Monday, December 10, 2007

Greater Love Hath No Man

Have you ever seen that commercial where actress Lynn Redgrave states that she "doesn't want to die from breast cancer...I want to die from something else?"

That commercial has always bothered me.

Don't get me wrong. I realize the point that she is trying to make. However, IMO, I thought that her method of conveying her point was just...well...kinda stupid.

Maybe if she stated that she'd rather "die from old age," then, the point she was trying to make would have made more sense.

When celebrities take a platform on political issues, that bothers me too.


Just because they have such a wide audience that tend to be easily influenced by them.


Just because they are well liked celebrities, perhaps.

If such celebrities are influencing people to vote for certain candidates that I personally think will damage our country; that is when my worry meter is raised.

For instance, let's look briefly at Oprah's support for Obama. It was only a 30 second video clip released on Fox News yesterday, but it showed a side of Oprah that most of her fans probably wouldn't recognize.

On her television talk show, Oprah comes across as very loving, tolerant, inoffensive, helpful, kind, considerate and giving-to-others type of person. I firmly believe that it is that particular image which has endeared many, if not all, of her fans towards her.

But if we look at the total picture, we find that she holds a very different, much more partisan mindset. The Fox News channel brief film clip of her at the microphone "stumping" for Obama on the campaign trail showed the harsh, partisan side of her....big time!

The first thing that I noticed in that clip was how angry she appeared. Of course, this was the opportune time for her to speak out harshly against the war in Iraq. But I was a bit taken aback by her harsh and angry demeanor. I immediately thought Oprah has morphed into Maxine Waters!!

If you saw the film clip, what did you think?

There are over a million blogposts and articles that one could read regarding the Oprah/Obama connection. The four main ones are that they both share the same race, the same radical church connection, the same worldview, and the same hatred of Bush and the Iraq war.

Today I received an email link to a great article. It is called A Medicine Worse Than the Sickness. Interesting read.

I encourage you to read the entire article. In a way, it ties in Redgrave's commercial rhetoric with the usual rhetoric of those who oppose the Iraq war.


Because, quite obviously, people tend to die in wars.

In fact, you really do need to read the paragraphs that precede the following excerpt:

I am also writing from the perspective of a Christian. As I survey the landscape today I believe we can see that the sort of attitude that Sayers decried back in World War 2 is still alive and well with us today. When I hear calls like “Support the Troops- Bring them Home,” I recognize that the speaker believes that the very worst thing that can happen in life is to die. We must ask ourselves how many tyrants are in power today, stifling their populace by whatever means that they have, because free men and women can’t bring themselves to assert their understanding of what is right and what is wrong for fear that war might break out.

That is the story of Rwanda in the 90s. It is today’s story in Sudan. This article is not about trying to lay out arguments for war but rather to expound on the principle at work in Sayer’s statement. That principle is: In the face of evils that will always be with us, we shouldn't try to avoid them, stall them, or overcome them in such a way that is also evil or sets the stage for something more horrific.

I can think of other applications of this principle and when we are in a political season I think it is wise to consider the matter, especially those of us who are Christians.

Back to Redgrave's commercial.

Earlier in this post, I said that her statement, "I want to die from something else" was stupid.

Perhaps I was wrong.

When I thought it over, I realized that people often choose careers that put them in harms way. The purpose, of course, is not because they wish to die an early death. The reason they do so is to serve their fellow man and country.

Such a list could include thousands of different kinds of jobs...all the way from body guards, construction workers, policemen, firemen, border patrolmen, national guardsmen, etc. up to , and including, our brave military men and women in uniform who actively, and willingly, place their lives on the line each and every day for their beloved nation.

We can't possibly thank them enough!

However, civilian patriots are actively showing their utmost gratitude to our troops in many ways; especially during the Christmas season of celebration.

When I think of those who have died serving our country, I am reminded of what Jesus said.

Jhn 15:13 Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.

Of course, the act of Jesus laying down His Own Life for His friends is incomparable to any other act of human sacrifice. Jesus' death for our sakes is the most important event in human history. His resurrection to life everlasting demonstrates that this world is not all that there is.

As far as war is concerned, losing one's life in such necessary battles is not a "wasted" life, as some war dissenters have foolishly stated and claim. The Christian men and women who have chosen to do such a sacrificial act of service will be greeted by our Lord with, "well done, good and faithful servant."

Unfortunately, such a sentiment is lost on those who perceive this life as "all that there is." But God's Word tells us differently:

1Jo 3:16
Hereby perceive we the love [of God], because he laid down his life for us: and we ought to lay down [our] lives for the brethren.

The assurance of Eternal Life is mentioned 30 times in Scripture. Jesus Himself often spoke these very words.

Back to Oprah.

Please know that I admire Oprah for all of the causes that she supports, the generosity of donations and the giving that she does for her fellow men and women. As my former pastor always used to say, "I just wish I had some time to share the gospel of Christ with Oprah!"

A born again celebrity of her caliber could do so much more good in the world! It 's not the material good that we do in this world that makes the difference in eternity. It's the spiritual work of Christ, our one and only Savior and Lord Who does the most good.

Physically, we are here to serve our fellow man. Spiritually, all that we can do is point others towards salvation in Him. We can share the Word of God to this sinful, suffering world. We need to serve in deeds and truth.

1Jo 3:17 But whoso hath this world's good, and seeth his brother have need, and shutteth up his bowels [of compassion] from him, how dwelleth the love of God in him?

1Jo 3:18 My little children, let us not love in word, neither in tongue; but in deed and in truth.

1Jo 3:19 And hereby we know that we are of the truth, and shall assure our hearts before him.

1Jo 3:20 For if our heart condemn us, God is greater than our heart, and knoweth all things.

1Jo 3:21 Beloved, if our heart condemn us not, [then] have we confidence toward God.

1Jo 3:22 And whatsoever we ask, we receive of him, because we keep his commandments, and do those things that are pleasing in his sight.

1Jo 3:23 And this is his commandment, That we should believe on the name of his Son Jesus Christ, and love one another, as he gave us commandment.

1Jo 3:24 ¶ And he that keepeth his commandments dwelleth in him, and he in him. And hereby we know that he abideth in us, by the Spirit which he hath given us.

HT: Laiglesforum, Troops


Matt W. said...

It's kinda funny, I had just finished writting a post for my own blog about the Oprah thing, and then I came here and read this. We took differant angles, but we are in agreement. I think that you are dead on here.

Also, every time I see the "I'd rather die from something else" commercial, I think it sounds a little nutty. I mean, that's the kind of statement that could be taken to mean, if I can't beat it, I'll kill myself, or some such thing as that, cause that would be something else, wouldn't it? Old age would have been much better phrasing.
Matt W.

Christinewjc said...

Hi Matt,

I replied to your blog post over at your blog.

I thought that the poll I heard about on Fox News was interesting.

"Would Oprah's endorsement of Obama influence you to change your own voting decision and cause you to vote for him?"

The poll answers:

Yes = 1%
No = 19%
Won't change it = 80%

(think I made a mistake in the "no" category at your's not 29%, it's 19%)

Looks like she can influence people to read books that she recommends, but does not have the same influence when it comes to political candidates that she supports.