David Bruce


with comments by David Bruce

I receive a lot of e-mail.  I am not able to post all the mail. I have included a good sampling, however.  If the subject is the same I might group the newer messages with similar older ones.  Also, my response may appear a few days after the original posting. I can't do HJ everyday.  You must include your "name" and e-mail address within your comment if you want it posted, otherwise it will not be posted (there is a privacy issue here and we respect that).  I do, however, encourage you to give your "name" and e-mail so others can respond to you personally.
E-mail and Comments:
This page was last updated on May 5, 2001

Subject: tv interview with Jane Fonda?
Date: Thu, 3 May 2001 14:11:43 -0500
From: Dee

David, In light of your article about Dyan Cannon's God Party, my and I were wondering if Jane Fonda has appeared on Larry King since her conversion to Christianity. Or maybe if there were any other public interviews with her since her conversion. I hope you can help me. Thank you, God Bless you and keep up the good work with the newsletter and website.
In JESUS, Dee and Liz

Response: I have a Jane Fonda piece coming soon. -David


Subject: Newsletter_24
Date: Thu, 3 May 2001
From: Heather Gerber

It is VERY refreshing to hear a Christian man speak out AGAINST gay bashing. I am a firm believer that being Christian means that we are called to love. Period. Not called to love those whose lifestyles and/or choices we agree with - although I don't believe that our sexuality is a choice, but that's a whole other subject. I may not understand how a person falls in love with someone of the same sex - although being married, sometimes I can understand the appeal :-) Some very dear friends of mine are gay - both men and women - and they are some of the most beautiful, giving, loving, and yes, CHRISTIAN people I know. Sexuality is such a small portion of who we are - it's not ALL we are.

Thank you for your brief, but eloquent words. To answer the question posed, I think many Christians are susceptible to these bogus messages because they have tunnel-vision. Many Christians are on the defensive about their faith, and therefore will take anything printed or spoken against their faith to heart, because they believe that's the way most people think. It is possible to be a Christian AND live in the real world. Jesus hung out with prostitutes and tax collectors, not in the temple. Being a Christian and only associating with other Christians is easy. Being a Christian isn't supposed to be comfortable. It's about reaching out to those who aren't aware of God's immeasurable love and mercy. It's about showing love to those whose ideas and behaviors differ from our own or even upset us. Jesus himself said that he came to call SINNERS - which is ALL of us. If anyone reading this feels justified in passing judgment on homosexuals, please remember Jesus' words "Let anyone among you who is without sin be the first to cast the stone." ONLY GOD CAN JUDGE. Why don't we let God do His job, and not try to do it for Him.
Heather Gerber

Subject: Cartoons Newsletter_24
Date: Thu, 3 May 2001
From: Gordon Stromberg

May I respectfully suggest that you move out of the cartoon area under the title Hollywood Jesus. The word Hollywood only conjures up primarily Films. Any cartoons would be animated. A lot of the cartoons seem less than the cleverness of a New Yorker cartoon. Start a new site for good/excellent cartoons, whether they're done by Christians or not. I'm glad someone is dealing with 'Christian' cartoons, but it's a different media. Please stick with reviewing films in some quick-check way, then allow me/us to click for a more 'in-depth review'. "Crappy' films can be given some kind of rating without using that word. I'm looking for a web site that will review films in a 3 or 4 sentence mode, give it some type of rating artistically, message-wise, etc. Who cares how much it made? Let the coins fall on the courtyard plaza, as in Jesus time.

P.S. Rather than use the abbreviated HJ, HJ like you're IBM or some conglomerate/corporation, just use the two words, and stick to those issues: faith in Christ and films with serious value. Thanks for all your work. How do I find out how the Nov. seminar that limited itself to ?120 players turned out?
Gordon Stromberg

Response: I like cartoons. I like visuals. I would never do three sentence artistic reviews. I like visual reviews. Every newspaper in the world has three sentence reviews. Hollywood Jesus has the hits that it has because it does more. HJ with out cartoons and just 3 sentence reviews without visuals would not be Hollywood J. But, hmmm, perhaps a 3 sentence spiritual review would be good as a link to the visual reviews. You maybe right -David

Subject: Gay Jesus film. Newsletter_24
Date: Fri, 4 May 2001
From: Greg Carrick www.roomwithaview.cjb.net

Hi, Yes, even in Australia we are bombarded with the emails that are based on 10 year old rumours. However, over here in Melbourne, a stage play is in process depicting gay themes among the disciples. So, no, it's not a hollywood film. No, it's not depicting Jesus as gay. No, it's not a rumour. No, I didn't hear this via email. (I live in Melbourne) Yes, it is really on stage. All the same, it caused a brief sensation, then it has been ignored. After all, very few people are seeing it, and many more people are damaging there position with God by simply not believing Jesus is His Son at all. The whole 'gay Jesus' concept is making very small waves here. (Possibly because we're the nation that put "Priscilla, Queen of the desert" on the big screen).
Greg Carrick www.roomwithaview.cjb.net

Subject: Newsletter_24
Date: Thu, 3 May 2001
From: Rev. Dennis Ticen Brushwood United Methodist Church

I totally agree with you--censorship also gives me the chills. I believe good people with good intentions sign this type of petition not because they are bashing gays, but, rather, because they regard this as a form of "blasphemy" or "slander" and definitely Lies against our Lord and Savior and His apostles. I, personally, know a few homosexuals and the ones I know are fine people. Some of them are my friends; others are acquaintants. Yes, I consider myself a Christian and try to practice Christian principles. Rose Marie "A Resistance starts with one, then a few, then many." -- Cade Foster, as portrayed by Sebastian Spence on the TV series, First Wave.

David, As a pastor, I constantly get such e-mail petitions like the Gay Jesus Film one from church members and others I know. E-mail has only served to fuel a paranoia that seems to be taught in many churches (it always seems to be tied to a particular vision of eschatology as well). The problem, perhaps, is that we have failed in the church to teach people to THINK. We have taught too long in a "lecture" (i.e., "don't question me") format rather than allowing the congregation as a whole to open the Scriptures. So we accept whatever comes in our e-mailbox, without checking out the facts. (There seems to be a direct correlation between how fundamental the church/Christian is and how many such e-mails they forward.) I have been engaged for the last few years in a one-man war against e-mail forwards such as the one you mentioned. I refer people to the "Urban Legends" section of About.com or to TruthorFiction.com. There is also a good article addressing just what you talked about on the Focus on the Family (Citizen) website (family.org). Thanks for your words and your works.
Rev. Dennis Ticen Brushwood United Methodist Church

Subject: Newsletter_24
Date: Thu, 03 May 2001
From: Valarie

I don't understand what the problem is with a movie depicting Jesus and his disciples as gay. That's really just saying that there's a problem with the human mind and creativity. I don't feel that such a movie is disrespectful of God. Rather, it shows the beauty of God within our creativity. It is the repression of imagination and feelings rather than the expression of such things (as long as it does not inflict harm upon yourself or others) that causes many of the present problems of the world. I feel that any type of movie that challenges the normal way of thinking is good. It allows us to view a new perspective, and then to reevaluate our own perspective, and perhaps to make one's faith even stronger. I feel that people should be open to viewing new perspectives rather than banning them. We should open doors to knowledge, not close them.
Valarie SageWind cheshyremoon@hotmail.com http://www.geocities.com/cheshyremoon/

Subject: my thoughts...why are Christians susceptible... Newsletter_24
Date: Thu, 3 May 2001
From: PHIL

David, ...I've been a long time subscriber...never written, til now...why I think Christians are so susceptible is most Christians of this generation and my generation..(I was born in 1960) is we are scripturally ignorant...we know less about scripture and the "truth" than 5 year old kids were taught back in the 40's and earlier...so when idiotic email go around like this people are too lazy to think, or check scripture to really evaluate that what they are reading is really wise to send on etc...I think because the name "Jesus" is mentioned and gay in the same breath it's bad...so we will march on and defend his name!!! But even the Crusades were done in Jesus name, but it was man's ignorance and NOT Jesus teaching to "spread the Gospel" so this ignorance is an ebb and flow, up and down kind of situation...more Christians need to be more scripturally sound, so if they got an email like that they could send on the message of Jesus and his sacrifice for us and not worry about some stupid movie...actually all that email would be doing would be a grass roots advertising for the movie, if the movie existed... and David you also mentioned "hate filled" email, I feel there was no hate, there was concern that somebody thinks there is a movie out there depicting Jesus as a homosexual...if you are not offended by that , that should be a concern...the maker of Heaven and Earth, Jesus that sacrificed,died on the cross and rose again for us, which we do not deserve...wow , if we got what we deserved, scary, but I digress, my point is a movie depicting "God with Us" as a sinner is revolting....and it's not Gay bashing....if it was a movie about Jesus being a adulterer, murderer, thief , any thing that falls short of Gods glory is wrong...and I am not adultery bashing, murder bashing, thief bashing, but I think you get my drift...It does not matter if your gay or a killer or just a straight,never strayed from your wife/husband kind of person, we are all sinners, period, and by the grace of God we are saved....and yes they used the scripture quoted in the email out of context, so out of fear and ignorance "I better send this or I am not a good Christian" but thats why we as Christians should be more educated and knowledgeable in scripture...and me, for one, is the first to admit I have got a long long way to go....please take this in a loving way, if I sound too harsh, it's because you have a responsibility , though it is on the net, you are being read by lots and lots of people...
thanks and peace <><,
Phil Eastham

Subject: response
Date: Thu, 3 May 2001
From: Pat

I think it all began in the garden with someone saying "Did God really say . . . " and it's been down hill ever since. We will follow everything and anything but truth.

Subject: Newsletter_24
Date: Thu, 3 May 2001
From: Jimmy Chalmers

I have thought about this very question for more than six years. My email box is constantly filled with these petitions along with every other urban legend. I have seen the same information come from the same person in a two year period. Here are a few thoughts.

Written words have great power, they linger in the mind and can be referred to again and again.

We as believers are taught that God's written word is TRUTH.

Believers get written words and the truth of God's written word confused.

Many of the urban email have some "truth" in them. Believers are taught to believe written words, they are not taught to seek truth.

Many christians believe in a conspiracy society. For that reason they can beleive the stories in the urban emails.

Most christians are honest and gullible all at once. They tell the truth...all people do.

The enemy's greatest weapon is deception. While we are all sending urban email petitions around it keeps us from true friendship time/musing with DADDY.
Jimmy Chalmers

Date: Thu, 3 May 2001
From: "Bruce Donaldson"

Mr. Bruce, In my *opinion,* the reason Christians are so susceptible to bogus urban legends is that there are very few people trained in critical thinking anymore. If more of us were, we might be much closer to the New Testament form of Church intended by Christ and his apostles.

Too many people, not Christians alone, just sit and accept whatever they read, hear or see. Somehow if it made it to the public forum it's got to be true!! If something strikes one's heart they should do all they can to investigate the issue, from every angle, before spreading any opinion on that topic as factually based...this goes especially for Christians who are supposed to be the example to the world.

Too many of us as Christians just sit and accept whatever our pastors tell us. No matter how well meaning the pastors, or how submitted a disciple is to spiritual authority, we all need to be able to search the scriptures and think for ourselves to see if these things are really so. We need to be free to question, politely/non-accusingly/non-policingly, what we hear from the alter, TV and radio. We should further investigate those things that move us in the newspapers. There is nothing like public discourse to challenge one's sacred cows or pet peeves.

The United States has become a land of advertising and soundbites. "Everyone" is packaging their ideas and opinions in forms that are traditionally meant for objective factual display. We used to be able to trust the character of the people we learned from. Today unless we know a person really well...

Public education has not helped us either.

Soooo...this lack of skill of Critical thinking, listening, reading, and researching for factual information combined with 80-90% of the Church that believes "things will get worse and worse and then the end will come," you get a cynical ignorant "Bride" (that is supposed to be without spot or wrinkle)waiting to be rescued from evil people destined to burn -- like the filmmakers of a homosexual Jesus of Nazareth.
B.D. Los Angeles, CA

Subject: Newsletter_24
Date: Thu, 3 May 2001
From: Kim Wenger

Just a few thoughts on why people forward on these stupid, bogus emails regarding gay Jesus films, Madeline O'Hare banning Christian television and radio, etc...

It makes me angry when I get messages from my fellow Christians with messages across the bottom that say Jesus said, "Deny Me before men and I will deny you before the Father" Show respect for our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ who died for us! Please help! PLEASE SIGN AND SEND TO EVERYONE YOU KNOW! PLEASE... IF WE WORK TOGETHER..."

I get many different types of messages from people that proclaim them to be Christians. The end of the message will say that if you don't pass it on, you are denying Christ and aren't a true Christian. This plays on people's fears and superstitions. Many people live in total fear of making God angry with them. They don't want to do anything to jeopardize the balance beam they think they're walking on.

Another reason that I think people pass this type of message on is that they really believe it! I have gotten messages telling me not to eat bananas, not to drive with my car windows down, not to use certain beauty products that people have been using for years - all on the threat of sudden, violent death. People are so gullible. They actually believe that it could be true and want all their friends to know. As for Jesus and his disciples being gay, I got that one too. My response was to write the person back who sent it and inform them that if a movie was coming out like that, I would worry about it when it hit the theaters - but no Hollywood studio cares about a massive email forwarding campaign. It's just free publicity for them!

I never forward the paranoid messages about the possibility of my kidneys being stolen and waking up in a bathtub full of ice. If a good forward comes along that I would pass along, the first thing I do is delete the part at the end that says "forward this to 10 people for good luck" or "if you truly love Jesus, forward this 10 of your friends". And I have let my friends know that it would be nice for them to do the same.

One day, when I have a lot of time on my hands, I might make up something totally nuts - you know, aliens have landed in my back yard. Pray for me as I try to win them to Christ! if you don't pass this along, they'll land in your yard too! - and just see how many people really do believe it and forward it along. :-)

I appreciate your newsletter and website. I always try to check it out before I see a movie so I can have something positive to discuss with my friends on the way home. When they tell me how smart I am, I tell them to check out your website. You have a wonderful ministry.
God bless you,
Kimberly Wenger
Cokesbury Seminars Administrator (615) 749-6127

Date: Thu, 03 May 2001
From: Andrew

Hey David, It's Andrew Postma, you spoke for our college group and at our church (Hilmar Covenant).

I liked the note about the "Gay Jesus" chain mail. I hate it when I get that crap. Way to be a light and point out the truth.
Take care! --Andrew

Date: Thu, 3 May 2001
From: Joyce Chasteen

I understand where you are coming from EXCEPT to call it gay bashing if Christians are against Jesus and his disciples being homosexual.

The Jewish outcry if someone wanted to make a film that showed Moses and Aaron were lovers, or Abraham had sex with sheep or the Muslim outcry if a movie was to be made that portrayed Mohammed was a transvestite.

However when someone doesn't want Jesus blasphemed it's intolerance. Give me a break! THAT is intolerance right there! Okay to blaspheme Jesus in art and elsewhere, but all hell breaks loose if anyone touches other faiths. What a load!!!
Joyce Chasteen


Subject: dyan cannon's God parties Newsletter_23
Date: Wed, 02 May 2001
From: Brian

My name is Brian Davis from Toledo, Ohio and a friend frowarded your piece on Dyan Cannon's God Party. A small group of spiritually-minded people started our own "Saturday Night Fever Prayer Party" every other Saturday night in my home. We have been doing this for the past few months and those who attend find it very beneficial. We do guided meditations and pray for individual and group intentions of those present or those of others who send their intentions but could not be there. I think what Dyan is doing is reaching out to so many people who are looking for happiness in their life through love. She is sharing a wonderful gift with others through her love of God. What a wonderful example for the rest of us, especially from Hollywood which many perceive to be the "sin capital of the world". Thank you Dyan for your inspiration and courage to show up in the world as the loving soul that you are. We are all the better for it.
Brian Davis brian.davis@iscg.net

Subject: my top spiritual films
Date: Wed, 02 May 2001
From: Paul Hart
Please post my email... hartp@imagegroup.com

There are only two movies I can think of that have influenced me spiritually in a positive way.

Shawshank Redemption At a particularly lonely period in my life, I watched this movie alone in the theatre. It changed my life presently, and even for years afterward. The Biblical insight? Grace.

Shadowlands This movie speaks for itself... A great movie about an incredible love story. The best part of the movie was the scene in the barn in the rain where Joy (Debra Winger) says to the hopeless Lewis (Anthony Hopkins), 'The joy we experience now is part of the pain we experience later.' In a negative way, one movie overwhelmed me.

Pleasantville What a disturbing reflection of our society. For days after I saw this, it was present in the forefront of my mind. I was just so taken with the thought that our society was at this point of hopelessness, for someone once told me that movies and television are just a reflection of our society. Is there any hope?

-- Paul Hart | The Image Group | Integrated Media | Interface Designer

Subject: newsletter_23
Date: Wed, 2 May 2001
From: CP

Some Christians can't stand the good news, especially when a new Christian is joyful.
from CP

Subject: Unforgiven Blow
Date: Wed, 2 May 2001
From: Rev. Wesley Channell

There certainly were a lot of shared elements with Ecclesiastes. However, the subplot of fatherhood is especially poignant. The natural love and hope of a father toward his child is hard to erase, no matter how depraved and broken the image of God is in a man. The ending scenes with George becoming delusion in hopes that he would one day again see his daughter Christina are indicative of the culture of regret and broken relationships we live in. It takes the courage and love of Christ to reach out and across the broken promises of life for a child to honor their father by the mere recognition of their existence and say "I forgive you." How sad that the movie ends in unforgiveness and without hope. But how instructive of the need for God to turn the hearts of the children to their fathers and the fathers to their children to bring peace and reconciliation between both God and man.'
Shalom, Rev. Wesley Channell

Subject: some secrets Blair_Witch_2
Date: Tue, 01 May 2001
From: Janet

ok check this out.......in the room where the cop guy is interviewing one of the guys in the movie, there is a Mirror in the background, not really a mirror, but one of the glass things that you can see into, but not out out..anyways, watch the movie through to this part, and watch the mirror when the cop walks by it!!! it aint him, but instead a older man, and watch how the reflection is.instead of showing the back of his head like it should show, it show him looking DIRECTLY at the camera!!

another one is when the girl that is supposely possed by the witch is lookin outside a window, and the camera focuses on what she is looking at....the owl. well, look at the blurred part to the left of her before it focuses outside, and you will see the blair witch's face outlined DIRECTLY where the owl is.

another one..in the graveyard, when everyone is leaving....look at the tombstone in the center, it has a shadow, and its shadow also has the shadow of the witch's stick, and as soon as all the members of the team walk over it, it has dissapeared.

also, if you have a dvd or a VCR with a slow button....watch the part where they are smoking the joints, and watch where it shows one of them blowing out smoke....SLOW right here, and you will see a face in the smoke, its not very distinctive, but a face none the less, and it is only for a second.

i know of about 2-3 more, but i am tired of writing, so i will write more later if i remember!

Subject: My_blank_Films
Date: Tue, 01 May 2001
From: Kyle

1. Dead Man Walking - best display of radical grace I've ever seen

2. Shadowlands - CS Lewis's story of his first love -

3. Jesus Matthew - Loved it and the script is exactly the book of Matthew from the NIV

4. Prince Of Egypt - powerful movie of God's power and promises

5. Jesus - some great moments in that movie showing his humanity, pretty well done

6. Amistad - wow - what a powerful film

7. Life Is Beautiful - an unbelievable depiction of the holocaust and hope in the midst of it

8. It's A Wonderful Life - quite a moral story and simple message

9. The Mission - neat story of bringing the love of Christ to indians, unfortunately the church had to mess it all up

10. Chariots of Fire - a movie that impacted culture without question, great film

Subject: Mates Bridget_Joness_Diary
Date: Tue, 1 May 2001
From: withy

It's not that we need someone to complete us. We are already created complete, whether we've discovered it or not. We do seek someone to complement us. Opposites attract for a purpose--opposite personalities will always be drawn to each other consciously or subconsciously. If we wait until we have fully discovered everything within ourselves, we will be too old to have children! What person in their 20's really knows what they are all about or capable of? God intended us to complement each other by one's strengths covering for the other's weaknesses, to help each other grow, and to grow together. Unconditional love is necessary for this to work. And the best way to know if it is unconditional is to NOT have sex before marriage!

Subject: Dyan Cannon -- Jewish Christian
Date: Tue, 01 May 2001
From: JRC

I just read the article about Dyan Cannon's interview with Larry King and her "God Parties". You know, we cannot discern what is in a person's heart, only God can do that. We can only judge people by their fruits. I doubt that any of the nay sayers can say they gather a standing room only crowd to praise the Lord. That seems to be pretty good fruit. Enough nit-picking about which words we choose to communicate what Jesus has done in our life. He promised that He came that we might have life more abundantly. He promised that if we abide in Him and His words abide in us, we can ask whatever we wish and it shall be done for us. He said we have not because we ask not, or we ask with wrong motives. Too many (so-called) Christians are too quick to judge a person's motives because that person has something they don't have. We forget that the record of scripture shows that God relates to each of His children in a unique way. To make these judgments only diverts attention away from Christ and toward differences and divisions -- a temporary victory for the adversary. Paul was able to say that, even though some go about their ministry in a different, and even questionable way, "whether in pretense or in truth, Christ is proclaimed; and in this I rejoice." Praise God for what he is doing through Dyan Cannon!

PS. Not that it matters that much to me, but some teach that Jesus was not Jewish, but Galilean (Matthew 26:69, Mark 14:70, Luke 22:59). It is thought that Jew referred to those who lived in Judea -- not of the tribe of Judah. Jesus was from Galilee, so therefore He was not Jew, but a Galilean.

Response: I agree with you in terms of Dyan Cannon. I agree that too many Christians are highly judgemental. However, in terms of Jesus, he was a Jew from Galilee. And he was from the tribe of Judah, of the house of David (Judah) and is called the Lion of Judah. See Hebrews 7:14, 8:8 and Revelations 5:5. Beyond all this, Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judea -Matthew 2:1. Your comment sounds very anti-Jewish. It caused me great alarm and concern. -David

Subject: Blair_Witch_2
Date: Tue, 01 May 2001
From: Gravie

I only got the dvd a little while ago. I will add what I can about the secrets of esrever as I find them. The first clues are the words at the extras section. They are DOOR, RUG, GRAVE, MIRROR, WATER. I guess since they are obvious, no one has mentioned them, but I am starting slow so I won't miss anything.

That being said, I have more to share, but still I want to find more. ...more to come...

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