14 January 2011

World Vision & Veggie Tales Team Up to Teach Your Kids the Social Gospel

Christian Newswire has the press release:
SEATTLE, Jan. 13, 2011 /Christian Newswire/ -- Christian humanitarian organization World Vision is partnering with Big Idea Entertainment on a new campaign offering parents practical ways to help their children learn the importance of serving others.
Just in time for the Easter season, the new VeggieTales® 'Twas The Night Before Easter DVD reminds kids and families of the true meaning of the Easter celebration and the importance of helping others. Through its involvement in the new VeggieTales® project, World Vision hopes to encourage families to make a difference together by sponsoring children in need around the globe.
"Parents often tell us that sponsorship provides them with tools to teach their children about sharing, about God's love for all his children, and about the needs in our world," said Jenny Lockwald, World Vision's Channel/Product Executive Director. "In this new VeggieTales story, Bob and Larry learn the joy of helping others, providing a fun way for moms and dads to start a conversation about how their family can make a difference, too."
Read the entire press release here
Now, it comes as no surprise that World Vision is pushing the false gospel of social justice, because that's been their M.O. from day one. And while I'd rather see a child watching Veggie Tales than most of the other junk that's available today, I'm not all that enamored with the series. This announcement, however, poses some serious problems. Without having seen this newest Veggie Tales video, I cannot make a fully-informed assessment, however, the following sentence from the press release is extremely telling:
"Just in time for the Easter season, the new Veggie Tales "Twas the Night Before Easter" DVD reminds kids and families of the true meaning of the Easter celebration and the importance of helping others."
The remainder of the press release goes on to laud and elaborate upon the social gospel, with no actual mention of "the true meaning of the Easter celebration." I can only assume, and if I was a gambler, I would even bet, that this latest Veggie Tales DVD will glaze past the Biblical Easter story in favor of today's social gospel message.

Call me crazy, but I'm pretty sure that in the Biblical accounts of that first Easter Sunday, there was no mention of, "Go therefore and sponsor thyself a starving child, for this is why Christ has risen." To even imply such a thing is actually blasphemous! Let's remind ourselves of the actual meaning of Easter and of the actual command Christ gave following His resurrection:
Now after the Sabbath, toward the dawn of the first day of the week, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary went to see the tomb. And behold, there was a great earthquake, for an angel of the Lord descended from heaven and came and rolled back the stone and sat on it. His appearance was like lightning, and his clothing white as snow. And for fear of him the guards trembled and became like dead men. But the angel said to the women, “Do not be afraid, for I know that you seek Jesus who was crucified. He is not here, for he has risen, as he said. Come, see the place where he lay. Then go quickly and tell his disciples that he has risen from the dead, and behold, he is going before you to Galilee; there you will see him. See, I have told you.” So they departed quickly from the tomb with fear and great joy, and ran to tell his disciples. And behold, Jesus met them and said, “Greetings!” And they came up and took hold of his feet and worshiped him. Then Jesus said to them, “Do not be afraid; go and tell my brothers to go to Galilee, and there they will see me.” (Matthew 28:1-10)
Now the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain to which Jesus had directed them. And when they saw him they worshiped him, but some doubted. And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.” (Matthew 28:16-20)
 “Men of Israel, hear these words: Jesus of Nazareth, a man attested to you by God with mighty works and wonders and signs that God did through him in your midst, as you yourselves know— this Jesus, delivered up according to the definite plan and foreknowledge of God, you crucified and killed by the hands of lawless men. God raised him up, loosing the pangs of death, because it was not possible for him to be held by it. (Acts 2:22-24)
But in fact Christ has been raised from the dead, the firstfruits of those who have fallen asleep. For as by a man came death, by a man has come also the resurrection of the dead. For as in Adam all die, so also in Christ shall all be made alive. But each in his own order: Christ the firstfruits, then at his coming those who belong to Christ. Then comes the end, when he delivers the kingdom to God the Father after destroying every rule and every authority and power. For he must reign until he has put all his enemies under his feet. The last enemy to be destroyed is death. For “God has put all things in subjection under his feet.” But when it says, “all things are put in subjection,” it is plain that he is excepted who put all things in subjection under him. When all things are subjected to him, then the Son himself will also be subjected to him who put all things in subjection under him, that God may be all in all. (1 Corinthians 15:20-28)
The "Easter celebration" is one that remembers Christ's death and resurrection. Christ suffered and died as the perfect, atoning sacrifice for all those who would believe in Him. Christ experienced the wrath of God in the place of each and every wretched sinner who would ever be called to be His. Three days later, God raised Jesus, overcoming death and sin and Satan. We live because Christ died and rose again. That is the message of Easter. That is what Christians are called to proclaim. At the risk of sounding (by the world's definition) unloving, Easter is not about feeding the poor. It is not about how many good works I can do so that I may work my way to eternal life. It is not about "loving" people with my generosity, yet at the same time neglecting to love them enough to share with them the Gospel: that they are a sinner in need of a Savior, who cannot save themselves, and that they may be saved through repentance and faith in Jesus Christ as the only way to eternal life. All the "love," food and money in the world won't bring someone to the knee-buckling realization that without Christ they are hopeless. Easter isn't about loving people into Hell with our gospel-less good works, it's about Jesus Christ. It's too bad that so many "Christian" organizations have decided to take Christ out of their message.

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