I am a Christian. I believe in Jesus Christ. I love Him and understand fully what He did for me. I grew up in church every Sunday, Wednesday and every revival evening. My parents loved each other very much, were and still are devoted to Christ. I teach my children about God's love and His purpose for our lives. I've given my heart to Christ, asked His forgiveness, think on His sacrifice for me and my family, been baptised in a river and in a baptismal in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Let's see...did I cover all my bases. Oh I have an active prayer life, Gee whiz...I even get bent out of shape when someone uses God in vain. Okay there's my background...
That being said, I'm going to talk about an issue that has been preached from the pulpit as being bad and even "anti-Christian." I'm going to disagree and I'm really not interested in debating the subject. This is being written so my children can see my views about parenting when they are parent's, so they can learn to take all the Bible in it's context and buck the urge to follow the evangelical herd at every whim, so to speak.
I have friends who are in total disagreement with me on this issue so please know that I respect those who follow a different perspective than mine. I am, however, going to get in depth with my thinking and it will be my view, voiced with the force of my conviction. Please know that I've heard and understand the other side of the argument that was voiced to me, by a few, with the same force of conviction.
You guys love me anyway. :-)
Here we go...
I used to be someone who would listen to a preacher and believe everything he said. Worse yet, I would jump on every bandwagon the church pulled in my directions and chant with the best of them. I protested Proctor and Gamble, I refused the Internet for years, I even burned all my records and tapes.
I learned quite a long time ago that God isn't so fragile, I don't have to jump on every wagon and that Christians don't necessarily believe the same things. I learned that for every scripture someone pulls out of a hat there is a chapter and book of the Bible and a long History to go along with it. Verses mean nothing to me now. The Book is where the Truth lies. Look at the context and who God was talking to in those verses and you may come up with a totally different view.
After much thought away from the religious propaganda and political mill I decided without reservation or conviction that
I CAN read Harry Potter and I CAN watch all of the Harry Potter movies.
Guess what! I even let my children read and watch Harry Potter.
There you have it.
There have been many preachers and Christians who condemn these books for their witchcraft and wizardry aspect. They quote scripture such as:
Deuteronomy 18:9-14 When you enter the land the LORD your God is giving you, do not learn to imitate the detestable ways of the nations there. 10 Let no one be found among you who sacrifices his son or daughter in the fire, who practices divination or sorcery, interprets omens, engages in witchcraft, 11 or casts spells, or who is a medium or spiritist or who consults the dead. 12 Anyone who does these things is detestable to the LORD, and because of these detestable practices the LORD your God will drive out those nations before you. 13 You must be blameless before the LORD your God. 14 The nations you will dispossess listen to those who practice sorcery or divination. But as for you, the LORD your God has not permitted you to do so.
Now lets read the entire chapter. When I read this what I understand God to be saying is that these crazy things don't even work. He didn't acknowledge them as satanic only that they are an abomination if you are doing these things instead of living for Christ. Now understand that he was trying to get them to put away all their superstitions. These were things that those people were doing instead of living for Christ. They were trying to accomplish all of these things as a religion because they had no other. They were looking for something, it wasn't working, then Christ came and bammo they were able to focus on Him for their life. These superstitions were fruitless things that adults were trying to make into meaningful things. They didn't work so they turned to someone who did work. God.
So does that verse mean we can't watch Harry Potter? Nope. Our kids are not going to go out and live their lives waving wands if they don't work. And guess what...They don't!
This is fantasy. Superman with all his power is fantasy. Spiderman is fantasy. The Lion, Witch and the wardrobe...fantasy, Harry Potter...fantasy!
If someone out there could show me a REAL person who can zap something with a wand and make it fly then maybe I would believe that Harry Potter has some semblance of reality. If I could see someone say some words and mix a potion and actually turn someone into a mouse then I would assess that Harry Potter is real. IF someone could show me anyone at all, anywhere on earth that could actually perform any of the "spells" that are fantasized in Harry Potter I may re-think my choice but until then I do not see how these books in any way could harm any person.
Now granted, you will have your sporadic child who will jump off a roof because Superman can fly. You may have a few who will take a stick (wand) and try to turn their cup to a mouse or fly on a broom because Harry Potter can do these things. But really now! After they realize that whipping a stick around just makes their arm tired they'll stop, though they may have a better imagination for it.
When I was a child I used to watch Bewitched. Bewitched was about magic. I would twinkle my nose and squint with all my might trying to fly or make my toys fly. It was fun. I was no more interested in satan than when I watched cartoons who could fly. I knew some kids in my church who couldn't watch it because it was "satanic." Their parents put a lot of thought into this. Those kids snuck and watched it because it became fascinating to them.
I know a preacher's son who could only listen to certain music and see certain shows and only watch TV at certain hours. He also listened to Rock mixed tapes his friends gave to him, had sex with his girlfriend when his parents weren't home and had the youth group cracking up talking about his sexcapades.
If a child becomes a satan worshiper because they watched Harry Potter they have deeper issues than this book. I don't know one child interested in the occult. I know many, many public schooled children with no religious background and I can tell you that they aren't the least bit interested in satan or any power we as Christians seem to place on him.
Our God is much bigger than satan. This book is but fantasy and fun. The magical world of Hogwarts School is a taste of what the kids wish were reality. Who hasn't wished they could fly or zap someone with a stick? Who hasn't wished they were the captain of the team or the smartest kid in school?
They even get to wrangle and wrestle, Giant Spiders, Werewolves, Giant Trolls, Giant Snakes, Merpeople under the sea, Fire breathing dragons, and a Whomping Willow Tree. They get to set slaves free by using socks for crying out loud. It's the most imaginative, playful, children's story. It beats the Wizard of Oz hands down. Oh My! The Wizard of Oz has a good witch. Can they watch that? Yes! And Mary Poppins and Nanny McPhee and Alladin and Fantasia with the Mickey Mouse wizard...
You Know Why?
It's not real. It's not real in the book and it's not real in well, in Reality. It can never be real. It never was real. It's Not Real!
I can't imagine that Harry Potter would be something that an actual occultist would like. It would have to serve as a "HA HA" to their religion. It's says to them..."Here is your religion if it were real. But guess what...It's NOT!" Ha Ha..
So there you go. An in-depth view of why we really like and enjoy Harry Potter.
You should try it sometime. I think you'd love it! :-)