I had the wonderful privilege of hearing Jim Caviezel speak last night. No, he was not greeted with chants of “Hosanna!” and the waving of palm branches while riding in on a donkey. Yet, I must say that that would have been funny.
He walked on stage in a black leather jacket and black jeans sporting a new hairdo. He was given a warm welcome and no one pressed the stage to be healed. Jim began by sharing how he came to play Jesus in the 2004 film, The Passion of the Christ.
He spoke on the making of the movie and the many trials he went through while playing the part of the Suffering Messiah. His words were honest and inspiring as scenes from the film played on the big screens behind him. The entire audience was moved as Jim shifted everyone’s focus off of himself and onto Jesus of Nazareth.
Jim is a very serious and sincere man. If you have watched any of his films, especially behind the scenes, you will know this to be true. He is very serious about his work as an actor—not for acting sake—but in order to portray good versus evil and judgment versus redemption. I was thrilled to be able to hear his heart as he spoke of his own faith in Christ and how that faith is to be lived out in all the dark places in our world.
I believe what stuck out to me the most about what he shared was what I would call a prophetic message to the church. Jim mentioned the increasingly hostile world that we live in and how persecution and suffering was coming to the church. He referred to this as God’s way. If I remember correctly, he said, in reference to suffering, “This too is from God.”
He reminded the audience that all of the saints who have gone on before us were all acquainted with this one thing: suffering. He went on to encourage the audience to be the Lord wherever they are at and to not be concerned about what others think. He said:
“We may never win an Oscar or be known by men, but we are known by God and that’s all that matters.”
I met Jim after the talk to have him sign something. Relax, it was the only way to speak to him. 🙂 Since I’m aware that he is serious and that he seemed to be tense from all the attention, I thought I would break the mood with some humor.
I shook his hand and said, “Jim, I just want to know one thing… how hard was it not to laugh in your interview with Ron Burgundy?” (If you don’t know what I am talking about, you can watch the interview on You Tube.) He laughed and replied, “You know… you didn’t see all of the outtakes. It wasn’t easy.”
I laughed with him and shook his hand one last time. As I shook his hand to leave, I said, “Keep being a light in a dark world.” His serious look returned with an expression that conveyed appreciation and at the same time a hopeful brother in an evil place; a brother who understands what it means to be in the world, but not of it.
Finally, I just want to say that I was moved by the Spirit of Christ in the hearing of Jim’s words. I was moved enough to stay up until three in the AM to tell you about it. I truly believe the Lord spoke through Jim Caviezel in a powerful way. I just hope that the Christians in the room and those reading this blog are receiving the “heads up” on what God is getting his people ready to endure.
Soon we will have a new context in which to live out our Christianity. Soon and very soon, Christians living in the empire will experience the purification of God’s people on earth; to bear the marks of Jesus on our bodies and identify with him through suffering. May those of us who have long enjoyed the security of the world be ready for what is to come.
March 3rd, 2008 at 7:12 am
I perfectly know what you mean, my friend.
The Spirit of Christ is in him, and such an amazing experience to feel it!!
Thank you for sharing all that!!
God bless your life!
March 4th, 2008 at 4:31 am
I know that I don’t know you personally but I came across your blog by chance and just had to comment…This guy sounds like a truly awesome person! I love it when speakers humble themselves to the point that God has a chance to touch your heart in a way that no human could ever get close to!! May God continue to get the glory!!!
March 11th, 2008 at 6:23 pm
I have to say… today my daughter was home with the flu and I took the day off to doctor her. As she lay sleeping I once again watched the movie. I have watched it at least a half a dozen times. I too am impressed of Jims humility of playing such a role. You see men in the past that have attempted this but afterwards go and live their normal insane hollywood lives. Jim seems to be very low key and very humbled and honored. I also agree that there is a day coming that those who call themselves Christians will have to make a choice to either reject Christ or follow Him and suffer. I pray that all will stand firm as Christ did and all who followed Him in History, even to the point of death.
December 18th, 2008 at 8:00 pm
Have never seen the film, but all that you say speaks volumes enough. The Lord is preparing us.
December 20th, 2008 at 8:00 am
I agree Frances. May we be ready and ever-vigilant as we speed his coming. Blessings to you in your pursuit of Christ.
April 26th, 2009 at 8:02 pm
I really enjoyed this article on Jim Caviezel and can also say that his portrayal of Christ in the film but – more particularly -what I have read about his Catholic faith, have also made some impact on me. Is it daft (or wrong) to let an actor do this? Shouldn’t I get this from the Gospels? Hopefully Jim Caviezel IS part of God’s plan! I’ll feel OK about it then!
April 26th, 2009 at 11:19 pm
I would love to sit down with Jim and talk more personally about our faith in Christ. We are all a part of God’s plan one way or another. I pray it is that part of the plan that involves us ushering in the kingdom of God through the daily living out the Gospel of Christ.
August 30th, 2009 at 1:48 pm
The gift of suffering is one of those things that I was sadly never taught as an evangelical, yet is so very biblical. Only in reading the early church fathers and the lives of the saints,did I start to understand how our pain brings us closer to Christ, and even helps our brethren.
Churches should teach less “prosperity gospel” and more suffering servant.
February 26th, 2010 at 10:27 pm
Jim Caviezel–Oh, my heart!
May 7th, 2010 at 1:31 am
Thanks for your article. I am in a church in South Africa. Do you by any chance know how they contacted James to speak. We are trying to get into contact with him. We would also like to hear some of his insight. Any help would be greatly appreciated.
October 23rd, 2010 at 10:39 am
HI Conrad – contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org in regards to inviting Jim to speak at your church. I work with his team and we would love to explore this with you.
David – what church did you visit with Jim? I may have been there. Curious and want to see if the church is interested in having us return. We are seeing so many people come receive the Lord in their lives. Over 10,000 in three years. Please pray for us and that churches will continue to invite us in to help with evangelism. When Jim speaks there is a huge interest from those who don’t know the Lord to come hear him speak. Jim shares his story, his heart and most importantly his Savior. Then we work with the church to open the altars.
Thanks everyone for praying for Jim. He really is an awesome guy and loves the Lord. We are all one body and God is really doing something powerful
October 23rd, 2010 at 11:38 am
It was Fellowship of The Woodlands. We went just to listen to Jim speak.
It’s great to hear about all of the lives that have been changed. Thanks!
May 6th, 2011 at 10:11 am
I love Jim’s work on the silver screen, but as believer in the Reformation I can’t and won’t get past the fact that he’s a Roman Catholic and sincerely believes in a salvation of grace + works = heaven. If that formula would work then the Cross wouldn’t have been necessary and we could go to the Levites to get right with God.
Brother David, going to see Jim on a talk where he speaks on acting and his secular career is an event I would gladly attend, but in an event where he is speaking his other gospel than that which “Paul delivered once and for all to the saints”, I couldn’t attend, at least more than once. Think about it: if he wasn’t famous would you have gone to listen to him speak? Would you go out of your way to attend an event held by Daniel N. DiNardo, the cardinal assigned to Texas as of 2007, to speak about his sincere faith in Christ? Even though we both know he doesn’t believe in the sufficiency of Scripture, the worship of Mary and other humans, the Eucharist, Infant Baptismal regeneration and a host of other blatant blasphemies?
I urge you to steer clear of such events as with guilt by association/omission can lead immature Christians to stumble by our example.
Concerning Jim we should pray and fast for his salvation and for him to come out of her, the Whore of Babylon who is drunk with the blood of the saints.
May 6th, 2011 at 10:39 am
Thomas, I understand your sincerity. I’m also aware of false doctrines at work in the church. But I encourage you to be careful of how quickly you judge another for their possible misunderstandings of Scripture or their involvement with questionable denominations. Jim was not speaking “his other gospel” at this event. Were you there?
Please don’t presume that I was somehow enchanted by his fame (or anyone else’s popularity) that I put aside the Christ I know and his Spirit that spoke powerfully this evening. I urge you to be slow in making judgments about the salvation of others and the condition of their soul, as it leads to slander. I acknowledge that there are plenty of foul doctrines and “blasphemies” at work in and around the church, but we must be careful about setting ourselves up as the doctrine police… even going so far to say, as you have done, that Jim Caviezel is not a true believer. Sir, you have no right.
And, the “Whore of Babylon” is the Roman Empire in the book of Revelation, not your idea of a false church. It’s the imperial powers that are “drunk with the blood of the saints.” As I said before, the Lord was speaking through Jim Caviezel out of a deep personal experience. And in every interview I have ever seen of Jim, he has always displayed the same knowledge of Christ that I hear coming from the apostles of the New Testament. Test the spirits (1 Jn 4). Do they confess that Jesus is God having come in the flesh? That’s the concern of the NT.
Does Jim Caviezel believe that works determine salvation?–maybe more so than I do (based on NT warnings of apostasy and my reading of faith-works in James). Therefore, I shall pray that the Lord will help to iron out any confusion or insecurity he might have regarding God’s saving work in him.
Thomas, in the future, I hope that you will be mindful of the ways God is at work in folks that are still on a journey with the Lord.