (chuckles)

Yeah, I've never had so
many people care what I think.

Well, I'm on your
side. You know that.

Busy today, huh?

Busy's good.

The more people
we feed, the better.

Hey, thank your
congregation for all this.

Couldn't do it without y'all.

- I'll see you next Saturday.
- Hold up.

From last night.

Pork chops turned out great.


(door opens, bell dings)

JUDE: Told you.

Who asked you?

(protestors shouting)


DAVE: Wonder what
my father would think.

When he was a pastor,
he'd leave these doors open

day and night... didn't matter.

Now we hire armed
security guards

to protect us from
the same people

we're supposed
to be ministering to.

It's just fear, David,
and it can be overcome.

You know this.

Do you ever complain?

You know where I come from.

I've seen my share of struggles.

But one thing has never changed.

God is good all the time.

All the time, God is good.

DAVE: I appreciate you all

braving the angry mobs
and picketers again.

- (laughter)
- But even with all the noise

going on out there, I
just want to assure you

that Saint James has been
around for over 150 years,

and despite what those
picket signs say out there,

- we're not going anywhere.

Now, looking forward, I
have some very good news.

Jude, you want to come up?

I couldn't be happier to share
that our very own Jude Mbaye

has accepted a
permanent position

with us here at Saint
James as my co-pastor.

Amen. Welcome, brother.

Thank you.

You know, I realized
tonight that, uh,

it's been a long
time since I've felt

like I had a real
brother in my life.

(Jude chuckles)

David, are you
sharing your feelings?

Okay, let's not make
a big deal out of it.

I'm just saying that
I'm grateful for you.

I'm excited.

JUDE: I feel the same.

- Now can we get some waffles?
- (chuckles)

(glass shatters, alarm blares)

- What was that?
- I don't know.

- (alarm continues blaring)
- (dog barking in distance)

- Hey! Hey! Get back here!
- David!

David, no!

(Dave groans)

JUDE: You call the police.

- I'll shut off the alarm.
- Yeah.

Yeah, this is, uh,
Reverend David Hill.

I'm a... I'm a pastor
at Saint James.

(buttons beeping)

(alarm stops)

DAVE: Well, no, it's
not an emergency.

It's just a, uh... it
was a broken window

to the basement.


(door creaking)



- (gasps)
- (alarm blaring)



(pants, coughs)

(coughing) Jude?

(flames whooshing)

- Jude?
- (glass shattering)

Oh, no.


You're gonna be okay.

All right? Stay with me.

- (Jude mumbles)
- Okay.


Come on, pal.



(flames whooshing)


(alarm continues blaring)


Jude, I'm gonna
get you out of here.

- Okay. Okay.
- Okay?

- Stay with me.
- (loud banging)

(alarm stops)

Please, God, help me.







Don't talk, brother. Don't talk.

Just stay with me.

Help is coming.

Hold on, Jude. It's okay.

(speaking Swahili)


(speaking Swahili)

- (sirens approaching)
- What are you saying?

What does that mean?

- (exhales)
- Jude?

- Jude.
- (sirens growing louder)


Please, God, no.

Jude. Help!

Stay with me, brother.



(crying): No.




(siren wailing)

(water burbling)


KEATON: I'm so
tired of all the noise.

Everyone yelling.

On the news.

In the classroom.

Even in church.

I can barely hear You anymore.

Are You even there?

(shower running)

I hope You are.

'Cause I feel so lost, God.

I'm starting to feel pretty dumb

talking to myself when
You don't talk back, so...

Wherever You are...

I'm still here.



I stopped at Stella's,
got you the good stuff.

- You're my hero. Thank you.
- I know.

You're welcome.

- How's your day?
- Good.

- Wow, this looks, uh, fun.
- (cell phone buzzing)

You can get it if you want.

It's Sunday.

Oh, that's right.

You're... "in church."

Don't be a jerk.

Why don't you just tell 'em?

Adam, my parents
would be devastated

if they found out I
was even questioning.

Okay, you have no idea.

Yeah, I do.

I did my time as
a kid, remember?

I just got out
sooner than you did.

Okay, can we
not talk about this?


I get it.

What you're going through.

I really do.

Okay, go to your study group.

I have work to do.

- Are you kicking me out?
- Mm-hmm.


- See you later.
- Okay. Bye.

Thanks for the snack.


(indistinct chatter)

KEATON: Okay, wait, wait.

- So, let me get this straight.
- (laughter)

So, you're saying

that because the Kit Kat
logo doesn't have a hyphen,

it proves there are
multiple realities?

Okay, look, you're

- but yes, exactly.
- How am I oversimplifying?

That's exactly what you said.

ADAM: Yeah, but it's
not just Kit Kat, though.

It's a lot of things.

- Like what?
- Like... like Curious George

used to have a tail,
but now he doesn't.

- What?
- KEATON: "Used to"?

- Yeah. Look it up.
- No, it didn't change.

- People just remember it wrong.
- Okay, but maybe it did change.

- Maybe it did change.
- Wait, wait, whoa, whoa, whoa.

Curious George
does not have a tail?

- No.
- On it.

- My whole life's a lie.
- (laughter)

- This is freaking me out.
- You haven't heard about this?

- No.
- No, it's called the Mandela Effect.

Millions of people thought
that Nelson Mandela

died in prison in the '80s,

- but he didn't.
- The theory is our reality

collided with a
parallel reality.

Right, right, right... Where
Kit Kat has no hyphen

and Curious George has no tail.

Oh, okay.

Look, it's science, yo, okay?

- Quantum physics... look it up.
- (mocking): "Quantum physics."

Do you guys seriously not
hear how ridiculous you sound?

Okay, but God had
Himself a human son

who could walk on
water and multiply fish,

and that's not ridiculous?

So, yeah, given the choice,
I'm taking the Kit Kat theory.

And if we get lucky,
maybe we'll collide

with a reality where our school
isn't poisoned by Reverend Dave

- and his one truth.
- Preach it.

You just don't get it
'cause you're one of 'em, K.

Not really.

I mean, not anymore.

Excuse me?

- What?
- Okay, if-if you're not

one of them, then what are you?

What am I?

I'm annoyed.

By you, because you're annoying.

I have to go.

- Sorry, bro. I...
- Thanks, Teo.

It was a... conversation.

It's okay.

Keaton, wait up.

Look, I didn't
mean anything by it.

I know. It's fine.

I have a chem test tomorrow.

- I have to study.
- We were just joking.


I don't care what you
believe and don't believe,

and I don't have a
problem with God.

Yeah, but you do, Adam.

Okay? You say
it's just the church

or religion or whatever, but...

(Keaton sighs)

You know, I am so tired of
having this same conversation

- over and over again with you.
- Yeah. Me, too.

I-I'm sorry. I'm sorry.


I know.


I think I...

Think I just need
some time right now.

On my own.

What does that mean?

Just to figure things out.

Are you serious?

No, come on.


Don't do that.

Keaton, please,
what are you doing?


I love you.

I know.

I love you. Don't do this.

I'm sorry.

DAVE: All the time, God is good.

(door closes)



♪ You're alive in us ♪

♪ And we'll never be the same ♪

♪ No ♪

♪ We'll never be
the same, yeah ♪

♪ We'll never be the same. ♪


Dear God: Thank
You for Harbor House.

Lord, we're broken people.

Please just bring
healing and restoration

to our school right now,

um, in this really
difficult time.

We love You and answer
to Your beautiful name.

- Amen. Thanks, guys.
- OTHERS: Amen.

Have a good one.

(quiet chatter)


I know, I know. I've been M.I.A.

It's just been a
really crazy semester.

Yeah, no, I-I totally get it.

Well, look, you're...
you're more than welcome

to come down to
the city and work

on our habitat
project, if you want.

Cool. Yeah, I'll...
I'll definitely try.

Did you know that there's
no hyphen in "Kit Kat"?

You mean like Kit
Kat, the candy bar?

(Keaton chuckles)

Yeah. You know what? Sorry.

Forget it. I'm
being really weird.


If you need to talk
about anything or...

whatever, I'm-I'm always here.

Thanks, but I'm fine, really.

See ya.

(door closes)


- (low chatter)
- ♪♪


TEO: See, this here is
why you should never

talk religion or politics, yo.

ADAM: Dude, that's
all you talk about.

Will you have Keaton text
me when you get back?

Oh, uh-uh.

Leave me out of this.

This one is on you, Adam.

If she wants to text
you, she will text you.

All right, look, you
need to sleep it off, man.

All right?

- I'm fine.
- You good?


All right, man,
we're going this way.



Yeah, right.

(drops cup to ground)

(spray paint can rattling)


- (hissing)
- (alarm blaring)

DAVE: Hey!

- Hey! Get back here!
- JUDE: David!

David, no!

(siren wailing)

(birds chirping)

The city was in shock

late last night
when a tragic fire

broke out at Saint James.

That is the controversial church

on the campus of our very
own Hadleigh University.

Both police and fire departments

have not ruled out arson
in the fire that has claimed

the life of a visiting
pastor from Ghana,

Jude Mbaye.

Police and the FBI are
now treating the case

as a hate-crime homicide.

Crowds have already started
to gather outside the church

to pay their respects.

MAN: This is why a church

does not belong
on a state campus.

You're favoring one
religion over another,

of course people are angry.

It just invites
violence like this.

What else is it gonna
take for people to wake up?

WOMAN: The church has
brought nothing but controversy

to the school for
years. It's time.

Our enrollment is down 18%.

We stand to lose $15
million this year alone.

I am well aware of that,

but we can't pin all
of this on Saint James.

Well, this university
is in the midst

of an identity crisis, Tom,
because of Saint James.

We're moving backwards.

This is wrong.

The church is a
historic landmark.

It was here before
the university.


is a good man.

What about Jude,
the one who died?

I'm sure he was a good man, too.

Barbara, with all due respect,

if we kick the church
off campus now

after what just happened,

how do you think
that's gonna look?

We're gonna look bad
no matter what we do.

But in the long run, this is
what's best for the students.


Tom... I think you should be

the one to talk to
Reverend Dave.

Dave is my friend.



♪ Glory, glory ♪

♪ Hallelujah ♪

♪ Since I've laid my ♪

♪ My burdens down... ♪

My first message, my
friends from Saint James:

We love you.

We are grieving
right alongside you.

Consider us your home
for as long as you need.

My second message
in this difficult hour:

the same one

that Peter, John and James spoke

on that one dark night
when all their hopes died

on that blood-stained Cross.

Weeping may last
through the night,

but joy cometh in the morning.

And the morning always comes.

♪ Yes, I'm going home to ♪

♪ To live with Jesus ♪

♪ Since I've laid ♪

♪ My burdens down. ♪

- You okay?
- Yeah.

I'm sorry.

I never know what
to say at these things.

Oh, it's okay.

I'll come by, and we
can discuss the details...

Construction plans,
repairs, all that.


Well... when you're ready.

Okay? Don't rush.

Just come on by my office.

- Yeah, thanks, Tom.
- Yeah. Hang in there.

- Appreciate it.
- Yeah.

Jude spoke of you all the time.

His American brother.

I thank God he wasn't
alone in his last moments.

I'm sorry.

This is not your fault.

God... He uses all
things for His good.

You know this.

(speaking Swahili)

What does...?

I think that's what
Jude said to me.

Last thing he said to me.

Wh-What does that mean?

WOMAN: It's hard to translate.

In English, it
means basically...

"Always God is good.

And God is good always."


(panting, sobbing)

DAVE: Hey.

Dave, what are you doing here?

Well, it's Saturday, isn't it?

I mean, people
still need to eat.

Sorry, it's a little bit
light this week, but, uh...

well, everything in the
pantry was ruined, so...

I know. I heard. I'm so sorry.

And Jude.

Oh, I can't believe it.


I'll be okay.

You hungry?

How about I feed
you for a change?

Thanks, but, uh...

rain check?


You know where to find me.




Thanks for coming in.

Let's go get a cup of coffee.


Tom, this is insane.

You're gonna use
this as an opportunity

to advance some
political agenda?

It's not about that.

You don't just
knock a church down

because of a little controversy.

Look, the insurance
will cover the damage.

It won't cost the
university anything.

It's not about
the money, either.

It's really not.

This makes no sense.

We were attacked.

I know.

But, Dave, we're
worried about the school,

the welfare of the students.

There are a lot of factors here.

Look, I know you're upset.

You have every right to be.

I don't like this, either.

I hope you get that.

It's all in there.

This was my father's church.

I was baptized there.

I spent my whole life there.

I know.

It's my home, Tom.

It's everything I have.

(slides papers across table)

And it's not for sale.

I don't think you're
hearing me, Dave.

The board has decided.

It's a done deal.

I'm sorry.

WOMAN: This is absurd.

They can just take
the church from us?

- I mean, don't we own this land?
- Yes.

- So, how is this legal?
- JOSH: Eminent domain.

I studied property law
a bit in grad school.

As I understand it, the state
gave all public universities

complete autonomy
over eminent domain.

Which means Hadleigh
can legally force us to sell.

- Where are we supposed to go?
- And with what

they're offering, how can
we build anything anyway?

- Can we go to court?
- Another lawsuit?

- Really?
- I hate to be the bearer of bad news,

but we've burned through any
legal reserves and then some

- over the last few months.
- No land within 30 miles of here.

We're out of money,
plain and simple.

None that we can afford.

I don't see that we
have an option here.

JOSH: You gonna be okay?

All these years this
church has been here.

When I think about the
work that God has done

and the lives that
He's changed...

Now it's just a crime scene.

(heavy sigh)

You know, Keaton
stopped by the other day.

Remember her?

First time I've seen
her in five months.

She's lost.

She needs someone to walk
with her right where she's at.

There are hundreds
more like her.

- Here.
- I know, Josh. I got it, but...

This is why I took on
Professor Radisson,

why I left law school
for this ministry.

Because what we do
and how we do it, it...

it's important, Dave.

Josh, we have no
money, no lawyers.

If I could do
something, I would.

It's just... it's not that easy.

No, it's not easy.

But it's simple.

Look, I, uh...

(chuckles) I hate to
quote scripture to a pastor,

but, um...

you remember Luke 12:48?

Seems like you're the one

much is being
asked of this time.

If you decide you
want to fight this,

pretty sure God will
handle the details.

And I'll be right
here beside you.




(phone ringing)

WOMAN: You've got an apartment?

Okay, apartment "E"?

Thank you.

MAN: Okay, don't
you worry about it.

WOMAN: I know.
Thank you, Pearce.

I swear Mike's a good kid.

He's just really struggling
right now, with his friends.

- He's just caught up...
- What are you doing here?

Dad's church.

You'd hardly even recognize it.

Hey, look, this is a
property law case.

It's not really my thing.

Pearce, you're a
social justice attorney.

They're forcing us out
because we're a church.

This is exactly your thing.

Let me get this
straight... You drive

all the way up here,
you don't even call.

Were you afraid I'd say no?

I didn't know what
you'd say, to be honest.

Look, I have a little money.

I don't want your money.

This is a legit offer.

Thing goes to trial,

jury will probably give
you half that amount.

Less even.

Money aside...

these things always get messy.

God called me to fight.

I'm gonna fight.

Aw... God calls
you, you call me.

- Did you see that? Uh-huh.
- Right in the third position.

(laughing): Third position?

(indistinct chatter
and laughter)

Adam, what's up,
baby? Where you been?

Can I talk to you?

- (Keaton sighs heavily)
- (Adam crying)

What do I do?

What do I do?

I don't know what to do.

DAVE: Hey, I appreciate
you coming down.

I know you're
busy. It's a lot to ask.


Wow. Look at this place.

It got smaller.

What'd you do to the tree?


What's wrong with it?

For one thing, it's dead.

I figured you could
take your old room.

It's kind of a guest room
and some storage, but...


Got the old man's chair.

Allowed to sit in it now?


Sorry to hear about your friend.

Yeah. Thanks.

I'm okay.

You know, that's...

what you said at Mom's
funeral: "I'm okay."

Somebody burns your church down,

kills your friend,
but you're okay.

What do you want
me to say, Pearce?

Yes, I'm having a hard time.

Just doing my
best to get through.

You want something to drink?

You got booze?


Did you buy three
boxes of these for me?

Of course.

I knew you'd come.

Unfortunately, I don't
really eat Zingers anymore.

What do you mean,
you don't eat Zingers?

You love those things.

What happened?

Triple bypass.

Heart surgery?

You had heart surgery?

- Six years ago.
- I had no idea.

Why would you?

Well, we're all caught up.

And I'm gonna
hit the hay. Night.


(flames crackling)


PEARCE (in other room):
Eminent domain precedent cases

having to do with churches
specifically would be best.

I'll be back as soon as I can.

Well, just take the
meeting without me, Todd.

No, I realize that,
but it's a family thing.

What do you want me to say?

Just make sure everything
has the same zip.

Okay? Okay, thanks.

Make yourself at home.

- You doing all right?
- I'll tell you what.

You stop asking me, and
I'll stop saying I'm okay.

Fair enough.

Ready to get to it? (sighs)

I've been getting
to it since 5:00 a.m.

Okay? I'm starving.
There's nothing in that fridge

but moldy casseroles.
Is Doe's still open?

- I guess.
- Well, let's go.

Don't eat that.


PEARCE: The government
takes private property.

They do it all the time.

End of story.

How do you think highways
and railroads get built, man?

But this isn't about a railroad.

They said they need the land
to build a new student union.

I hardly think that qualifies.

We'll see. It might.

You're not hearing me.

They just want the church
gone because they think

it's bad PR for the university.

Yeah, they're probably right.

- Pearce.
- Hey, listen, man.

I said this ain't my thing.

All right? Now
you want to tell me

how to fight an
eminent domain case?

Why don't I just go home?

You can do it.

- (people talking, laughing)
- (sighs)

This is eerie.

Let's go check it out.

Can't. It's all locked up.

(Dave groans)


Last time I was
in this building,

Dad was standing right there.


DAVE: You got in so
much trouble for that.

(both laughing)

So stupid.

I'm gonna write a letter
to the board of trustees

and introduce myself
as your legal counsel.

I'll politely let them know we
won't be entertaining any more

backroom offers
between old friends.

Thank you.

One step at a
time, little brother.

WOMAN: His brother is a lawyer?

Are you kidding me?

Of course he's gonna fight back.

What'd you expect?

At least we can offer him
a... a better settlement.

Something more fair.

And where do we
take that money from?

To pay any more
than legally required

is a disservice to the school.

Not to mention, it's unethical.

Be careful not to
let your friendship

with Reverend Dave
cloud your judgment.

- (scoffs)
- Look, I'm on your side.

My advice is take
care of this now.

Or the person who
replaces you will.

MAN (over monitor): And
it's important to remember,

in the midst of all
this controversy,

that friends and
family are now grieving

the death of this innocent man

killed in this tragic
and senseless way.

I can't even imagine
the heartbreak

for his parents having to...


you just need to stop

- thinking about it.
- I can't.

How can I?

Everybody thinks...

that he was...


His... his friends,
his... his parents.

They deserve to
know the truth...

That it was an accident.

Maybe it'll help them.

Maybe that'll... that'll
give them some sort of...

- But...
- closure.

- I don't know.
- Okay, okay, so say you confess.

Maybe they'll go
easy on you, but...

maybe they won't.

Okay, and then what?

I don't know.

ADAM: Do you really believe...

that there's a God?

I don't know.

I guess.

If He does exist...

do you think that
He would forgive me?

Of course.


DAVE: Hey, Pearce,
I'm headed to church.

You want to join?

Not one bit.

Look what I found.


(chuckling): Check it out.

My gosh.

Wait, wait, wait. I want
to show you something.

Oh, man.


- (Dave chuckling)
- Wow.

I thought most of this stuff

would've ended up in a landfill.

- No.
- Hey.

Pearce, Aunt Celia painted that.

Who cares? It's ugly.

- Bet you can't hit the frog.
- Grow up.

Ten bucks.

Give it to me.

Told you.

Wow. Mandy Stebbins.

- Whatever happened to her?
- I don't know.

If she's not on
Facebook, I have no idea.

(Pearce whistles)



You still pray for me?

Pearce, can we not?

Why? I'm just curious.

Yeah. Sometimes.

I knew it.

What do you pray for?

I'll come back around,
I'll find peace? What?

- Is this fun for you?
- I'm just making conversation.

Yeah, well, maybe
I'll pray that you make

- better conversation.
- (cell phone buzzing)


Wha...? Right now?

PEARCE: Hey, I'm
gonna need the name

- of a circuit judge down here.
- Whoa. -Whoa.

Yes. Now. Today.

- Okay, let me know.
- Dave! -Yeah.

- What... what's going on?
- They won't stop.

Excuse me. Excuse me.

Hey. Whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa.

- Stop! Stop!
- Hey. I need you on the other

- side of the tape, sir.
- I'm the pastor of this church.

Well, that may
be, but it's not safe.

- It's okay. I'm his attorney.
- Congratulations.

And I'm a Mets fan.
Now, move back,

- or I call the cops.
- Already called 'em.

Hey, buddy, I have
a demo permit.

You got a permit to wreck
a church on a Sunday?

- Really?
- Yeah, what can I say?

Signed by the president
of the university.

DAVE: "Thomas Ellsworth."

- Unbelievable.
- Just trying to do my job here.

Yeah, and I'm trying to do
mine. Give me your keys.

You touch this church
before I get back, I'll have you

arrested for destruction
of property, okay?

You stay put.

Yeah, what do you want me to do?

I don't know. Stall.

- You have a Bible?
- Yeah.


yeah, Gloria Pascual.

I know.

I'm already on my way.

What? Are you kidding me?


Of course she is. It's Sunday.

Where is she?

Yeah, yeah, I know it.

I know it.

DAVE: Hey, everyone.

We're gonna hold service.

Right now.

Come on in, guys. Come on.

Come on over here.

Can I have that Bible?

JOSH: Yeah, yeah.

Said some kind of lawyer.

So the, uh...

the Bible is the Word of God.

But how often do we
really take time to read it?

Let's start at the
top, shall we?

- "In the beginning..."
- Oh, man.

haven't even filed yet.

No appraisals, no
escrow deposits.

It's an old-fashioned
end around.

Hold on.

You still there? You still
gotta send me the injunction.

Yeah, PDF's fine.

Okay, hurry up.

Hey, hey, hey! I-I
don't even know

what she looks like.

The judge! Who do you
think I'm talking about?

Yeah, send me a pic.

(choir sings gentle melody)


DAVE: "The serpent

"was more crafty than
any of the wild animals

"the Lord God had made.

"And he said to the woman,

"" Did God really
say you must not eat

- from the tree in any garden? ""
- (siren whoops)

(siren wails)

(choir continues singing)

Your Honor, I am so
sorry, but I'm an attorney,

and it's important
that I speak with you.

I'm in the middle of Mass.

I'm aware. It's...
it's very timely.

It involves a church.

we want to take you

live to the scene right now,

show you what is
developing as we speak.

You are looking here
at Saint James Church.

This is on the campus of
Hadleigh University now.

Local pastor, David
Hill, is basically staging

his very own version of what
can only be described here

as a Senate filibuster.

His last-ditch effort
to delay the demolition

of his church.

"When it came to pass..."

As you can see here,
he's literally reading

the Bible cover to cover
while the growing crowds

watch and wait.

Yeah, that's him.

Your little stunt's gonna
cost you and the pastor

- a night in jail.
- Well, I don't think so.

I have a signed injunction
from Judge Pascual that says...

Well, you can read it yourself.

"Cease and desist."


- Thank you.
- (whistles) Let's go!

(crowd cheering and applauding)

All right, guys, we're done.

- Time to leave. Let's go.
- (machinery beeping)

What happened?

I just bought us three weeks.

Thank you.

maybe the university's

board of trustees
does have the right

to expropriate the
church property.

But even if it's
legal, is it moral?

Just take a look at
their dilemma here.

This is no longer
a Christian school.

The church really should
have moved off campus

50 years ago when the
state bought the university.

Instead, funding is
given disproportionately

to one religious organization

while other ones
are being denied.

So you add that to all of this
controversy and now violence.

You tell me... How
can they justify

keeping the church on campus?

Thomas Ellsworth is
making the right choice here.

It's not the easy one,
but it is the right choice.

DAVE: I think their
intentions are pretty clear.

Enough with writing
letters. Let's call 'em out.

Call 'em out on what, stupidity?

Why are you so
reluctant to accept

- what's really going on?
- Unbelievable.

You guys love to play
the victim card, don't you?

- "You guys."
- Look, forget it.

I'm not engaging in a
false narrative with you.

I'm just... I'm not.

It undermines true
religious liberty.

You're talking to a
guy who went to jail

who's now having
his church stolen.

How is that false narrative?

Because it's never that simple.

The Christian Church has a
long history of persecuting people,

and then those people push back,

and you guys want to cry victim.

And for every example of someone

who's misrepresented
Jesus for some twisted reason,

there are a hundred others
who have done good in His name.

We can debate
history all you want,

but I'm talking about now,
about getting my church back.

Can you just help me do that?

I'm right here, aren't I?

Just don't drag me into
your personal crusade.


Where you going?

I'm going to bed.

- Thank you, Pastor.
- Thank you for your sacrifice.

- Appreciate it.
- Thank you.



Pastor Dave.

Keaton, how are you?

I'm okay.

So, how's stuff going
with the the church?

Have they found
the person who did it?

Not yet. They're
still investigating.

Oh, I just figured, like,
fingerprints or whatever.

Oh, it's not quite
like the movies.

It takes time, but I'm
sure they'll catch 'em.

What's gonna happen
when they find 'em?

Put 'em away, I
hope, for a long time.

PEARCE: The order's
good for three weeks.

Can't be much longer than that.

Hey, what do you want me to say?

He's my brother.

Do me a favor...
Send me some briefs

for Kelo v. New
London and... what else?

Faith Temple, uh, v. Brighton.

Okay, thanks.


Really, take it with you.
It's getting cold out there.

All right, bye.

- Thank you.
- Smells good.

- Mm-hmm. -Smells good.

Coming to collect
on that rain check.

MEG: You guys close growing up?

DAVE: Yeah. That's
why it was so hard.

Pearce was my hero.

I mean, he had
this strong faith.

But he was so cool about it.

He made Christianity cool.

Yeah, I know the type.

Went off to law school
when I started college.

And then something happened.

I don't know, he changed.


(sighing): Uh...

I don't know, I guess he
was struggling in his faith.

But it was more
than just confusion.

It was darker than that.

I always hoped that
he'd come around

before our parents died.

It was hard on them.

Felt like they lost their son.

You lost your hero.


Guess I did.


MEG: That's amazing, isn't it?

That he can look at that...

and see that.

You okay?

I feel a little bit
like I'm drifting.

Keep trying to tell
myself all the things

that I would tell others
who are struggling.

It's not helping.

Think I might be bad at my job.

I doubt that.

I just want to get back
to the way things were.

How far back is that?

I mean, going back
doesn't really work.

And believe me, I've tried.

I've gone back to
school, gone back home,

back to brunette.

But I've never been able to
go back to the way things were.

I hope you're wrong.

'Cause if I can't go back,
I don't know where to go.

(distant bell tolling)

Are you doing okay?

I told you to stop
asking me that.

Oh, yeah. I forgot.

BARBARA: So, how much?

PEARCE: How much what?

We made you an offer.

You're here to
counter, so counter.

Oh, believe me, I wish I could.

despite my counsel,

my client is not
interested in money.

So, what is your
client interested in?

- I want my church back.
- TOM: Dave...

be reasonable.

Reason went out the window,
Tom, when you brought

a demolition crew
to my front door.

WOMAN: Look, a college campus

is about education,
not religion.

We've got limited space.

We need to maximize
it for every student.

None of that gives you the
right to tear my church down.

- Well, actually it does.
- Dana, stop.

We're wasting our time here.

We both know that this
meeting was simply a courtesy.

And, Barbara, we appreciate it.

It's very courteous.

I get it. It's a
prime piece of land.

You know what
I'd do if it were me?

I'd put in a big student center
with a fancy coffee shop.

The kids would love it.

I mean, to me,
that's more valuable

than a dusty old
church. No offense.

But he knows
how I feel about it.

Here's the problem.

What you're doing,
it's against the law.

'Cause eminent domain
doesn't automatically apply

just because you guys
don't like his church.

So, here's my counter.

Withdraw your claim, or we sue.

See what a judge
has to say about it.

We're done.

This case will never
make it to court.

They didn't look
worried, Pearce.

Oh, they are.
That's their job...

To not look worried.

Listen, we gotta change
the conversation in the media.

Okay, we gotta put a
face to the opposition.

- Tom?
- Yeah, Tom.

He's the most visible.
He's got the most to lose.

You okay with that?

I'll just tell the truth.

People need to
know what he's doing.

Good boy. Let's go.

But Saint James built
Hadleigh University years ago.

Exactly. So you see
how far this has gone.

And now, with the
school board's actions,

we've been given no choice
but to seek a legal solution.

these college administrators,

they go on and on
and on about diversity

and tolerance and inclusion,

but yet, when
it's asked of them,

they run you off of campus.

That doesn't sound very
tolerant or inclusive to me.

Tom Ellsworth is
trying to strip away

the foundational
element of this university

because he believes that
it is no longer convenient.

But truth isn't
about convenience.

And faith in God may not be

as popular on
campus as it once was,

but people still have a right...

A fundamental human
right to express their beliefs,

even in a public square
at a state university.

If you agree, we're asking that
you make your voices heard.

Send an e-mail.

Make a call.

Let Tom Ellsworth and
the university board know

that you believe the
church still has value.

gauntlet has been thrown.

And we'll see how
people respond.

PEARCE: Dude, almost
three million views.

People are mad. This is good.

Does this buy us the
leverage we need?

Well, we'll find
out at the prelim.

Need the judge to let
us argue the case, but...

this all helps.

Nice work.


DAVE (over phone):
I think it's time for me

to get back preaching again.

I'm afraid I'm
getting so caught up

in all this, I just...

I don't want to lose sight
of my work, you know.

Well, let me know
when and where.

I'll be there for sure.

Hey, we're back.

- Oh, I turned it off.
- What?

Don't you want to see
if they get the diamond?

Don't you knock?

- What are you doing?
- I'm on the phone.

Who you talking to so late?

None of your business.

MEG: Is that Pearce?
Tell him I said hi.

Meg says hi.

Hi, Meg.

Uh, let me call you back.

Ooh, what's the deal there?

There's no deal.
She's a friend of mine.

She runs one of the
ministries we support.

- What do you want, Pearce?
- Nothing.

- Is that my shirt?
- Yeah.

(repeated banging)

What are you doing?

I told you, this tree's dead.
It's gonna fall on the house.

I didn't ask you to cut it down.

- I can do it myself.
- Can you, now?

Yeah, I could.

Go for it.

All right, fine.

You might want to back up.

- Gotta do better than that.
- It was a warm-up.

(clears throat)

Still warming up?

(door closes)

Careful with that
weak heart of yours.

Ha ha. Funny guy.

Watch this.

Get ready to yell "timber."

I got a better idea.

(motor rumbling)

- Oh, now we're talking.
- (motor buzzing)


- Okay, give it a push.
- All right, hold up.

- Tell me when you're ready.
- Yeah.


- (wood cracking)
- (grunting)

Ah, we almost got it!

Oh! Yeah!

- (grunts)
- Yes!

Just promise me you'll
plant something new here.

Mom liked pomegranate trees.

Do you even believe in
what we're fighting for?

Do I believe in your right
to keep your church? Yes.

But the rest of it...
You know the answer.

So, why help me?

What do you think
I do for a living?

Do you think I need to
have the belief system

of every crackhead I
defend to defend 'em?

So religion has no value

except for the
laws that protect it?

Value? I don't know.

But people have evolved.

Science has
replaced superstition.

Church has outlived
its usefulness.

- Wow.
- Okay, I don't expect you to agree, but...

that's okay, 'cause
this is healthy.

It's a healthy discourse.

Pearce, people are broken.

They're-they're... they're lost.

They're searching...
For meaning, for purpose.

Oh, church is the answer
to those problems, huh?

Church is a place
for people to seek.

To grapple with those
difficult questions.

To find hope and... and truth.

And you know that.

Or at least you used to.

Why do you need me to agree
with you about everything?

I'm just your lawyer.

I didn't come here
to debate religion

or do your landscaping.

But, man, you're
my little brother.

And I don't like to see
people push you around.

And that's why I'm helping you.

And right now, that answer's
gotta be good enough for you.

this whole situation

brings you to the Cross.

And the Cross is both
vertical and horizontal.

Vertical is me and God.

God and me... My
relationship with Christ.

The horizontal
part... you and I.

Sometimes we get so
caught up in the vertical,

we forget the horizontal,
forget each other.

Yeah, but it's... it's at

the intersection
where Jesus comes in.

- Yes.
- That nexus... and that's

where Paul's words are so
powerful and compelling...

Even Jews and gentiles
are fellow citizens.

So, with all the noise and
anger out there right now,

it's peace that we
have to think about.

And it's gonna
require one thing,

and it's gonna
require sacrifice.

At the end of the
day, we can't forget

that Christ's
forgiveness came about

via the conduit
of the sacrifice.

And we are called, believe
it or not, to do the same.

(chatter, laughter)

- Hey.
- Hey.


How are you?

Mm, been better.

Do you know why my
mom divorced my dad?

He used to beat her.

I was nine...

when she left him.

You know what our church did?

They called her a sinner.

They said that if
she married again

she'd be an adulterer.

They humiliated her.

What I remember
most about that time

is the sound of my mother
crying herself to sleep.

I'm so sorry. I...

So yeah, I get angry sometimes.

But I didn't... I didn't mean
for anybody to get hurt.

I know you didn't.


For what it's worth,
I prayed about it.


No answer.

- (laughter)
- And did you believe him?

Of course I believed him.

I was seven years old.

I believed whatever he told me.

"Dave, you can
make your own 7 Up.

(laughing): "All you need is...

is just water and salt."

(laughter continues)

- And did you drink it?
- It was terrible, obviously.

But I kept adding
more and more salt,

just waiting for
those little bubbles.

PEARCE: Oh, the poor guy.

He drank the whole bottle...
Two liters of salt water.

But I gotta hand it to Pearce.

He, uh... he waited by
my bedside all night long

to make sure that I didn't die.

Yeah. That's what brothers
do. They look out for each other.

- Hear, hear.
- Hear, hear, brother.

DAVE: Thank you.

PEARCE: I really thought
you were gonna die.

(Pearce and Meg laugh)

Hadleigh University
is being flooded

with calls and e-mails
from angry citizens,

and it seems Chancellor
Ellsworth, well,

taking the brunt of that anger.

Kayla's asking for
her bedtime story.

(cell phone buzzing)

Don't answer it, Tom.



Hel... Stop calling me.

(glass shatters)

- What was that?
- Stay here, stay here.


KAYLA: Daddy!

Kayla! Come here, baby.

(vehicle speeding away)

What was that?

Go on upstairs.

(sighs) It's okay, baby.

- It's okay.
- (Kayla whimpers)

MEG: I'm very proud of you.

DAVE: Of me?

For what?

I get the feeling fighting's
not really your thing.

But it's important
what you're doing.

It's inspiring.

I was just thinking
about that sculptor

chiseling away at that rock.

It's okay to be broken, Dave.

It means God's
still shaping you.

I'm honored to be a part of it.

(car approaching)

(tires screech)

- Tom?
- I'm getting death threats, Dave.

Somebody threw a
brick through my window.

- Okay, just take it easy, okay?
- No, Kayla could've been hurt!

I don't know anything
about that. I'm sorry.

No, no.

- You did this!
- Hey, hey.



(grunting and groaning)


Get off him!

You brought the
fight to us, Tom.

- I'll get you some ice.
- (car speeding away)

You all right?

Yeah, I'm fine.

Maybe we should
just call it a night.

Yeah. Uh...

I'll just get my stuff.

I didn't realize Tom
was a psychopath.

Well, he's just scared.


Way to impress
the lady, by the way.

Well, it's kind of
my signature move.

Invite a girl over, and then
get punched in the face.

Works every time.

Let's see.

(inhales sharply)

Ow. What'd you do that for?

You'll be all right.

JOSH: Cottonwood
Christian Center

v. Cypress Redevelopment Agency?

I got that. Give
me something else.

DAVE: Hey, I've got
some leftover pizza.


Josh, you're a smart kid.

Why'd you give up on law school?

Well, I wouldn't
say I gave up on it.

Um, once I spent time
on a college campus,

I realized there was
a real need there.

You know, ministry's just
another way for me to serve.

What kind of law
were you studying?

Same as you... civil
rights, social justice.

Really? 'Cause you
don't strike me as a liberal.

Give the kid a break.

- What?
- JOSH: I don't think

standing up for the oppressed

is exclusive to a
political agenda.

Well, let me ask you this.

Do you think that
your religious beliefs

get in the way of
real social change?

No, my... my beliefs are
the foundation of change.

The belief that every human
is made in the image of God.

I mean, Jesus was the
ultimate social justice warrior.

He said the lives
of children mattered

and regarded women
with honor and dignity

in a cultural moment where a
woman's testimony wasn't even

permissible in a court of law.

He consistently stood
up for the mistreated

and the marginalized.

Well, I've been
doing this a long time,

and I wish I'd seen those
words put into action more often.

Yeah. Me, too.

We're all responsible
for our part,

but it's grace and then justice,

not the other way around.

Whether you serve
the court or the Lord,

you should follow the
example of Jesus because...

without grace as
our goal, we're just...

you know, we're just fighting.

DAVE: Amen.

Let's say grace.

Dear Lord: Thank
you for this day.

Thank you for this food.

Bless it to our bodies,
and forgive Pearce

for eating before grace.

- Amen.
- Amen.

That's not funny.

DAVE: So, if the
judge agrees to let us

go to trial, do we have a shot?

PEARCE: If we go to
trial, we're gonna win.

Public's on our side,
jury's on our side.

- What if the judge says no?
- Then we're done.


(Dave takes a deep breath)

- Am I allowed to talk in there?
- Please don't.

You know, I've been
thinking... I like this Meg.

She's the good kind
of Christian... authentic.

You ought to seal the
deal before she gets wise.

It's not exactly great timing.

(Pearce clucks like a chicken)

Maybe I don't want
to rush into things.

Try not to end up
with two ex-wives.

(chuckling): Oh,
I forgot to tell you.

It's three now.


Hadleigh offered a sum
that's fair market value

- for the property.
- It's perfectly fair.

But Saint James' value can't
be measured only in dollars.

The court has no standard
for determining intrinsic value.

Your Honor, Saint James
has had a positive impact

on this community
for generations.

The university concedes the
plaintiff is not without merit,

but we question the
relevancy to this case.

May I say something?

Well, you brought the lawsuit.

If you want to assess
the value of the church

to this community,
just turn on the news.

The community is
speaking... Loudly.

PEARCE: This is
what victory feels like.

We're going to court.

Come on, man, this is a big win.

Be happy.


- Be happy!
- Stop it.

Be happy.

Ow! Will you just...

Be happy. Oh!
There's my little brother!

No, I'm not happy
suing my friend.

I'm not happy suing anybody.

(sighs) Okay.

Well, number one, Tom
Ellsworth is not your friend.

And number two, I'm going to bed

'cause you're a buzzkill.

ROLAND: Paul tells us that...

even if you can
speak the language

of both man and
angels, if you lack love,

brothers and sisters,

you're just making
a lot of noise.

Maybe you're the
world's smartest person

and you have a great faith
that can move mountains

or you give all your
money to the poor

or you give your
body over to hardship.

My Bible says, without love,

you say nothing.

Without love, you gain nothing.

Without love,

- you are nothing.
- (cell phone buzzing)

(grabs keys)

(indistinct chatter)

Hey, Adam.

- Hey.
- Pastor Dave?

Is it true?

I don't... I don't know...

- Is it? Tell me.
- Adam!

- (grunting)
- (onlookers gasping)

- You killed Jude, didn't you?
- MAN: Hey, hey, hey.

- Take it easy, pal.
- Get off of me! Get off of me!

KEATON: What is wrong with you?

MAN: Hey, man, what's going on?

(indistinct chatter)

That is messed up.

(indistinct radio transmission)

(machine beeping)

Sign with that pen.

What am I signing?

Just saying I just
took your fingerprints

and you're just being booked in.

Is this, like, a mug shot?


shocking confrontation

by Reverend David Hill on
Hadleigh campus, the suspect

has been identified
as 21-year-old

Hadleigh student
Adam Richertson.

The college senior
has no criminal record

and no history of violence,

which has left many
people wondering

what inspired this
deadly attack on a church.


I'm so sorry.

TEO: This is beyond messed up.

I know Adam.

He's a good dude... sincerely.

And Pastor Dave needs to
take a page from his own book.

So, you know what?

We're having a
protest Friday night.

Saint James.

Make sure your voice is heard.

Be there. Be mad.

'Cause this fight
is far from over.

Have you seen this?

TOM: Media works both ways.

This gives us a real shot.

Get the team working on it.

I'm gonna send a gift
basket to Reverend Dave.

TOM: We condemn

the hateful actions
of Adam Richertson

in the strongest possible terms.

They do not represent the values

of our esteemed
Hadleigh University.

We will not stand for
violence or discrimination

in any form, of any people,

regardless of their religious
backgrounds and beliefs.

We've taken the immediate
steps to expel Mr. Richertson,

and we have encouraged the state

to prosecute him to the
fullest extent of the law.

None of this, however,

should excuse the actions
of Reverend Dave Hill.

His outburst has made
our position stronger:

that Saint James
Church has become

a beacon of violence
and controversy,

and it has no place here

on Hadleigh University campus.

Good day.

(reporters shouting questions)

So, Reverend Hill
goes after Ellsworth.

Now Ellsworth fires back.

And meanwhile, this
kid Adam Richertson

is caught in the crossfire.

- Judge, this kid killed somebody.
- Oh, come on.

- It was an accident. Everybody knows that.
- Can't forget it.

Look, a judge and
jury's gonna decide that.

Speaking of judge and jury,

who's gonna hold this
reverend accountable?

Okay, there's a big
difference between a death,

okay, and-and a
fight, but this reverend

did attack this
kid, and now he's

calling for the kid to get
put away for 30 years?

- That's insane.
- Well, and there you have it.

Both sides are totally fired up.

Huge protest is
planned for the weekend.

And this is teed
up for disaster.

That's the sign of
the times, isn't it?

Everybody's yelling.

- Nobody's listening.
- Absolutely.

KEATON: It doesn't make sense.

Nothing makes sense.

Adam never meant to hurt anyone.

I'm not saying he shouldn't
own up to what he did, but...

I just don't see
God's mercy here.

Especially not from Pastor Dave.

He's human, Keaton.

Yeah, but he's supposed
to be a man of God.

What kind of example is that?

I mean, if being a Christian

doesn't affect the
way we act, then...

how do we actually
know that our values

and beliefs are any more
valid than anyone else's?


Can I show you something?

A friend sent this to me
when I was in high school.


It was inspiring.

It's why I came to Hadleigh.

I wanted to be a
part of something.

At the time, I'd never even

considered that
God could be dead.

But now...

It's okay, Keaton.

It's good to ask
difficult questions.

God can use it.

He's not afraid of
your uncertainty.

But I am.

You know, I... I think
about John the Baptist.

If anyone should've been
sure about Jesus, it was him.

And John said, "I've
seen, and I testify

that this is the Son of God."

And then he got locked
up in Herod's little jail cell,

and the doubts started
messing with his head.

"What if I'm wrong
about this Jesus guy?

"What if all the stories
I've heard about him

healing people... what
if it's just ridiculous?"

So John sent some of his friends

to watch Jesus and report back.

And Jesus told them, "Tell
John what you've seen and heard.

"The blind receive their sight.

"The lame walk.

"The lepers are cleansed.

The deaf hear."

John needed to doubt.

Why, though?

Because... uncertainty
led to the pursuit of truth.

I know it hurts...

to be in the fire.

And as painful and...

confusing as all of this is,

it just might be exactly where
God wants you right now.

Well, it ain't good.

Public opinion,
your reputation...

It's all gonna take a hit.

I guess we'll have
to wait and see.

The kid confessed,
so... that helps.

I just... I want to know
what you were thinking.

I wasn't thinking, obviously.

You get an anonymous text,
then you go nuts on somebody?

I'm not interested in
rehashing this, okay?

Sorry, folks.

(door closes)

(car alarm blaring)

- (chirps, alarm stops)
- What's going on with you?

I'm a mess. I don't
know what I'm doing,

I don't know what
God wants me to do,

and I don't know why any
of this is even happening.

- First, you gotta settle down.
- Oh, I'm sure...

I'm sure this is fun for you.
You get a front-row seat

to watch your little brother,
Dave, just self-destruct.

That's probably why you drove
down here in the first place.

Where are you going?

Oh, I'm walking.

You can't.

- Watch me.
- Pearce.


You have the car keys.



Hey, Roland.

How you doing?

Doing all right.

You're sure on TV a lot
for someone doing all right.

All this business
with Tom Ellsworth.

And now the boy.

Well, I didn't
ask for this fight.

Mm, that's a
fact, but here it is.

Keep your eye on
what's important.

I think what's important
is that Christians stop

rolling over all the time.

When is it our right to fight?

I'm tired of being
pushed around.

I'm tired of turning
the other cheek.

Oh, so now you're tired.

A minute ago, you
were doing all right.

I'm just saying,
I think it's time

that Christians stand
up for themselves.

(Roland sighs)


people were drawn to
Jesus because of His...

His love.

His patience and kindness.

He managed to preach the truth

without losing
Himself in the bargain.

He was gentle with the meek

and hard as a rock
with the arrogant.

And when He talked to
the foolish, He was patient

and never became a fool Himself.

And He was never proud, David.

This has nothing to
do with pride, Roland.

And no offense, but maybe
you'd understand a little better

if you were the
one being attacked.

Brother, who do you
think you're talking to?

I'm a black preacher
in the Deep South.

I could build you a
church with all the bricks

been thrown through my windows.

You're right. I'm sorry.

You gotta work through the pain.

We cannot respond
to hate with more hate.

And don't forget.

We are called to be a light

in the darkness.

I miss Jude.


And I miss You, too, Lord.

I'm trying to do the
right thing. I just...

I don't know what
that is anymore.

Hey there.

Just checking on you.

I saw the news.

I can't imagine
what you're feeling.

I'd like to see you.

How about a little adventure?

Um, I'm gonna
send you a drop pin.

I'll meet you there in an hour?

It's my church away from church.

It's where I come
to be alone with God.

- I can see why.
- Mm-hmm.

What do you got there?

I light a candle for
people I'm praying for.


folks I meet at the restaurant,

friends from A.A.


I just love the way He uses
other people in our lives to...

to bring us comfort.

To remind us that we're loved.

I think you need to
be reminded right now.

God is here.

I'm here.

And you're loved.

(door opens)

(door closes)

I thought you were out with Meg.

You screw that up, too?

What are you doing?

Listen, I'm gonna fly
back to Chicago tonight.

I left you the name
and, uh, number

of an attorney friend of mine.

She'll take good
care of you. My treat.

Why? Just because
we had an argument?

- It's just time.
- Pearce, are you kidding me?


You know what?

Go ahead.

Oh, I haven't done
enough for you, huh?

Come down here,
put my life on hold,

but I'm the bad guy
now 'cause I'm bailing?

Is that it?

Let's not get into
it. It's not worth it.

No, I-I think it's worth
it. Let's get into it.

It's water under the bridge.

I forgave you years ago.

You forgave me?

For what exactly? For leaving?

You forced me out.

You and Mom and Dad. All you.

Give me a break. No
one forced you out.

Oh, yes, you did.

I wasn't welcome in this house

once I started asking
tough questions.

Is that what they
were? Tough questions?

Oh, "Why does
God allow bad things

to happen to good people?"

Or, "How do we even
know God exists?"

- Really?
- You should back off, little brother.

Maybe you were
just trying to impress

a coed with how worldly
and forward-thinking you were.

I guess your Christian roots

- were too provincial.
- Well, at least

I know what's happening
in the world five miles

- outside the county line.
- You're right, I don't know.

And I don't know why
you left me to take care

of Mom and Dad
when they were sick.

Why did you leave
me to take care

of everything after
they were gone?

Do you have any idea what
you did to Mom and Dad?

You broke their hearts.

You're the one
that broke my heart!

You really don't
get that, do you?

You didn't take the time

to understand what
I was going through.

I was trying to sort
out my own faith.

My own sense of God.

I was changing, and
you all hated me for it,

and that's the truth, David.


(breathing heavily)





What am I doing wrong?

Just show me.



(taking deep breaths)


(car door opens)

REPORTER: As the battle
rages on in Hope Springs,

police say they're expecting
hundreds of students and locals

for a protest outside Saint
James Church tonight...

Some showing support for
the church, others continuing

- to call for its removal.
- (knock on door)


Did you ever even stop to
ask why Adam threw that brick?

He's tired of feeling
judged and rejected

by the people who should
be loving and accepting.

You want to know
why our generation's

leaving the church?

It's because the
whole world knows

what the church is
against, but it's getting

harder and harder
to know what it's for.

You're right.

There's something I need to do.

Will you come with me?

KEATON; Pastor
Dave is here to see you.

If you want.



(lock clicks)

(door closes)

I'm the one that sent
you that message.

I needed you to know.

I guess I was
hoping that you'd...


This is, uh... this
is Jude's Bible.

He'd want you to have it.

I'm so sorry.

About Jude, I am so...


(Adam crying)

We want to plead
for leniency for Adam.

I'm the only witness
the state has.

I'll tell the D.A. what I saw...

That Jude's death couldn't
have been premeditated.

I spoke with Jude's parents.

They feel the same.

(sighs) We're hoping the state

will agree to a lesser charge.

Drop it from a felony
to a misdemeanor.

Hopefully he doesn't have
to do any more jail time.


The boy shouldn't be collateral
damage for our fight, Tom.

There's gonna be a big
protest tonight at the church.

Town's on edge. The
whole thing has gone too far.

- Didn't have to.
- You're right.

And I'm sorry.

I truly am.

For everything.

Me, too.

My part.

So, what about the church?

(crowd clamoring)

CROWD: The church must go!

Enough is enough!

The church must go!

(clamoring continues)

Can I talk to them?
This is my church.

(clamoring continues)

(clamoring continues)

One God! One truth! One God!

One truth!

(clamoring continues)

The church must go!
Enough is enough!

The church must go!

Enough is enough!
The church must go!

DAVE: Can I have your attention?

- (clamoring continues)
- The church must go!

Can I please say something?

Get out of here!

Excuse me. May
I... may I just say...

may I say something?

(clamoring continues)

May I please say something?

Please. Please.

Let's hear what
the man has to say.

(crowd quiets)

Thank you.

I came here tonight

to ask all of you
for your forgiveness.

(crowd murmuring)

The other night, I stood
before this burnt altar,

and I heard God's voice for
the first time in a long time.

Couldn't have been clearer.

He said, "This building...

is not My church."

Although Saint James
has meant everything to me,

although it's been
my whole life...

I would gladly give
all of that up for this.

For you.

So I am withdrawing my
lawsuit against the school

and dropping the charges
against Adam Richertson.

I've also agreed to
turn this land over

to Hadleigh University

so that they can use it to
build a new student center,

a long overdue
addition to this campus.

Chancellor Ellsworth
has assured me

that this new facility
will have a space

for our Harbor House,

led by our campus
minister, Josh Wheaton.

As for me...

I'm going to build a new church.

And I don't know how,
I don't know where yet,

but I'm willing to bet that
God can handle the details,

and I'd love your help.

All of you.

We can build
something new together.

But for now, please...

put down those signs.

Put 'em down.


Go ahead, lay them down.

Put 'em down.

- (crowd murmuring)
- Everyone.


Let's stop shouting
at each other

and start listening.

It's the only way that
things will get better.

Now, please, take these candles.

And let's stand together.



Thank you.


DAVE: Let this
candle represent...

peace, hope...

and unity.

And love.


KEATON: Sometimes
all it takes is a spark.

Something very small.

But the spark becomes a flame.

And if that flame spreads,

the power can be so overwhelming

it transforms
everything around it.

JUDGE PIRRO: The divisive pastor

at the center of weeks
of vehement protests

has suddenly become
a symbol of forgiveness

and unity in Hope Springs.

And what was once a city divided

is now a community
coming together to heal.

I... You can't be taken
seriously as a leader

if you roll over
for your enemies.

Now, I don't think that
Reverend Hill rolled over.

I think that he saw
people suffering

and he made a
sacrifice for them.

Surely, the parallels
to Christianity

are not lost on you.

So, I mean, call it a
publicity stunt if you want,

but we were there.

I mean, this dude's legit.

He would have won.

He could have given
Hadleigh the finger,

but he handed it back.

He cares more about this
community than winning.

I believe that.

Perhaps the rest of the country

can take a page from this book.

SECRETARY: Your 2:00 is here.

Send her in, Charlotte.

Hey. Let me guess.

You're probably on
another phone interview.

Listen, if you're going to
do the media circuit thing,

why don't you get
a big-boy haircut,

get Meg to take you
clothes shopping.

Um, give me a call when
you get your head above water.

I want to hear about the
plans for the new digs.

I'm proud of
you, little brother.

Take care, David.

- Hi.
- Hey.


(Tom chuckling)



- I think you're going to love it here.
- Thank you.

Thank you.

(low, indistinct chatter)

DAVE: You know
what I was thinking?

What's that?

Jude was right.

God is good.

All the time.

And all the time...

God is good.

KEATON: I can hear You again.

And even though I know
You were never really gone...

it's good to have You back.

♪ My God's not dead,
He's surely alive ♪

♪ He's living on the
inside, roaring like a lion ♪

♪ God's not dead,
He's surely alive ♪

♪ He's living on the
inside, roaring like a lion ♪

- ♪ Roaring ♪
- ♪ Roaring ♪

♪ He's roaring ♪

♪ Roaring, roaring like a lion ♪

- ♪ Yeah, yeah, roaring ♪
- ♪ Roaring ♪

- ♪ He's roaring ♪
- ♪ Listen ♪

♪ Let Heaven roar ♪

- ♪ And the fire fall ♪
- ♪ And fire fall ♪

♪ Father, come
shake the ground ♪

♪ Come shake the ground ♪

- ♪ Yes ♪
- ♪ With the sound ♪

- ♪ Of revival ♪
- ♪ Of revival ♪

♪ Say it one more time ♪

♪ Let Heaven roar ♪

♪ We need Your fire ♪

♪ And fire fall ♪

♪ 'Cause our hearts are cold ♪

- ♪ Come shake the ground ♪
- ♪ Shake the ground ♪

- ♪ With the sound ♪
- ♪ We need You now ♪

- ♪ Of revival ♪
- ♪ Sing it one more time ♪

♪ Let Heaven roar ♪

♪ If we ever needed You before ♪

- ♪ And fire fall ♪
- ♪ This world needs You now ♪

- ♪ Come shake the ground ♪
- ♪ Shake this ground ♪

- ♪ With the sound ♪
- ♪ With Your revival ♪

- ♪ Of revival ♪
- ♪ Hallelujah ♪

♪ Oh! ♪

♪ My God's not dead,
He's surely alive ♪

♪ He's living on the
inside, roaring like a lion ♪

♪ God's not dead,
He's surely alive ♪

♪ He's living on the
inside, roaring like a lion ♪

- ♪ Yeah, yeah ♪
- ♪ Let's go! ♪

♪ God's not dead,
He's surely alive ♪

♪ He's living on the
inside, roaring like a lion ♪

♪ God's not dead,
He's surely alive ♪

♪ He's living on the inside ♪

- ♪ Come on, yeah, yeah ♪
- ♪ Roaring like a lion ♪

- ♪ Roaring ♪
- ♪ Roaring ♪

- ♪ He's roaring ♪
- ♪ Roaring ♪

- ♪ Oh, yeah ♪
- ♪ Roaring like a lion ♪

♪ Roaring like a lion ♪

♪ Can't you hear Him roaring? ♪

- ♪ Roaring ♪
- ♪ He's roaring ♪

♪ Roaring, roaring like a lion ♪

♪ Yeah ♪

♪ And these are they ♪

♪ Who have come
out of great tribulation ♪

♪ And they have
washed their robes ♪

♪ And made them white ♪

♪ In the blood of the Lamb ♪

♪ Forevermore. ♪

♪ Is my soul forever broken? ♪

♪ Is my heart beyond repair? ♪

♪ 'Cause my wounds
are left here open ♪

♪ And I'm struggling for air ♪

♪ I bet you'll
watch for the drop ♪

♪ I'm hoping to God
that I'll reach the top ♪

♪ Let me tell you
that you're wrong ♪

♪ Hey! ♪

♪ 'Cause I am resilient ♪

♪ And there is no fear in me ♪

♪ When I fall down, I get up ♪

♪ No, I'm not afraid
to hit the ground ♪

♪ 'Cause the sky is
where I will rebound ♪

♪ Hey! ♪

♪ I will rebound... ♪

♪ No, I'm not afraid
to hit the ground ♪

♪ 'Cause I am resilient ♪

- ♪ And there is no fear in me ♪
- ♪ I will rebound ♪

♪ When I fall down, I get up ♪

- ♪ I get up ♪
- ♪ No, I'm not afraid ♪

♪ To hit the ground ♪

♪ I will rebound. ♪

The healing that happened
here can happen anywhere.

I'm Michael Tait
of the Newsboys.

The cure to what
plagues our world

isn't more division
or finger pointing.

It's hope and unity.

And letting Christ's
love shine through us.

The beauty of the human race

is found in the diversity
of the human race.

Let's celebrate this.

Since the very first
God's Not Dead movie,

we set out to inspire a movement

to show God is alive
and still working today.

It's not easy to see in a world
of division and anger and pain,

but God remains
good all the time.

We just need to show
it through our words,

our actions and our love.

It's our chance to
be a light in darkness.

So let's start right now.

As you leave the theaters,
share a message of integrity

and unity with your family
and friends on social media

with the hashtag #GodsNotDead

and by downloading
the God's Not Dead app.

Together, we can create a wave
of hope and inspiration online.

Our world desperately
needs to see the light.

Let's share it.

Let's be it.

God bless you.

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