Amid reports over the appearance of an LGBT pride flag on the set of the Christian series "The Chosen," creator and director Dallas Jenkins says he is willing to hire individuals who do not share his spiritual views and doesn't enact tight restrictions on how they can express themselves.
Christian Post reporter Jeannie Ortega-Law sat down with Jenkins for an interview Wednesday night, asking him about the difficulties of employing a cast and crew from various political and religious backgrounds while staying true to the production's mission. The multi-season historical drama centers on the life and ministry of Jesus Christ.
Jenkins clarified that the knowledge that God knows he is a sinner does not mean he is exempt from continuing to strive for righteousness. Going off of that point, the Evangelical Christian stated that there is no "religious or political litmus test" the cast and crew must undergo to assist in telling the story of Jesus and his disciples.
"We are not a church in which all of our employees are going to fit under one particular mission statement, one particular belief system," he said. "We are a for-profit company; we're a media company; we're a public company. We have investors and all of that."
He said the people hired to work on "The Chosen" often come from a "broad spectrum of beliefs" and an individual's qualifications and willingness to work are considered when hiring someone for the project.
"When we hire someone to work for us, our No. 1 objective is who is the best person for this job?" he said. "We made a decision from the beginning that our standards is going to be 'will you work hard?'"
The director and co-writer clarified that if someone is vulgar or harming someone else, that's not appropriate in a professional environment. However, Jenkins said he does not discriminate against people regarding their personal belief systems.
"When it comes to their personal belief systems or what they wear, we're not going to do what we've seen other people do, where sometimes you'll see a Christian not allowed to wear a hat or express themselves or put a sticker on their desk that expresses their beliefs," he said, commenting that it's "unfortunate" when employers engage in that type of behavior.
Jenkins emphasized that he and his production team would not do the same thing in "reverse" to people who do not share their views, stating that the goal when on set is to ensure that the job gets done.
"And as long as you're contributing to that and helping make that show great, as great as possible, we think our viewers should be saying 'thank you,'" he said, "especially to those who might have different beliefs than we do and yet are still willing to work their tails off for this show and for the message of the show."
This week, media reports highlighted how a photograph recently surfaced of an LGBT pride flag attached to a camera during the filming of the fourth season of "The Chosen." On Wednesday, Daily Wire CEO Jeremy Boreing took to Twitter to apologize for an article his outlet published about the incident.
"This is a disgusting piece, and I'm sorry we ran it," Boreing wrote. "A show like The Chosen has 100+ employees. One of them brought a pride flag to work. That sucks, but it's hardly the fault of the show."
The conservative CEO contended that the article his website published "reeks of 'purity death spiral' politics," which he defined as the belief that "unless you are perfect — as defined by the ever-and-rapidly changing sensibilities of the moment, you aren't even good." He described that way of thinking as "madness."
"Hold people and organizations accountable, yes. Hold them to impossible standards and require death for their sins? I think actual Jesus had something to say about that," he concluded.
As some on the cast have come to faith in Christ while working on the show, Jenkins said he thinks its a "great thing" for non-Christians to be able to work on the set and "get this kind of exposure to a story like this and to someone who is leading the team who has the beliefs that I do and the passion that I do for Christ."