No greater love . . .
BY PASTOR TONY REA | MARCH 29, 2021
It’s hard to believe, but it’s been 23 years since Titanic hit the Hollywood big screen. Released December 19, 1997, Titanic became an overnight sensation.
Taking into consideration the inflation of ticket pricing, experts say Titanic is still the most successful movie ever made. With the exception of Avatar and Avengers (Endgame), Titanic is the highest grossing film in the history of movies. And why not? Titanic contains all the necessary ingredients of an epic Hollywood blockbuster movie.
First of all, the key to the movie’s success takes place in the very beginning as the stunning opening frames captivate everyone's attention. Right at the start, the audience is enthralled by footage of the actual Titanic—the authentic R.M.S. Titanic that sank to its watery grave in the Atlantic Ocean on April 14, 1912. We’re talking about a real ship that really sank. In the movie, right before our very eyes, the Titanic emerges from its place of burial and we witness the resurrection of a brand-new Titanic.
Secondly, the history of the Titanic has tragedy written all over it. Some 1500 passengers on board the ship were killed. We already know what's going to happen, so by re-creating the event we have the opportunity to witness and experience the disaster firsthand. It’s like we’re right there, and we all get a chance to decide, without commitment of course, what we would've done in that same situation. Faced with the ultimate test of character, would we act like a hero and go down with the ship? Or because we have such a strong sense of survival, would we do whatever it takes to get on board one of those lifeboats?
Then in addition to all that, the reality of Titanic is a classic tale of wealth and arrogance, and we find out there’s a huge price to pay for pride. Pride that boasts, “No fear! There is no danger here. Full speed ahead; we are invincible. Even God himself couldn’t sink this ship.”
However, in my estimation, what makes Titanic click, what sets it apart from all the rest, is the romance piece. And don't we all enjoy a good love story? (Personally, I’m an action/adventure guy.) For whatever reason, romance strikes an emotional chord in our hearts; and it has become the people's choice these days. In Titanic there's an obvious passionate romance that develops between Rose and Jack. Everything happening on the ship during the entire movie just seems to get swept away and lost in the compelling magic of their love and commitment to each other.
But here’s the secret, what makes Titanic such a winner… Jack loves Rose so much, he's willing to lay down his life and pay the ultimate price for her. Jack doesn't just say it, he proves the depth of his love with his actions. In like manner, Rose also loves Jack. For the first time in her life, she experienced true love, and beyond a shadow of a doubt, she now understands what sacrifice is all about. You see, Titanic is all about love… amazing, unconditional, love! The kind of love that says, “I love you so much I will die for you.”
Sound familiar? Of course it does!
It’s precisely what Jesus said to his disciples on the eve of his death. Sharing final intimate moments with them during the Passover meal, Jesus said, “Greater love has no man than this, that he would lay down his life for his friends.” (John 15:13)
Change the names and faces, remove the religious overtones, fast forward a few centuries, and the Easter story contains all the same, necessary ingredients to make it a highly successful blockbuster movie. There’s humanity and heroism, belief and betrayal; there’s tragedy and triumph; and make no mistake, there’s love—sacrificial love of another kind. In fact, from start to finish, the Easter account is the greatest love story ever told.
Now, today is the start of Passion Week, the final few days of Jesus’ earthly life. Rather than review the storyline here, I’m going to invite you to celebrate Easter 2021 with us at Community Christian Church.
We have a Good Friday service scheduled on April 2, beginning at 7PM Prior to the start of the Good Friday service, we are hosting a one-hour contemplative prayer experience in the youth sanctuary from 6 to 7PM. You are welcome to visit this special prayer environment at any time during the hour and then join us in the main sanctuary for Good Friday. Communion will be served.
Our contemporary and compelling Easter worship experience will be held on Sunday, April 4. There will be one in-person service only at 10AM. You will, however, be able to watch the service at any time during the day on Easter; it will be streaming on our website the entire day.
You can join us online or in person for Good Friday and Easter Sunday. For more information, please visit this page: