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Message

At The Movies - Part 4, Star Wars
Miles McPherson - September 4, 2016

Message Recap

In this series, we are exploring Biblical truths by analyzing Hollywood blockbusters. Today’s message was based on the movie Star Wars: The Force Awakens. For copyright purposes, we cannot air the movie on our web recaps, but Pastor Mickey is providing a short devotional on today’s topic of light and darkness.

As a people of God, we need to choose where we stand on the issues of life and eternity because there is a spiritual war going on all around us.

There is little gray area in our world anymore. It’s either light or darkness. As a people of God, we can no longer be neutral; we need to choose where we stand on the issues of life and eternity because there is a spiritual war going on all around us. We’re not on a cruise ship, but a battleship!

Recently Pastor Mickey had a conversation with a Navy Seal, who highlighted three principles that anchor them in times of war. These same principles apply to our lives as Christians in the spiritual battle that surrounds us every day.

1. Know the mission.

As God’s children, our goals are His goals. Jesus exhorted His followers in the Great Commission to seek out people who don’t know Him, baptize them, and teach them the Scriptures.

2. Know where your enemy is.

We all need to be aware that there are dark forces out there in opposition to God and they have real goals.

The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly. John 10:10

Our adversary is the father of lies who is out to destroy us. Sometimes we can play right into his hands by being unduly critical of others and having a negative spirit. Remember, our enemy is the accuser of the brethren!  Our goals toward others should be not be the same as his, but the same as those of our loving Father: be faithful, speak truth, edify and encourage one another. 

While on tour in Israel, Pastor Mickey witnessed a flock of sheep being driven into a corral. The man behind them was beating them with a rod and yelling at them. Mickey commented to his guide, “I thought that shepherds were supposed to lead their flocks,” and the guide replied, “That’s not the shepherd. That’s the butcher. These sheep are being taken to the slaughter.”  What a picture this is of the difference in masters!  We have a Good Shepherd who loves us and seeks to give us life and light, but we also have a harsh enemy of our souls whose desire is to divide and destroy us. It is critical to know the difference and to choose a master intentionally.

3. Know where your buddy is.

Just as a soldier needs another soldier watching his back, Christians need one another. If you’re not part of a Life Group, you need to find that small community where you can make friends to whom you can pour your heart out and be accountable, from whom you can receive prayer and encouragement in all stages of life, and with whom you can study God’s Word. We are in a spiritual war, so you need other spiritual soldiers who have your back.

In addition to our devotion by Pastor Mickey, Pastor Miles brings a Biblical context to the movie Star Wars: The Force Awakens.

The most important decision you’ll make in your life is deciding who is your master. Jesus says in Matthew 6:24, "No one can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other, or else he will be loyal to the one and despise the other…”

We live in a world of spiritual light and spiritual darkness - good and evil. By your own choices and decisions, you will be on one side of the other. There is no neutral. 

How far are you willing to go to do the right thing?  How much are you willing to risk in order to honor your true master?  Are you holding back because of what it might cost you in relationships, money, or reputation?  Do you think your Master deserves better than what you are giving Him? 

When an athlete gets traded to a new team, the first thing he must do is become a passionate supporter of everything about his new team: the direction of the organization, its community involvement, and its goals for the season. He must also become a passionate opponent to every other team. 

When Jesus becomes your master, he gives you a new name and a new identity. (The word “Christian” means “little Christ.”)  As part of this new team, you need to be loyal to Him alone, seeking the objections of His mission. Choosing God as your master also means you are at war with Satan.On an athletic level, the goal is to win, but on a spiritual level, winning is about life and death. 

The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly. John 10:10

If God is your master, you will be about love and life.

Then Jesus spoke to them again, saying, “I am the light of the world. He who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but have the light of life.” John 8:12

But if your master is the devil, a deceiver and destroyer, then your mission is about hate and death - death of opportunities, relationships, and reputation. 

“You are of your father the devil, and the desires of your father you want to do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaks a lie, he speaks from his own resources, for he is a liar and the father of it.” John 8:44

This is why so critical to think through your choices of masters: the master of evil who leads to death, or a loving God who grants abundant life.

Pastor Miles shared that he is always encouraged when he preaches in a prison to men who have done some really evil things, because he can see them being convicted and drawn to the light of the Lord. Remember, no matter where you are, where you’ve been, or how far away you’ve drifted, God is just a prayer away and the Holy Spirit can always draw you back. 

>Or do you despise the riches of His goodness, forbearance, and longsuffering, not knowing that the goodness of God leads you to repentance? Romans 2:4

In The Force Awakens, even though Kylo Ren defected to the dark side, there was still a pilot light of good in his heart that was shining in the darkness - and it bothered him!  How do you know the difference between light and darkness in your own life? How do you know that light is calling you out of the darkness?  How can you put gas on that fire to make it grow?

God’s light will always be consistent with his Word, and His Word is what teaches us about His character. So when you are wondering if thoughts and desires are from the Lord, you will know if they are godly if they are consistent with the heart of God. He also has a way of convicting you and giving you a bad taste concerning gossip, rude language, inappropriate things you watch online, or even excuses about not reading your Bible, praying, or being generous.

And when He has come, He will convict the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment… John 16:8

There comes a time in your life when you need to choose between light and darkness. Your successes and failures don’t define you, so no matter how you may think you’ve destroyed your life, there is always hope that God can restore it. This is because spiritual salvation, transformation and wholeness are not about your own strength or actions, but about what you allow God to do in your life by faith. Your responsibility is to ask Him!

At The Movies

This 4-part series looks at recent films in a Biblical context, exploring themes like good, evil, victory, destruction, and redemption. In this devotional, Pastor Mickey challenges us to be firm on where we stand in regards to life and eternity.

Message Resources

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