A short video called “Bourne Again” is making the Internet rounds this morning. In the film, the main character is not Jason Bourne but Jesus Christ. He returns to earth, where a sniper tries to kill him. So he shaves off his beard and becomes an action figure as the narrator explains: “He came back, only to be hunted. He returned, only to find he could never go home. On the run, he must fight to survive.”
We watch as “Jesus” eludes enemies and fights assailants. He tells one man to “turn the other cheek,” then slugs him on that cheek. He blinds a man, heals him, then knocks him out. He uses loaves and fish to beat up his opponents. Toward the end of the clip, he wakes up after spending the night with a woman. As he leaves, she says that she loves him, to which he replies, “I love everyone.” As the video closes, the narrator says: “Bourne Again—there was never just one. Well, except for God. There’s just one God. But I mean it’s America, so believe what you want.” The film fades to the words, “Coming Again This Easter.”
When I saw the video, my first thought was one of sorrow that we live in a culture where such blasphemy could be popular. Would a video like this have been possible a generation or even a decade ago? Tragically, it’s not alone online—a quick search of “Jesus video parodies” yields dozens of similar films. One that Saturday Night Live aired recentlypictures Tim Tebow after another miraculous win. Tebow thanks Jesus, then Jesus appears in the locker room. He tells the team they should be thanking their kicker, then says, “Matt Prader, I pray to you, brother.” What must our Savior think of a culture like ours?
My next response was one of anger: why is Christianity mocked when other religions are not? Imagine the reaction if someone did a video spoof of Mohammed, or the Dalai Lama, or another religious leader. Our society is clearly more post-Christian than ever before in our history. How do you feel when your faith is attacked?
My son Craig’s response to the “Bourne Again” video gave me hope. As he and I were discussing the film, he noted: Satan leads our culture to mock Jesus while affirming other religious figures because Jesus threatens him and others do not. In a very real way, the blasphemy Christ and Christians must endure today is a compliment. My youth minister used to tell us: if you’re not running into Satan, you’re running with him.
Be encouraged. Your enemy is strong, but your Father is stronger. As John reminds us, “the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world” (1 John 4:4). We know how the cosmic story ends: We win.
Dr. Denison’s cultural commentary originally appeared at http://www.denisonforum.org. It has been reposted here with permission of the Denison Forum on Truth and Culture.