[This post is a follow-up to the question I posted today on Facebook about whether I should read the Harry Potter series.]
Alright. Thanks all for your input today. I was not calling for divisiveness, but I knew that saying “Harry Potter” would bring you all out in full flourishes. You did great.
Just a couple thoughts and then an answer…
- Yes, it is! The “magic” in Harry Potter is the same thing as the magic in Narnia and LotR. Accepting it in one and rejecting it in another is a problem.
- You all don’t know many of each other and didn’t see that some of you were speaking tongue-in-cheek for part of the time at least.
- I’ll be writing/speaking more on it in the next school year, but let us be really clear that the Bible has many, many objectionable elements in it, much more varied than Harry Potter. The Bible as a movie would be rated R in parts. The matter is how those elements are treated. Condemning a work because it contains something you don’t like isn’t just cause. The fact is that there must be conflict, there must be something that makes everything ugly and need redemption. That’s what makes a story good. Conflict/problem is what makes every story not a documentary/infomercial (and even documentary is enhanced by conflict).
- If you’re struggling with people enjoying Harry Potter, I think that I Cor 8 should be your guide.
- If you’re struggling with people being offended by Harry Potter, I think that I Cor. 8 should be your guide.
- For meat!? For Harry Potter!? Are we willing to make mincemeat of the bonds of Christ? Don’t!
I don’t need to write a response, because one has already been gracefully and beautifully written. I read it last summer, and it helped swing me over to officially be willing to read/listen to the series (not sure I’m interested in the movies, but we’ll see if it’s convenient to watch them).
The fact is that “we turn to stories and pictures and music because they show us who and what and why we are.” (Madeleine L’Engle).
The best position I’ve read on the matter was written by Andrew Peterson. He said in part,
Let me be clear: Harry Potter is NOT Jesus. This story isn’t inspired, at least not in the sense that Scripture is inspired; but because I believe that all truth is God’s truth, that the resurrection is at the heart of the Christian story, and the main character of the Christian story is Christ, because I believe in God the Father, almighty maker of heaven and earth and in Jesus Christ his only begotten son—and because I believe that he inhabits my heart and has adopted me as his son, into his family, his kingdom, his church—I have the freedom to rejoice in the Harry Potter story, because even there, Christ is King. Wherever we see beauty, light, truth, goodness, we see Christ. Do we think him so small that he couldn’t invade a series of books about a boy wizard? Do we think him cut off from a story like this, as if he were afraid, or weak, or worried? Remember when Santa Claus shows up (incongruously) in The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe? It’s a strange moment, but to my great surprise I’ve been moved by it. Lewis reminds me that even Father Christmas is subject to Jesus, just as in Prince Caspian the hosts of mythology are subject to him. The Harry Potter story is subject to him, too, and Jesus can use it however he wants. In my case, Jesus used it to help me long for heaven, to remind me of the invisible world, to keep my imagination active and young, and he used it to show me his holy bravery in his triumph over the grave.
The full article is called “Harry Potter, Jesus and Me.” Please follow the link and go read it. Every word. It is seasoned with grace and addresses the wide array of problems that were brought up today. It will be an encouragement to the proponents, also.
Thanks for taking part.