Jewish Journal

That born-again ‘Basic Instinct’ for Joe Eszterhaus

by Brad A. Greenberg

September 21, 2008 | 11:05 pm

I created this post two weeks ago, but for some reason never published it. Here goes:

Stranger things have happened, but this one definitely attests to the power of religious healing.

Joe Eszterhas, who wrote “Basic Instinct” and “Showgirls,” is a new man, born again of the Holy Spirit. He gives his testimony at Newsweek’s On Faith religion site:

Why did God save the life of a man who had trashed, lampooned, and marginalized Him most of his life? Why did He take the time and the trouble to save me? It certainly wasn’t because I had written Basic Instinct and Showgirls, right? Was it because my wife and I had four little boys we were trying to raise? Possibly.

Or was it God’s divinely impish sense of humor? “Who, you? You’re praying? After everything you’ve done to break my commandments and after every nasty, unfunny thing you’ve written about Me and those who follow Me - now you’re sobbing? Praying? Asking Me to help you? Hah! Okay, fine, I’ll help you. But if I do, know this: My help will obliterate the old, infamous you. You’ll wind up turning your life inside-out. You’ll wind up stopping all of your excesses. You know what will happen to you? You’ll wind up telling the world what I did for you. You’ll wind up carrying my cross in church. Yes, I make all things new - and you will be new, too.”

Well, I thought I heard God saying all those things to me . . . and then all of the things God said would happen . . . did. My life has turned inside-out. I have stopped my excesses and replaced them with prayer and long walks. I am carrying the cross as often as they’ll let me at Holy Angels Church in Bainbridge Township, Ohio. And I have written a book as a thank-you to God. Not just for saving my life, but for saving me.

I am witness to and the beneficiary of God’s love for all of us. Am I am witness, too, to the fact that His love is so strong that it was even able to open my rusty old closed heart.

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Since launching the blog in 2007, I’ve referred to myself as “a God-fearing Christian with devilishly good Jewish looks.” The description, I’d say, is an accurate one,...

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