Luke 17:25 But first he must suffer many things and be rejected by this generation.
Apparently, Donny Osmond won “Dancing with the Stars” last night on television. I never watch the show but millions of other people do, so I’m guessing that many of those who voted were lifelong fans of Donny.
I can remember his first single disc “Puppy Love” and how teenage girls all over the world screamed and swooned at the concerts where he was performing. After Elvis and the Beatles, Donny and his brothers were the biggest act in the music world during the 1970’s. His only rival was a young black kid called Michael Jackson. It’s funny how life turned out for both of them.
I admire Donny’s comeback and maybe his win on the show will rekindle his showbiz career. He’s not done a lot of international performing for the past two decades, because most of his fans outgrew his music and rejected his ‘soppy’ love songs. Perhaps a new wave of nostalgia among his original fans will help rebuild his career.
People are fickle, especially those who are obsessed with celebrities. As the years come and go, so does their enthusiasm for performers, artistes, and stars. Even leaders in both the political and religious worlds can be negatively affected by this group mentality. One day the people want to crown you as their king; the next day the mob wants to crucify you to a Cross.
When Jesus was talking to His disciples, He warned them several times about the suffering to come. Most of them were caught up in Christ’s popularity and enjoyed being connected to Him. Jesus frequently reminded them about the fickleness of the crowds. He knew that He was destined to suffer. He fully understood that the people would one day reject Him.
Several generations ago, Christianity was a popular faith. The Church had helped lead our people through two World Wars and the Great Depression. Faith was a key component that enabled our people to endure the worst and hope for better days to come. But then, decades later, the same communities who had embraced and increased the Church began to reject Christ’s teachings.
Sadly, we now live in a time where agnostics and atheists are using their belief system to undermine, diminish, and marginalize our faith in the public arena. However, the Church has faced this before in different places and times. At some point, revival occurs and the Church emerges in a stronger way. We only have to look at the flourishing churches in the former Soviet bloc countries to see that this actually occurs. The world may delightfully tell us that the Christian Church is dying, but it forgets that death only means resurrection for us.
Prayer: Lord Jesus, You have stood the test of time and Your Church has endured persecution, devastation, and destruction throughout the centuries. Your Spirit never fails to inspire people every day to come to You. Thank You for the gift of the Church in the world and for the promises of hope and resurrection in the years to come. In Your Holy Name, we pray. Amen.
John Stuart is the pastor of Erin Presbyterian Church in Knoxville, Tennessee. If you would like to comment on today’s message, please send him an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.