Ok, I know you usually skip over the videos in this blog, but this time you might want to watch this scene from Star Wars. Here Obi Wan explains to Luke Skywalker about the Force. You can pick it up around the 2:00 mark if you want to.
How does Obi Wan define the Force? He calls it “an energy field created by all living things, it surrounds us, penetrates us, and binds the galaxy together.”
This explanation of the Force is close to what we might call Pantheism today. All things are alive, and have an energy to them- a divine energy. Therefore all things are divine. Atheism, of course denies an supernatural forces or divine energy. Christianity, and living from the life of Christ, is much closer to pantheism than atheism. Obi Wan’s description of the Force is close to our description of the Spirit and even the indwelling life of Christ. Like the Force, the Spirit is energy that surrounds, penetrates, and binds all things together. But there are two distinctions that we must make about the Spirit of God, that is, two ways that the Spirit is not like the Force.
First, the Spirit is the Creator, not the creation. As you recall from the past couple days, the Spirit’s hovering led to his creating. In Genesis 1 and Psalm 33, the Spirit creates living things. In Luke 2, the Spirit gave human life to Jesus himself. In 2 Corinthians, the Spirit makes us the New Creation.
Second, the Spirit is personal. The Spirit is not an impersonal “force.” He is God. And he brings us the life of God through the indwelling life of the person of Jesus. The force is alive and thinking, and feeling, and loving, and living. The Spirit is better than the Force, because the Spirit loves you.
John addresses the “Force” of his day, called the Logos, in John 1:1-5.
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2 He was in the beginning with God. 3 All things were made through him, and without him was not any thing made that was made. 4 In him was life, and the life was the light of men. 5 The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.
The Greeks, like Star Wars nerds and pantheists, believed in an impersonal force that guided life. They called it the Logos or the “Word”. But John flips it on its head when he says that the Word/Logos/Force is a personal, living, creator and the light of the world.
As we move forward in our journey to understand what “to live is Christ” means, we will learn more and more about the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit is not an impersonal force. The Spirit is God. He is personal and he fills us with the life giving energy of a person- Jesus Christ.
By the way, this is not an anti-Star Wars blog. In fact I think there are many gospel and redemptive themes in the story.