R.I.P. Mr. Spock

Although I never was a fanatical Star Trek follower, I was saddened today to learn of the death of Leonard Nimoy, who played Mr. Spock. I’m intrigued to look back on this unique character and ask why it became so beloved around the world. After all, it’s not like Spock was a sex symbol or someone who was warm and fuzzy. Quite the contrary, his persona was emotionally detached and exceedingly logical.

I would love to hear your ideas on why Spock was so supremely popular. Do you have a friend like him? A professor in college? Or do you see qualities in Spock that remind you of the logical, unemotional way you like to process events in your own life?

As the years go by, I think I am less and less like Spock. Trained as an attorney, I certainly have an appreciation for logic and debate. But in recent years, I’ve gained an increasing conviction that “The heart of the matter is almost always a matter of the heart.”

The central Biblical paradigm for humanity is found in Mark 12:30: “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength.” Notice that the word “ALL” is used four times here. There’s no room here for love that is halfhearted or lukewarm.

Take a moment to reflect on how beautiful and profound this principle is. We are supposed to love and serve God with our entire being. Despite its critics, Christianity is certainly not meant to be a mindless pursuit, because we are specifically told to love God with our mind.

But the paradigm doesn’t encourage us to be like Spock either. Intellectual Christianity, divorced from our heart and soul, will never succeed in changing the world.

And I’m glad that strength is included as well. Yes, Christianity is about beliefs, but it is also about actions. Faith without works is dead (James 2:26), and God wants us to actively serve Him—with ALL of our strength.

So I encourage you to write back and tell me your thoughts on why Mr. Spock touched such a nerve in our culture. And, while you’re at it, take a look at Mark 12:30 and ask yourself: Am I loving the Lord with my entire being, or just a part?