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3.12.2005    |    Nebuchadnezzar and Mooby
That's Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon in the Book of Daniel, and Mooby, the Golden Calf of "Dogma." "Dogma" is a deviously devout movie, and many believers might be put off by, among other things, the crude language and the vastly irreverant takes on matters of faith.

On the other hand, there is to my way of thinking a serious message about the true nature of God and of idolatry in the movie. This is the scene where Loki, the retired Angel of Death (played by Matt Damon), slaughters the board of directors of a Disneyesque entertainment conglomerate whose centerpiece is...the Golden Calf. Sparing but one righteous soul, showing that God's angel will carry out His vengeance with mercy. Sort of.

Back to old Nebuchadnezzar and his golden image. The king forced all his people to bow down to this statue of gold, and there is a straight line between this story and the fictional Mooby. Well, here's where fact and fiction become a little entangled.

From Daniel, Chapter 3:
26 Then Nebuchadnezzar came near to the door of the burning fiery furnace; he declared, "Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, servants of the Most High God, come out, and come here!" Then Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego came out from the fire. 27 And the satraps, the prefects, the governors, and the king's counselors gathered together and saw that the fire had not had any power over the bodies of those men. The hair of their heads was not singed, their cloaks were not harmed, and no smell of fire had come upon them. 28 Nebuchadnezzar answered and said, "Blessed be the God of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, who has sent his angel and delivered his servants, who trusted in him, and set aside the king's command, and yielded up their bodies rather than serve and worship any god except their own God.
The faith of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego had saved them. Will it save those of us who worship Mooby, the Golden Calf? The serious message of "Dogma" is that one may not serve both God and Mammon, and that, even in this modern world there will be Hell to pay for such worship.

Nebuchadnezzar was converted to worship of the one true God. How are we to be converted away from our golden calf? Do we even recognize our own Moobys?

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About this site and the author

Welcome. My name is John Luke Rich, (very) struggling Christian. The focus here is Christianity in its many varieties, its fussing and feuding, how it impacts our lives and our society, with detours to consider it with other faiths (or lack thereof).

Call this blog my way of evangelizing on the internet.

Putting it differently, we're only here on this earth a short time. It's the rest of eternity that we should be most concerned about. Call it the care and feeding of our souls.

I was born Jewish, and born again in Christ Jesus over thirty years ago. First as a Roman Catholic; now a Calvinist by persuasion and a Baptist by denomination. But I'm hardly a poster boy for doctrinal rigidity.

I believe that Scripture is the rock on which all Christian churches must stand -- or sink if they are not so grounded. I believe that we are saved by faith, but hardly in a vacuum. That faith is a gift from God, through no agency on our part -- although we sometimes turn a deaf ear and choose to ignore God's knocking on the door.

To be Christian is to evangelize. Those who think it not their part to evangelize perhaps haven't truly understood what our Lord told us in Matthew 28. We must preach the Gospel as best we are able. Using words if necessary.

Though my faith waxes and wanes, it never seems to go away. Sometimes I wish it would, to give me some peace of mind. But then, Jesus never said that walking with Him was going to be easy...

Final note: I also blog as Jack Rich on cultural, political and other things over at Wrong Side of the Tracks

Thanks for stopping by.