The Down Side About God Not Being dead!
First, before I start discussing the whole “God is not dead” thing, let me say that I absolutely love the God Is Not Dead movies. The first and third ones are fantastic…the second…not that great, but I liked it.
If you haven’t guessed by now, this post is mostly going to be a commentary on the God Is Not Dead movies…or more specifically the first one. Now, like I said before, I loved the movie, and I thought it really portrayed the idea of God’s creation even through the scientific lens of evolution.
We won’t be discussing the whole literal creation vs. evolution argument, but the movie does touch on the idea that God created the process of the big bang theory and the such.
Okay, so enough of that. Let’s get to what I want to talk about. It is something I actually never considered until I was discussing the movie with a friend of mine. I don’t remember who this friend was or even where or when we were discussing the movie, but what I do remember is a comment that he said which really made me think of how we Christians “do the right thing in the wrong way.”
How was the movie “done the wrong way” you might ask? Well, here’s what my friend had issues with. The movie is about a Christian who goes to a college, and his professor tells the class that he is in that they will have to basically do more work in the class unless everyone writes down on a sheet of paper that God is dead. In short, that is what will happen – now there is more to that, but that is the pretty much the bones of it. The main character does not write this and thus has to present an argument to the class, and if he does not convince the class that God is not dead, then he will fail the semester in that class.
This is a great movie and has done much for encouraging the faith-filled believers to stay strong while giving some basic apologetic arguments about how Christianity is not just a “fake” faith, but can, in fact, be reasoned out. That is one reason I absolutely love this movie.
But here is the problem with this movie. The movie alienates and downright ticks off an entire people group. I have known many atheists…in fact one of my best friends in the military was a proclaiming atheist. Never have I met an atheist who hated Christians or hated God. Yes, I know they exist, however not all atheists are haters, but in this movie the antagonist…the one everyone is rooting for failure…. the one everyone hates…the one who everyone hopes gets put in his place in the most humiliating way is an ATHIEST.
Now, my friend mentioned that if he were an atheist, he would be angry at this movie because it portrays the atheists as the villains. Probably much like we believers get frustrated when a “Christian” character is the villain in a movie and using religion as a reason to do evil.
In the process of ministering to countless people, this movie also manages to alienate and anger an entire group of men and women, unintentional as it may have been.
So, with all that said, it made me think of how many times we as Christians “do the right thing in the wrong way” for example boycotts, picketing, witnessing, even praying for people.
How do we do these in the wrong ways…now remember…this is all my opinion, so you are welcome to disagree with me.
Well, let me give you a few examples that I have seen on social media. We’ll start with one of the most recent moral obligations Christians have.
Most of us are against abortions and thus many actively participate in demonstrations and the such. One such video I saw was of a man standing outside an abortion clinic yelling that abortion is killing babies and that the doctors need Jesus. Now was he wrong? No. In my opinion, however, he was IN the wrong. In this video, all it did was stir up a particular doctor to angry, hateful, and spiteful comments. Is it right to protest the killing of unborn babies? Yes. Maybe he could have found a more loving way to demonstrate his grievances.
Another example…that has been going on for years…. would be homosexuality. Now, there is pretty much a disagreement in the Christian realm of the truth of homosexuality as a sin or not, but we won’t talk about that.
For those who do believe it to be a sin, many times we see our fellow brothers and sisters speaking harsh and condemning words over homosexuals. This is completely against what I believe Jesus stands for. Not once do we ever see Jesus speak harshly to unbelievers…. wait…. let me take that back…. he DOES…. speak harshly to the religious people of the time. Let that sink in.
What Jesus did do was to love those who he disagreed with. He never condoned their sin and in fact, told some not to sin anymore, but he never spoke evil of them or made them feel degraded as people.
We as believers should express our disagreements with what others might do…if…. they…proclaim to be believers. We need to love non-believers (even if they never receive Jesus) and yes, we can let them know that we disagree with them based on religious views, but it shouldn’t hinder our love to them.
So, let’s turn the tables. How have we believers done the right thing in the right way?
Well, I remember this one video about a man who got to speak at the trial of his daughter’s murderer. This man was a serial killer and was finally caught. It was indeed touching. Person after person told the murderer that he should die, rot in hell, etc. but then this man came up. Through his tears, he spoke love into this man who killed his daughter (I’m not sure that I could do that) he said that he forgave the murderer and that it wouldn’t be easy, but he is choosing to forgive and love the man. He said (if I remember right) that he prays that the murderer finds Jesus.
This cold-hearted, stone hard man just began to weep. Not one person before the believer had impacted him in any way…until words of forgiveness and love broke through the adamantium (only the nerds will get that reference) surrounding the murderer’s heart.
I have said my two cents on the issue. I say all of that, to say this…. we Christians should think more of what the best way to “minister” and show righteousness before we act out on our emotions…which is definitely easier said than done…. I know.
We will never get it ALL right…. but we sure as heck can start trying. Rather than condemning unbelievers for NOT walking like we do, we should love them until they START walking like we do.
I actually have much more to say on this issue, but I have already written too much!!