WOODY WEDNESDAY My letter to Woody Allen’s Sister!!!!

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If anyone has read my blog for any length of time they know that I am the biggest Woody Allen fan of all time. No one except maybe Bergman has attacked the big questions in life as well as Woody Allen. Furthermore, Francis Schaeffer is my favorite Christian Philosopher and he spent a lot of time quoting Woody Allen too. Also CRIMES AND MISDEMEANORS is my favorite Woody Allen movie of all time. Southern Baptist leader Richard Land was right when he noted that Woody Allen “asks all the right questions, he just doesn’t have the right answers.”

“Many of Allen’s films wrestle in a complex way with core moral themes, such as the nature of forgiveness, what to do with sin, whether life can have any meaning without God. And he does this as an agnostic,” Michelle Boorstein writes in the blog post.

Woody Allen said in Esquire’s September 2013 issue.

“It’s just an accident that we happen to be on earth, enjoying our silly little moments, distracting ourselves as often as possible so we don’t have to really face up to the fact that, you know, we’re just temporary people with a very short time in a universe that will eventually be completely gone…And everything that you value, whether it’s Shakespeare, Beethoven, da Vinci, or whatever, will be gone. The earth will be gone. The sun will be gone. There’ll be nothing. The best you can do to get through life is distraction. Love works as a distraction. And work works as a distraction. You can distract yourself a billion different ways. But the key is to distract yourself.”

Southern Baptist leader Jack Graham was asked for a response to Allen’s comments during his Aug. 20 appearance on “The Janet Mefferd Show,” and the minister immediately brought up Jesus.

“What does it profit a man if he gains the whole world and loses his own soul?” Graham quoted Jesus from the Gospels. “The soul exists and we are not just an accident of time or matter or space. We are created by God for an eternal purpose, therefore we do matter.”

“You matter to God, we matter to God,” the former Southern Baptist Convention president went on. “Because not only were we created by God but in Christ we are recreated to have an eternal life with him.

“So how sad, how tragic that so many people like Woody Allen, whether they can express it like that or not, are just living for self, and living for pleasure and living for things.”

“That’s the sadness of the lostness of people all around us,” he concluded.

Graham suggested that Christians need to get more “aggressive” in building relationships with people who seem hopeless.

HOW SHOULD WE APPROACH SHARING CHRIST WITH THE LOST AROUND US?

A Fascinating Conversation on Sharing Christ with Woody Allen While on an Airplane

Last year World Magazine published an article that contains a conversation between Christian intellectual and historian extraordinaire Eric Metaxas and Richard Land. Both men are fans of Woody Allen movies.

I have long had this gnawing sense in me that evangelism among Fundamentalists has something inherently wrong in terms of methodology. Many “evangelicals,”, some even in the Southern Baptist Convention, will yell and scream the Word of God to lost people — acting as if the quoting the Bible will bring about a change in the hearer. There are even some commentors on this blog who are in the habit of telling others they are “going to hell” or have “never been saved” or are “in need of Jesus” and glibly quote a Bible verse as if making some kind of shocking statement and backing it up with words from Scripture will lead someone to be converted. It reminds me of street preachers who yell “REPENT” to passerbys and then shout “JESUS IS THE WAY THE TRUTH AND THE LIFE” as if somehow, almost magically, those words will bring salvation.

In the interview between Richard Land and Eric Metaxas (who by the way, is the author of the new fantastic biography on Dietrich Bonhoeffer), Land asks Metaxas how he would share Christ with Woody Allen were he to sit beside him on a plane. The first paragraph of Metaxas’ answer is worthy of your close examination.

I have to somehow figure out how to connect with him. . . . If you come across as morally superior, that’s unbiblical, that’s wrong, it’s a lie, so you’re confused. But also you’ll push the person away. You’ve got to find a point of connection, otherwise they won’t hear you. If you walk around New York you might see someone, semi-homeless, almost always from out of town, with a hat and a Bible “preaching the word” on the street. Nine times out of 10 they are not preaching the Word any more than Satan was when he was quoting the Bible to Jesus in the wilderness. The words are not magic. Some people will respond, “The word of God will not return void,” and yes, the capital-w Word of God, the Logos, will not return void—but the words of the Bible can certainly return void unless they’re anointed by the Holy Spirit. Many people think that if they just spew out Scripture or something that people are hearing them, but it’s not true. Jesus never did that. He always connected with everyone around him.

Well stated, Eric. Would to God we worked on our connections with people instead of coming across as morally superior.

In His Grace,

Wade

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