Thursday, August 31, 2017

"Blood. . . Part and Parcel of the Programming We Receive as Christians"

Some of what I have written lately is very important.  Very.  It should at least get a reaction, even though I'm not writing it to get a reaction, and I'm talking about the last two posts I've written.  They are making very strong statements about major problems, as I am witnessing them, in professing Christianity, and they seem to be ignored.  I say this at the peril of those ignoring this and this (click on links).

Perhaps something people won't ignore is Hollywood.  Paul Schrader is called "a legendary screenwriter and director," and now he has written and directed First Reformed, a film that he and its star, Ethan Hawke, say go back to their religious roots.  With this film, he blames the problems of the world, and its apocalypse interestingly enough, on biblical Christianity.  Schrader was raised in a Calvinist upbringing, but turned away to the titillation of Hollywood filth.  He says he is returning to austerity, because he sees himself as having grown up in "a magic cone of history" of great affluence and leisure; however, leaving his children and grandchildren to destruction.

Consider the following ending recorded part of the interview with Schrader:
Schrader leaves the questions unanswered with an ambiguous finale, but makes no excuse for portraying a Christian minister as a potential suicide bomber. 
"Deep-rooted in Christianity there is a notion of atonement by blood," he said. "It begins with sacrifices of animals in the Old Testament and continues with the symbolic sacrifice of Christ." 
"Whether you are protestant or catholic you are raised with the idea that through blood you can become clean. This is a pretty dangerous idea when you think about it but it is part and parcel of the programming we receive as Christians."
The point of his film is to attack and undo the biblical teaching of blood atonement, seeing it as the underlying cause of wrong, destructive thinking on society.  Instead, Schrader should see the diminishing of teaching on blood atonement as destroying our culture, creating the magical cone in which he has lived, but he is so deceived that he doesn't even know that he and others like him are the problem.

What he says should be a warning of what's coming for Christians in the country.  It should also help to understand the world's thinking. This is a film that could be made and then greatly applauded at the Venice Film Festival. Think if this was instead a film about Islam, attacking that religion and its founder.  He could find himself leaving his magic cone very quickly.  Instead he focuses on a Dutch Reformed, inebriated suicide bomber, as if that was even a possibility, which is completely laughable. That it would even be entertained is where we are today, leading to the apocalypse that he fears.

Schrader and true Christians have in common a belief in a coming apocalypse.  He may be right that most people will not survive this century.  He could be very right about that.  He just doesn't understand why.  Hopefully, you do.

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