Star Wars…


My objective with this entry is not only to continue my personal processing of God’s divine plan of redemption, but also to speak into the lives of those who often challenge the text of God (The Bible), and in turn miss the very Word of God (His voice).  Many of them are friends.

There seems to be a new wave of atheism prominent in our culture today.  As one pastor friend reflected, the new atheism of our age may have actually been spawned by the a-theistic approach of those who now train the leaders of the church?  The very institutions set apart to prepare ministers, seem now to spend more time challenging the faith from a point of logic and reason than encouraging a relationship with the faith giver!

In a recent dialogue with one of my professing atheist friends, I was sent a Facebook post on secular humanism.  I will reprint it for your review:

“Secular humanism is a philosophy and world view which centers upon human concerns and employs rational and scientific methods to address the wide range of issues important to us all. While secular humanism is at odds with faith-based religious systems on many issues, it is dedicated to the fulfillment of the individual and humankind in general. To accomplish this end, secular humanism encourages a commitment to a set of principles which promote the development of tolerance and compassion and an understanding of the methods of science, critical analysis, and philosophical reflection.”  http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=2223483925

Interestingly enough, I’m not sure that I radically disagree with the words above, but any attempts to dialogue around this post have been conveniently construed as me “arguing” for my position of faith?  Any efforts to share my life experience at that point are like trying to describe color to a blind person!

When it comes to books like Genesis,  my friends taunt our “apple” theory along with its “talking snakes”, ideas that the church in its flannel-graph approach to communication may have exercised more than the Word, making it doubly hard to keep their attention.

As well, like with the earlier story of Copernicus, churchmen continue in their notorious ability to reject knowledge, while scientists, though often condemned, progressively build the foundations for current medical science.  Christians then flock much more readily to medical science than to their own faith.  The arguments offered by these atheists now become even more compelling.

What if the Word is no more science than it is history, but in fact is simply a love story built around a drama whose actors are the weakest of all known creatures of intelligence, strategically placed on a globe once inhabited solely by ancient fallen angels, whom humans beings cannot even see?  The weaker creatures, these humans, are now protected by a Superior Being who holds full capacity to deliver them and in fact transform them into the image of His own son.  By empowering these beings, this God is able through them, to overcome the ravages of death packaged within the sinfulness of those previous and ancient fallen beings.  He, God, then becomes flesh (birthed to a virgin…He is His own Son), then modeling deep love and an alternative to  sinfulness through these “people” now empowered by faith, He will restore His Kingdom in the very face of those once attempting major mutiny?   Sounds like a Stars Wars saga, huh?  Maybe the popularity of such myths is the fact that we all somehow know them to be real?

One thought on “Star Wars…

  1. Your closing comment regarding the appeal of epic stories has been a point of contemplation for myself as well in the last few months. I had a recent experience with an individual for whom I was providing service. He was taken to church by his mother and other family members but it had little impact. He read scripture as part of church participation and attempted to read it in other contexts at times but could not understand it. He had difficult childhood circumstances and his adult life was complicated by alcohol abuse and psychiatric problems. Then a couple of years ago he picked up a bible and began to read. This time what he read had meaning and he experienced understanding. He saw how men who committed despicable acts were reconciled to God. He never realized how interesting and “real life” the stories were. The scripture provided a compelling narrative of the grace and mercy given to people that he found more engaging than that provided by the media and entertainment industry. His life began to change.

    He wanted to share the truth from his life and he did so without fanfare or any indication doing so would be of any benefit to him. In the end I validated his experience and told him I think his story reminds me that God provides the grace we need to have the capacity to respond to the gospel. When he finally read the scriptures with understanding, he was experiencing God’s prevenient grace and thankfully responded. The stories from the Old Testament serve to show that none of us deserve the goodness of God but He relentlessly pursues us. The stories from the New Testament show that God’s purposes will be fulfilled even when we fall short. The scriptures in total reveal an epic struggle of good and evil that transcends any given person’s life span and our capacity to comprehend at any given moment the implications of events that ultimately mark progress toward final resolution. The power of the gospel really does change lives.

    This experience came at a time when cynicism had begun to encroach upon my faith. I have been having difficulty seeing real evidence of the power of the Holy Spirit in the world around me. His personal story of prevenient grace reminds me the good news is for “sinners”. It will have little impact on the self righteous, religiously inoculated, and humanistic do gooders. But when the seed falls on good soil (that prepared by grace) fruit will be produced. Lives will change. Let us participate in the life changing power of restored relationship with God and joyfully observe and participate in His cosmic story.

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