Star Trek: Quotes

“I do not approve. I understand.” -Spock

It’s been awhile since I’ve done one of these! In my search for good quotes with lengthy words and deep meaning I overlooked the simplicity but equal importance of others. This one from Spock in reply to Anan in A Taste of Armageddon is one of such quotes that I feel has relevance today.

For those that aren’t familiar with this series, Spock is a half human/half vulcan that prizes himself on logic. However, even he has said that logic is only the beginning of wisdom, not the end.

In today’s society, the amount of illogic would probably lead to this iconic expression.

Fascinating

My point today, however, isn’t to raise my eyebrows at the state of our world, but to try and understand the “why” behind it.

I believe that no one is born evil. And quite frankly, I wouldn’t readily say that those who do evil things do it with the thought of, “I want to be evil and turn against God.” If we really looked into it, I’m sure you would find that most people think they are good and feel a sense of guilt over those actions which they believe to be bad.

Character and civility still mean something, and that is a good thing! Though it’s importance and definition is slowly fading, most of us still have a moral compass which directs us. That is why the devil has his work cut out for him when he seeks to twist a person to his will.

You can’t take a good person and turn them toward darkness in a day. It would be like trying to get a doctor, whose spent his whole life healing and helping others, to kill and destroy. It would be unnatural and disgusting to him, and yet doctors are doing this in abortion clinics throughout the world.

The only way to twist a man is by one thought, or rather, half-truth, at a time. The devil is good at being that subtle voice, like the serpent he is. He knows that a snare can’t be too obvious or we would avoid it, and so he spends years laying the trap and training us to step into it unawares. In fact, by the time he’s done with you, you’ll believe that his words are truth and his trap a warm embrace.

If you allow this way of thinking to take hold, he will get you to believe anything.

Maybe it isn’t a baby…maybe it is just a lump of cells

I don’t like who I am, God must’ve made a mistake when I should’ve been born a boy!

The list is practically never-ending. It’s these slippery slopes of deception that I can very easily understand. We have all been tested and have believed these lies (maybe not the ones listed above) but others…

Maybe God isn’t all good

I don’t see miracles, they must not exist today

Do these ones hit closer to home? Can you see that we are all in the same boat, being attacked by the same enemy. Like any battlefield, you’ll see injured, broken comrades, alongside those who get back up and keep fighting, some retreat, others lose heart, and others still are killed.

We are all on this battlefield fighting the same battles and one enemy.

It isn’t Biden, world leaders, the wealthy, some ethic group, a political party…rewind and keep rewinding…it all started in that garden. The serpent.

Jesus understands. He came down to live as a man, but died to free us from death. He is now our mediator but just like the quote above His understanding of our condition didn’t equate to approval. If that were so, we would still be lost and damned without a savior.

I don’t want to beat a dead horse with this topic but my final example is the clearest one in my experience.

Behavior in Children.

I’ve worked with young children for awhile now and have seen my share of illogical behavior. Most of which, are normal developmental phases of learning boundaries, though not all.

In the normal cases, children learn quickly and the problems are easily managed with discipline. In cases of abuse/neglect they tend to spiral and react poorly to discipline.

It’s easy to get annoyed by bad behavior but once you hear the story behind it, suddenly you understand the why to their behavior all the while wanting them to overcome the obstacle and to heal.

It is this heart of compassion, of understanding that I believe will reignite our passion for the lost. We’ve grown used to arguing and judging and have forgotten to love like Christ. He died while we were still sinners, and though He understood our condition He loved us too much to leave us there.

And so let’s attempt to be an understanding church, so that we can be a compassionate one. That our love and commonality would unite us and press us toward the fulfillment of the great commission, to lead people to Christ and bring Heaven to earth.

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Star Trek: Quotes

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“Things are only impossible until they’re not.”

-Captian Jean-Luc Picard

 

It’s impossible for man to fly ~ Wilbur and Orville Wright 1903

It’s impossible to land on the moon ~ US Apollo 11 1969

It’s impossible to create light without fire ~ Thomas Edison 1879

…the list goes on.

What has been considered impossible for one era has been proven possible in another. So the question is this, is anything truly impossible? Afterall, we label something impossible only when we personally cannot find a solution. Once someone is willing to stand up and challenge an impossibility, there is always a chance that he or she will succeed, solving the problem that no one else could and therefore broadening our abilities as human beings.

It is more than adaptation, more than growth, it is reaching beyond our limitations and societal boxes. It’s becoming something greater. Are we still human? Yes, but we are continuing to stand apart from the rest of creation, proving once and for all that we have a soul, and a purpose. That we aren’t just animals but that we have minds that see beyond this world.

If we were truly made for this world, it would contain us. However, it does not, we continually reach upward and outward, searching for more, driven by a great desire for more that only God can satisfy.

What do you think of this quote?

Have you ever faced an impossibility and have overcome it?

Star Trek: Quotes

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“A man either lives life as it happens to him, meets it head-on and licks it, or he turns his back on it and starts to wither away.” 

-Dr. Boyce, “The Menagerie,” (“The Cage”)

I heard about a man retiring from a factory, he had worked for 70+ years. Everyone was excited for him, but when asked, “are you ready to retire?” he replied, “no, I’m afraid that if I retire I will start to die.” You see, he had worked for so long, a life of ease sounded like a death sentence, and quite honestly, without hobbies and other things to do, the body would undergo quite a shock.

The health of a person involves so much more than we realize. Too much of anything can be deadly, too little of something can be just as hazardous. We must always be well balanced in diet and exercise. And then there is our mental health. Though eating right and keeping fit helps our minds, we need to face challenges…to face life. It is as Dr. Boyce said, we must live life as it happens to us, or wither away.

Many mental illnesses develop from a denial or refusal to accept/face circumstances. (I’m not saying this is the reason behind all cases) But it isn’t hard to see that any problem left unattended will grow into a larger problem. Denial, fear, anger….if not dealt with at hand can progress and very possibly consume us. The mind has both the ability to face a problem and to avoid it-though at considerable cost. The choices of the mind very much affect the health of the body. That is why it is common to find mental illnesses accompanied by body ailments such as chronic pain, immune deficiencies, asthma, and even cancer.

So, I believe this quote is true, though we may think at the time we are protecting ourselves when we avoid or “turn our backs” on life, we are really making life more difficult long term. It can be compared to this image; going with the flow of a stream, or fighting against the current. Eventually, you exhaust yourself fighting and end up swept away. More tired and worn then if you would have followed the stream, to begin with.

What are your thoughts on this quote?

 

Star Trek: Quotes

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“Logic is the beginning of wisdom, not the end.”

-Mr. Spock

This quote is a well-learned lesson for Mr. Spock, as, throughout his voyages on the Enterprise, he discovered that logic isn’t always enough, especially when dealing with humans who rely on intuition and emotions to guide them.  Logic is simply limited by what we know. A logical response for you may not be so logical to someone else, or in this case, may not be logical in another world.

Logic is generally what “makes sense”, and what makes sense is brought about through experience and reasoning. But what about the unknown? The things we encounter that, on the surface, don’t make sense? This is where logic isn’t enough, and we must rely on something greater.

To Mr. Spock, when logic doesn’t fit, he relies on his human side to fill in the equation. What feels right, or the things that aren’t logical but often true nonetheless. This is the beginning of wisdom as he describes it. A new level of understanding gained through time and maturity.

What I want to add to this is the Christian perspective, in that for us, wisdom is gained through a relationship with God. True wisdom, that which is understood only through revelation and faith. Though God created the world and it’s known science, He also created much that is unknown and even unseen. A world not governed or limited by our science or scientific laws. A world where our logic is not so logical at all. It is when we realize that limitation and start to see things openly that wisdom starts to grow in us. It involves humility and faith in that we must believe in something that can’t be fully understood.

That’s the heart of it, logic will only take you so far, eventually, you will have to have faith in something because we will never know all the answers to everything, whether you are a Christain or even an atheist, you will need to have faith to believe in what you do. And you will need the wisdom to make the right choice, a choice arrived at through objective means.

What are your thoughts on Logic vs. Wisdom?

Blessed is the one who finds wisdom, and the one who gets understanding, for the gain from her is better than gain from silver and her profit better than gold. She is more precious than jewels, and nothing you desire can compare with her. Long life is in her right hand; in her left hand are riches and honor. Her ways are ways of pleasantness, and all her paths are peace.”-Proverbs 3:13-18

 

 

Star Trek: Quotes

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If you kill them they may become martyrs. If they become martyrs you won’t be able to silence them.”

-William T. Riker

There are times when the existence of God becomes more clear, more definite. He isn’t only found in the masterpiece of creation but can be plainly seen in the heart of mankind. Though we have fallen into sin and destruction, hope isn’t lost, and the very core of our being remains God breathed life. Maybe even a desire to become more than what we are. Watching the news all the time will blind us all to the good that is still at work. The world is full of beauty and love put into action, to find it we need only look for it. In other words, we see what we want to see, what we look for we find.

You won’t discover a single animal willing to die for a belief. And yet humans have been known to give up their lives as a sacrifice for what they believe is greater than themselves. Soldiers die to protect freedom, a freedom we often take for granted. Many have given their lives to protect others, risking their lives for justice. It all tends to make me think about what I would die for. Would I die for my faith? Could I become a martyr?

I agree with what Commander Riker said, the moment someone finds something worthy enough to die for, it says something to everyone else. Suddenly they find that something valuable too. People may ignore this feeling, but I believe that we still place value on something based on what has been sacrificed for it. The more blood that was spilled, the more we take notice and protect that which has been protected.

We even glorify this concept. Watch any movie where the hero dies for his beliefs and you will almost feel that same passion stir within you. Movies like Braveheart. It’s as if death becomes a victory, a defining moment, and not the end of their legacy but the beginning.

But what about the Christian martyrs? We honor soldiers who died for our freedom, but do we truly honor those who died for our faith? Those who put everything into what they believed and hoped for? I really advise you to read Jesus Freaks by DC Talk, It’s a culmination of stories about those who gave up their lives for Jesus. Their voices won’t be silenced, even if the world tries to ignore them. Death for us shouldn’t be defeat, Jesus died and rose again, defeating death’s sting. Death for us now means eternity, but how we die is important. We can die as we are, displaying our love as Christ’s followers, or we can die in fear and resentment, clinging desperately to this life even if it means denouncing all that we believed in. The difference is significant. Satan stands defeated but we all have been given the chance to defeat him ourselves. To defeat our flesh and sin and choose Christ.

To die for Him is the ultimate sacrifice.

“For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain.”-Philippians 1:21

 

 

Star Trek: Quotes

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The Enemy Within

Spock: We have here an unusual opportunity to appraise the human mind, or to examine, in Earth terms, the roles of good and evil in a man– his negative side, which you call hostility, lust, violence, and his positive side, which Earth people express as compassion, love, tenderness.
McCoy: Are you aware it’s the captain’s guts you’re analyzing?
Spock: Yes, and what makes one man an exceptional leader? We see indications that it’s his negative side which makes him strong, that his evil side, controlled and disciplined, is vital to his strength. Your negative side removed from you, the power of command begins to elude you.

 

In this episode, we see Captian Kirk split into two beings. One containing the more gentle and good characteristics of humanity, the other containing as Spock mentioned, the more hostile savage-like qualities of humanity. As Christians, that side is the flesh and sinful qualities that we long to be severed from, much like Kirk was. In a way, this episode is romanticising the fallen man. The animal man, apart from God and yet still somehow driven by God’s morality as a means to control savage urges. Symbolically keeping the beast locked in a cage. But is it truly these hostile qualities that make us strong?

I don’t believe this is so. The bravest acts of mankind I have ever seen were driven by love. Granted, hate is a powerful motivator, but love has proven more lasting and powerful. More men and women are willing to be martyred for the sake of love and faith than for selfish hatred or retribution. I would say that it is our love that gives us courage, as well as possibly our passion for justice, or our compassion for others. When we accept Jesus into our soul we cut away the old self, the fallen man. Becoming new creations, no longer enslaved to sin. Can we choose to sin and fall away? Absolutely, but to do so without repentance would be to openly declare allegiance to the evil forces of this world. As new creations, we have the Holy Spirit who convicts us, guides us, and comforts us in the ways of righteousness. To choose the old self, would be to ignore His leanings and to put aside His convictions willingly. It is much like being given a great inheritance and then throwing it in the fire.

Therefore, we are all better off without our savage fleshly urges, they weren’t originally a part of us. We took that identity when we turned our faces from God and His design. We still may be tempted, and at times we may fail, but when our heart remains for the Lord and His righteousness, we will continue to rise from the ashes and take up our new identity as sons and daughters of God.

What do you believe?

 

 

 

Star Trek: Quotes

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“Above all else a God needs compassion!”

-Captian Kirk

It amazes me that such a statement was even spoken on Star Trek, as I stated before, it is a highly secular show and yet Kirk makes a statement about God and the characteristics he believes God should possess above all else, “compassion.” I am sure that everyone on the face of the earth would at least agree that, given the choice, they would rather serve a compassionate God over one who wasn’t. Why go through the trouble of creating a world full of wonder for beings that aren’t really loved or valued? God put a lot of thought and passion into His creation, He even gave up His Son to see it restored. We truly serve a God who is compassionate towards us, and yet, if the world agrees that a God should be compassionate why don’t they believe that He is?

That is the question, it isn’t that people don’t believe in God’s existence, as Romans 1:19-20 states:

19 because that which is known about God is evident [b]within them; for God made it evident to them. 20 For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes, His eternal power, and divine nature, have been clearly seen, being understood through what has been made, so that they are without excuse.

His existence is proven, and yet many people choose to believe He doesn’t exist, why? Because it’s easier to believe there’s no God than in the existence of one who is angry and hateful towards His creation. People pretend for the sake of feeling secure and in charge of their lives. They believe God is morally inadequate and so they have placed themselves on the throne, failing to see that they are far from all-knowing and righteous. What is good and evil gets muddied pretty fast when everyone believes they are God. It’s all too easy to point and judge when you are sitting on the throne seat. In fact, you start to feel pretty entitled to do whatever you please, because as God you can do no wrong right?

And so there we have it, those who deny the existence of God so they can be, and those who believe in God. The monotheists and polytheists, and the very many religions under those categories. Believing in many doctrines, and in many types of God. Some believing He is unreachable, others that He is limited. Some believe He cares only about obedience and others still who believe He simply exists and cares not what the world does. And then there are the Christians and Jews who believe He is a good God….but the Christians go even further in that belief. He is so good He gave His one and only begotten Son to save mankind. He is more good than we can imagine!

Compassion? I agree, above all else a God needs compassion. And thank God, ours is so compassionate that He doesn’t just have love, but IS love. (1 John 4:8)

What do you believe?

Would love to hear your thoughts on this quote!

Star Trek: Quotes

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“You know the greatest danger facing us is ourselves, and irrational fear of the unknown. There is no such thing as the unknown. Only things temporarily hidden, temporarily not understood.”

– James T. Kirk, “The Corbomite Maneuver”

I remember the first time I watched Star Trek. Having watched 2009’s, J.J. Abrams-directed film, I immediately became captivated by creator Gene Roddenberry’s imagination. So I started at the very beginning, or as it’s called, The Original Series. And haven’t stopped watching since.

Why did I become a Trekkie and what’s this post leading to? Good point, I’m getting there. What first drew me to Star Trek was nostalgia, I have a fondness for the past and that includes TV shows. They take me to another time, to another world. Star Trek takes me there literally, with a whole universe of worlds to explore!

What I really love about the show, however, is that each episode reflects the problems and issues of the day, and asks all the deep questions that many of us struggle to answer. I’m not saying that I agree with the answers that Star Trek provides to these dilemmas, but I do applaud their openminded boldness to even ask such questions and try to tackle them. They are deep and personal things that can be painful to uncover and challenge, and yet this is the only show that I have seen take such a leap.

Lastly, I will say that I love how it explores humanity. It’s never truly about exploring new planets, though on the surface that’s what it would seem. With each new discovery, we also discover something about ourselves that makes us set apart. Whether that be compassion, creativity, love, or the thirst for freedom.

Now on to the point, I really wanted to start a blog series on Star Trek quotes that have stuck with me and have challenged me to think deeper. Although I would say this is a highly secular show, that doesn’t mean that we can’t learn from it as Christians. In some ways, it gives us a broader understanding of what our society thinks and feels about different subjects from a non-religious background.

The first quote, though spoken by both Captain Picard and Doctor McCoy, originated from John Dalberg-Acton, a writer, politician, and historian from the late 1800s:

“Absolute power corrupts absolutely.”

Let’s discuss this quote for a moment, and let’s see if you agree. I believe this speaks to our need of God, in that we ourselves are ill-equipped to handle access power apart from Him. This also shows that evil does exist and tends to take over well-intentioned people of power. I truly believe that without God and His authority over us, we automatically place something else in that place of authority and power, and if we aren’t careful, that something can be ourselves.

We see this in society, this erasing of God and promoting of self. It is a weakness in humans to believe we know and perceive more than our creator does. That somehow we can surpass Him in our goodness, wisdom, and power. When we start to believe this, satan takes over and that is when we start to bring about our own destruction. There is a reason we live in a world that lacks a supreme ruler, power is delegated for the sole purpose of protecting ourselves from such a predicament.

Let’s chew on this one for the time being, what are your thoughts on this subject?