Dr. Ted Baehr is the founder and publisher of MOVIEGUIDE, chairman of the Christian Film & Television Commission, and a well-known movie critic, educator, lecturer and media pundit. He also is the author of several books, including "The Culture-Wise Family" with legendary entertainer Pat Boone. For more information, please call 800-899-6684 or go to the MOVIEGUIDE website.More ↓Less ↑
When my four children were young, they went through the usual phases of raising ants, then hamsters, then gerbils, then cats and dogs – together. Often disasters would occur. The ant farm would break, and the gerbils and hamsters would escape into the pipes. Sometimes, the children would exercise a great deal of effort to direct a gerbil or a hamster out of a floorboard or some other difficult spot. Pipes would be banged. Floors would be hit. Usually, the gerbil never got the point and days later an unpleasant smell would emerge from the pipe or floorboard.
One friend of mine in a fraternity at Dartmouth College over 40 years ago had a pet boa constrictor. The boa eventually got stuck in the pipes. The boa’s reaction to the broomstick and other items was to attack them or any hand that tried to grab it. Soon, the smell was so bad that the fraternity was reprimanded and had to spend a considerable sum of money to get the dead boa removed.
Thus, although their life depended on it, the boa constrictor, the gerbil and the hamsters couldn’t figure out why this gigantic person was banging, knocking and interfering.
Right now, He who is beyond and above our finite mortal senses is trying to get our attention. When we enact laws that are self-destructive, indulge in activities that are leading us into the edge of the abyss, the concerned, beneficent Creator sends warnings such as hurricanes, floods, fires and earthquakes, as well as prophets and His own Son to save us from stewing in the juice of our own greedy self-centeredness.
Our reaction has been to ignore the warning alarms as well as anyone who heard from Him and spoke in His name. We have even gone as far in the past as to stone His prophets and kill His Son, whom He quickly resurrected. Like the boa constrictor, our reaction has been self-defeating in the extreme, especially considering that all our beneficent Creator wanted to do is rescue us, because He loves us.
In the book of Exodus, as well as in the movie version of “The Ten Commandments,” starring Charlton Heston as Moses and Yul Brynner as Pharaoh, Pharaoh refuses to let God’s people go, even when faced with numerous plagues and natural disasters sent as warnings by God. Only when Pharaoh’s first-born son dies because of Pharaoh’s hard headedness does he relent and allow the Jews to leave Egypt. Even, then, however, he changes his mind and pursues the Jews with his army, to kill them all.
So, the Lord issues one more warning alarm. After parting the Red Sea for the Jews to cross safely into Sinai, the Egyptian army pursues in vain and drowns in the re-flowing waters of that sea. The Jews listened to what God said, but Pharaoh and his soldiers did not – and they paid the penalty for their rebellion!
The United States of America has become like Pharaoh in Exodus. Despite what God clearly says in His Word, America is ignoring God’s warning signs of impending disaster, to continue in evil sins like sexual perversion, rampant promiscuity and their cruel, inevitable consequence – abortion, the torturous killing of an innocent unborn child.
God will never give up on us. As we get stuck in the self-destructive behavior of our own pride, lust and greed, His alarms will continue to go off and His warnings will intensify. The question is whether our finite brains can grasp the meaning of His warning alarms. Or, like Pharaoh, will we drown in our self-destructive, God denying behavior?