Thursday, February 21, 2008

"It's up to each one to determine what God wants."

This is aggressive clip from ER, but it has a power. Quote:
"I want a real chaplain who believes in a real God and a real hell ... I need someone who will look me in the eye and tell me how to find forgiveness".
Take a watch. It's 2 minutes. H/T Sam Lago.

15 comments:

sam said...

That's a great clip! What happened in the rest of the episode? Did he find a chaplain who would tell him the truth?

Christopher said...

Was the Chaplain who told him the truth a man?

I thought it was a very powerful clip but interesting that the Chaplain was a woman. Do you think that there is any significance in that? Or is she a regular character?

Justin said...

I don't know to either question. I have never watched ER. Someone else?

Nancy & Nathan said...

Fantastic clip. Wow. I was a hospital chaplain for a year during seminary, and my supervisor instructed me to act just like this chaplain acted... that is, without conviction. I didn't take my supervisor's advice. :)

Christopher, what does gender have to do with anything? Weird question.

Justin said...

Nathan -- Chris has got 'issues'.

:)

Justin said...

You know I'm for you, don't you, Chris?

Ali said...

A a case in point of this quote from Spurgeon perhaps:

"If ever there should come a wretched day when all our pulpits shall be full of modern thought, and the old doctrine of a substitutionary sacrifice shall be exploded, then will there remain no word of comfort for the guilty or hope for the despairing. Hushed will be for ever those silver notes which now console the living, and cheer the dying; a dumb spirit will possess this sullen world, and no voice of joy will break the blank silence of despair. The gospel speaks through the propitiatation for sin, and if that be denied, it speaketh no more. Those who preach not the atonement exhibit a dumb and dummy gospel; a mouth it hath, but speaketh not; they that make it are like unto their idol ..."

From Spurgeon "The Blood of Sprinkling" Sermon No 1888 quote in Chapter 1 "Pierced for our Transgressions" by Jeffery, Ovey and Sach. Thankfully it is not hushed forever yet ...

Benjamin Ady said...

I didn't see the conflict between the chaplain and the cancer patient as being created by her lack of "conviction" or "willingness to tell the truth", but rather by a cultural divide between him and her. He wanted someone from ... in a sense, from his own culture--a pastor or chaplain who was thoroughly modern, rather than her postmodern.

I think that's reasonable for him to want, and I would hope this for people when they are dying, that they would have a chaplain, or a comforter, from their own culture, who understands how to comfort them.

Am I making sense? I don't think the pomo nor the modern take on things necessarily has a *better* or *righter* take on truth. We have different takes on it, and of course it's more comforting in many ways to be around those who see things through the same lenses as we do, and *uncomfortable* to be around those who see things through another lens.

I would think if *I* were a chaplain, my desire in death bed situations would be provide comfort most effectively, and I would hope I would be a bit better at reaching across culture than the chaplain depicted here seemed to be. Thoughts?

Justin said...

Benjamin -- Great thoughts.

Although what happens if there is a real God? And a real Hell? What happens if he really does need forgiveness? Then the comfort of anyone -- modern or post-modern is useless when he meets his God.

The point of the clip is surely this: that if there really is a personal God, then we need forgiveness, not just comfort.

(And there is one side point worth pursuing: When she says that each person has to determine themselves what God wants, he says: 'you can even rape and murder claiming that this is what God wants'. He is exposing a legitimate flaw in the relativistic mindset, surely.)

Anonymous said...

Great clip Jud,
Thanks mate, reminds me of the need to tell the truth, especially when people just want to hear fluffy nice sayings that will help them to feel better. Unfortunately they aren't going to do anybody much good if what the bible says is true.
Simon Elliott.

Eun said...

good stuff, Justin. would you mind if I knick the clip?

Justin said...

eun -- not at all. I nicked it. And its public on Youtube!

Benjamin Ady said...

"Although what happens if there is a real God? And a real Hell? What happens if he really does need forgiveness? Then the comfort of anyone -- modern or post-modern is useless when he meets his God."

... Hmmmm. *If* there is a real God, and a real Hell, and he really needs forgiveneness, then I rather suspect a coupla things:

A. He'll get the forgiveness, if he wants it.

B. He'll eventually want it, if he doesn't now.

I think perhaps you are at least *slightly* more ... stressed/concerned about his evenutal outcome than I am. Am I getting that right?

In light of A. and B. above, my bottom line would be comfort. If "truth" would comfort him, or that is, a modern understanding of truth, then I would hope to provide that perhaps better than she did. There's enough misery in life. Seems like if someone is about to die, comfort should be a high priority.

I'll get back to you about the relativity thing.

Anonymous said...

Hey J-man.

Great clip. Two observations.

(1) The average actor/actress in a US tv series is SO much better than their Australian counterparts. Why is that?

(2) When it really comes down to it, in the beautiful/dangerous/terrible moments in life, we want absolutes. The birth of a healthy baby is good. Absolutely, not relatively. Being seriously wronged, raped to use the man in the clip's example, is evil. Absolutely, not relatively.

He understands if God is real, his guilt is more than
a feeling, it's a problem, and one as yet, unsolved. The Chaplain can't help him unless she understands that, and more importantly, has a solution.

Phil Mark...
(Aust)

Christopher said...

Probably a little late to defend myself or my question, so I won't.

But I will say that gender has a lot to do with a lot of things.

And yes Justin, I know that you are not against me, although I had to read your comment twice because I initially thought you said "You know I'm against you, don't you Chris?"

Hope you and your family are going well.