Have you ever prayed to God, and not had your prayers answered? Or perhaps you’ve seen the Lord tangibly bless those around you, seemingly passing you over.
If this is you, good news! There is a Chosen character just for you.
The Chosen is a TV series offered through online streaming services like Prime, Angel Studios, and their app. The series is funded through crowdsourcing, and depicts the lives of Jesus and His apostles as they begin the Lord’s earthly ministry.
One of the great, yet controversial, aspects of the show is how it humanizes the apostles. Instead of being static figures depicted through stained glass, they each have personality quirks, and physical attributes.
The great thing about the way the apostles are humanized is that they become more relatable, thus more believable. In essence, The Chosen makes the Gospel come alive off of the pages of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John, and provide some tangibility and credibility.
The controversial aspect to this is that much of the characterizations of the apostles is fiction. We don’t know that Matthew was on the spectrum, and there is no scriptural evidence to support that theory. Furthermore, many of the scenarios depicted in the show happen between the instances recorded in scripture, meaning that many of the events in The Chosen are completely fabricated and are fictitious.
However, these portrayals humanize the apostles and make the Gospel real and relatable.
So while The Chosen may be good for making the apostles relatable, and communicating the gracious and loving nature of Christ, as well as His divinity, those seeking truth are still well advised to open the Bible. Enjoy the show, but read the Bible.
Which brings me to my new, favorite character. Spoiler alert… if you keep reading, you may come across some plot information.
Little James, like Matthew, is depicted with a quirk. Again, no scripture that I can recall right off hand supports this portrayal, but such is the approach of The Chosen.
While Matthew’s issue is being on the spectrum, Little James suffers from a limp. Partially crippled, he relies on a walking stick he uses as a crutch. He struggles during travel, and believes his gait slows down the company as they travel.
So, the apostles travel, witnessing the miraculous healing our Lord freely performed for the masses. Multitudes, many of whom had the same disability as James, were suddenly healed and able to walk with little to no effort.
So, here’s Little James, crippled while everyone else around him is healed. He wants to ask, but he does not want to offend the Lord. He wants to understand, but does not want to be disrespectful to Jesus, and certainly doesn’t feel as if the Lord has withheld anything from him.
But, he desires healing. He desires understanding, and it’s breaking his heart. So, near then end of Season 3 Episode 2, he tearfully approaches Jesus, who gracefully understands, and encourages him.
Not gonna lie, that scene got me. It ranks right up there with the final scene of “Field of Dreams” for me.
Jesus told Little James that he could be healed, and someday he would, but what made his testimony so powerful was that he believed even though he had not been healed. And that through his testimony many would come to faith.
Modern Christianity has wrongfully turned faith into a transaction. You believe, then God gives you what you want. Therefore, if you do not have what you want, there must be something wrong with your faith. This is wrong and contrary to the scriptures, but leads to the following situations.
How many times have I sat with a weeping woman who couldn’t understand why God would not give her a child. A weeping man who doesn’t understand why God would allow his wife to have cancer, and why the miraculous healing still hadn’t come.
They had prayed, trusted the Lord, and called out to Him in ways we probably couldn’t imagine. Yet, no baby, no healing, no response. Yet, they still believed in the Lord. And yet, others continued to accuse them of imperfect faith, secret sin, and whatever else they could think of to explain the lack of a miracle.
Yet, these believers remained faithful, for their faith was in the Lord, His goodness and grace, regardless of their outcomes.
And I can not only admire that, I relate to it as well. I have lived knowing that God has forgiven me and cleansed me of all my sin, even while others tell me how awful I am. I have seen others receive tangible blessings from the Lord, while observers tell me that the lack of tangible answers to prayer in my own life reflect a flaw in my faith.
Yet, I live, with the peace in my heart knowing Jesus loves me, and that I have been blessed and forgiven. And nothing will take that away from me, nor will I ever be deterred.
And that’s why the story line of Little James resonates with me. How about you? Have you seen The Chosen? If so, what character resonates with you?