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Iron Academy + Jon Erwin

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February 21, 2023 8:47 am

Iron Academy + Jon Erwin

The Steve Noble Show / Steve Noble

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February 21, 2023 8:47 am

Iron Academy + Jon Erwin

Steve talks to Alan Hahn from Iron Academy about girls' and boys' tendencies in school and to Jon Erwin director of Jesus Revolution.

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The following program is recorded content created by the Truth Network. Not only Digital Businesses so hot for teen boys. So whether they're male or female, a lot of challenges out there in the last 10 years, obviously the proliferation of social media. So for many of you, for many of us, we decided, well, they're not going back to public school. So you start thinking about other options, private school, what you can afford, maybe homeschooling, homeschooling took off. But if you could start a school, and a lot of people really move in that direction, what do you do? If you could change all the things about the education process that you understand now, especially because of COVID, what would those changes look like? So we're going to talk about that today with somebody that actually bothered to do it.

Of course, our good friend Allan Hahn from Iron Academy went down that road. And what do we do? If you're going to have a school, what would you put in there? Especially, like Allan was just teasing me, if we're going to be all about Jesus, what should your school look like? Allan, it's great to see you. Thanks for being here. Oh, it's good to be here.

Thanks. So this is a great topic and something you went down this road. And obviously, I think there's a lot of people that think about this. There's not very many that do it.

So whether you're actually in the mode to start a school or not, I think what you're going to discuss here today is something that we could use almost like a measuring stick. Or is that too aggressive? That might be a little aggressive.

As Christians, I think the first thing is, is the creator of the universe telling you to do this? Right. And if he's not, run. Yeah, don't do it. Run away.

But if he is, you have two choices. You're going to be obedient or you're going to be disobedient. Right. Yeah, which is true with everything. And they always got to have wisdom. And sometimes we're called to take a leap of faith. But oftentimes, it's faith plus wisdom.

God never chucks wisdom out the door. But when you start considering, what should we do if we're going to design a school, especially if we're going to design the school, do we want to design the school, Allan, for young men or both? So my story is a little different than most people, but very similar in some ways. I was a new Christian. I was raising a young man and my son was born.

And I'm trying to figure this out. I start working in Christian education. And it becomes very obvious very quickly that we are graduating boys from our high schools. Furthermore, that's true for almost every school in the nation, Christian or non-Christian. That wasn't particularly specific to just the one you were at. I looked at it more. No, absolutely not.

But I looked at it more. And the same is true for colleges. Colleges are graduating boys.

It is absolutely up to the young man at that point. But we're graduating boys from our colleges. Worse yet, our wives are marrying boys, hoping they will become men soon. And unfortunately, that was true with my wife as well.

But none of those things should be true. So that was the first impetus for Iron Academy, is what are we doing with our young men? We need to be graduating young men who know who they are in Christ, what it means to be a godly man, what God says is good and what God says is bad. The second thing was our classrooms across the nation are generally pretty well set up for young ladies in the fact, and this is a generalization, but young ladies are much better at paying attention in class without having to have physical stimulation. They can go to the next class. They can keep from doing dumb things.

They can keep paying attention. Whereas a guy comes in, he's cognitively very high in the morning. He goes to his first period. He's crashing throughout the day. He has lunch.

He's back up and he crashes throughout the afternoon. So those are the two things. We want an environment where we can reveal God's perfect design for biblical manhood with every young man. And second, we want to get the most out of young men educationally as possible. So that was where the idea for Iron Academy and yes, we said, all right, can we build a better mass trout? And we said, yes, we can.

Absolutely. Well, that's the thing. We all know that, that there's these massive differences in how our sons go through the educational system versus how our daughters and generally the daughters are a lot less trouble because they can do that. They can persevere throughout the day. They can stay focused. But with young men, they just can't. And I think largely we look at that and go, that's just bad behavior as opposed to saying, well, that's just the deal.

That's the way they are. Pre-frontal cortex isn't even fully developed for a guy until he's 25. That's why girls mature quicker than guys, so on and so forth. And you have to take that into consideration. And schools, I think it's one size fits all.

Is that basically what's happened there? So that is our modern educational system. We're going to customize the educational process to a young man.

Yes. And any educator will tell you, if you can specialize your educational delivery towards an audience that you can get to be more similar rather than more diverse. And I'm not talking about color.

I'm not talking about this. But there are gender differences between how young men and young women respond to education and what they look for. And as an educator, if you can tailor that, if I were teaching a classroom of young ladies, I could tailor a really excellent opportunity for them. But the same is true for young men. And what the studies have told us is young women do benefit from single-sex education, but young men benefit even more. Almost 22% better outcomes when it's single-sex. Really? 22%.

That's a big deal. And when you say that, 22% better, that's got to be just academics, right? That's just academics.

Those are the measured things. But it doesn't take into account the biblical manhood. But we also know that young men are more socially mature. They treat women better. They're more confident when they do speak with the opposite sex. They're more joyful.

If they've gone through the single-sex education. Oh, yeah. Yeah. Because we look at that, and especially the world right now, this is where the devil is going to get involved and say, that's so old-fashioned, that's not woke. You're living in the past. But what the devil can't do is create anything new. All he can do is mess around with what's out there and try to reorder it. God designed men and women differently.

Duh. And you should educate them differently as well. So we're going to consider that, some other things as we build this school. And I think God has already done that through Iron Academy here in the triangle area. So listen up for good advice, parents. But if you're in the triangle, think about this seriously for your own son. We'll be right back. Oh, maybe the advantages of single-sex education. Well, we can pick up on that. Yeah, we can pick up on that. Welcome back.

It's Steve Noble, The Steve Noble Show, talking to Alan Hahn. is always the CEO, chief education officer at Iron Academy. And when did Iron Academy come out of the ground?

What was your number one? Ten years ago, 2013. Yeah. That's crazy, my friend. That's just crazy.

I'm only 20 years older. Yes, I appreciate that. God is good. Iron Academy here in the triangle area, if you have sons or grandsons, sixth through 12th grade, you definitely want to check out this. Check out what God's been doing at Iron Academy. There's nothing like it. There's nothing I've ever heard of that's like it.

Certainly nothing I've ever seen that's like it. And that's why we're talking about designing a school. If you're going to design a school from the ground up, what do you want to do?

And hopefully maybe this will inspire somebody. Maybe it's you right now listening that you're like, we all know what's going on in the public schools. You also know that in the private school world, whether it's secular or Christian, one of the things that you just started off talking about, Alan, was the challenge of that the fact that boys don't learn, young men do not learn the same way that women do. The existing system's okay for the girls because they can control themselves, but it's really bad for the guys. So that was one of the things you said is right up there. It's the single sex education, which the world's going to tell us that's close minded, that's patriarchal, it's sexist, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah.

But who cares what the world says because the world is insane and doesn't know what it's talking about. So we're going to go with God's design here. So that and the single sex advantages, which you said, I mean, the proof is in the pudding because the effect is measurable, right? That's what you were talking about.

Yes. So education is notoriously difficult to measure outcomes, but there are certain things you can do and it's usually on standardized tests. So we definitely see the big improvements on standardized tests. In fact, 22% is enormous. That's enormous.

We've actually seen better than that at Iron Academy, even in IQ growth, which is something that most people didn't think you could actually do. But we see it in terms of biblical manhood as well. And that's really why we exist. And I love what Tozer said, the most interesting thing about a person is what they believe about God. And as parents, one of the most important things we can do to help our young people become all that they were created to be is to have a proper understanding of who the creator is and what he wants from each of us.

And so much of the world in our culture right now is tearing that away and misshaping it. No, there is no creator, therefore the creator hasn't said anything. So you replace that, Romans 1, you suppress that truth, you replace it with a lie, which becomes whatever you want. Alan wants to claim that he's a woman today, he can. And whatever you decide, you create your own reality, which we know of course is insanity.

Yes. Our minds are always being transformed, whether we're renewing them into what we were created to be or whether they're being created or retrained into something else. And we see so much of those negative influences. But when we have a culture in a school where we can focus on biblical outcomes, so we do it in the context of biblical manhood. But really what we're doing is discipleship. We just do discipleship in the context of an all-male atmosphere. And so much of biblical manhood is identical to biblical womanhood, but there are these little fringe things that are very important that separate us. So when we do a school for biblical manhood, we can enter those conversations, we can hold people accountable, we can invest in one another, we can love one another. We can't even... I had a young man who came in from a school today, and I told him, I said, well, if you look around, you'll see how well the guys love each other. And he kind of smirked, and I forgot.

You can't say that about other places. Right, you say that in the culture now, how well our guys love each other, and of course they're thinking sexual. Yes, and it makes no sense. But our guys are able to take care of one another, the older guys are able to bring the younger guys up, they're able to be their keepers. We have this Genesis 3 quote we use, when God asks Cain, are you your brother? Where's your brother? And he says, am I my brother's keeper?

Well, our answer is yes. And so our 10th, 11th, and 12th graders who have shown us that level of trust that we can put into them, they've earned their challenge coins, we make them keepers over one, two, or three other younger brothers, and they're responsible for their outcomes. They clean the school with them every day, they eat lunch with them once a week, they sing with them when we sing on Tuesdays and Thursdays, they do a lot of stuff together.

But it's much like when I had Nicholas, a brand new father, and I see Nicholas say something that I said and shouldn't have said, or behave like his dad, I'm thinking, uh-oh, this has got to change. So now I'm on, well, this has been so good for building these young men up into knowing that they are leaders and that they are models for these younger guys. You know, we originally did that keeper program to pass down the school culture from the older guys to the younger guys, but I think we would keep it because it's so good for the older guys to start thinking of themselves as model and becoming the men that they need those little guys to see them. Yeah, because a regular school, like again, back to building a school, having single-sex school has massive advantages and then getting them involved with the actual operation of the school. They have ownership. They're a part of the process.

It's not just the teachers and then all the lab rats down here. Now you've got all these students who are a part of the actual process itself and discipleship too, which is the way, again, we're back to doing it God's way as opposed to mankind's way. That's the same thing over and over again we're talking about.

Yes. So what we're doing is there's nothing new about it, although it is quite unique. This shouldn't be unique. Everything we do, we try to have a biblical philosophy behind it for why we do it. And then if you ask me a question and we don't have one, well then it's time to make one up. All right, what do we really believe about this? But it's been an adventure because nothing else exists like this.

And so for the last 10 years, we try something and if it doesn't work, we ditch it and we try something else and we're constantly improving. But we're really getting to pave the way for biblical manhood in a middle and high school context because it's not being done. In fact, there are so few historical examples of this ever being attempted.

Doesn't mean it wasn't, but we don't even know about it if it was. Right. I mean, listen, there's a graduated scale going on in everybody that's got children or grandchildren in the system. There's the public school system. There's the private school system.

There's the private Christian system. There's homeschooling in there. But even this is more deliberate because when we homeschool our kids, we're basically homeschooling them to their grade.

Not really thinking about, we do some things curriculum-wise to differentiate between our sons and our daughters when we homeschool for all those years. But this is going even beyond that. This isn't just, okay, I'm aware of these things. This is developing a system to basically meet them where they're at based on the way God's designed them.

Yes, and where their families are. So there are only a couple options. Biblical homeschool, that will always be an option. Right. In a biblical private Christian school.

Those are pretty much your options. Which is great, but it's still not tailored to single-sex education and single-sex discipleship. No, it's not. And I'm glad you mentioned a minute ago, Alan.

Sorry to jump in there. But listen, there's all kinds of things about being a Christian that applies to all of us all the time. But there are other things about being a biblical man and a biblical woman that are different. They have different roles.

And again, that's one of the things at Iron Academy. Your goal is not to produce kids that go off to college and get good grades and get a good job and make a lot of money. You're trying to produce leaders.

That's different, isn't it? Yes, and I would say leaders is actually our third goal. Our primary goals, we want to build the best husbands that can be out there and the best fathers that can be out there. And after that, the best leaders. Your citizen, your worker, your participant. Yeah, your first impact is that home in Jerusalem and then outside of that.

Yes. We have, generation after generation in the United States, we've been passing down milk drinkers and that's got to stop. If we want true revival and a great awakening, we've got to pass down meat eaters. And we're just not getting it done. Well, you said that before and you say that often.

It's a reminder for all of us. We're graduating boys and then forcing young women to marry boys. And there's nothing good about that. That whole thing collapses.

And we know that. Just go look at the breakdown of the family. If you want to put it into a even more specific, go look at the breakdown of the African-American family. African-Americans, even before the civil rights movement, were thriving in the 50s because about 80% of them were intact families. Now it's only about 10%.

And so you break down the family, the whole thing starts to fall apart. That starts with men being men rather than men being boys. Talking to Alan Hahn, We'll pick it up there when we come back.

Welcome back. It's Steve Noble, The Steve Noble Show here with our good friend Alan Hahn from Iron Academy, here in the Triangle area, sixth through 12th grade for young men. If you say boys, you'll get your hand slapped. So I had to learn that a long time ago. If you say they're boys, then that's what you're teaching them to be.

You got to say they're young men, and that's what you're teaching them to be. So Alan had this idea for the show today to talk about if you're going to build a school, and I think a lot of us are like, yeah, we need to do that because we've learned a lot about our educational programs around the country. I think we knew that generally, anecdotally about public education, but once our kids got sent home and now you see what's on the screen and what they're learning and what they're not learning, all the mixed up world views that are in there, some of it just flat out satanic. And then you're like, okay, so homeschooling is booming, private schools. But even then, you can do even better. And that's why we're talking to Alan today. And so looking at these essential elements for the very best possible educational program for young men and women, if we want to develop them into what God calls them to be in terms of these young men.

Biblical manhood, of course, that's the target. Single sex education, which Alan, you were saying there's benefits across the board. There's probably is there a single downside to that? I can't think of a single downside of that other than the culture is going to think you're an idiot. Yes, the culture doesn't like it.

But who cares? We get called a medieval school all the time. Excellent. Yeah, because it's single sex. And when you graduate, you get a sword. Right.

So the world just thinks we're a bunch of idiots. That's the patriarchy exemplified. But what do they know? Then, of course, leadership development. And then you mentioned this other one, targeted manhood, which we just started to touch on. But I want to go a little bit deeper there. So what do you mean by that targeted manhood? And then how do you achieve it? Well, the idea of the target, we have this thing for our educational philosophy called targeted learning, where we're always targeting learning the most difficult things the brain has to do, how to synthesize a whole bunch of information, which we're surrounded by information and put it into something useful, how to evaluate between right and wrong, good versus evil, or to create something new.

So that's where the targeted part came from. When we put it in the context of our honor code, and our honor code is I will always conduct myself as a gentleman, live pure, speak true, right, wrong, and follow the king. And for the 10 years of Iron Academy, we've always expected our sixth through 12th graders to attempt to live up to that honor code to the best of their ability. And one of the things we learned last year when we took the eighth graders away for what we call eighth grade unplugged, we take them away camping for four or five days, and we focus, all right, what do you want to be? What kind of man do you want to be?

What do you need to fix? And they came up with two things. They went from being the most difficult class to teach to this week, and they came up with we are not going to tear each other down, and we're not going to do selfish things that hurt our family, hurt the family. And these are eighth graders. These are eighth graders, and they did it.

It took about 10 days. They said hold us accountable, give us extra burpees. We did that, but they did it. They stopped tearing each other down, and their class transformed. And as ninth graders, they're flourishing. They're godly young men.

They love each other well. Which by the way, let me jump in there. Speaking of swords and tearing people down, we have to remember, and I fight this all the time, oftentimes lose, social media cancel culture. We're addicted to outrage. Social media just is doing a great job at developing that into us, that we tear one another down. So as soon as something interesting starts happening at Asbury University in Kentucky, all the swords come out.

That's not a revival. That's not of God. And we just do this naturally. I'm so glad these eighth graders saw that. In an eighth grade, you think it's fun. You think it's funny. You're tearing people down.

Well, the whole world's rewarding you for that. So you've got what we call the totem pole mentality, whereas if you want to get to the top of the totem pole where the eagle is, you've got to push the other ones down. So you do that by hurting other people, not by lifting them up.

So it's the exact opposite idea of a servant leader. And so they did that, and they went from being the hardest class to teach to one of the most joyful classes. Wow.

That's awesome. And it changed everything about them. They started accepting their differences, and our guys are all different. We've got quiet guys, athletic guys, unathletic guys, funny guys, studious guys, artistic.

We've got the whole gamut. They accepted each other's differences. They loved each other well.

They stopped tearing each other down, and they flourished. And so one of the things we realized is developmentally, our honor code, yes, we want sixth through 12th grade to do it. A sixth grader, they know that we can focus on them of what it means to conduct yourself as a gentleman, how to put the needs of others in front of yours.

There are all kinds of things we mean by that, but that's one of the easy ones. But a seventh and an eighth grader, they're starting to become interested in the opposite sex. They're starting to talk about bodies, parents, whether we want to admit this or not.

Please. They're starting to notice these things. They're starting to talk about it. Nine-year-old is the average exposure, first-time exposure to porn now, by the way. Yes, and parents have to realize this. But in seventh and eighth grade, we really need to focus on what it means to live pure and speak true, because they need to live pure in regard to the opposite sex, but they need to speak true in context of how they talk about one another and the opposite sex. And then by ninth grade, we need them really to focus on what it means to right wrong, how to make situations better.

And you say, well, why can't they do that earlier? Well, cognitively, they're really focused on the speck in your eye while they don't see the plank in there. Everything's black and white, but it's all askew. Well, you're just dealing with the regular developmental phases of adolescence, so to speak, and that's just the reality.

That's just meeting them where they're at. Right. And I'm going to ask God about all these things and the Holy Spirit, why he didn't just fix this right away. But this sanctification process is happening, and these developmental process in these young men is different, and we get to address it that way. So the 10th, 11th, and 12th graders, yes, they need to know how to conduct themselves as a gentleman, live pure, speak true, and right wrong. But now it's time to really focus on what it means to follow the king. And yes, we want everybody following the king. That's part of who we are, but now they're able to really embrace that. And then the thing we add to that. Well, they can't fully do that well until all the other stuff's been handled.

Yes. So they learn all those things. And the thing we add to it is shepherding well. So yes, you can conduct yourself as a gentleman, live pure, speak true, right wrong, and follow the king. But if you're not winsome, if you're not bringing people with you, you're not shepherding other people well.

And the shepherd is the single best picture in the Bible that I can find for biblical manhood. And we are supposed to shepherd the people around us to care for them to work and keep and to protect. And so adding that to it, and this year we changed everything up. We refined what we did the first nine years. And now this 10th year, we're doing this targeted manhood so that with each grade, we can focus on where they are developmentally. And if somebody is ahead of that, we can push them ahead. But we always have a place to be pushing them with these manhood goals. And these are who we're supposed to become as young men. That's what God calls us to.

Yes. And I love what Romans 12 to says is be constantly transformed by the renewing of your mind. And renewing there tells me that there was something there that sin has marred that we can reclaim. And I know that the creator of the universe created us, each one of us perfectly, and that we were supposed to be all these glorious things. But if we don't have a way to draw that out and concentrate on those things and for the fruits of the spirit to be true of who we are, rather than the evidences of the flesh. But you have to have a process for this and a methodology. And parents are so overwhelmed today.

So many of us like me are first generation Christians, and we're trying to figure this out on our own. And we just need that community of people to help us do this because this is what God asks of us. That's right. Yeah. And again, that's not an Iron Academy. We've had this conversation before. And then I just want to do a general update on what's going on at Iron Academy,

If you're here in the Triangle area, sixth or 12th grade for young men. But talking about these things over the years and realizing, hey, listen, this isn't you outsourcing your son to Iron Academy. This is a partnership. We're doing this together. That's why it's the body of Christ.

The arm doesn't exist without the leg. They work together. So just a reminder. Real quick, couple of minutes left. Any just kind of announcements, an invitation for people to come check out the school. Just anything you want to share.

Just nuts and bolts about Iron Academy. Well, for all the people out there who are listening, who are ministry partners engaged in kingdom work right now, we have something for you. We want you to be part of this. We have 60% discounts off to tuition.

That's amazing. For those of you who are serving full time in the ministry, we want more of you. We want, oh, I'm probably gonna get in trouble for saying that, but we're after radical Christ followers, not radical political flag waivers, not radical sports fans. We're after radical Christ followers. And it's the families that we look to first.

And then we look at the young men because we have to have that alliance with the families if this is going to work. Yeah, that's so awesome. So 60% off tuition for sons of full time ministry workers. That's huge.

Anything else? Yeah, our grades are filling up pretty quickly and having some of our best enrollment ever. We've got we've had probably over 50 students shadow since the beginning of the school year. Really? Yes. And we've got them. We've got three or four a week and we do tours almost every day, sometimes three and four a day.

Get in quickly. Because that's one of those things that's kind of I have to see it to believe it. But once you see it, it's so different. It's so different. Just like when I had the students in here a couple months ago and the senior who's a discipling and leading eighth grader, I think he was. And every time people are like, it's shocking how I'm just not used to hearing young men talk like that.

I mean, it's really amazing. God provides on these tours. He always provides a group of young men who walk by and I'll say, oh, hey, can you talk to the Johnson family real quick? This is Ben.

He's a ninth grader. Talk to Mrs. Johnson. Mrs. Johnson asked them anything you want.

Can you guys come get me when you're done? Wow. And they'll and you just walk away and just walk away.

And I don't even ask what they talked about. But they like it. Yeah. No, because we are we know who we are. Yeah. And it's not fake. No. And we're doing you know, we're not perfect.

We're doing the best we can. So it's real deal. But I can tell you from from an outside, somewhat inside perspective, God is doing a unique work at Iron Academy. It's not a new one.

It's just the biblical one. And following the tenets of the faith, as you have and laying that out today, if you're going to start a school, what would it look like? Well, for for young men, it would look like Iron Academy for young women. Well, we'll see what the Lord does next with that.

But Iron Academy, Alan, thanks for being here. Welcome back at Steve Noble, The Steve Noble Show. I know my audience well enough and Christian radio listeners. A lot of you are like around my age.

I'm 57. And and so when you think of the Jesus revolution and all of the ripples that came out from that, going back to the late 60s, early 70s and all these ripples. And I didn't know much about it. And then we did a Harvest Crusade here with Greg Laurie. And that started that process started in March of 2006, culminated in June of 2007. And then I went on to work with the Harvest Crusades team and Pastor Greg from 2012 through 2016.

And then one process, one part. And I didn't I'm like, all of a sudden, well, who's Chuck Smith? The Jesus revolution?

What is that? Oh, that that's that thing back in the early 70s. And then you realize that all the different things that I was involved in with respect to harvest, including what happened here in my own city of Raleigh at the Harvest Crusade and how it impacted my family, that all was fruit that came off of the tree of the Jesus movement, which started in the early 70s. And so I just didn't realize it. So then I had a chance going back almost about 12 years now to meet John and Andy Irwin.

October Baby was the first movie and had him on the show and then met Andy on a one of the marriage cruises where he was doing a screening of Mom's Night Out. And then with Woodlawn and I can only imagine and just been watching and walking alongside John and Andy Irwin. It's just been amazing to watch. But Jesus Revolution, which I've been talking about almost ad nauseum.

I'm not going to ask for your forgiveness because I'm talking about ad nauseum because you need to go see it, need to get other people to share it. And then based on what we just saw with Asbury, which I've been talking about University in Kentucky. So we had Andy in the studio a couple of weeks ago.

Now we got his brother, John, the director of Jesus Revolution. My friend, how are you? Welcome back.

How are you? You've been a wonderful friend for a long time. Like we have been friends for a while. And I'm like you years and years ago. I didn't know about the Jesus movement either. I found this time magazine on eBay that was called The Jesus Revolution, had this psychedelic face of Jesus on the front of it and wanted to make the movie ever since. And that was way before even I can only imagine.

And so it's so cool to see God's timing and all of this. Beth and I went up to, we were in Kentucky anyway, and it was like day three of the Asbury revival. And not many people might not know this, but there was a 1970 in that same chapel, Hughes Auditorium revival broke out.

It was a big part of the Jesus movement. So it's just an unbelievable coincidence. And we went in and just sat there and listened to the students. And God's presence was just in the room. And it was so similar to scenes in the movie.

It was just like, so it's just God's timing is amazing. I love this story. I love the movie. And I can't wait for people to see it. I think it starts playing in early access screening tomorrow night.

Tomorrow night. And that's just incredible. You know, you can see it early. Yeah, it's so powerful. I was mentioning during the break for Facebook Live and Rumble, I set aside the Passion of the Christ because that was just a whole different kind of thing to call it a Christian movie.

I think it's got a category all its own. So setting that aside, the first time I saw a screener online and I watched it with Gina, the next night, John, I was like, this is by far the most powerful Christian film I've ever seen. It is by far the best one in terms of quality, music, the acting with people like Kelsey Grammer and Jonathan Rumi, who a lot of people know plays Jesus on The Chosen. It's just like I was kind of dumbfounded when we watched it because it's so amazing. I did have, I was watching last night when you were doing the thing with Dallas Jenkins last night from The Chosen, actually. And I wanted to ask you this question, John, because you may remember this. So you were traveling around the country working on Woodlawn, recording churches doing the Lord's Prayer. And then you and I had a conversation.

I said, I think I can introduce you to somebody that might be able to help get that sound to 45,000 people. You came into Southern California. We met up with Greg Laurie at the OC campus. Did you guys start talking about the Jesus revolution, the Jesus movement and that very first meeting?

Because I just sat across the room and watched and took pictures of you guys. But, you know, it was obvious that something was happening. I remember that. I remember that well. And talk about an introduction. I appreciate that because we've done so much together.

But you're right. You did introduce me to Greg. And I'm always doing something. And I'm always like at the bleeding edge of something. And so I live, I'm like literally a reoccurring episode of 24, like Sutherland of like, you know, we have to do this right now, you know, and, and so we did, we needed sound for, you know, we had all these visual effects to be in the Woodlawn. And there's this theme where 45,000 people say the Lord's Prayer together. And we needed that sound and we needed it quickly. And and I had heard about Greg and I just call him the last Jedi.

He's like the last guy that can get that many people into a stadium or an arena. And and so you made the introduction. I had put Jesus revolution, the magazine into the movie Woodlawn because it was in researching that movie that I had discovered the magazine because I was like, did a whole high school really get rescued from itself, you know, and from, you know, violence and racial decision through a revival, is that possible? And that's when I discovered the Jesus movement.

And that's when I went on eBay and bought the magazine reading it. And so I, you know, the conversation with with Greg and Kathy very quickly began a conversation about Jesus revolution because I just wanted to meet people that lived the movement and wanted to understand what had happened. And the more I learned, the more I started thinking like, can this happen in our time? Can this please happen in our time? Oh, man. And and John Irwin, you would have made this you would have made this movie five years ago, but God didn't let you, interestingly enough.

That is absolutely right. God had his plan. And, you know, one of the more, you know, just for everybody listening, if you just keep going, God will direct your steps. And we've been trying to make this every movie that we've made. I've been trying to make this movie.

It's like, I can only imagine I still believe American underdog, like, can we just please make Jesus revolution? And we almost got it made. 20 moments of my career. No, I still believe open this number one movie in America Friday night for one day. Five days later, all movies theaters were closed. The whole industry was shut down.

It really just took a bullet through the heart. Yeah. And and a part of that was that all of production shut down worldwide, the movies. And Jesus Revolution was actually in pre production. We were about five, six weeks away from rolling cameras on the movie, which I'm done directing.

And and it shuts down. And so there was a whole other timeline version of this film that almost happened. And God just said, No, I have the perfect moment for this film.

I was talking to Dallas Jenkins and and some of those behind, like the green family like the green family behind this. He gets us Super Bowl commercials. And I'm like, we did not sit down and orchestrate like we didn't like like, like, how do we get February to be the month of Jesus, you know, and entertainment? But it just so happened that chosen season three, which is wonderful. The final episode is spectacular. A Super Bowl commercial. And then Jesus Revolution, all in the same month of February. And wouldn't you know it, right in the middle, these revival start happening on college campuses across America.

So I do think God's timing is just perfect. And it's always been hard to cry this movie. I want it to be entertaining. I want people to love it. It's my favorite film ever to watch with an audience in a theater. It's just so much fun.

People laugh more than they laugh all the time. Yeah, I was doing two screenings at the same time, like 30 minutes apart. So I was jumping back and forth between theaters. And people just so enjoyed it. And a lot of people like for Gina and I, John, when we finished watching it together, we were both in tears because, number one, it took us right back to our own salvation story. And number two, and Gina asked the question, which I hope rings across this country as a result of Jesus Revolution, who are the hippies today that the church has closed its doors to who desperately need Jesus? And I think we're seeing that with like what's going on at Asbury.

But but what's your hope for this? Because this is such a I mean, it's almost like, hey, take your shoes off because this is holy ground. We're talking about something that the Lord did here in America back in the early 1970s. Yeah. And the Lord is doing again. And I love it.

It's breaking out of you before the film comes out. Hopefully we can. You know, I'd rather be a small part of something big than a big part of something small. You know, I love that the movie is going to get to be a part of what God is doing. But, you know, my hope is that Asbury and Lee University and Stanford University, that's hope.

That's always my hope for the generation. Yeah. When you say who are the hippies now?

You know, I think the hippies were an interesting group. When you pray for spiritual awakening and I just learned this through studying and I'm just obsessively curious. I didn't know there was a difference between a term like revival and spiritual awakening.

And those are different things. Revival sort of happens in the church. Spiritual awakening happens in culture and and in a generation. And there was in in the late 60s, it was just this time of desperation. It's very similar time when we're living now. And this new generation, they were so smart and so spiritually aware and they were aware of their own vacuum. They were aware of their own need and they were aware that the dreams of their parents were insufficient in terms of like this materialistic quest. Right.

Right. And so if you pray for spiritual awakening, watch out because your life will be disrupted. And that's what happened in America. And free love, drugs, rock and roll that, you know, especially LSD. There was a class thinking more and they had to get to the bottom of that to find God. And that's why they said at the time, Jesus is the real drug.

It's like this is the thing that actually works. And so I just generation right now, I so believe in Gen Z and and I think that they're that generation that has a level of spiritual sort of awareness and and I think that they're primed to to for a revival. And I think that that's what we're seeing. And so I just what moved me the most was very, you know, on day three.

And when you just walk in and and just listening to these kids talk, it was just so cool to hear their testimony and to hear what I was doing. And this is their movement. That's right. And their time. And that's that's my time to be seen by a couple generations. Yeah.

Yeah. And that's and that's our opportunity. That's our opportunity this weekend, John, with Jesus Revolution opening nationwide. Select places tomorrow night nationwide on Friday is to sew into that, to pray into that, to support that, to help push this this weekend, which we all have an obligation to do this, to help push this out there, because the more people that hear it, I mean, it's how wild is it to hear Jimmy Fallon say Jesus Revolution on late night television? I mean, it's just amazing. God bless you, my friend. We're out of time, but I just love you and appreciate you. And it's just so another program powered by the Truth Network.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-02-27 10:56:26 / 2023-02-27 11:13:51 / 17

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