Summary: What does it mean for beleivers to do the Opus Dei
Doing the Opus Dei
It is like something out of your worst nightmare, that is if you have nightmares about being chased through Paris by an albino killer monk. If your worst nightmare is standing next to your high school locker in your underwear then it’s nothing like your worst nightmare. We went and saw the Da Vinci Code with my folks and my mother told me that Silas was just as she pictured him from reading the book. Now if you didn’t read the book or see the movie then at this point you are totally confused wonder who or what a Silas is. Well he is one of the villains of the book and movie, here is a picture of him and yeah he pretty much looks like he was described in the book. Here’s a brief overview if you have neither read nor seen the Da Vinci Code to date. It all begins when Robert Langdon, the noted symbologist from Harvard University becomes entangled in a murder investigation while lecturing in Paris. Jacques Sauniere one of the curators of the Louvre is brutally murdered and it appears that Langdon has been framed as the murderer. He is helped to escape by the s beautiful police cryptographer Sophie Neveu. Langdon discovers that the murdered Sauniere not only is Sophie’s estranged Grandfather but he is also the Grand Master of Priory of Sion, a secret society entrusted with a secret which if revealed would destroy the Christian church as we know it.
Now over the past two weeks we discovered that the secret in the book is the revelation that Jesus Christ was only a good man and prophet, not the son of God and that before he died on the cross he married Mary Magdalene who was pregnant with their daughter Sarah when she became a widow. She then fled to France where their descendents still reside.
Last week and the week before we looked at a number of errors in the book that are presented as fact. 1) The Priory of Sion does exist but it was not established in 1099 to protect this secret it was actually established in 1956 in Paris by a convicted con artist, Pierre Plantard. 2) The Gospels of Mary, Phillip and Thomas are not credible sources, they were written 150 to 200 years after the Gospels of Matthew Mark, Luke and John were written and accepted as the true account of the life of Christ. 3) The divinity of Christ was not established by the Nicene Council under the direction of Constantine in 325 AD. instead it was taught and believed by Paul in his writings dating from around 48 AD, the first generation of the church never debated it and Christ himself allowed people to call him God and he made such statements as “If you have seen me you have seen the Father.” 4) Mary Magdalene was a follower of Christ but there is no evidence at all to suggest the relationship was more then teacher disciple let alone that they married and produced a child.
However the gist of the story is that all of those fallacies, as well as others are true and they are so dangerous to Christianity that the Catholic Church has been willing to kill in order to keep those secrets under wraps. The deadly instrument used by the Vatican to achieve this silence is the Organization “Opus Dei” and at least in this instance they were using a mad monk, you gotta love a story with a mad monk in it, named Silas who was willing to kill anyone who stood in his way, including an elderly nun.
Dan Brown’s choice of villains shouldn’t surprise any of us because the Catholic Church is everyone’s favourite whipping boy these days. You can well imagine the outcry if the villains had of been a Jewish organization or the Islamic Church. Of course if the Da Vinci code had of been brave enough to tackle an earth shattering secret about Mohammed and Islam Dan Brown would be hiding for his life and Columbia Pictures would have been bombed by now. But it’s an ill wind that blows no good. In my 25 years in the ministry I have never seen so many Protestants rush to the defence of a Catholic Organization, as I have seen in the past few months. Especially an organization as conservatively Catholic as Opus Dei
This morning we are going to look at “Doing the Opus Dei” Now unlike the Priory of Sion Opus Dei does exist, just not in the manner described by Dan Brown.
Time magazine says “In casting the group (Opus Dei) as it’s heavy, Brown was as shrewd as someone setting up an innocent man for a crime. You don’t choose the head of the Rotary. You single out the secretive guy at the end of the block with the off putting tics, who perhaps has a couple of incidents in his past that will hinder an effective defence.”