Does The Term “Bible Belt” Still Remain True For Southern States?

1504 words - 6 pages

Does the term “Bible Belt” still remain true for Southern states? Did Facing the Giants depict religious life in the South accurately? From before I can remember, I was attending church and a part of children’s musicals. Church is like a second home and a huge aspect of my life. Religion is a common ground for many Southerners, and is a place to gather and catch up with one another, while in other parts of the country it tends to be a touchy topic. Religion is one of many aspects that developed the South into what it is known for today. Facing the Giants, by Alex Kendrick, effectively represents the role of religion in the South through the literal translation of the Bible, the role it continues to play in daily lives, and how the South still embodies religious aspects.
Facing the Giants is a biblically based movie made by Sherwood Baptist Church of Albany, Georgia about religion and football. The film stars Coach Taylor, a mediocre football coach, for Shiloh Christian Academy Eagles. Everything is falling apart for Coach Taylor: his car continually breaks down, he is the reason his wife cannot become pregnant, and he is on the verge of being fired. With all of these things confronting him, he turns to the Bible, puts his life in God’s hands, and his life dramatically changes . He and the football team decide they are going to play football to glorify God and not necessarily to win; thus, whether they win or lose, they will glorify God. This change impacts the players, which in turn impacts the school, and a revival transpires. The Eagles play their next football game and win. They continue to win and make it to the semi-final round of the state playoffs. Sadly they lose in the semi-finals to the Panthers but still glorified God, despite their disappointment. The next morning, Coach Taylor receives a phone call that the Panthers played two ineligible nineteen year-olds and they, the Eagles, will proceed to the state championship. Consequently, the Eagles have to play the Giants, three time consecutive state champions, for the championship game. The Giants far outnumber the Eagles but the Eagles fight hard and win the game with a 51-yard field goal kicked by their backup kicker. Afterwards, Coach Taylor’s wife discovers she is pregnant. The film ends by showing two state championship trophies, Coach Taylor playing with his child and his, once again, pregnant wife (Kendrick).
The South embodies many challenges that are set forth in the Bible. Facing the Giants is a great example of living out the Great Commission, spreading the good news of the Bible set forth by Jesus Christ. Charles Wilson claims, “The central theme of religion in the South has been the compelling drive toward conversion and the moral life afterwards. Churches orient their missionary work designed to further the Great Commission that Jesus Christ outlined- going out and converting the world” (“2005 Religion” 9). Coach Taylor, after gathering the news he...

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