'Dexter Theology': Shedding Blood in God's Name
I’ll admit I’m a sucker for stories about the malleability of human morality. From the mob movies, where a guy can whack his cousin but better not show his Patron any “disrespect,” to justice-seeking serial killers like “Dexter,” there’s plenty of justified violence to be found.
Where do such seemingly contradictory value systems come from? And do they actually happen in the real world today?
How about the politician who claims a platform that values a respect for “all life,” while justifying war and advocating for capital punishment? Or those who celebrate the death of Osama Bin Laden and Saddam Hussein? And the list goes on.
Oh, boy, and there we go...
So, somehow, it's the fault of those who are think there are good reasons for going to war and executing murders that we have "Dexter"?
Sorry, I'm laughing my head off here. Or I would be, if I weren't in a library.
Because, really, how does that work?
I haven't watched "Dexter", and frankly have no wish to. Why should I watch anything that glorifies what is essentially murder, and the glorification of a serial killer no matter his reasons?
So, let's change this argument a bit, shall we? How about if we call it "NCIS theology"? That being one of my favorite shows, I'm a bit more familiar with it.
"NCIS" is essentially a detective show about usually military situations and issues. The team of investigators are law-enforcement officers. They use investigative techniques and technology to solve crimes. Sometimes, that also involves pulling out guns and having to shoot people, and sometimes that means the criminal is killed.
So, we have law-enforcement officers, abiding by the law and rules of their organization (even if they sometimes bend those rules a lot sometimes) and who sometimes have to use lethal force. A far cry from "Dexter", I would guess.
Do they show a disrespect for life when they try to bring criminals to justice and sometimes have to use lethal force? I would say, no. There is nothing in the position that supports capital punishment that leads to a lack of respect for life.
(and would one dare point out that those on the left are the ones who advocate for the real killing of innocents, the unborn, in the form of abortion?)
So, yes, I respect all life, and am pro-life in that I am against abortion, and wish to see it's legality ended. I am also pro-capital punishment, because there are crimes that deserve that punishment.
But, I think this sojrone has a bigger fish to fry.
Some even suggest that a culture of justified violence was applied to Jesus’ own crucifixion. This can even be found in the writings of Paul, who came from a culture in which blood was used to purify one of sinfulness. The sacrifice of life, was a common practice in ancient Judaism as well. So it’s understandable when this same model is applied to Jesus’ death.
His "bigger fish" is the substitutionary atonement of Christ, that "Christ died for our sins, as the Scriptures tell us".
Jesus forgave sin while he was still alive. Was this a lie? A Mistake? Or did he actually present a grace to the world that was greater than sin, even then?
How does Jesus forgiving sins while He was alive contradict anything? Christ was going to lay down His life for us. Forgiveness, then, was likely based on Him doing that, just like all other sins before His death were forgiven through it. There is nothing contradictory there.
I believe that Walter Wink’s interpretation of Jesus’ message rings the most true, and it can be summed up in three simple words:
Violence never redeems.
We come to it, the real point of this whole sad sojo post--the death of Christ is needless.
It’s love that redeems, and love requires no blood to be spilled in order to exist, or else it’s not really love. There’s no such thing as conditional love; love never comes with an asterisk, a caveat or fine print. It is whole, complete and absolute in and of itself.
Justified violence may be culturally acceptable. It may even be considered Biblical in some cases. But it’s not Christ-like.
"Without shedding of blood there is no redemption of sins". That is God's Word, and if the words of Walter Wink or this sojrone contradict it, then they are wrong. "Let God be true, and every man a liar".
Even heathens honor those who sacrifice their own lives for their family or countries, but this sojrone belittles and dishonors the Christ who gave His life for us by his trite and unscriptural positions. This is blasphemy, pure and simple. He is one who trods upon the blood of Christ, calling it an accursed thing.