Jesus was always saying this kind of thing: You want to live? Die to yourself. You want to be first? Be last. Want to come out on top? Head for the bottom. Want to win? Surrender.Go and read the whole article. Many thanks to Pacific Views for pointing this post out to me.
You want to get saved? Get lost.
Which brings us to what is, for my money, the greatest scene of salvation and redemption in literature:It was a close place. I took it up, and held it in my hand. I was a-trembling, because I'd got to decide, forever, betwixt two things, and I knowed it. I studied a minute, sort of holding my breath, and then says to myself:This is, of course, from The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn. The piece of paper that poor Huck tore up was the letter he had written to turn in his friend, the escaped slave Jim. Huck had been taught, and he sincerely believed, that doing so was his duty as a good Christian (and as a good, law-abiding American). He had been taught, and he sincerely believed, that failing to do so would damn his soul to Hell.
"All right, then, I'll go to Hell" -- and tore it up.
It was awful thoughts and awful words, but they was said. And I let them stay said; and never thought no more about reforming. ... And for a starter I would go to work and steal Jim out of slavery again; and if I could think up anything worse, I would do that, too; because as long as I was in, and in for good, I might as well go the whole hog.
Study that a minute. Turning in Jim would condemn his friend to years of misery in this world, but his own immortal soul would be damned for eternity -- and what are a few mortal years compared with that? Weigh such a choice on the scales that L&J use in Left Behind and Huck's choice is clear. But that is not the choice he makes.
"All right, then, I'll go to Hell!" he says. And the angels in heaven rejoice.
Huck may just be talking to himself there, but I think of that declaration as a prayer -- as, in fact, a prayer pleasing to God.
Monday, December 26, 2005
If you ever wanted to see what's wrong with the Left Behind books without having to wade through them, Slacktivist really sums the whole thing up.
Posted by Tegan at 10:41 AM