Help! The Da Vinci Code Movie is Coming!
Looking at the mobilization of some Christians with regards to the coming movie, one would think there is a forthcoming invasion of Christianity. This is surprising to me considering that the book, The Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown was published in 2003 and 40 millions copies have already been sold! The genie is already out of the bottle.
There are many suggestions in which Christians are encouraged to do to respond to the ‘perceived threat’ of The Da Vinci Code. Some are encouraged to ignore it, others to protest, to call for a ban, to dialogue and one ingenious suggestion by Barbara Nicolosi, Christian scriptwriter and script consultant is to ‘othercott’ it. Instead of boycotting the movie, see another movie instead. The idea is to send a message to Hollywood who will be counting the weekend earnings of the movie. While respecting the views of Ms. Nicolosi, I cannot see how it will really benefit anyone if all Christians should othercott the movie.
My personal approach is to engage falsehood with the truth. Again I do not agree with Ms.Nicolosi that a dialogue with the issues raised by the movie is ‘debating the devil’. Truth needs to be told. St. Paul mentioned that if we do not tell the truth, who will then? Again truth is like a beam of light. Light drives out darkness and deception.
One reason we, Christians, fear the book and the movie is that we ourselves do have not sufficient knowledge about out own faith and church history. That’s why we are so easily swayed by false doctrines that blow our way. I think this is a good opportunity for us to reexamine our faith and our own beliefs. Time for us to review our knowledge about
(1) How did the formation of the canon of the Bible come about?
(2) Was our Bible edited to suit a particular politics or viewpoint?
(3) Is Jesus just a mortal man and Emperor Constantine made him God?
(4) What happened at the Council of Nicea?
(5) Who was Mary Magdalene?
(6) When did Mary Magdelene become our model for a reformed prostitute?
(7) What was the relationship between Mary Magdalene and Jesus?
(8) Who is the Priory of Sion? The Knight Templar? The Opus Dei?
(9) What is Gnosticism?
(10) What are the ‘lost’ gospels?
(11) What information did the Dead Sea Scrolls give us?
(12) What information did the Nag Hammadi Documents give us?
(13) What is ‘goddess’ worship?
(14) Does reading The Da Vinci Code shake our faith?
If we are unable to answer these questions above, then it is time for us to do something about it. I would recommend the following books for a comprehensive and scholarly perspective
(1) Darrell L. Bock, Breaking the Da Vinci Code: Answers the Question Everybody’s Asking (Thomas Nelson: 2004)
(2) Erwin W. Luther, The Da Vinci Deception: Credible Answers to the Questions Millions are asking about Jesus, the Bible and the Da Vinci Code (Tyndale: 2004)
(3) Ben Witherington III, The Gospel Code: Novel Claims about Jesus, Mary Magdalene and Da Vinci (Intervarsity Press: 2004)
Aside from that, attend the numerous Da Vinci Code seminars the various churches and organizations are organizing. I would like to appreciate the Agora forum, a yahoo discussion group especially David Chong for getting Mandarin and Malay translations of various responses to the Da Vinci Code. Let us be sure that we know what we believe.
Then, we should read the book or watch the movie. Not only should we read the book or watch the movie but we also invite our non Christian friends to do it with us. Then in the discussion, we will have the perfect opportunity to reveal the truth as we believed it. The movie is coming! So what let it come and we shall have a jolly good time.
Soli Deo Gloria