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Friday, April 5, 2013

XCIV. It's the Culture

As Resurrection Sunday (Easter) was this past week many television stations chose to air movies and TV specials about the Crucifixion of Christ. The one that of course that is most notorious of our age is the Passion of the Christ. There is a scene in the movie that explains it all about our culture. Well, actually the Bible explains it all but in the day of electronics who is going to literally read pages?

The scene is when Pilate has given the choice to the Jewish people whom he would release to them as part of a tradition of releasing a prisoner for Passover. The two choices were Jesus of Nazareth or Barabbas. The crowd overwhelmingly chose to release Barabbas. To understand this story more and what it has to do with politics you have to look at the underlining themes. One thing neat about the Bible is the circular pattern of the writings. Hardly any verse or any part of the history can stand alone. The names of these two men we usually hear in Greek since most of the New Testament was written in Greek. Traditions, and the Hebrew translation, state the full names are actually Y'Shua Ha'Natzeret and Y'Shua Bar-Abba; Jesus the Nazarene and Jesus Barabbas, respectively. Oddly enough they had the same what we would call first name. Nazarene of course means the first Jesus was from Nazareth. But what does Barabbas mean in English? Bar means "son of", Abba means "father", or "God". So the choices that people had for release was Jesus of Nazareth or Jesus Son of God.

Why is that important to the Church? Because metaphorically speaking the real Son of God was the one who people humiliated, punished, beaten, mocked, spit on, bruised, and ultimately crucified while the fake son of God was let go. The truth was sacrificed for what mankind thought was the truth. Too many times Biblical truth is sacrificed to be politically correct.

The same it is with today's truth. People think that what they feel is correct and just because others back their feelings up then they feel they are justified. They take the truth and beat it up. They stretch it. They bruise it. They mock it. The truth becomes the lie to them, while the actual lie lives on. Those who stick up for the truth are made to sound like they are idiots or bigots.   Liberalism in its modern form is the lie.
 
Church leaders have embraced this idea.  The idea that the Church should change due to the culture becoming more liberal is what is killing the Church.  The new way of thinking is "succumb" to the culture.  Don't say things that the culture doesn't want to hear because then they won't show up to church.  Well, no one is supposed to show up to church, the church is supposed to show up to them.  All the church cares about today are the numbers.  One of the first things we see in any church bulletin is the attendance number.  The church building is not for the lost, it is for the ones who already know Christ.  Christians are supposed to be witnesses---OUTSIDE the church building.  And sometimes that means going against the culture, staying true to the truth.  Acceptance of life actions, practices, and styles are now common.  This seems like it is the right thing to do but this is why the Bible says there is a way that seems right to a man but in the end it only brings death.  Just because it seems like the right thing does not mean it is.  That does not mean compassion for those who are lost should be stopped, on the contrary, telling someone the truth is more compassion than letting someone live a lie and die in their sin.  Sometimes the truth hurts but the truth is what sets you free.  Stop accepting the lies of this world.  We need to change the culture.


Note:  This thought is also located at www.ideasoftim.blogspot.com but focuses on the political aspect of our culture.

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