Driving on Route 36, towards the Parkway, on the right side of the road, one sees the advertisement for a new club called Sinsations. One has to admire the creativity of the future owners as they created the title. I was driving to Philadelphia where I was to teach a course entitled The Victory of Christ over the Demonic World. It made me think about how I should respond to this new enterprise in the neighboring community.
Many years ago, when a local community theater wanted to become an X rated movie theater, some of my pastoral predecessors protested in front of the theater. While there were only a couple of pastors, the owner of the theater changed his mind and sold the theater to someone else. I also remember an article I wrote in this column against the proliferation of psychics in New Jersey, only to be accosted by our local psychic. She told me that she was a Christian and she did this for fun and that I was against the business community.
As I was pondering this issue, a remark that Richard Wurmbrand made in a conversation came to mind. He was talking about the magnetism Jesus had in drawing people to himself. In fact, in all the Gospels, one of the major concerns of the political and religious leaders was the multitude going after Jesus. This made me think about the magnetism of the church and pastors. Wurmbrand continued his conversation that what is important in advertising is the product – the future Sinsations club is about sin and they advertise that. The current churches and pastors should be about the Son (from where the word Sonsations came).
As one who pastors people struggling with varying sins, I am aware that sins are constantly enslaving, in my life and in the lives of others. One statement that I heard was, “Even if there is no hell, for the damage that sin does in your life, you should avoid it all costs!” Yet, I have to say that sin and sinful products are very magnetic, sell well, and people purchase them in large numbers.
In contrast with the future effects of Sinsations, which has consequences of enslavement and destruction, the effects of the Son are freedom and eternal blessing. Jesus said in the conversati0n with some people who wanted to become His disciples, “So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed (John 8:36).”
Protesting the opening of Sinsations club could be one of the options for the local churches and pastors. However, since the community gave them the permits and they are building, I deemed it more appropriate to present the Son. I pray all the sensations people will get will be divine sensations that flow from the person of the beloved Son of God, our Savior and Lord Jesus Christ, before whom every knee shall bow and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is the Lord to the glory of God the Father.