Saturday, 15 January 2011

Strange Cures

"In this place lay a multitude of the blind, lame and paralyzed, waiting for the waters to be troubled". The pool at Bethesda in John's Gospel.

There's often debate about certain things being of any real value. Homeopathy is one such practice that immediately springs to mind, but it's fascinating how certain other 'beliefs' (of equally if not more dubious suppositions) are peddled publicly without anyone so much as batting an eyelid.

This morning, for example, I was listening to a local radio station which had a guest who works with prisoners, getting them to record bedtime stories to send home to their children. Also on the show was a chap who runs a local zoo, whose biography is about to be made into a Hollywood movie. He kindly offered to bring a 3D audio/visual venture by the zoo into the local prison for the inmates to enjoy - fine - but his reason for doing so? Well, because we've evolved from tree-dwelling primates, so we enjoy viewing other animals... it reaches us at some primal level and refreshes us there! I guess you have to resort to such 'therapy' if you believe we're just animals.

A few minutes later, I flipped channels to see what the local 'Christian' radio station was up to...
any chance they would be giving something like the Gospel of Christ a mention? They were busy on another endeavor... advocating local church unity by looking at common ways that 'all Christians' in the town can be brought together under a common goal to love God and neighbor...that's what Jesus shows us it's really all about. I felt myself groan inwardly. Yes, we apparently can skip over lots of things (as with evolutionary therapy) in our haste to find common the need for the actual Gospel (we're saved by God's merciful work of Grace, and nothing more). It's the same old merry go-round... the same old message of we can, of course, all help ourselves, but the result is at best a few cracks hidden to our eye.

Jesus approached one man at the pool in the story referred to above. So many, apparently, wanted a cure, but only one of these would actually look and listen to the true remedy to all our ills. It would seem that reality is still very much the case today.


Anonymous said...

What could be more strange in 2011 than believing that the brutal murder of Jesus is "good news".

Or belief in the "resurrection" of Jesus' body. And the belief that you are somehow "saved" from death by believing in the "resurrection".

Or indeed believing that the Bible altogether is the infallible (and only) word of "God".

Howard said...

John, it's actually pretty simple - if the life, death and resurrection of Jesus are not 'good news', then there really isn't any, because we're totally locked into a realm subject to nothing but futility. How is that good for anyone or anything?

Truth alone is what will true set us free, and that is found in the life and redeeming action of Jesus Christ.