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Sunday, April 06, 2008

The Crucifixion of Oprah Part Tres

This is the third post on Oprah and the barrage of emails and videos I have received to make her out to be “new age” (have we not retired this term yet?) and evil. I would encourage you to watch the video from the first post and follow with us from The Crucifixion of Oprah Part One.

Continued : : ;

Then they say Oprah promotes, “The man on the cross is an archetypal image. He is every man and every woman.” Okay, a little weird, yes. But, what about the concept of Jesus becoming sin on our behalf? All our sin taken on Himself. Every man. Every woman. That man told you and I to take up our own cross and follow Him. Then we are told to lose our lives. Put the old man to death. “I am crucified with Christ—nevertheless I live,” said the Apostle. Doesn’t seem as weird now, right. Poetic device and metaphor are not statements of truth. They are pictures to get us to the truth. I’m just sayin.’

My mind is part of God’s—I am very holy” says Oprah or Eckhart. Okay. Is this really that whacked? I mean, the Bible says I am transformed by the renewing of my mind. And, I am urged to be holy as he is holy. He calls me holy because of Jesus. I am made in His image. I’m just sayin.’

My holiness is my salvation” is another apparently bad thing to believe. Well, what if I said Jesus—our high priest—in whom I have salvation, has made me holy. His holiness has become my holiness. Now is my holiness my salvation? I’m just sayin.’

My salvation comes from me” they say. Yeah, that is weird. But what about the Christian who believes they must make a willful decision to follow Jesus in order to obtain salvation? What if they say they made a choice to lay down their burdens and put aside old ways and follow Jesus for salvation?” Where did salvation start in that process? I’m just sayin.’

Let me remember that there is no sin” they say. Well, okay. I do agree sin no longer has a hold on me. I have been made right in relationship with God that was once broken. It is no longer broken. That sin is in the sea of forgetfulness. As far as east is from the west. It no longer exists as far as God is concerned and as far as I am. So . . .

Do not make the pathetic error of “clinging to the old rugged cross.Hmmm. Let’s take that for a spin. Honestly, a case could be made for not wallowing in the death of Jesus constantly and walking with our heads hung low. He is alive! Our salvation is not in the cross, it is in Jesus! So, yeah, it is kinda pathetic on some levels to constantly be clinging to a cross that could have been any other device of torture and doesn’t really bring us salvation. The absolute horrific thing about the cross was the “removal of God” to quote Peter Rollins. Now, can we find the absent God in the midst of the absence? Yes! Absolutely! But, there is more to the story than the cross. Jesus doesn't want you to pathetically cling to it either. He wants you to fall in love with Him and begin to love others.

The only message of the crucifixion is that you can overcome the cross.Ummm. Yeah, that’s kinda dumb sounding. Of course, it is all out of context though. We know what happens when things get taken out of context right? Denominations get started. Any good preacher could take this statement and turn it in to something beautiful. Context.

It is sad to me that they are making a case against Oprah for confusing Christians as they say in the flick. Really? Oprah? Like there is nothing else to confuse people? In all honesty, Oprah doesn’t confuse Christians . . . Christians who don’t ask questions or read their Bibles or jump in to every witch-hunt confuse other Christians.

Oprah says in the video she took God out of the box, recognized His indescribable hugeness, and was unsettled by simply trusting in the rules, belief systems, and doctrine that was handed to her by the Baptist church. Nothing wrong with that.

They make a big deal out of Oprah saying she was confused about the “jealous God” quote. She even mistook it to mean God might be jealous “of” her, which didn’t make sense and sent her on a quest. So she misunderstood what jealous God means. So? Lots of people can’t explain that one until they dig deep and seek to understand. If I believed that meant God was jealous of me I would be confused too.

How about the quote “Man made god in his own image” and that “the eternal, infinite, and un-nameable was reduced to a mental idol?” Well, isn’t that true for some? We can certainly be accused of this stuff. Read Screwtape Letters—the classic by C.S. Lewis and get some insight on this.

Then there are a few words to this effect: “God isn’t something to believe. God is. If God is simply a belief he is not truly God.” Actually friends, a lot can be said about this. God exists outside of our belief of Him. God doesn’t need us to step towards Him to reveal Himself. Being a Christian is way more about relationship and participation than it is “believing” the “right” things and being able to articulate them.

More to come . . .