Monday, January 29, 2007

Digital Blasphemy

Have a soul you're not using? BlasphemyChallenge.com is an anti-Christian website that offers a free movie to the first 1001 people who will "record a short message damning yourself to Hell" and upload it to YouTube. From the site:

"You may damn yourself to Hell however you would like, but somewhere in your video you must say this phrase: 'I deny the Holy Spirit.'

Why? Because, according to Mark 3:29 in the Holy Bible, "Whoever blasphemes against the Holy Spirit will never be forgiven; he is guilty of an eternal sin." Jesus will forgive you for just about anything, but he won't forgive you for denying the existence of the Holy Spirit. Ever. This is a one-way road you're taking here."

I assume that most folks who read this blog are Christian(-ish), and as such may have some strong opinions about yon "Blasphemy Challenge." While I am begining to find this sort of thing too juvenile and sophomoric to be deeply offensive (maybe I'm just getting old), there are plenty of folks who take campaigns like this pretty seriously. Maybe the Blasphemy Challenge should be seriously addressed by the Church... but maybe not. To be honest, I have a hard time believing the Blasphemy Challenge and the anti-Christian activists who sponsor it, like The Rational Response Squad ("Fighting to Free Humanity From the Mind Disorder Known as Theism!"), are really much of a threat.

Before you go all fundamental on me, let me briefly explain. First, I'd be hard pressed to say that putting a video on YouTube would keep the Holy Spirit from calling folks to Christ if He in His good pleasure wants your soul. Secondly, I highly doubt droves of good Christian folk come across the site, see Penn Jillette denounce the Holy Spirit, and immediately become atheists. Like much of the Christian church (sadly), I would say the Blasphemy Challenge reaches no further than their own choir. (And, speaking of racism, why is it that all the videos are pissed-off white kids? I guess YouTube blasphemy is not racially diverse.)

My question though, is how should a Christian respond to something like this? Should we just shake our heads and talk to each other about what a sad shame it is? Those sinners! Should we write these folks some nasty, scripture-quoting emails telling them to go to hell? Should we upload some "I believe in the Holy Spirit" videos on YouTube? Or hack the Blasphemy Challenge servers? Maybe start up BlasphemyChallengeIsDumb.com?

What manner of response to this sort of thing - if a response is even needed - is both effective and glorifies Christ?

9 comments:

theRoyal said...

What manner of response to this sort of thing?

Holy buckets thats heavy...but I think a non-response is the way to go here...my guess is the majority are looking for a reaction or some sort of attention. I think it is funny that they are doing this sort of thing. And that is all that it is really, funny. It should not detract from YOUR calling in Christ...i think often times we get distracted with trying to save the world when in reality we should be trying to save the world.

I believe a man once wisely said, Preach the Gospel, and if necessary, use words. My Fran knows whats up. He could of coined the phrase actions speak louder than words yo. And the actions of the people posting video speaks volumes, and the reaction of the christian community will play a part in continuing to denegrate the "cause" or boost the ultimate enterprise in reaching the lost...so in short...keep yer damn mouth shut about it.

Scott said...

Interesting. They have actually been used by the Holy Spirit by their actions, though it comes across negatively.

They have shown in their ignorance that they know the witness of the Holy Spirit is true by trying to be offensive. Ironic as it is, people will most likely look to see if this is true for themselves. Bibles will get dusted off and church doors will have shadows cast across them that have not been cast in years.

God will not be mocked.

Anonymous said...

They obviously don't take it seriously but I don't think they need any promotion either whereas Christians have a lot more respect and reverence for their faith. I tend to ignore such trivial grasps at notoriety as they normally view any Christian response to them as being judgemental. I know Frank Walton has more of an expose of the RRSquad at his site http://atheismsucks.blogspot.com/ and also JPHolding can't be beaten at http://tektonics.org

Truitt said...

just tell them God kicks our ass. that'll show 'em.

van.diesel said...

Royal Wif Cheese - i like your point about the reaction of the Christian community.

Scott -"They have actually been used by the Holy Spirit by their actions" - i didn't think of that at first, but excellent point. All things to the good, right?

Veritas - it's true; it seems like most responses to such things from the Christian community are automatically rejected out-of-hand as purely judgemental, and therefore not worthy of consideration. not to say we have never given just cause for that reaction...

Truitt - I will call up my boy Johnny P. He will bring the verbal smack down.

Anonymous said...

pray

pray for the people that run the website

pray for the people that will make the videos

and pray for the people that will see the videos

and then pray some more

goodwillhiking said...

that last comment was mine. don't know why it shows anonymous.

Allie said...

Sheesh. This is um, an old idea. Check out Flannery O'Connor's "Wise Blood." It's a book about a character who decides to start a blasmephous church. I don't what this says about me, but it's one of my favorite books. I don't see why Christians should react any differently to this, than they do to minor blasphemies that occur everyday in our lives and the lives of those around us. Sure, denouncing the Holy Spirit verbally is considered a blasphemy. But don't we denounce the Spirit by refusing to live by the Spirit everyday? Or we shut out the Spirit's gentle whisper with the loud noise of our own logic, cluttered thoughts, and fiercely misguided independence?

I dont agree with Scott, though. I don't think it shows that these folks believe that the witness of Holy Spirit is true by trying to be offensive. It may prove they think the Spirit exists, if there is someone to offend by making such a statement. That doesn't mean they believe the Spirit. Even the demons recognize the Spirit. Don't mean a thang.

I'm Audi500....

Gentle Graffiti rulezzzz

vandorsten said...

Good Will - pray? Hmm... good thinking.

Audi500 - i would like to check out this book. and we do indeed denounce the Spirit every day, in those ways and more. i think that's why i can't get too riled up about this - they do with words what i do with actions. thankfully, neither keep God from accomplishing His purposes.