Several weeks ago our family rented Kung Fu Panda 2 for a cozy movie night at home. In the midst of backflips and kickboxing, incendiary buildings and talking animals, there were two scenes that captured me with their depth and veiled allusions to God. Both made me consider how I would answer the questions posed.
Today we will consider Scene 1:
The evil Lord Shen: “Are you willing to die to find the truth?”
Po: “Yes I am…although I’d prefer not to.”
Shen: “You think knowing will heal you?…fill some crater in your soul?”
(insert flames and ominous music)
What’s My Commitment?
As soon as Shen said those first words, I had to stop and wonder the same. Would I truly be willing to die to find — and hold onto — the Truth? Do I believe that knowing the Truth will, indeed, heal me? Fill me?
Is God that big in my own life?
My mind went instantly to our brothers and sisters in India, Egypt, Israel, and other parts of the world who are willing to die to find the truth. Despite their wounds, they are being healed. Despite their homes being leveled and burned, their craters are filled. Despite torture and murder, they deem it all worth the price.
Would I say the same if placed in those circumstances?
The Biblical Model
This year in Bible Study Fellowship we have been studying the book of Acts and several other New Testament Letters. The theme, overwhelmingly, has been the persecution of Paul and the church.
In his second letter to the Corinthian church, Paul recounts the suffering he has endured for the cross. He has found the Truth and is willing to die to share it with others:
“I have worked much harder, been in prison more frequently, been flogged more severely, and been exposed to death again and again. 24 Five times I received from the Jews the forty lashes minus one. 25 Three times I was beaten with rods, once I was pelted with stones, three times I was shipwrecked, I spent a night and a day in the open sea, 26 I have been constantly on the move. I have been in danger from rivers, in danger from bandits, in danger from my fellow Jews, in danger from Gentiles; in danger in the city, in danger in the country, in danger at sea; and in danger from false believers. 27 I have labored and toiled and have often gone without sleep; I have known hunger and thirst and have often gone without food; I have been cold and naked. 28 Besides everything else, I face daily the pressure of my concern for all the churches.” (2 Cor 11:23b-28)
The Gospel Hidden Within Kung Fu Panda
Shen’s question, while contextually different from the one I am asking, is vital for us as believers. And although we may never face beatings or bandits, I believe we must be willing to answer it.
It is Christ who promises healing, filling, and Truth to all.
By his grace, are you willing to receive it?
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Tomorrow: The Gospel According to Kung Fu Panda: Part 2