Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Once Dead, Yet Making a Comeback

One of the few benefits to being me is that I look for stories and connection points everywhere.  I go see a movie, read a book, listen to a song, or view of piece of art, and the homiletic creative juices start rolling.  Some might call it sensory overload—and they may be correct—however I like to think that it is the way that I am wired.

One benefit is that it usually means I can find spiritual truths in really odd places.  Take, for instance, the film shown above.  Warm Bodies (2013) is a new spin on Romeo and Juliet mixed with a dash of the classic Evil Dead and a sprinkling the upcoming World War Z (based on the novel by the same title).  Here’s the basic plot: The “Zombie Apocalypse” has occurred.  The majority of humanity (or at least New York City) has been infected and now spends their days shuffling from place to place, muttering to each other and trying desperately to not turn into “skinnys” (zombies that are way scarier. . .and faster).  The story centers on zombie R and human Julie.  Julie is part of a colony militia that is sent out to find food and supplies.  However her squad is attacked by a zombie hoard.  Although he is part of the hoard, R rescues Julie and takes her back to his airplane home.  There he begins to undergo a transformation—he starts changing back into a human, he starts “healing.”

Now, I would hate to spoil the rest of the film.  So rent it on Netflix or Redbox and find out the end.  It was worth the price of admission and is worth the rental cost.  As I was watching it in Memphis, I could not help noticing two connections.  First, this was a lot like Romeo and Juliet (R and Julie; R’s “best friend” is named M; Julie’s best friend is Nora).  Second, the idea of R healing sounded a lot like Paul’s concept of salvation and spiritual regeneration.  In Ephesians 4:17-24, Paul writes, “Now this I affirm and insist on in the Lord: you must no longer live as the Gentiles live, in the futility of their minds.  They are darkened in their understanding, alienated from the life of God because of their ignorance and hardness of heart.  They have lost all sensitivity and have abandoned themselves to licentiousness, greedy to practice every kind of impurity.  That is not the way you learned Christ!  For surely you have heard about him and were taught in him, as truth is in Jesus.  You were taught to put away your former way of life, your old self, corrupt and deluded by its lusts, and to be renewed in the spirit of your minds, and to clothe yourselves with the new self, created according to the likeness of God in true righteousness and holiness.”  In a way, before we accept Christ, we are spiritual zombies.  We are simply shuffling from place to place, looking for something to give a reason to keep on going.  When we accept Christ, we experience the renewing of our minds and souls.  We were once lost, yet now we are found.  We were once dead, yet now we are making a spiritual comeback!  

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