Robin Williams on ‘Biblical History’

Robin Williams on ‘Biblical History’ August 12, 2014

I was deeply saddened to learn today about the death of Robin Williams, who is just six months older than me. He has brought me a lot of joy and laughter in my life (even when I was grieving), both on TV and in films, that I have felt very down today, and went back to watch some of his clip highlights.

Spoiler alert. There is a bit of off color language in this following video, and a bit of what some would call irreverence as well, though I’m pretty sure Robin did not mean it that way (see below). This however is a good example of how incredible he was at instantaneous improvisation.

The reason I say Robin was just trying for a laugh in this video and not being irreverent is that I once spoke at a conservative Evangelical Church in San Francisco where he attended from time to time. The minister told me about his encounters with Robin and his search for God, and more to the point for redemption. He was hopeful about him.

Robin had grown up as the child of privilege but as a very lonely child, somewhat chubby and by himself a good deal. His father had been a successful exec in the Ford Motor Company. It was a lot to live up to. Lately he had been struggling with depression a good deal, as often happens to people who are very sensitive and very much alive to all that is going on around them. You have to ask yourself— why wouldn’t you be depressed if you watch the evening news most nights? The police found him yesterday, and it appears he hanged himself. Just very sad…….

One of the things I would stress when we hear stories like this, especially about suicide, is that a person should never be judged by the worst moment or moments in their life, even if it is their last moment in this world. The Bible says nothing about suicide being some kind of unforgivable sin. Judging people on the basis of their worst moments is certainly not how Christ evaluated people. People should be evaluated at their very best, especially if it is a consistent part of who they are over a long period of time. It is of course not our job, even if you are a minister to makes some kind of final pronouncement about a person’s eternal destiny. Only God knows everything, including that. God rest your soul Robin. You will most definitely be missed.

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