by Steve Eastman, OpenHeaven.com
Every Wednesday readers of WorldNetDaily look forward to a weekly dose of For the Record. The word “commentary” is too weak to describe the humorous, politically incorrect, cartoon-style video examination of current events and issues.
Host Molotov Mitchell is a Christian, but feels the term is used so loosely, it has lost its meaning. “I’m a devoted follower of Jesus Christ. I don’t call myself a Christian anymore. People hear ‘Christian,’ and they can think of a myriad of things. I call myself a Christian supremacist. Jesus is supreme. Everything else is garbage, every other belief system.”
Not all Christians agree with Molotov’s stands on various issues. That’s okay. Paul says in Romans 14:5 “Let each be fully convinced in his own mind.” This is the story of how God took Molotov Mitchell from a punk rock devotee to a promoter of Kingdom living.
A TV DISASTER LEADS TO A WEEKLY GIG ON THE INTERNET
Faith TV (since renamed My Family TV) pulled the plug on Molotov Mitchell’s comedy show Flamethrower in early 2008 after originally saying it was only censoring a single episode. It was just a few years after the Danish newspaper Jyllands-Posten published an editorial cartoon in which Mohammed was depicted as wearing a bomb for a turban. As a result, artist Kurt Westergaard received death threats. Seeking to show support for the cartoonist, Mitchell produced a satiric episode called All Things Islamic, and that caught WorldNetDaily’s attention.
Mitchell says his show included a regular segment called Conservative Cooking with Chef Jeff. This time Jeff’s recipes included “the Mohammed’s face cookie, which we ate on camera. It wasn’t just that we made the face of Mohammed. It was modeled exactly after the cartoon version.”
That was more than the religious network could take. It, like virtually all Christian channels, had signed an agreement not to demean another religion. Mitchell was quoted in WorldNetDaily as saying “One thing I’ve noticed is that it’s always the Christians who are most offended when people speak ill of other religions. We should all pause and ask ourselves who stands to gain if we’re afraid to call a spade a spade – the forces of evil, or the forces of good, and I mean that in an epic, Christian, supernatural sense.”
The incident is reminiscent of the time another Kingdom man, compared members of a religious sect to whitewashed tombs and called them a brood of vipers.
After Faith TV cancelled, Mitchell and friends did a series of anti-Obama videos leading up to the 2008 election. His I Invented the Internet series captured the attention of the New York Times. A little later, Mitchell developed the concept for an ongoing, brief, hard-hitting show called For the Record, which he pitched to WorldNetDaily founder Joseph Farah. The rest, as they say, is history.
There are two things that immediately capture the attention of a new viewer of For the Record — the cartoon-like format and the name of the production company.
So why does Mitchell use the approach he does? “What we’re doing is, we’re entertaining people, and we’re being funny at the same time. To a lot of people, this is actually cartoonish behavior. So it seemed a proper fit. It’s entertaining. It’s funny. It’s fresh. Also, For the Record is more than just commentary. For the Record is actually art. It’s graphic design, artistic expression combined with a political sentiment.” Some episodes of For the Record, like the recent End Times: How Christians Lose, deal more with spiritual truth than politics tied to spiritual truth.
The name of the production company, Illuminati Pictures, is a real shocker. But there are no ties to the Order of the Illuminati founded by Adam Weishaupt in Ingolstadt, Bavaria on May 1, 1776. Mitchell says the name refers to “how the company illuminates aspects of the culture that have either been misconstrued or even deleted by ‘nefarious’ forces.” He started Illuminati in 2003 after interning with other film companies.
A YEAR WITH THE HOMELESS WETS MOLOTOV’S SPIRITUAL APPETITE
Before he was known as “Molotov,” Mitchell’s nickname was “Crazy.” He was a self-described “punk rock kid” in his pre-Christian days. Mitchell’s friends in the mid-90s did not always understand his intellectual curiosity about how other people see the world. “I knew a lot of transient people who were homeless by choice, always begging for money to get beer and things like that. I just really thought that was a really odd lifestyle, so I decided to start living with the homeless.”
The one-month experiment stretched into a year. In the beginning Mitchell still had a job, a car and a girlfriend. “But I was sleeping in the woods and on rooftops and spending a lot of my time with the homeless. By the end of the year, a lot of things had changed. I didn’t really use the car much any more. I just stopped working. I was heavily influenced by the company I kept.”
What did Mitchell learn from that year? “I’d say ninety percent of the people on the street are there because they want to be there, or they don’t want to be there, but they don’t want to work either. There’s about ten percent of people who genuinely need assistance and a lot of them already get it from independent charities (and) churches.”
It was also during this time that Mitchell was introduced to world religions. “As a homeless persons, I was first attracted to the Hare Krishna devotees because they did so much outreach. They were just some of the kindest, most selfless people. To be quite honest, I have not met many Christians that compare to the selflessness they exhibited, which is why I almost became one of them. I was so moved by their kindness.”
Today Mitchell is concerned about their eternal destiny. “Ultimately I realize they were living a lie. You can have great intentions and still be deceived. I believe there have been people working in armies throughout history. The armies have done evil, terrible things and many of the people were good soldiers and good family men who were just misled. They just contributed in small ways. They never saw the big picture. I feel that’s what happens with people who get sucked into false religions. They haven’t taken the time to step back and analytically work through this.“
Mitchell summarizes the issue in this way, “If your religion is false, and there really is a heaven and there really is a hell, and you’re convincing people to join the wrong religion, you’re worse they any Nazi. But of course you can do it with a better smile than a Nazi. I don’t think they were any better than any Christian. I just think Christians need to be challenged by that kind of kindness.”
MOLOTOV FINDS JESUS AT THE END OF HIS SEARCH
Imagine a typical conversion scenario:
- A friend, relative, acquaintance or stranger witnesses to an unbeliever one or more times.
- The evangelizer invites the potential convert to “church.”
- An emotional message accompanied with the “right” music overcomes the subject’s objections.
- The convert is induced to repeat the words of the sinner’s prayer, line by line. Everyone rejoices.
- The new believer drifts away because there was little depth to his decision, and he is harder to reach in the future.
This is not the route that moved Mitchell from death to life. Here is the scenario that describes his experience:
- God uses an intellectual concept to capture the attention of someone who is spiritually curious. (Mitchell came across the idea of intelligent design on the Internet and grew to understand the universe shows the evidence of a Designer.)
- The unbeliever in Christianity discovers world religions generally admit, at a minimum, that Jesus was a great man. They do not tend to speak as positively about other spiritual leaders, except their own.
- The potential convert comes across Jesus’ statement that no one comes to the Father, except through Him. This offends him because Jesus is not only challenging the politically correct statement that everyone will make it to heaven, but makes it clear very few will.
- The inquirer realizes his own offense does not negate the truth of what Jesus said. He now internally submits himself to God and His truth and considers himself a believer, although he cannot recall the exact words he used in the process.
- Over time, what began as an intellectual analysis, results in a passion that drives the way the “new man” lives the rest of his life, even years later.
- Now the disciple’s statements and actions offend others. Some of them get past this and find their own life-long passion for Jesus.
Mitchell likes to put it this way “Christianity is for men with heads on their shoulders.”
Mitchell’s niche is to serve in the media where politics and faith come together. It is not a case of politics driving faith, but of faith driving politics. He tells us, “In the broadest sense my goal is to make it on earth as it is in heaven. Jesus wasn’t delusional when he asked his disciples to pray that. It can happen. It has happened.”
What does this mean, now that we’re completing the first decade of the twenty-first century? “Take over everything. When you see injustice, oppose it. When you see those that are in despair, give them hope. Give them solutions. The Kingdom is about bringing the principles of heaven to earth. And that means in every aspect of life. That means in art. That means in family. That means in politics. That means as a pharmacist. If I could say what America’s greatest problem is, it would be Christians are not Kingdom-minded. If Christians would be Kingdom-minded, we would have a Renaissance.”
Tied in with Kingdom-mentality, is Mitchell’s belief that abortion will end during his generation. “We can’t talk about how the government is using taxes. We can’t debate about health care reform with a straight face. ‘Cause the whole time that we’re having the conversation, we’re having it on a mountain of dead bodies.” Mitchell says the numbers have already started to turn around. People are waking up.
AN ENCOURAGING EMAIL
A good example of the numbers turning around is contained in an email Mitchell recently received. He says a conservative girl has persuaded her liberal fiancé to watch For the Record. “They debate it and argue about it. They’ve been doing that for several months. He was actually pro-abortion and now he’s pro-life. She is so thrilled! They’re becoming more and more radical together every week. “
THE PRICE OF COMMITMENT
In a little over a decade Molotov Mitchell has transformed from non-Christian homeless person to “Christian supremacist” film producer, who speaks to a national audience every week. But he says his success comes at a price, “I’ve learned to adapt to death threats, which we get fairly often. We get legal challenges all the time. It’s just a tactic to frustrate and confuse. But unfortunately for them, it doesn’t bother us that much. If somebody were to get upset enough at the message that I’m sending to actually kill me, I would consider it the greatest accomplishment of my life.” Mitchell says the threats are coming almost entirely from atheists.
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