Faith, Media & Culture

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture.

Bible inspired TV trend continues with Killing Jesus adaptation. From The Wrap: The book, by Fox News Channel personality Bill O’Reilly and writing partner Martin Dugard, will be published Sept. 24. The film version will air globally on National Geographic Channels next year. Billed as a “factual drama,” the film and book will tell the story of Jesus “as a  beloved and controversial young revolutionary brutally killed by Roman soldiers and recounting the seismic political and historical events that made his death inevitable and the changes that his life brought upon the world for the centuries to follow.”

Comment: The stellar ratings of The Bible miniseries on The History Channel suggests that O’Reilly may have yet another hit on his hands.  We’ll see.

In any event, Killing Jesus will likely generate controversy given the Factor host’s contention that high Roman taxes somehow played a role in Jesus’ execution.

I don’t know about that. I’m no theologian or even historian. I just remember Jesus saying something about giving to Caesar what is Caesar’s.  So, to me, He didn’t seem interested in promoting a tax revolt or any sort of forcible reallocation of wealth. Not that a fairer tax code and more economic opportunity aren’t good things.  Debating how to achieve those positive ends are certainly worthy of respectful debate.  It’s just that Jesus’ mission was so much grander than those issues. I also personally believe that those things  tend to fall into place when we set our hearts on the eternal values of love set forth by God.

From Corinthians: Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. 

If we all managed to get that stuff down and quit worrying about what other people have that we don’t, we’d be doing pretty good and there would be abundance for everyone. The real revolution is about reforming our own individual hearts and souls, causing us all to freely give because we genuinely understand that it is better to do so than to receive. At least, that’s what I think.

Encourage one another and build each other up – 1 Thessalonians 5:11