The 9/11 Christian Story
By Cody G. Carson
Copyright 2009 All Rights Reserved.
Imagine: The Story of Christianity Told as a Terrorist Attack Analogy
A large group of people are having a party in the top of a 120 story building. There are celebrities, a live rock band, great food, pretty women, rich men, famous authors and scientists. Security guards are everywhere.
Suddenly, there is another terrorist attack like the one on Sept. 11th, 2001. A large Jet, full of fuel, crashes through the building fifteen floors below the party. There is a great explosion. The power goes out. The elevators stop.
Security control, located on the ground floor, cannot see what is going on, but they do know that there are fire alarms and that the elevators are not working, so they call the security guards on their radios and tell them to have the people go down the stairs.
Battery power kicks in where the party is, and the lights and music come back on. There are 20 exits, some larger than others, and security guards stand in front of each one. They tell the people that they are in danger and it is time to go. Some people say that they cannot see flames or smell smoke, so there is no hurry-- The food is still good and the musicians are playing loud live music. Most people, however, do heed the warnings and are going to the many exits.
A news helicopter is circling the building; a reporter looks into the building's windows and sees that ALL of the stairwells around the building are engulfed in flames. The reporter verifies this with an infrared camera and sees the security guards directing people into them. He calls building security; however the phone lines are not working. The reporter wants to land on the building's roof, but there is too much smoke to approach it.
The reporter then checks the building's website on his i-phone and gets the cell phone number of one of the security guards. The reporter tries to call, but the signal is too weak for a voice connection.
The reporter then sends this text message:
Reporter: No! You must tell everyone, there is a great fire below that has blocked all stairwells. Those who enter them are being overcome with smoke and they are dying! There has to be another way! Don't let them go down the stairs!
Security Guard: I will try to stop them. But what do we do? The stairs are our only exits. Can you get us off of the roof?
Reporter: Tried that. Too much smoke.
Security guard: There has to be a way.
Reporter: A forest-fire fighting helicopter approaches. Stand by.
The security guard waited two minutes.
Reporter: He is dropping water.No good, the water evaporated in the heat before it can put out the fire.
Security Guard: Then there is no hope.
Reporter: Wait. There is another one coming. He is calling my pilot on the radio. I'll get back with you when I hear the message.
The security guard waited one minute.
Reporter: My God, He's going to fly through the flames and crash into one of the stairwells to get the water in where it will do some good. The pilot said he only has enough water to extinguish the fire in one stairwell.
Security Guard: He is going to die for us?
Reporter: He just said that the stairwell he is clearing out will be the only safe way down the building. He said that everyone who does not go the way that he prepares will die. He wants you to tell everyone to evacuate at the North wall stairwell.
Security Guard: I will tell everyone. Please tell him thank you.
Reporter: Oh my God! He crashed! No one could have survived that! Wait! The Fire is going out on that side of the building. The North wall is clear! The way to salvation is open! Get all of the people to go down that stairwell. I can see water flowing down those stairs like a giant waterfall. Hurry, it won't last forever.
After the security guard finished reading the message, he unplugged the musicians' amplifiers to get everyone's' attention. The security guard shouted at everyone telling them about what text messages he had just read.
Some of the people were already in the North wall stairwell and were already following the right path when it was opened up. When some others heard the message from the security guard, they changed their stairwell immediately, thanked the guard, and joined the others in the North wall with gratitude.
Some, however, had to have proof, so they opened the building's windows at the North, South, East and West walls and looked for evidence of a fire and of that fire being extinguished at the North wall. Then they entered the North wall stairwell. They were able to reassure others that the guard had told the truth because they had seen proof.
Most of the people at the party, however, said that ALL stairwells are just different ways of reaching the same ground. They accused the security guard of being intolerant of other's beliefs. They ignored the security guard and stayed in their own stairwells.
Some became very angry at the guard for making an exclusive claim to salvation. They said, "Why would a loving pilot not extinguish ALL of the fire? Why would a loving building designer let a fire happen in the first place? Who gives you the right to tell us which stairwell to take and which one not to take? You, sir, are a fundamental fascist and your little group just wants to control us. Yours is the very last stairwell we would want to go through because of your attitude. Who believes in text messages anyway; you know those things can be edited. Keep your elitist views to yourself and stop trying to convert us."
Others were mad at the guard for interrupting the party for something as insignificant as a trivial event that would not immediately affect them. They said, "The party we are having is too much fun. We therefore, refuse to believe in any fire at all. Why should we concern ourselves with something we cannot clearly see? We will eat, drink, and be merry, for tomorrow we will die… Go away and let us party... Let us go the way of our own choosing.... Do not try to force your salvation on us. We were all happy until you started preaching your hate messages of death and fire. We are still young! Let the music start again!"
Another group of people refused to make a decision about the fire at all saying, "You really can't believe in anything either way. Nothing, in fact, can be proven. That could be a cloud outside the window; it is not necessarily smoke. It could be that IF there is a fire, it may go out before it affects us. Anything and everything is possible; WE will remain agnostic as we enjoy the music of the party. Perhaps we will decide at a later time. Meanwhile, your insistence is annoying; it keeps us from enjoying the spirit of the party. You are tolerant of others, so we will not tolerate you. Leave us alone. Talk about the fire to those who come to your stairwell of their own choosing. Proselytizing is rude. You are a conservative cell phone thumper! Maybe you should spend more time reading your texts instead of preaching them."
The guard said, "PLEASE! Listen! A man gave his life for us so that we could live! Don't you understand? None of us Security Guards could save you. Our words were empty; all of the stairs were on fire. That firefighter did the work that opened up a way. All I can do is tell you the truth about what He did and try to help you to understand that you will burn without following the way He prepared. That is NOT intolerance; that is LOVE!
I could leave right now and save myself, I am a lover of people. I am like the pilot who gave his life for you. I do not want to see any of you die. I'm sorry I unplugged the music. I'm sorry I interrupted the party. I'm sorry I yelled to get your attention. I just needed to tell you what you need to know in order to live. This building is going to come down soon and kill everyone in it. Everyone who chooses the wrong stairwell will die. I don't like those facts either, and if I could change them, I would. How would I be showing you love if I just left without telling you?
People began to leave the party and get into the elevator until a young man said, "Hey, I just got a cell phone call. Apparently some people in that stairwell of yours have picked the pockets of some of the others; there was even a little girl who got molested by one of your North stairwell people. How am I supposed to feel like this is the right stairwell for me to go through? Aren't you people supposed to lead by example? Sounds kind of phony and hypocritical."
"Look," the guard said, "the firefighter who gave his life for us, gave his life for ALL of us. That does NOT mean that we can all just stand around and believe that we are saved. We still have to get into the right stairwell and try out best to follow it. I doubt that a man who would fly Himself into the flames to put them out for us would condone those actions. I'm sorry that happened; I wasn't there to police them; I was trying to help you understand the fire."
The guard then shouted down the stairwell, "Everyone who has entered the stairwell, please conduct yourselves as you should. There are people up here who are going to burn to death because of your immorality!"
Some of the people in the North stairwell then ran back up to join the party saying, "Going to safety is one thing! You have no right to tell us how to live!"
The security guard then rolled his eyes and said, "I don't believe this! Why is it so hard to get you people to understand! It's not about missing the party or about being moral; it's about saving your lives!"
The music started and the people turned away from him. Discouraged, he left the party and entered the North stairs. When he passed by the wrecked helicopter He saw an empty seat where the pilot had been. When he looked on the other side of the wreckage, he saw the pilot who said, "Hello, my name is Jesus. I died saving you, but the designer of the building, my father, ran up the stairs after my crash and revived me. I must go now, but I will be returning again soon. I will be in another chopper that evacuates (raptures) this stairwell just before the fire returns to it. Soon the fire will reach the upper floors and those who are in the party will be going through a painful tribulation time when the flames enter the room with them. From that point in time, anyone who enters this stairwell will not be fully protected from the flames. I will also be returning in a giant and powerful airship that will drop millions of gallons of water on the building extinguishing the flames, but that second coming will kill anyone who has not sought refuge in this stairwell."
"Lord," The guard said, "I tried so hard to get them to listen, but many will not. They do not believe that you are the only way."
"Go to them one more time," Jesus said, "Tell them that when the water comes, they will no longer have a choice about what they believe, for they will see me coming with their own eyes. But it will be too late for them then; the water will washout the building and will remove them by force and they shall perish. The ones who are in this stairwell when I come, however, even if they miss the rapture, will remain alive. Hurry. Time is short."
Jesus left and the guard returned to the party. He pleaded with the people, but they ignored him. Even when the building became hotter and began to shake from the raging fire below, the party continued. The guard then made a last effort as he went to one of his friends who had been mad at him for being so insensitive earlier. The guard said, "Please. I know you like the party. I know you don't like the idea of death and fire. I know you don't like some of the people who found safety in the North stairwell, and I know that you think you are smarter than they are, but please….. Please just walk with me. Let's go down the stairs to the safety of the rocky ground outside. Then we can look back up at this burning building. Just trust me that far. If you want to go back inside - if you prefer the party that is about to ignite - then I won't stop you. You have free will. I just want you to clearly see the truth."
"I'll think about it," the friend said, "meanwhile, you want a beer? Check out those women over there. They sure are hot."
"Unfortunately, my friend, they are about to get a lot hotter. I have more people to invite; I doubt I'd have any credibility if I was carrying a beer in my hand while I told them they were about to die. I hope you join me in the stairwell… Good bye."
Thinking that someone else's religion is false, is not disrespectful. I have many friends who belong to other religions. I can be friends with anyone. But believing as I do, I feel it is important to share what I know to be true with others. If you were the guard in that building, could you stand quietly while others went to a fire-engulfed stairwell while you stood at the door of the only safe one? This is my heart; what is it intolerant of?
Take care, and hope to see you in the stairwell,