Sunday, January 15, 2006
Over the past month, I have received numerous emails from Christians decrying the TV show, "The Book of Daniel". Now, I know what I am about to say is not going to be popular with my Christian brethren, but SO WHAT? What did you expect from the world's system? Here is what one email in particular says about the show:
- The main character is Daniel Webster, a drug-addicted Episcopal priest.
- His wife depends heavily on her mid-day martinis.
- Webster regularly sees and talks with a very unconventional and non-Biblical Jesus.
- The Webster family includes a 23-year-old homosexual Republican son, a 16-year-old drug-dealing daughter, and a 16-year-old adopted son who is having sex with the bishop's daughter.
- Webster's lesbian secretary is sleeping with the priest's sister-in-law.
Both my wife and I are of the opinion that many well intentioned Christian and family organizations over react to things, just making the world of Christendom look stupid. Thus, we decided to watch the show for ourselves before making judgement on either side. I was this way when I was a heathen and the movie "The Last Temptation of Christ" came out. I saw the protesters out front of the movie theater right around the corner from where I was living. So I went to the theater, stood in line, bought a ticket, and got to heckle some picketers. I knew that mnost likely none of the protesters had seen the movie, they just heard commentary, got their marching orders, and lined up like lemings. They carried signs saying "that's not my Jesus", and other pithy sayings (a little Bill O'Reilly lingo there).
Yes, the homos are in the story line. Yes, the Episcopal priest pops a few prescription pills to calm him down. Yes, the wife has a few martinis and needed something to drink after dealing with her mother on a touchy subject. Heck, I want a beer after dealing with family sometimes, too.
The part about an unconventional and unscriptural Jesus? I don't know about that part from the one episode that I saw at first. I caught part of a second episode and did see that the Jesus character just shrugged his shoulders at the news of the clergyman's son fornicating and exclaiming "Kids!" The Jesus that I know doesn't speak in King James verbiage. I hear from the Lord in language that I can clearly understand. If he is "a friend that sticks closer than a brother", then he will talk to us the way he does in the show. I know that some will accuse me of being a nut, but I have seen and have talked to Jesus myself. Quite honestly, though he may not have appeared to me the same way as he does in the TV show, he has shown himself to me. By the way, we are talking about a television show here...stuff is fabricated for entertainment and the ability to relate a concept. That is exactly the license that the show takes. I can deal with that. The most real part of the program to me was the communicating Jesus. Granted, I don't believe that he would so communicate with an Episcopal priest, much less one that is all accepting of homosexuality. I certainly, however, do NOT believe that the Jesus that I know and have read about for years would just shrug off the sin from which he came to set us free. The show takes great liberties in that regard, which is why I most likely will never see another episode. I am not, however, going to participate in boycotts, letter writing, email campaigns, press releases of condemnation, etc.
Focus on the Family had this statement: “Having previewed the pilot and an additional episode, I find NBC’s new television show, The Book of Daniel, extremely repulsive in its portrayal of Jesus Christ and intentionally offensive in its flippant attitude toward behaviors almost universally agreed upon as unhealthy to society, morally bankrupt, and, dare I say it, sinful. Adultery. Teen sex. Involvement in a ménage a trois to spice up a marriage. Homosexuality. A pastor who expects, and supports, premarital intercourse. Drug use as a sexual boost. And the list goes on and on.
“Still, most egregious is its portrayal of Jesus. On Daniel, the Individual believed to be the Savior of the world by nearly a billion people around the globe is cast as a wimpy, white-robed visitor who cares little about evil, addictions and perversity. This Christ glosses over a teenager's sexual romps with a, "He's a kid, let him be a kid." [Troy's comment: I agree with this totally. Yes, Jesus would certainly never condone fornication or sin. It is contrary to his very nature.]
“The Jesus of Daniel is a long way from the holy, compassionate Second Person of the Trinity who created the universe, then found the sin-problems of mankind so egregious that He gave His very life sacrificially to bring redemption. You won't find that Jesus on Book of Daniel. Sadly, if the Jesus of Book of Daniel was the real deal he'd need to apologize to the woman caught in adultery (in John 8) that he instructed, "Go now and leave your life of sin." Viewers with limited knowledge of the Bible are going to be asking themselves, why was He crucified? And that's a great question for us on this show, Jesus winks at the behaviors the genuine Jesus was crucified to save us from." [Troy's commentary: Sounds like a great chance to open the door for discussion and witnessing. Turn that negative into a positive.]
There is more on their web site.
Yes, the homosexuality, heavy drinking, drug dealing, and fornication are all abhorrent. The program is billed as a "serious drama about Christian people and the Christian faith." No, it really isn't. It is Hollywood's attempt to push a homosexual agenda and acceptance of sinful activities. Let me let you in on a little secret. IT IS THE WORLD SYSTEM PRODUCING A WORLDLY PROGRAM! I EXPECT THIS STUFF FROM THE WORLD, WHY CAN'T MOST CHRISTIANS? What did you really expect? I expect the world to act like the world. They have not been translated into the kindom of light. How can we expect them to understand Christian values if they are not Christians?
What gets me is the pushing for boycots of advertisers. I don't buy clothes from Burlington Coat Factory, use H&R Block, or consider buying a Mazda, anyway. Let the marketplace take care of it for you. If you want to let people know about the program and its content, fine. But to show outrage, draw attention to a program that most people would never have heard of, bring viewer ratings to a potential flop, and make the Christian faith look petty and stupid is in itself stupid. Groups like Renew America, well intentioned political candidates, the American Family Association, and others are into being boisterous rather than spreading the truth on such things. OK, let the truth be known. Staging boycots only brings eyeballs to the very thing they oppose.
The bottom line is that the world will be the world. I expect the Christian faith to be ridiculed and distorted in the world system. I expect Jesus to be misrepresented. I expect some things to be askew in Hollywood, especially. Why does this so surprise or outrage people? If you know the truth, then you are free. The antidote for falsehood is truth. Pass the truth along.