I have been a “closet trekkie” since the original Star Trek series started in the 60s when I was in high school.  So when someone in my office invited me to join her and some friends to see the new movie, Star Trek:  Into Darkness, at the local 3-D Imax theater, I had to go.  I dug out my Next Gen comm-badge, slapped it on my shirt and headed to the Regal at the mall.

The new Star Trek pic is stunning in 3-D.  The graphics are fantastic and the storyline has loads of action with layers of plots and subplots.  To avoid a spoiler alert, I won’t talk about the details, but will focus on two matters.

First, the movie has a strong theme of self-sacrifice for the greater good, which is rather common throughout the various Star Trek films.  The crews are devoted to their mission and to each other.  So putting their lives on the line is the rule, not the exception.

For me this theme echoes what Jesus did for us.  Of course, we have all heard John 3:16, that God so loved the world that He sent His son to die for us.

As in the title to the newest Star Trek, Jesus descended into darkness to bring us His light.  Read what the Apostle Paul told the church in Philippi about this self-sacrifice:

Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others. Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. Therefore God has highly exalted him and bestowed on him the name that is above every name, so that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.  Philippians 2:4-11

What would happen if we followed this example of putting others before our own self-interest?  That is easier said than done, no?

The second point takes off in a different direction — this series of new movies has an alternative time line.

For those who didn’t see the last one, a catastrophic event changed the future.  So although the characters are basically the same, their circumstances and reactions are different, sometimes subtly and other times dramatically.  I was fascinated by familiar lines from past movies used in parallel scenes.  The possibilities for the future of the series are fantastic and fascinating.  But for me, it raised another question.

I wonder – what if Jesus never became a man on this earth and died on our behalf?

What do you think?  Leave your comment.  It would be fun to have a discussion.

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