Have you ever taken Driver’s Ed.? I did. Long ago in the summer of 1989. In this class I learned about turn signals, emergency brakes, how to parallel park, and how many feet I should leave between me and the car in front of me. You know what else I learned? How important it is to obey all traffic laws.
The majority of the instruction in this course was done in lecture format or “in the car” driving sessions with the instructor. That was sufficient to teach parking techniques and how to appropriately use the blinker. But when it came time to talk about the importance of traffic laws … the form of pedagogy changed. They tried to terrify us.
It began with a survey of the fines you have to pay if you break the law. Then, it progressed to the discussion of having your insurance or driver’s license cancelled. However (just to close the deal) the instructors saved the big guns for the end … movies detailing gruesome traffic accidents with the not so subtle admonition – if you break the law this could be you!
This summer, my son is taking Driver’s Ed. I am curious if the tools of the trade have changed at all. We will soon find out!
I share this today as we prepare for the seventh and final installment in the “Lord of the Earth” sermon series at Wildwood. This weekend we will be looking at Revelation 17-18. In these verses we have a “gruesome video” detailing the dangers of driving the world’s system.
In Revelation 13:11-18, Satan’s end time’s plan was on display. Through the work of a false prophet, Satan entices all the world to worship the anti-christ as god. If they do so, they will receive some form of “blessing” and will be allowed to continue to work and profit inside the world’s system. For those who refuse to worship the anti-christ, they will be marked for persecution and forbidden the chance to work and make a living in this world. No doubt this pressure will woo some (in the last days) to worship the beast in order to get the political connection and material gain that he promises. Though the particulars are different, the same pressures rest on us today. “Follow the world and fit in … don’t follow the world, and prepare to be cancelled!”
But in Revelation 17-18, Jesus (the Great Educator) debuts films on where riding the system of this world leads. To no one’s surprise, the anti-christ and his system provide no permanent relief, and will ultimately turn on you and try to devour you. Further, the material gain the world economic system promises will ultimately fail.
Jesus shows these movies to “scare us straight.” And encourage us to trust the One who will never let us down and invest in what is guaranteed to last.
Make plans to join us this Sunday as we conclude this series together in our 8:30, 9:45, and 11:00 service. Join us … and bring friends!