Monday, May 15, 2006


"The book is after all just another pop-lit novel, and will be passed up by the next big insult to religion, which will evoke another round of debate and defensive retoric."

Polls on the whole are unreliable and untrustworthy for gathering information due to a wide variety of reasons, but many journalists rely on them for news and their ideal purpose is to gain some sense of what people think on issues and how they understand certain topics. World Magazine Blog reported on a recent poll by the Barna group:

A nationwide survey by The Barna Group on Dan Brown’s novel The Da Vinci Code shows that the book has impacted millions of lives – but changes few beliefs. One out of every five adults has read the book but only 5% - which represents about two million adults – said that they changed any of the pre-existing beliefs or religious perspectives because of the book’s content. The survey finds that the people most likely to have altered their religious views in response to the book’s content were Hispanics (who comprise 17% of the book’s readers), women (three times more likely than male readers to do so), and liberals (twice as likely as conservatives).

Commenters on the site responded:
My 13 year-old is currently reading the book, "so I can laugh at it with my friend." I told her fine, but she needed to give it to me when she is done and be ready for discussion. Our church has provided talking points as well, so we can at least sound intelligent. I confess, I'm not interested in becoming well versed on gnosticism, but you got to do what you got to do . . .
-by michelle

I saw a preview to the movie that began, "No matter what you've read, no matter what you believe . . ." That was insulting.

But I am pleased that most churches have taken an offensive approach instead of a defensive one with this book/movie. It is fiction and very easily refuted by thinking people.

Unfortunately, investigating Dan Brown's lies has become a necessity for the sake of Christian apologetics. However, nothing happens without the permission of our sovereign Lord. So, even though some may be led astray by this book, others may come to the Lord because of it. "All things work together for good to those who love the Lord."
-by michael martin

It's interesting that an admittedly fictional book is being pursued as fact warranting theological resource

Many Christian beliefs are being debated at universities, by theologians, by magazines, and by the newspapers. Open, honest, debate, is fair. But Scientology, Islam, Buddhism, and Hinduism, have no real debate. Certainly nothing as intense and scrutinizing as Christianity. The only thing that comes close is the Mormons and then everyone stops short of real scrutiny and challenge. Perhaps its also because some muslim sect will issue a fatwah against you and the scientologists will harass and harangue you to death.
-by Daniel

The book is after all just another pop-lit novel, and will be passed up by the next big insult to religion, which will evoke another round of debate and defensive retoric. After this whole thing is passe, no one will care, very few people will still be looking for hidden clues to some stupid non-existant code invented by Dan Brown and hyped by anti-religion types. Instead people will be indulging in some other movement hyped by anti-religon types. Again Churches will get up and hollar and shout from the roof-tops about this new evil wicked movement, then after doing so they will feel all justified and holy because they are "defending the Faith" from heresy. These same churches will be so involved in fighting off the "heresy" of the new movement that they will be too busy to notice or will turning a blind eye to the real problems in their church. Meanwhile precious hours and funds are spent, books are published articles are written. Writers get popularized and famous for their defence against the latest attack. Because of the popularity of their books they go on book signing tours where crowds of swooning (and sinning - idolitry) fans line up for hours to get a scribble and a verse written in the cover of the book. Millions of dollars are made off the book, the author relaxes (and sinns - pride) in the luxuries of his (or her) success, and thinks to himself "I'm rich, I have nice cloths and housing, I got it made! and boy I sure am glad that I have the insight to ward off false teachers." In church and in conventions and in religious fundraisers the author gives great testamonies of his success and how close his journey has brought him to Christ. People who gather to hear him speak swoon (and sin) once again. And so it goes, phoney heresy is warded off by phoney Christians, and rampant sin is excused. All the while people are dying and going to HELL!!!

A good study of the letters to the churchs in Ephesus, and in Leodacia found in Revelation 2 and 3 with their warning to return to the first love, and the warnings to buy eye salve, white rament and gold tried with fire from the Lord that we may restore our spiritual sight, be clothed in Christ and be rich in the things of the God.

It should come as no surprise when the world hates Christians and makes railing accusations against Christ. Some how Christians today think that Chistianity should be respected by the world. Why are Christians shocked and surprised when the world attacks them? Have Christians forgotten that those who are unregenarate naturaly have an adversion to the things of the Spirit? The Bible clearly teaches that the world hated Christ first.
-by jc

A number of commentators have complained that the controversy over The Da Vinci Code is ridiculous because, after all, it's just fiction. While this is true it is beside the point. Fiction has often been the vehicle for the examination or promulgation of ideas. Charles Dickens, for example, critiqued the social impact of utilitarianism in Oliver Twist and, even more so, Hard Times. Many of the authors discussed in yesterday's thread on the best American fiction of the past quarter-century have in their novels dealt with various ramifications of the sexual revolution. One cannot stop at the fiction threshold and dismiss the effect of these materials--many of a high literary quality--on readers.
-by Oswald

*UPDATE: added question mark to title left off by accident and added quote

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