Actor Kevin Sorbo is on a mission to prove that science and religion go hand-in-hand, with Sorbo teaming up with mathematician, philosopher and former Oxford professor John Lennox to "unpack theological and scientific proof of God" in the new film "Against the Tide: Finding God in an Age of Science."
Billy Hallowell Hey, what's going on? It's Billy Hallowell and welcome to the Pure Flix podcast. I'm excited to be here this week with another edition of our show leading you into the weekend. And today, we're actually going to be having one of my friends on. He's an actor, you know, from Hercules. God's Not Dead and a ton of other films and TV shows. His name is Kevin Sorbo. So we'll be bringing Kevin Sorbo on in a bit. But before we do that, I wanted to share one of the stories we have over on the Pure Flix Insider. If you don't know the Insider, that is our blog at Pure Flix and you can actually find it at insider.pureflix.com. We cover all sorts of content. We've got news, prayer and faith, Bible verse list, devotionals, you know, information on movies and TV shows that are hitting Pure Flix platform, education, content and so much more. Now, one of the news stories we covered and this is full disclosure, this is actually about a good friend of mine whose name is John Sidel. I used to work with John Seidl, and I've got to tell you his story, because what he is doing, you know, is just incredible. John has decided that he is going to do something totally selfless, totally faith driven, that he is going to donate one of his kidneys to a stranger in need. And we have this story. You can watch the interview and the discussion, rather, between John and the man who's donating his kidney to. And you can see why he's doing this. But John cares for people. He loves people. And he's a Christian. And so he's motivated by his faith. And I often look at my life and I look at the things I'm doing and I wonder, am I doing enough? Am I really showing that love others component of the love God, love others. And so when I see a story like this where John has gone out of his way to get in shape, lose weight, do the things he needs to do to give a kidney OK to somebody he doesn't know. I am incredibly inspired. And what is so moving about this is that John is giving it to this man named Ken Cook, and Ken has gone through so much. He has had amputations and dealt with diabetes. And last year really struggled and is desperately in need of this kidney. And John is coming in and just giving him this gift of life. And I could not be prouder to call John a friend, but I also couldn't be prouder to have a chance to tell that story and so I encourage you all to head over to insider.pureflix.com and see what both John and Ken have to say. It's a very emotional story and both men get emotional talking about it. You can watch them discuss it over at insider.pureflix.com. We also have a number of other stories you want to check out. It's obviously October and October is a big month for, you know, Halloween. And that's a holiday that there are lots of different viewpoints on. But one of the things that I wanted to do is put together a list of of films about angels and spiritual warfare and faith, things that can focus us in the right direction on Jesus. And so we've got a list of four TV shows about angels, demons and faith worth streaming. And so you check that list out and get some inspiration. We've also got a list of Christian football movies, right. You can check those out on Pureflix.com. We have it on the Insider and so much more. So check out the Insider. It's a great daily resource for inspiration and information on entertainment. Now, having said all of that, we are actually ready to bring our guest on here. And our guest is Kevin Sorbo. Again, you don't from God's Not Dead and Hercules and lots of other amazing projects. So with no further ado, let's welcome Kevin Sorbo to the Pure Flix podcast.
Billy Hallowell Why I'm joined today by my friend Kevin Sorbo, how you doing?
Kevin Sorbo I'm really great. Good to see you again, sir.
Billy Hallowell Good to see you. So you have been I mean, I don't even know. I would guess the word is busy. Insanely busy. You have had documentaries, films and more than one. I think, what, three or four projects going on right now?
Kevin Sorbo Yeah. I mean, it's been I mean, I'm kind of create my own busyness. I can't sit around too much. I know Covid has put some things on hold. I mean I had two movies ready to go. One in may and one in June. I mean in July. Covid hit. Funders freaked. Panicked. They pulled out and who knows if we're gonna do them again next year or ever. I mean that's what happens. You know, it's it's hard enough to raise money for these independent movies, as you know the way it is, but to compete against Hollywood's three hundred million dollar movies. But, and I do a lot of speaking events, all of them canceled. Hercules, drama. Do a lot of comic cons, all those canceled. So, you know, this has affected all of us, no matter what you do for a living. We all get infected by this, but I kept myself sort of going with stuff, I got a surprise call out of nowhere. I did a pilot two two years ago, a half hour comedy, and we got picked up for eight episodes. So I live in Florida now, but I flew back to L.A. and we shot eight episodes this summer and they'll probably be out in January. It's called the Pot wins It's sort of like the last man standing to Malin Show meets Family Ties, Michael J. Fox's old series. So it's pretty fun because you get both sides of a political issue and we both pretty much bash each other and point to the ridiculousness of everything going on the world right now, and it's very entertaining to be part of that. And I've got I've got a number of documentaries that are out there. One is Before the Rath, Climate Hussle Two just came out against The Tide is another one I did that's coming up in November. I know we're I about that. Uhm., I've got three movies done in the can. I get my four hours in. But because of Covid, everything got pushed to, you know, next year, we gotta wait 'till more theaters open up. Right now, just there's not enough theaters for the independent movies to fight the big blockbusters of Hollywood have wait so long to put out.
Billy Hallowell Yeah. And that yeah, that's a huge issue. And I think people don't people don't realize that it is fascinating. I've had my busiest year ever, too, and I think a lot of people didn't. I, it ended up being busy for me though. It was a different kind of busy, but it's crazy. And so you look at the way the world has changed. And one of the things that's interesting to me is I think people are really receptive right now to faith, you know, because I think a lot of people who are trying to figure out what is going on, what is happening, maybe they don't have the world view. And so a couple of your projects that really stood out to me, the first one Against the Tide and the subtitle of is Finding God in the Age of Science. So you teamed up with Oxford Professor John Lennix. And you guys basically like you went around the world and you were looking to sort of see how history and science come together to prove scripture. Right.
Kevin Sorbo John is a brilliant guy. I've certainly heard of him. He's one of the men who's a retired math professor at Oxford. He holds like five doctorates. He speaks like six languages. And they contacted me, Stephen Huff, who finances the whole thing. They contacted me and said, John would love you to be part of this. So I spent three weeks in Oxford with them last year and two weeks in Israel, which was my first I'm ever going to Israel. Wow. And it was incredible. I mean, the. I think the biggest thing that holds Christians back and I'm just as much to blame is our lack of of confidence. Maybe when we are approached by people that wanna sit there and look at the science of God and apologetics is a way to battle that. And John does it in such an amazing way of giving you amazing bullet points. This comes out November 19th. It's a fathom event, I believe, it runs 700 screens. So they should go up. They should go to the website AgainsttheTide.movie, give you all information you need to see the trailer. But I learned so much from John. It was it was incredible because a lot of my friends and as you know, people who say, well, science proves God doesn't exist. I go, well then prove it to me and they can't do it any better. Anybody else. So. Right. Right. I mean, I love that they just throw science out there. Well, it's science. I go no. So really, I mean, you know.
Billy Hallowell Can I ask you a question about that, though, because it's like. And I know your wife Sam has has also written on this and brilliantly. You know, when I look at when I look at science, science to me explain and I'm not a scientist, but the human body, the way that trees and plants operate, all of it points to an order. Right. So like if you're gonna say science proves there is no God, to me that seems insane because it proves order right?
Kevin Sorbo Yeah. There's no question. I mean, I always you know, and and I remember one time I was talking to a guy about this and just sort of hit I said, we're standing outside of this beautiful building. Who built a building while somebody built it? I go, Yeah. So there you go. I just don't believe you can get something from nothing. Call me. Right. It's insane. It's insane. Call God. whatever you want. But there's something that had to start all this. Can I explain it fully, no I probably can't. One day I'll probably understand. I believe when I go and I go to heaven, knock on wood, and you know it's really crazy. It's like that line in God's Not Dead the movie I did when the student says, "Why do you get so angry about something you don't believe in?" And I've always loved that line because it's so true. I see the biggest anger coming from people like atheists. When you watch this documentary. You see John, who's a very smart and very intelligent. He's a bit. He destroys these people like Dawkins and Hitchens, very famous, you know, atheist with with kindness and love. And just let's have a chat. And he sees people just get so frustrated. And John just sits there and smiles and has a kind of a Winnie the Pooh voice about him. It's just it's wonderful. And to be able to walk through Israel with him. I got to go to places that tourists never get to go to. In fact, I gotta throw this out there. I actually stood on the balcony where Pilot said, which of these two people you want me to crucify? And as the crowd blows scream, Jesus. And I got the stand. I got goose bumps telling this because the guy that brought me up there and this little tiny elevator holds like two people. He didn't get out, he says. He says, I can't go out there. We're not allowed to. And I got to stand there. That was pretty cool.
Billy Hallowell So that. I mean, that's incredible. What. What for you. And I don't want you to spoil anything, but you said you learned a lot. What was the most surprising thing for you? Maybe it's a fact detail or just something broader that you experience kind of going through this process with him and filming.
Kevin Sorbo I think more than anything, it's just it's John's way of how he answers any kind of questions, 'cause these questions would have been probably if I had questions or they probably wouldn't be far more simple. You know, we had we had Ian Morris as one who directed this and produced it, and he wrote the questions for me to ask. And a lot of times I sit there and go, "How do I say I that one again?" I mean, I know things like this. And I went to college you know to play sports and, you know, go and meet girls. So it was it was just interesting to see how John reacts to anything that I would say, because he's all he's just set to go. It's not that he has a look at any books or any things, though. He's so well schooled and so well versed on answering anything that anybody in the street can walk up to him. This was this was kind of interesting that I wasn't prepared for. I didn't think about it. But I think about the movies What if, God's Not Dead, Soul Surfer, Let There Be Light. Things like that. When I get there to Israel. I was like a rock star and I wasn't ready for that because people in China and Poland and Russia and America and Canada and Mexico all came up to me because they know me from those movies. It wasn't Hercules or Andromeda. It was those movies, because all these people are on their own increments right. They're there to follow in the footsteps of Jesus. And they're coming to me and asking me for photos. And I was like, finally, one guy walks up to you, goes right by me and he goes up to John. This guy from Michigan. And he says, Mr. Lennox, I'm such a fan of yours. Listen to stuff. And then John looks to me and goes, see Kevin, I'm famous too.
Billy Hallowell See, that's amazing, though, to see that impact. Right. Because that to me is like a fun legacy to have. Obviously pointing people toward Jesus and then going somewhere, not expecting that people all over the world are coming there to experience Jesus and they're seeing you and seeing you as a person who's helped bring those stories you know of faith to them. That's pretty incredible.
Kevin Sorbo Well, you know, it's after a while its oh Carson makes sense by going there. I wasn't on the plane going what if I'm to be famous in Israel, it didn't even enter into my mind. So it took me off guard. But it shows you the power of television and movies. It shows you what it can do around the globe.
Billy Hallowell And what you are doing and what you know, Sam is doing and what Pure Flix and others are doing is starting to combat combat that by having this content there. And it's incredibly important. I love the documentary style, too, because there aren't enough of these documentaries that dive into this. And here you guys are out there and you're doing this. I have to ask you this, and you can feel free to speak about this as long as you need to. It's sort of a loaded question. But what for you just kind of backtracking into your faith, like what for you was the thing that convinced you to become a Christian? Like, was there a moment? Was it a journey? What was that for you?
Kevin Sorbo Yeah. I grew up. I grew up in a little town in Minnesota, typical Scandinavian Norwegian kid. So Lutheran was our was our church, St. John's Lutheran Church. We went all the time. When I got to my teenage years, we had Wednesday nights for the teens with our youth pastor. And then Sunday, of course, I went to church. So it's always been with me. But something that certainly sticks out in my mind was when I was 13 years old, we did a we went to see Billy Graham speak and they had a they had a national headquarters based in the Minneapolis St. Paul area for years. And it was on the St. Paul Fairgrounds. And there had to be, I think was two hundred thousand people. It was unbelievable. And it was a hot August night because, yes, in Minnesota, we got hot and humid, too. OK. Full Moon was out and I was just moved to go up there and meet with one of his volunteers after he finished speaking. Many, I don't know, hundreds of volunteers because it's a big group. And I sat down on the grass with this guy. We weren't praying or anything, we're just talking. We're just hanging out talking. He was really cool. And all of a sudden a hand on my head. And I turned around and there was Billy Graham and he had, like, you know, security with him. But I remember looking up and the full moon was directly behind his head with this glow. It was "oh", there's a good halo going out over his head. And it just always stuck with me. And I wrote that in a in a in a story in and the hundred Chicken Soup for the Soul. The only hardcover book they ever did was One Hundred One Stories of Billy Graham. Otherwise they never did a hardcover book. Well Billy Graham, when he was still with us, read that story and the peep from Billy Graham, the publicity team called me up and said, Mr. Reverend Graham would love you to go around the country to promote the book. It blew my mind. I was like, yeah. And also in a heartbeat. And just this past weekend, I was in Washington, D.C. and had dinner with Franklin Graham and Ben Carson out of events just before they did the march. I was there For the Return speaking. They had I don't know, I think they said a worldwide streaming audience of well over 300 million, just as unbelievable.
Billy Hallowell See, that's the thing. People are people are craving this right now. They don't even realize they're craving it because of what has gone on with Covid, and with just the chaos of the election. And, you know, I think people really are looking to something bigger. And it's an amazing opportunity right now to be doing what you do.
Kevin Sorbo People are looking for something and the streaming services. I think there's a lot of atheists and agnostics out there that are going online now. 'Cause they don't want to feel pressure to walk into a church. They think all these Jesus people are going to freak them out. So they're going online looking for some.
Billy Hallowell With that said, there's another film that you have Before The Wrath that you are now narrating that film. And I just watched the trailer and actually can't wait to watch it. It's got thousands of reviews, very positive reviews, which is amazing to see. It's done very well. I know. On Amazon, but. But tell me a little bit about that one.
Kevin Sorbo It's done very well. I mean, they'd open as a number one documentary on Amazon for three straight weeks. It is now the number one Christian movie out there. And on streaming and DVD. And it's it is on the Book of Revelation. And it's it's. I love what the mix. What, Brent Miller and his team did, he directed, this thing that brought me in to be the narrator of it, I was honored to be part of this. What what they did is show they have actors from you know, they do the two thousand years ago during the time of Christ, but it deals with the wedding and deals with the wedding of with with mankind in God and man kind of Jesus and Jesus coming back when the time is right to have the wedding actually take place. I don't wanna say too much about it, but sure, it's a mixture of that with a mixture of scholars, philosophers, pastors, all talking about what the Bible meant by the second coming of Christ. So it's it's incredible and it's done so well. And I'm honored to be with this group. Next year, we're going do. I'll be on camera, but also narrating the next one and we're gonna do one of the disciples, which I'm very excited about because I don't think I don't think there's enough on the disciples. I actually have a script dealing with the disciples, that I want to make sure that one day we can make a new movie. So any investors out there. Let's talk.
Billy Hallowell I love well. I love that because I actually agree with you. There's so many moments. And the thing about the the disciples that I find most fascinating are the moments where they failed or where they didn't live up, where we can relate, where we're like, oh, wow, they weren't these perfect guys. They didn't even understand what was in front of them when Jesus was there half the time, they weren't really getting it. And so I feel like there's so many stories there that need to be told that we just, you know, I just I wrote a book about evil and I was looking a lot of evil. And it was the first time I ever looked that when you take the Bible and you actually look at something specific. It opens your mind to all different things you never realize were even there. And you've just read it over and over, but not really connected it. And so with that, I can't wait to see that project because I think there's so much that you could do. Honestly.
Kevin Sorbo It's...I hope people check it out. They can go to Beforethewrath.com you can see a trailer, it's information on how to pick it up and it's doing very well. I mean, it's incredible that people are using it in churches as as a teaching tool for kids and adults as well. And it was it was just a lot of people think the disciples, you know, you see all these, the paintings of them. These elderly men, they were kids, teenagers. They weren't. They weren't. seventy-five men following Jesus around. And you're right, they're imperfect, just like we're imperfect. And the stuff that they had to see was just unbelievable. I've got to mention that my Israel trip, I went back six months later with my wife, we had sponsored her trip, and Israel we took 50 people with us. And we did walk in the footsteps of Jesus. And I got to see more things there that I didn't could see the first trip around. Well, so it was amazing. I hope Israel, please open up your country again soon. People need to go and check this out. But I have another documentary we'll talk about down the road. But I'm going to leave next spring to Israel and go through Jordan, into Israel. But in Jordan, they believe they just found the very first synagogue. So we're doing a documentary on that.
Billy Hallowell The things they are going to find. Right. And that's the thing that's so crazy. They haven't even started scratching the surface because archeology that's really I mean, you think about nineteen- forty-eight to where we are now, it's just starting to kick up and the things are discovering continue to back up the Bible. It's it's fascinating.
Kevin Sorbo Well, I'm going to overload your viewers again here then, check out proof of the patterns of evidence. Exodus Tim Morganti spent ten years. I narrated that one Tim Mones, a fellow Minnesota guy. He spent 10 years in Egypt in archeological archeological digs to prove that the exodus actually did happen. And it's fascinating. And, you know, it is. I mean, every time you prove something that the Bible talks about because nonbelievers believe it's a myth, they just go, oh, darn it, you know, they do that. They do the Howard Homer Simpson, you know. So it' for me it's a wonderful thing to be able to show that this is no myths guys. This was real history. And it's great to see. And I love documentaries. So check that one out. Two patterns of evidence, Exodus.
Billy Hallowell Well, listen, I appreciate your time. We're having you back again very, very soon to talk about some of your other projects. Alright.
Kevin Sorbo Right. I'm going to keep juggling. I appreciate what you do as well.
Billy Hallowell Thanks, man. Appreciate it.
Kevin Sorbo All right. Take care.