Friday, January 1, 2016
Use the Force, Elisha!
So, what makes the Star Wars movies so great? Well, I guess it's that there's a little bit of something in there for everyone. There's action, adventure, romance, fantasy, sci-fi and even comedy. An intricate story weaves around dynamic characters, leaving audiences captivated with the entire premise of the movie and willing to spend an enormous amount of money on souvenirs, toys, posters and much more. (I have not gone so far!)
Here's what gets me. Take those same people from the movie theater and hand them a Bible, and most of them will turn up their noses. Why? Because to them, the Bible is boring. In their minds, it is simply a list of dos and don'ts. Pages and pages of "thou shalt nots." If only they knew what they were missing. For example, just this morning, I read a passage that reminded me so much of Star Wars that I laughed out loud.
Remember the Jedi mind trick from Star Wars? You know, where Obi-Wan Kenobi waved his hand in front of the storm troopers and said, "These are not the droids you're looking for," and the soldiers replied, "These are not the droids we're looking for." Or, where Luke controlled the mind of Jabba the Hutt's right-hand man. That's in the Bible! Don't believe me? Check it out.
And when the servant of the man of God was risen early, and gone forth, behold, an host compassed the city both with horses and chariots. And his servant said unto him, Alas, my master! how shall we do? And he answered, Fear not: for they that be with us are more than they that be with them. And Elisha prayed, and said, Lord, I pray thee, open his eyes, that he may see. And the Lord opened the eyes of the young man; and he saw: and, behold, the mountain was full of horses and chariots of fire round about Elisha. And when they came down to him, Elisha prayed unto the Lord, and said, Smite this people, I pray thee, with blindness. And he smote them with blindness according to the word of Elisha. And Elisha said unto them, This is not the way, neither is this the city: follow me, and I will bring you to the man whom ye seek. But he led them to Samaria. And it came to pass, when they were come into Samaria, that Elisha said, Lord, open the eyes of these men, that they may see. And the Lord opened their eyes, and they saw; and, behold, they were in the midst of Samaria. - II Kings 6:15-20
Elisha and his fellow prophets were under attack by the Syrians. Their camp was surrounded by a great host of battle-hardened soldiers who knew exactly where they were going and who they were looking for. But at the request of Elisha, God struck the entire army blind. Then, Elisha, in his Jedi fashion, approached the bloodthirsty army and said, "This is not the way you want to go. These are not the prophets you seek. Let me show you the way." Then he proceeded to lead the entire blind army to the heart of Samaria, a rival country. You see, Elisha used the force--the force of God, that is! Is that awesome of what? Boring? I think not!
Like so many others, I enjoy a good movie. But I praise the Lord for opening my eyes to the wonders within His holy Word. Just like Star Wars, there's something for everyone: action, adventure, romance, fantasy, sci-fi and even comedy. But unlike Star Wars, the Bible offers much, much more. It offers instruction and guidance. It provides comfort and encouragement. And, with no disrespect toward Star Wars, the Bible stays true to its own story line and never contradicts itself.
Am I against movies or movie theaters? Absolutely not. But may I urge you to spend as much time soaking in the Word of God as you do sitting in front of the television. As far as I'm concerned, I can think of no better New Year's Resolution than to spend more time in the Scriptures.