Back when he was promoting Rocky Balboa in 2006, Sylvester Stallone spoke to faith-based media about the final sequel in the Rocky series. I participated in a conference call where he shared about his Christian faith and some thoughts about being connected to a church. I’ve referenced the interview a few times before and on the heels of his supporting role in Creed II, I wanted to share them again here:
“Without the church, it’s like having a boat without a rudder. All my life I’ve been involved with exercise. I know a lot about the body, but you need help. You need a trainer. You need to go to a gym and have the guidance, the expertise. I feel the same way about Christianity, about church in general. Minsters, pastors, they are the trainers that take you places you think you can’t go but they guide you into it
“A lot of people say ‘I can do that on my own’ but it’s not quite the same. I found that out the hard way. They’re just trying to justify their laziness. The more I go to church and the more I turn myself over to the process of believing in Jesus, I feel the process (is working). You put in the time, you will reap the benefits.”
Later in the conversation, Stallone mentioned work on the upcoming Rambo movie, which would take place in Myanmar (Burma):
“I was looking for subject matter that would take everyone on a spiritual journey and what God means to people in other parts of the world. In Burma, this small tribal group of Christians that are undergoing hardship at the hands of the Burmese. For 60 years, they’re going through systematic genocide. But these grouips from the USA, on their own time and money, make this journey into heavily mined area to bring the Bible, the Word, bring a sense that there’s going to be a light at the end of the tunnel, to these people living in the jungle. Children are enslaved, houses are being burned to the ground. Nobody cares but these missionaries. So if a group of missionaries go in there and are captured, then Rambo goes in after them. Rambo also becomes a crusader.
(So you’re saying Rambo is a Christian crusader??)
“He is!! He’s a Christian warrior, can you believe it? He’s bitter, but when he meets these people and looks into their eyes, he’s swept up in it. You can tell a geo-political story and a religious story of how Christianity is being persecuted, it’s true – you can look it up right now.”
Sylvester Stallone can be seen again in Creed II, starring Michael B. Jordan and Tessa Thompson, releasing next week from MGM/Warner Brothers. Below, he speaks briefly about the lessons learned from the Rocky Balboa character.