Saturday, February 11, 2006

DaVinci Code Strategy

Last Sunday, PastorMark talked about the authority of Scripture. It was a really good message, as most of his are. What was most interesting to me was that he framed the topic in light of the novel, and forthcoming movie, The Da Vinci Code. I haven't read the book and haven't really kept up with it at all. But from all looks, it is quite an important element of our culture right now. And will probably become more so with the movie.

Barbara Nicolosi, executive director of Act One, writes the following about Christians going to see the movie in an effort to dialogue about it:
Further, we absolutely do not need to see the film to talk about Jesus. No more than we need to see porn to talk about human sexuality. Or to read Mein Kempf to decide whether I can have an opinion about gassing Jews. Besides, it would be dignifying a really inane story. Da Vinci Code is so ridiculous in its premises, that it is giving it a false gravity to even take it seriously enough so as to argue about it. ["And tomorrow, the Christians will be offering a hermenutical exigesis of moral praxis as can be gleaned from next weeks episode of WWF Smackdown. Ahem."] Yeah, let's all find a starting point for dialogue in the notion that a secret coterie of albino monks has been mythmaking about Jesus' Divinity for 2,000 years. No, you go first.

Now, Christians being coaxed into writing anti-DVC pieces on a stupid web site (like, well, this one) are meekly accepting that they are being given "a seat at the table" in some grand cultural discussion. Duped! There is no seat folks. There is no discussion. What there is, is a few p.r. folks in Hollywood taking mondo big bucks from Sony Pictures, to deliver legions of well-meaning Christians into subsidizing a movie that makes their own Savior out to be a sham.
She continues...
ANYWAY.... here's what I think we should do. I am hereby announcing my personal "How to Respond to Da Vinci Code Strategy." And the answer is to go to the movies on May 19, 2006. Every Christian who loves Jesus, your mission, if you will accept it is to buy movie tickets. We need to bring our kids, our church groups, our youth ministry clubs, our seniors groups - and buy tickets for the homeless for after we feed them. And we all need to go to see THIS!
She raises some very good points in light of engaging the culture.

UPDATE - 2006-02-12
Theopraxis offers a great great comment here so I thought I would post it because:
1 - most readers would appreciate it
2 - haloscan (my comment provider) stores comments for only three months and the dialogue is important enough to me to be included in the post.

So here it is. Theopraxis, thanks!!
She does have some good points there. On the other hand, we have folks in our churches who are buying into some of the premises of the book, and it's causing them to question their faith.

I think we need to at least be conversant enough in the themes of the story to discuss it. That might mean reading about it on wikipedia, or it might mean seeing the movie or reading the book. The premises of the story are ludicrous - I think she's right about that. But you have to know enough about church history to know that - for the average churchgoer, I question whether that level of knowledge is present. Would the average Christian today know, for example, that Dan Brown is completely making something up when he says that the four canonical gospels were selected out of over eighty possible gospels for inclusion in the canon? I'm not sure.

This could, in fact, be a good opportunity to discuss church history in our churches - something that's hardly ever brought up. It sounds like PastorMark is taking a good approach here.
The comment is right on isn't it? I would agree - we need to at least have some knowledge of the story without necessarily supporting the movie on opening weekend. It also reminds me that part of our responsibilities involve imploring people to care about the right things, not just to believe the right things. A topic like church history can seem really academic, at least until we recognize that a huge part of our culture could believe a made up story related about how the books of the Bible were chosen. At that point, its no longer studying church history just to memorize the facts.

If you want to listen to the message from last week [the main topic being how the Gospels were chosen] here is the link. Also here is a link to the ppt notes. Both links only good until Feb 20th [extra week because of the snow.]

No comments:

Post a Comment