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Alan Ritchson Preaches Gospel on Bill Maher Podcast

Michael Foust | CrosswalkHeadlines Contributor | Updated: Mar 14, 2024
Alan Ritchson Preaches Gospel on Bill Maher Podcast

Alan Ritchson Preaches Gospel on Bill Maher Podcast

The actor who is best known for his roles in Ordinary Angels, Reacher and Fast X explained the gospel and defended the faith on a recent episode of Club Random with Bill Maher, telling the host that Jesus introduced a “radically different new way to love.”

Alan Ritchson, an outspoken Christian, and Maher, a self-described skeptic/agnostic, discussed religion and faith during a 70-plus minute discussion that also delved into Ritchson’s career and Maher’s 2008 movie Religulous, which mocked religion, including Christianity.

Christianity, Ritchson said, introduced “somebody who claims to be the Messiah pointing the way toward a whole, radically different new way to love. …And that's through self-sacrificial care of your neighbor.”

“And when you talk about just that, it's a really beautiful thing that a lot of other religions don't talk about,” he said, “because you're talking about religions that talk about the way to salvation is through doing it over and over and over again and living a million lives or finding your own self-elevation through meditation or contemplation. But this is talking about admitting that we are flawed and admitting that there's a path toward joy that comes through self-service and self-sacrifice.”

Maher acknowledged that the message of Jesus was “revolutionary” because it told slaves and others on the lower tiers of society that it “gets good in the afterlife.”

“You know, this would be a really successful episode if you got me to be a Christian by the end of it,” Maher said, laughing.

At one point Maher told Ritchson, “Maybe you’re right.”

Christianity, Ritchson said, should impact the way Christians live in their day-to-day lives.

“The message is that the Kingdom is coming to us… that we're earthly creatures made for this place, and that this resurrection will take place on Earth,” he said. “If you're truly following the way of Christianity, you will be a good steward of this place.”

The two men went back and forth on several key tenets of Christianity, including Paul’s claim of apostleship. Maher said Paul was not a true apostle because he did not walk with Jesus in the flesh. Ritchson retorted that Paul was an apostle because Christ appeared to him in a vision.

“You have to believe in magic and I admit I do believe in magic,” Ritchson said. “The voice he was talking to said, ‘Why are you persecuting Christians?’ This was Christ that he was talking about. I believe that he did have an interaction, a personal interaction with the person [Christ]."

Ritchson added, “I believe that that kind of magic is real.”


Image credit: ©Getty Images / Bryan Steffy / Stringer

Michael Foust has covered the intersection of faith and news for 20 years. His stories have appeared in Baptist PressChristianity TodayThe Christian Post, the Leaf-Chronicle, the Toronto Star and the Knoxville News-Sentinel.

Alan Ritchson Preaches Gospel on Bill Maher Podcast