Christianity is deeply connected with the nation of Israel and its history, says Mike Pompeo, former Kansas congressman and U.S. secretary of state.
“It is impossible for Christians not to understand the centrality of Israel in Jerusalem to our faith,” he says. “It’s where so many of the stories that are important to Christians are told.”
In “Route 60: The Biblical Highway,” Pompeo and David Friedman, former U.S. ambassador to Israel, travel Route 60, also known as “Road of the Patriarchs,” which spans from Nazareth to Beersheba. Friedman, who is Jewish, and Pompeo, a Christian, highlight the biblical significance of the landmarks along the path walked by biblical heroes such as Abraham, Jacob, Joseph and David. The film, from Trinity Broadcasting Network and Fathom Events, will be in theaters on September 18-19.
“I hope as people watch this movie it will reinforce what I think most Christians know: This is the place that Jesus was crucified, buried and rose,” Pompeo said. “We got to travel some of the same roads that he traveled in this movie, and we tell these stories about His earthly life. I think every Christian can see that, and they’ll know it from stories they learned when they were in Sunday school; they’ll know it from stories in their Bible study that they’re doing today. They’ll get a chance to see some of the places that are, frankly, pretty difficult to get to sometimes.”
In traveling these paths, Pompeo, a former Sunday school teacher, said he felt a stronger connection to stories he had only ever read about.
“We shot this over several days, and each day I would finish and I would go back and prepare for the next day by digging into the stories we were going to tell, the places we would visit in the day that followed,” he recalled. “And I just remember thinking to myself how deeply connected our faith is to the land, to this place and to these people, and we should never forget the centrality of Judea and Samaria to our faith.”
Pompeo and Friedman stressed that “Route 60” is not a political movie; it’s a film they hope will encourage Jews and Christians in their faith and highlight the beauty of a region they see as central to both faiths.
“I want people to care about biblical Israel the way that I do,” Friedman said. “I want them to see in this the opportunity to bring the Bible to life, to become more energized in their faith, and to be in a position where it’s easier for them to believe in what they already believe.”
–Dwight Widaman | MV