Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Star Wars (1977)

     Yes, today, we’re looking at “Star Wars”, otherwise known as “Episode IV: A New Hope”. However, I won’t be calling it that—I’ll be calling it “Star Wars”. The other five movies (especially the newer three) are irrelevant to me since I’m not that big of a “Star Wars” fan, so don’t expect me to review the whole saga here like I did with the “Toy Story” trilogy. But there are several parts of “Star Wars” that I think really relate to Christianity, especially pertaining to the Holy Spirit. But we’ll get to that in a bit.

     Mark Hamill plays Luke Skywalker, a young boy living on the planet of Tattooine with his aunt and uncle, since his parents have long been dead. One day he buys two robots (excuse me, droids) to help him with the… yard work on his… farm. Which is in the middle of a desert or something, so it doesn’t make much sense to me. Anyway, the two droids are known as C-3PO (Anthony Daniels) and R2-D2 (Kenny Baker). The two of them happen to have escaped from a spaceship (or something) being attacked by the evil Darth Vader (voiced by James Earl Jones), where Princess Leia (Carrie Fisher) was leading a rebellion against the Senate… It’s a long story. But before Vader came aboard the enemy ship, Leia recorded a hologram message inside R2 to deliver to Obi-Wan Kenobi (Alec Guinness), along with the plans of the makings of Vader’s ship, the Death Star, so that Obi-Wan can get to Alderaan, deliver the plans, and the Death Star and the Imperial Senate can be destroyed.

     So in typical Western-film style, poor farm boy Luke finds himself in an opportunity to go with Obi-Wan to the planet of Alderaan and be part of a rebellion against the enemy. But before he starts on his journey, Obi-Wan explains to him what being a Jedi (aka a good guy) demands: being able to fight a lightsaber and use the Force. What’s the Force, Luke asks?

OBI-WAN: The Force is what gives a Jedi his power. It’s an energy field created by all living things. It surrounds us, it penetrates us; it binds the galaxy together.

     However, Han Solo (Harrison Ford) is a little skeptical. Luke and Obi-Wan meet Han and his Wookie friend Chewbacca (Peter Mayhew) at a bar, where Obi-Wan requests them to take them to Alderaan in their spaceship, the Millennium Falcon. And on the way there, Han reveals what he believes:

HAN: Hokey religions and ancient weapons are no match for a good blaster at your side.

LUKE: You don’t believe in the Force, do you?

HAN: Kid, I’ve flowed from one side of this galaxy to the other. I’ve seen a lot of strange stuff. But I’ve never seen anything to make me believe that there’s one all-powerful force controlling everything. There’s no mystical energy field that controls my destiny!

     I have no idea if it was really George Lucas’ intention, but to me, there’s a clear metaphor here for the existence of God—even the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit is what gives the disciple of Jesus the ability to perform miracles and testify to the Gospel. Jesus tells his disciples in Mark 13:11, “Whenever you are arrested and brought to trial, do not worry beforehand about what to say. Just say whatever is given you at the time, for it is not you speaking, but the Holy Spirit.” And when Peter heals a crippled man in Acts, he is called “filled with the Holy Spirit” (4:8). And if Christians today have the same faith that the disciples did, we will be able to “make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit” (Matthew 28:19).

     And with his ability to feel the Force, Luke Skywalker is able to destroy the Death Star and bring peace to the galaxy. My prayer for you, the reader, is that you will have that kind of faith by the Holy Spirit to be able to do anything for the cause of Christ, even perform miracles.

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