Heart Reflections Live
Monday, October 16, 2006
Christian Fantasy & Allegories
Anyone who has been reading my blog for any length of time, knows how much we love books & reading, & are always looking for additions to our home library that are godly, edifying, well-written, classic & have good morals in them.
I've discovered a problem with some Christian fiction books, that I would classify as fantasy or allegory.
Some allegories I love. eg. John Bunyan's The Pilgrims Progress (I found out 10 years ago that I'm a direct descendant of John Bunyan, through my paternal grandfather-all of my Dad's side of the family love to write). I'm not biased though- It's a brilliant book. I also love Hannah Hurnard's "Hinds Feet on High Places" & "Mountains of Spices". I would describe these allegories as very pure with clear biblical pictures.
Now here's where I feel the problem lies...We have a lovely volume of Hans Christian Anderson Fairy Tales, some of which are beautiful, clear allegories that point us to Christ & the Bible.Eg. I love "The Loveliest Rose in the World", "What the Whole Family Said", & "The Emporers New Clothes" & a few others are lovely & Pure. But I've found some very "muddy waters" in the same book & some others where I can't sense a peace to read them to my children. Some seem quite frightening, & while I don't mind a story having a witch in it if she gets her just desserts; I DO have a problem when the hero or heroine participates in the magic to achieve something-even if the end is good. To me this is an abomination. The good & bad are mixed together & the truth is muddied. How can this be spiritually healthy for our children?
The Narnia series presents the same problem for me. I read the whole series when I was a younger Christian & was troubled enough to get rid of the books. I have no problem understanding Aslan as a type of Christ, but the first book in the series has the main characters practicing magic & references to what sounds like a pre-Adamic race & the Gap Theory, which after studying I find biblically incorrect.
The story of the Lion, the Witch & the Wardrobe, is probably the least problematic for me, but still the mix of the pagan & Divine imagery, especially the half-human/half-beast mythological creatures, bothers me.
We've decided not to include the Narnia series in our library. We might let the children, when older, watch the new Disney Narnia movie under supervision, explaining how Aslan's sacrifice is similar to Jesus dying in our place & rising again.
What do you all think? Do you have any favourite Christian books? 1 Tim 1:4 says "Neither give heed to fables & endless genealogies, which minister questions, rather than godly edifying which is in faith:so do". Does this scripture, as well as Phil.4:8, guide you when choosing good books-or not? I welcome your thoughts on this.