Tuesday, September 20, 2011

‘Dr Who – The God Complex’ : We all Worship Something!!


This is not a review of the episode per se but some observations from it.

The recent episode of Dr Who was entitled ‘The God Complex’. This title was given to the Dr, by the Muslim character Rita, for taking charge and giving the impression that he could save everyone.


The basic premise of the episode being that there was this creature that looked like a Minotaur that was very old indeed, had previously set itself up as a God on other planets, they then ‘grew out of’ their need for Gods and built this prison ship for the creature and sent it off on its merry way. The creature and ship formed a sort of symbiosis whereupon the ship scoured the galaxy for people with very strong faith and pulled them aboard whereupon the creature fed upon the energy of their faith once it was suitably invoked. This was done by the people being placed in a holographic 80’s Hotel with many rooms, each of which contained some deep rooted fear for the individual causing them to fall back on their faith.

As an episode it was enjoyable and well done. Particularly David Walliams character who initially appeared as simply a cowardly amusing humanoid alien. Indeed the most invaded race in the Galaxy but actually turned out to be the most sinister, in that he would do anything to avoid being killed including betrayal.

The Tardis ended up there due to Amy’s total faith in the Doctor to save her.

Theme of Faith


‘everyone believes/puts their faith in something’

It is this theme of faith I wanted to comment on. According to the story it was people with a particularly strong faith in ‘something’ that resulted in them being taken. Whether it be a Muslims faith in God, a Gamblers faith in chance and luck or one persons faith in another, as per Amy in the Doctor. Interestingly the character of Rory was given the opportunity to leave as he apparently had no faith at all in anything (I disagree but I will come back to that).

What I found interesting is the observation that even in these times when ‘religious faith’ is seen to be on the wane, many people still believe in something. Dr Who confidential had an interview with the writer Toby Whithouse where he explained in more detail his thinking.

However I believe this should more accurately be stated ‘everyone believes/puts their faith in something’. I believe it to be a universal constant that every human being firstly has faith and secondly puts that faith in something, someone or several different somethings or someones (sorry about the poor english there!).

Put another way every human being gives themselves to the worship/idolisation of something or someone or to the aforementioned somethings or someones. But wait a minute, aren’t ‘Worship or Idolisation’ strong words to use. Yes they are very strong actively ‘doing’ words. They are not passive words at all and this is my point.

Let us define worship as ‘giving of oneself to’, ‘pouring oneself out to’ or ‘looking to XXXXX’ in order to provide meaning, security, worth to that person. The thing that when taken away would prove devastating to the person and is the thing that a person would most fight for if it was threatened.

The Drive to Worship

We all do it! It is a universal human desire to find security, meaning and worth for ourselves. This can be directed towards so many different things in this world and our culture is built around providing these things for us to feed on to satisfy those desires. Whether it be the ultimate relationship, sex, money, power, status, shopping, comfort, then next shiny toy, promotions, pride in ones house, pornography, drugs, alcohol to name a tiny fraction. All of these, some good, some not, serve the same purpose. Their purpose is to fill that aching desire in each of us. That ache that sais “surely there is something that can fill this emptiness inside me!” The ache for something lost or missing. The ache that no matter where we try and look is never satisfied and fulfilled. Sure we can pretend that our comfy well kitted out house, our job and family is all we need to be satisfied. This pretention can go on for years but if we are honest the ache is still there. It is NEVER satisfied and is what drives us.

It drives the alcoholic to keep drinking, the compulsive shopper to keep looking for the next thing to provide that purchase quick high, the adulterer, the promiscuous casual sex, the co-dependent and on and on it goes.

All these things are designed to either satisfy that deep rooted ache or to numb the pain of it not being satisfied.

Misdirected Worship is Idolatry

So if all these things cannot possibly fulfil this deep rooted ache then who or what can? Well I am glad you asked!

We were designed and created by God to worship Him alone. It is the first of the ten commandments in the Bible paraphrased as ‘you shall have no other Gods but The Lord and you shall worship Him alone’.

God designed us to depend entirely on him. He is the only one who can satisfy the deep ache and longing in our heart that each and every one of us has. Only in personal, intimate relationship with Him can satisfaction be found and our deep longing for Security, meaning and worth be found. Only in the Worship of our Creator God can we find all our thirsts met. It is what we were primarily created for, as worshippers.

When mankind first sinned the sin was pride and idolatry. It took God from His rightful place and raised us up equal with Him. The devil deceived our first parents with the lie of autonomy. The lie that says we don’t need God! It is the same lie that the world shouts at us today with all its myriad of pleasures and temptations. All designed to draw us away from faith and Worship of the only one worthy of it. All designed to provide a counterfeit. The Bible calls this Idolatry! Any time we worship, give ourselves over to, something that is not God it is worship in the form of idolatry.

‘The Human heart is an idol factory"’ – Martin Luther

Idolatry is the most serious sin in the Bible. It is an act of Cosmic treason against the creator. It is something every human does completely naturally and is all that is needed to justly condemn us, dead in our sins, for eternity before our Holy creator God. Praise God in His Grace and Mercy He provides for us a way out. Through Jesus Christ we can know forgiveness for our sinful predilection to idolatry. We can be declared righteous before God through Jesus and be given new life and hope for eternity. A life that can know that deep longing and ache satisfied when we quench our thirst in the living water of worship of our awesome creator.

I dare you to have faith in the only one who can satisfy!