Tonight Rachel and I went to see An Inconvenient Truth with Al Gore. It was a documentary sort of film with most of the footage being taken at a presentation he was doing in front of a large group of people. The amount of charts and visuals that he provided were endless and they really helped make his point. At the end of the video we are left realizing that we humans have really messed ourselves over and that we need to start taking responsibility for our actions and work to bring about a better future for ourselves. The entire film was on global warming and within the next fifty years or so, if we don’t start to cut down on our waste and energy use we are going to see a lot of devastation as coastlines all over the world start to flood. This is a point that I think we all need to take quite seriously and would recommend for everyone to see this movie at one time or another and you’ll probably walk away feeling at the very least more educated and at the most wanting to run for mayor to help try to stop it.
Through the movie he talked about scientists and how that when they stumble across information like this (that global warming is in fact happening) that they all through history have been pressured a lot to keep quiet. He talked about the oppression that scientists would go through to reveal this inconvenient truth to the world.
As a Christian, I began to realize that Al Gore’s message about global warming goes a lot deeper than just global warming. It reaches to the heart of the gospel and living it out. The entire Kingdom of God is an inconvenient truth. Christians throughout all of history have traded the inconvenient truth for something easy, bearable and comfortable. For instance…
|Gospel’s Inconvenient Truth
|Our Convenient Truth
|It is easier for a camel to go through an eye of a needle than for a rich man to get into heaven.
|God wants to financially bless us and give us an abundance of money.
|Living in community with people is how the church will function.
|Attending church on Sunday is how the church will function.
|Our lives our worship
|Worship takes place at a certain time in a certain venue
|Put others in front of yourself
|God wants to heal me, touch me, bless me
|The poor and widowed are the closest to God’s heart
|Throwing money in an offering plate takes care of our duty to the poor
|Don’t worry about tomorrow, tomorrow will take care of itself
|Build equity into yourself for later, poor money into a retirement fund for later
|Love your neighbour as yourself
|Loving means you ask them to come to church with you
|Everything belongs to God
|God gets 10%
|Be a good steward
|Everything God has given me is a gift so be grateful
|Don’t be greedy
|When you get enough money get a bigger house with more things
|Jesus brings salvation
|Jesus brings salvation so you better not screw it up
It’s interesting how we can take everything that is encompassed in the gospel and naturally, because we are human we edit it and change it until it makes sense and is comfortable to us. We manage to do it with almost everything and we don’t even know it. Jesus’ message is very inconvenient. Especially within the culture that we find ourselves in. Jesus’ message is completely counter to everything that is normal or comfortable to us. Jesus’ message is inconvenient to the way that a lot of us thought his message was saying. Soren Kierkegaard sums up my thoughts so beautifully in this quote that I’ve posted before, but I think it fits. So I’ll end with that.
The matter is simple. The Bible is very easy to understand. But we Christians are a bunch of scheming swindlers. We pretend to be unable to understand it because we know very well that the minute we understand we are obliged to act accordingly. Take any words in the New Testament and forget everything except pledging yourself to act accordingly. My God, you will say, if I do that my whole life will be ruined. How would I ever get on in the world.
Herein lies the real place of Christian scholarship. Christian Scholarship is the Church’s prodigious invention to defend itself against the Bible, to ensure that we can continue to be good Christians without the Bible coming to close. Dreadful it is to fall into the hands of the living God. Yes, it is even dreadful to be alone with the New Testament.