by Ray Comfort
Early in March of 2007, Hollywood director James Cameron announced something that he no doubt hoped would go down as well as Titanic. It was big news. When Cameron (with less subtlety than his Hollywood counterparts) attempted to sink Christianity by producing "the bones of Jesus," even Time Magazine couldn't help but use the word "showman" and be reminded of Hollywood fiction:
Ever the showman, (why does this remind me of the impresario in another movie, "King Kong", whose hubris blinds him to the dangers of an angry and very large ape?) Cameron is holding a New York press conference on Monday at which he will reveal three coffins, supposedly those of Jesus of Nazareth, his mother Mary and Mary Magdalene. 1
Ironically, it's not the first time the imaginative director has tried to help us understand the Bible. A year earlier he produced a documentary that made big news in England:
The greatest story ever told has acquired a Hollywood twist. James Cameron, the director of Titanic, is the executive producer of a new documentary that claims to have uncovered fresh evidence confirming one of the most dramatic episodes in the Old Testament -- the parting of the Red Sea and the Jewish exodus from Egypt . . . Cameron believes the parting of the Red Sea may have been a tsunami that destroyed the pharaoh's army as it pursued the escaping Jews. The documentary claims the episode occurred not at the Red Sea but at the smaller Sea of Reeds, a marshy area at the northern end of the Gulf of Suez. An underwater earthquake may have released poisonous gases that turned the waters red. 2
So the opening of the Red Sea wasn't a spontaneous miracle of God. It was a well-timed earthquake and tsunami. Thanks, Mr. Cameraman, for framing that for us, and for putting the issue in focus.
Thanks also for digging up these bones and making Jesus Christ headline news once again. You have given us another springboard for the gospel.
So, is the Christian world shaking in its bones because of this "discovery"? Can we be sure that he is wrong?
I can only speak for myself when I say that there are a couple of things in life of which I am sure. The first is that the sun is hot. I may be wrong, but everything around me--my natural senses, my life's experience, science, etc., all come together to tell me that the sun is very hot. The second thing of which I am sure is that Jesus Christ is the Son of God--that He suffered and died for me, rose again on the third day and that "God has appointed Him to judge the quick and the dead." Of both these things I am sure, but only the second is a hill to die on.
The thought that someone has found the bones of Jesus doesn't even come up to being a very bad joke. It would be more credible for Mr. Cameron to produce a documentary telling us that the sun is made of ice. He could perhaps have it aired on the Comedy Channel.
Why am I so sure that Jesus Christ is the Son of God? Because He transformed my life. He made me a brand new person on the inside. The first time I was born, it was radical. I didn't exist, then I did. When I was "born again" (by the same Maker) it was just as radical.
To understand that, you have to look to the Law of Moses for a moment. It says, "You shall not commit adultery," but this Jesus of whom Mr. Cameron speaks, said, "But I say to you, whoever looks upon a woman to lust after her, has committed adultery already with her in his heart." That's the standard humanity will be judged by, and I don't know about you, but that would leave me guilty, and the Bible warns that it would put me in Hell for eternity. That's why I need a Savior--a substitute who took my punishment, and then rose from the dead to give me peace with God.
It is because of that cross that I am forgiven, and it was the ultimate happy day "when Jesus washed, when Jesus washed, Jesus washed my sins away." That's the only hill I will die on . . . and that's because One has already died on a hill for me.
From Hollywood Be Thy Name, by Ray Comfort (due for release May 2007).