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Thursday, December 13, 2007

The Golden Compass

I don't know if you have been following any of the controversy surrounding the movie "The Golden Compass" but below are a couple of links to articles that are worth reading.

In short, "The Golden Compass" is a movie based off the trilogy "His Dark Materials" by Philip Pullman. If you notice some parallels with the "Chronicles of Narnia", it isn't accidental. Pullman's aim with his trilogy is to destroy faith in God. That isn't something that I am making up, that is what Pullman says himself. The trilogy he wrote is really an effort to undercut Lewis' Chronicles of Narnia and to destroy faith. "...Pullman has left little doubt about his books' intended thrust in his discussions of his works, such as noting in his 2003 interview that "My books are about killing God" and in a 2001 interview that he was "trying to undermine the basis of Christian belief."  http://www.snopes.com/politics/religion/compass.asp

Christianity Today has an article that looks at the film and Pullman's philosophies that underlie the work. Go to http://www.christianitytoday.com/ct/2007/december/12.36.html

I don't think that we should be afraid of Pullman, his works or his films. God wins. But we can use them in a couple of ways. One way is to teach our kids discernment. Pullman is not the first nor will he be the last that will seek to destroy the faith and belief of our kids. We need to be talking with our children about good influences and bad influences and help them understand that most things we see are not amoral but rather have underlying philosophies that drive their message. For smaller kids, I would say that not even watching the movie is probably the best thing. But for our teens, I don't believe it is harmful to watch it with them and help them to see and discern the messages it is communicating. An article by Jeffery Overstreet does a good job of helping us think this through. http://www.christianitytoday.com/movies/commentaries/fearnotthecompass.html
You have to use your own discernment on this. I personally struggle with giving my money to support the film by going to it in a theatre. It will be out on DVD soon. I'll rent it.

If you want a Christian Perspective Discussion Guide you can go to  http://biblestudies.stores.yahoo.net/goldencompass.html  and buy one for download.

If you have seen the movie, let me know what you think about it.

2 comments:

F. J. Gates said...

I love your statement "We need to be talking with our children about good influences and bad influences and help them understand that most things we see are not amoral but rather have underlying philosophies that drive their message". What comes to mind, however, is the slippery slope debate. My question would be this: Over time (maybe even over generations) is our discernment dulled by so many underlying "anti-God" philosophies?

I am left to wonder, is it best to observe the world through a lens of discernment? Or should we dive right in and partake of the world, confident that faith will allow us to "escape the corruption of the world caused by evil desires"...Or...avoid the world at all cost?

-FG

batmanforehead said...

I definitely think we can become dulled over time. But is not that the role of the Holy Spirit, to convict us of sin, unrighteousness and the like. I think you can find those words from the lips of Jesus.

I'm not sure that it is an either/or proposition. It's that whole sticky "be in the world but not of the world" thing. And really, can one "avoid the world at all costs" and would it really be worth the cost. Someone braved "the world" to reach out to me an share Jesus Christ. Otherwise I KNOW I would be in total darkness. And I'm sure glad Jesus didn't "avoid the world at all cost."