Bleeding Cool is the name of the website that first told this tale, one that has been jumped on by some major media outlets and more than a few bloggers. It is about DC comics doing a series called “the Second Coming” that really does seem kind of blasphemous. For those who wonder, being “kind of blasphemous” is probably a bit like being “kind of pregnant.”
I actually don’t want to throw blasphemy stones today nor do I want to weave a good defense of this guy and his Christian storyline, but I genuinely believe I could probably go in either direction and still make a valid point.
I have an exceeding dislike for knee jerk reactionary responses, hyperbole, and condemnation, before a book or article is even written. But this is 2019, we’ve gotten very good at taking offense and hurling accusations, before we’ve even read something. Do we want to know the truth or are we just delighting in the chance to have a target in which to vent our frustration? To drink in all that delicious offense? To right all the wrongs of the world by slaying the dragons of opinion?
No condemnation over here, I wouldn’t know any of these things myself if I didn’t sometimes resist the urge and sometimes indulge in it.
So blasphemous or not, and the jury is still out on that, but, “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.”
We should glean some pearls of wisdom from this tale and unfortunately that can be a wee bit uncomfortable, a touch convicting. I would much prefer to just issue a strongly worded accusatory tweet in 144 characters or less. The truth is often uncomfortable, it calls us to accountability, not finger-pointing or tweet shaming.
So, there are so, so many Christians today waiting for the Second Coming, almost as if the first Coming never happened. My generation was just inundated with the “Left Behind” series, with preppers and doomsday cults, with mutters of ‘come quickly Lord Jesus,’ and with every possible nutty prophecy predicting His imminent return.
The premise behind the DC comics storyline basically suggests, Jesus didn’t get it right the first time so He has to come back. Well, harsh truth here, but so many of us seem to be walking with that very same mindset and attitude.
A sweet brother in Christ has pointed me to 2 Peter 3, where it says, “Knowing this first, that there shall come in the last days scoffers, walking after their own lusts, And saying, Where is the promise of his coming? for since the fathers fell asleep, all things continue as they were from the beginning of the creation.”
We people often do act, think, and behave as if Jesus came and yet nothing really changed, as if “all things continue as they were from the beginning of the creation.” We’re still walking in the fall, separated from God, trapped in sin, and waiting for redemption to finally arrive. Why??
And by “we people,” I mean “we Christian people.” There are plenty of atheist scoffers saying, Jesus changed nothing. But those of us who claim His name are actually the ones called to share the good news, to demonstrate how Jesus changed everything and continues to change everything to this day.
Sometimes our attitudes, words, and belief systems do not reflect that and while I’m sure there is great mercy there and we are forgiven for our doubts and confusions, often WE are the scoffers.
If you read this blog, you may notice quite often I say things like, He is risen indeed. He is now seated in victory at the right hand of the Father. It is finished. Jesus came. Those are all responses to this Second Coming culture I find myself marinating in, the one that so often causes me to say, wait a minute, hold up, didn’t Jesus already come? Isn’t He here now? Doesn’t He invite us into His presence?
Didn’t He get it right the first time?
Of course He did, God is God. It’s not like He has to keep trying until He finally figures it out. It’s not like He has to practice. It’s not like He needs a “do over.” It’s not like Jesus is saying, hmmm, well let me go try that again, the first visit didn’t really seem to make much of an impact, it didn’t really “take.”
Don’t you make me come back down there!
Yes, most likely Jesus’ return is imminent. “imminent” in scientific terms means some time period between thousands of millions of years and a few hours from now. Yes, you should get right with the Lord, right now, and be ready, and there really is some prophetic goodness to be found in the bible about the end of days. Those things are true enough.
However, there are two mindsets that often happen. One calls us to accountability, to step into our full authority and power in the here and now. Jesus came and redeemed us, and handed us the keys to the kingdom. You have been reconciled with God, set back down in paradise as an adopted son. So if you ain’t walking around like you own the place and are seated in victory in heavenly places at the right hand of the Father in Jesus’s name, that’s your problem now.
The other mindset says, oh, come quickly Lord Jesus and set all that is wrong right, because we have made an epic mess of things. Also, I want to see the world brought to justice, especially my enemies. Just wait until Jesus returns, it’s going to involve spam and ammo and underground bunkers, and the Road Warriors from Beyond the Thunderdome….
All in good humor here, but I empathize deeply with that second mindset. However, it tends to imply we are still waiting, that Jesus didn’t get it right the first time, and that we aren’t required to step into His full power and authority right now because He hasn’t fixed things yet.
He fixed everything. His coming rocked the whole world. He is here now. Don’t wait for some obscure day in the future to set things right. Get in His presence, in the present. Step into His full authority and walk as if you have it, because you do.
Art has a way of imitating life. And often the stone we are prepared to throw at others, are our very own stones. The attitude, beliefs, and mentality that we Christians have created in the world, what I call a Second Coming culture, really is tainted with some subtle, but blasphemist ideas, like Jesus didn’t quite get it right the first time, so He needs a do over.
And trying to slay a comic book writer and “stone the heretic” is probably not going to cure what so often lurks in our very own hearts…..