Sermon March 11, 2018

Jeffrey Vamos

How many of us have read Ayn Rand’s The Fountainhead or Atlas Shrugged, and been inspired to throw off all mediocrity, seek to embody the greatness that is ours if we simply will it, and refuse to be dragged down by society’s demand to conform? Such is the very compelling message of Ayn Rand’s books, which have inspired many an impressionable high-school or college student to strive to manifest their own unique creativity and individuality, the herd be damned. To become, in Friedrich Nietzsche’s term, an Übermensch. A superman.

But do we realize that what’s really behind this thinking is a philosophy that sees compassion as slavery, disdains all forms of weakness and exalts a relentless self-focus that refuses to let anyone get in your way. The irony is that Ayn Rand has a lot of fans–blind to their conformity to these ideals of non-conformity. (I want to be different. Like Howard Roark.)

Jesus offers this critique: those who are well have no need of a physician. The people who “got” Jesus message–the gospel–were the folk who knew how far they were from being Übermensch-like. Could it be that the most ill among us are those who don’t realize how much they need healing–the healing power of Christ?

Listen on, and please comment below!

Texts: Psalm 30, Luke 5:27-32