And unto the angel of the church in Sardis write; These things saith he that hath the seven Spirits of God, and the seven stars; I know thy works, that thou hast a name that thou livest, and art dead. Be watchful, and strengthen the things which remain, that are ready to die: for I have not found thy works perfect before God. (Revelation 3:1,2)
Last night, I watched the latest version of the Exodus story. Specifically, the movie, Exodus: Gods and Kings. In many ways, it was very interesting. Lots of great special effects. The plague judgments God sent upon Pharaoh looked as realistic as I have ever seen in a film. And, as with all films of this type, there is always something to learn about the way people really lived — as opposed to the romanticism that we are so prone to imagine.
However, there is always a big problem with these films coming out of the secular culture; they simply refuse to take the Bible at face value.
Just a Nice Moral Story?
They tend to ignore the biblical record in order to create a more interesting or culturally relevant storyline. I try to give these guys the benefit of the doubt; but they know what they are doing. No one spends that kind of money to produce a major film without having an axe to grind. Every filmmaker has a philosophy he wants to weave into his story.
The film, Noah, had the same problem. Only more so. What a mess! There is a post I did in reference to that film about a year ago. I think it was called, Noah and the End of Naturalism. I will repeat what I said then; it was a major waste of time and money.
But I actually expect this deviation from the world. They do this all the time with biblical films. For them to produce a film that would be faithful to the biblical record would be a miracle in itself.
My real concern is when Christians cannot seem to get things right. They should know better. They should know that the Bible is not to be trifled with. And that it should be taught from a literal, historical viewpoint.
However, there is a trend today, among many popular Christian writers and pastors, to downplay the literal interpretation of scripture. That one can do that and still follow Christ. That the gospel can be reduced to discussions of the “Resurrection” or whatever works.
All placing the Authority and Inerrancy of God’s Word as a “secondary” thing.
Is Natural Science the 2nd Bible?
As an example, many are now openly telling us that Genesis Chapter 1 is just poetry and cannot be taken as historical fact. Some will say that we can take Chapter 2 with more confidence than Chapter 1. [But this creates more problems than it solves; which they conveniently ignore.]
They are also telling us that all of the Bible must be interpreted by the other “Bible”.
From their perspective this “Bible” would be the evidences of the Natural World. Or, to be more specific, the interpretation of the written scriptures must be governed by the consensus of scientific theory (or accepted popular theory).
This is the new “Bible” that many popular Evangelical leaders are now boldly stating must be used to properly interpret scripture.
Now you might say, “We have always know this to be the opinion of unbelieving Evolutionists. So what is the big deal?”
The problem is, that this heresy, this departure from faith, is becoming more frequently taught within Christian Universities and Christian Seminaries. Even within Evangelical schools! And it specifically includes an open acceptance of Evolutionary thought applied to biblical interpretation.
This is what many “scholars” are teaching those that will become leaders within our churches. And it is becoming more wide spread through Christian books, films and organizations that have great influence within the popular Christian culture.
In an upcoming post, we will explore “Christian” organizations which are having a deep impact on many of the pastors and leaders that influence our congregations.
While many pastors may not realize what they are condoning, their congregations are slowly being conditioned to accept very dangerous, anti-biblical ideas from popular Evangelical celebrities that promote these organizations.
I wish I could say that this is a minor problem. That such groups are not really affecting the church. And that they are only on the “fringe” of Christian culture.
But the danger is very real and very seductive.
Our entire faith is based upon the historical accuracy of the Word of God. It is based on Genesis Chapter 1 as much as on Chapter 2.
We must resist those who would try to “minimize” our faith. Who try to “whittle down” those areas of our belief to only what the “popular scientific” and general culture can accept.
God did not write his Word with only the Old Testament, “primitive” believer in mind (which is the foundational belief of those departing from the literal view); God said what He meant with all men in mind. His words were meant to be understood by the simple man and the intellectual alike.
And this applies to all men who would read His words from the Creation until the End of Days.
He expects us to accept it in the most straightforward manner. Not to interpret it through the prism of religious tradition nor “popular” scientific demands.
All we have is the Word. It is the only thing we actually hold in our hands. By its power we are born again. By its power we are cleansed. And by its power we are sanctified.
It is time to wake up and “strengthen those things that remain”.
PS: That photo is of a birdfeeder. But the birds don’t use it. At least they are smart enough to exercise the wisdom God gave them.