Friday, June 26, 2009

How should Christians respond to Michael Jackson's death?

I'm sad for Michael Jackson and Farrah Fawcett but sadder still for the throngs of people who are worshipping these celebrities and others. Our society has become eerily like the Romans who worshipped their emperor almost as much as their celebrities in the Colosseum. How should Christians be reacting right now to the startling news of Michael Jackson's sudden death? It is easy to mock and joke about the bizarre and tragic life of the self-proclaimed "king of pop" but is that really edifying?

Ephesians 4:29 says, "Let no unwholesome word proceed from your mouth, but only such a word as is good for edification according to the need of the moment, so that it will give grace to those who hear." How can our words in this moment "give grace to those who hear"? Let me make a few suggestions...

1. Say that Michael Jackson was created for God's glory and not his own.

2. Say that what kept Michael Jackson from enjoying and glorifying God most fully is the same thing that keeps all of us from it- sin.

3. Say that the various sins Michael Jackson is known for are the product of a sinful condition we're all born with and need rescuing from.

4. Say that Michael Jackson's money, fame, fan adoration, or cult status could not rescue him and that the world offers nothing to satisfy the spiritual need we all have.

5. Say that Michael Jackson is not great but God is great and knowing greatness is in knowing God.

6. Say that Michael Jackson may have proclaimed himself "king of pop" but he along with everyone else who ever lived will bow the knee to the True King.

7. Say that wishing Michael Jackson rest in peace is not the same as truly knowing peace which can only be found in the Lordship of Jesus Christ.

8. Say that no man- not even Michael Jackson- is beyond redemption if he repents from self-rule and has faith in Christ's rule.

9. Say that celebrity worship is idolatry and God will allow no rivals- He alone is worthy of worship.

10. Say that Michael Jackson's death is a reminder that life is a vapor and do not waste the time that has been given by God's grace for God's glory.

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