Fantasy and a Christian Worldview, Part 6


I am happy to announce the winner of the autographed set of Bryan Davis’s Dragons in Our Midst books: Timothy Hicks. (Timothy, congratulations. You’ll find the contact info for Bryan here, so you can let him know the mailing address you wish the books sent to. Mention you are the Fantasy Blog Tour winner from A Christian Worldview of Fiction.)

Now that the first stop of the tour is officially over, I’ll help you locate the fantasy poetry contest. You still have a little over a week to participate (I posted my offering Sunday.) The contest is the brainchild of Sally Apokedak, and she introduced it last week at All About Children’s Books.

One more bit of news. I received a letter from the Association of Christian Schools International confirming the three seminars I’ll be teaching in the fall at the Anaheim Convention Center. That includes my fantasy topic! 🙂

Magic. Real power, but also the stuff of pretense. Here are the questions. First, in order to keep from endorsing what is not of God, should Christians stay away from reading books that include magic? Secondly, should adults grow beyond pretend?

No and no. Or at least, not necessarily and no. Here’s where critical thinking becomes crucial. If a book glorifies power opposed to God, or paints evil as right, then I believe Christians should consider not reading that book. It is not true.

In the case of Christian fantasy—books written by Christians, written from a Christian worldview—power opposed to God is put in its proper place. For this reason alone, Christian fantasy needs to have a place in literature.

Authors of Christian fantasy acknowledge that there is a spiritual realm, that there are spiritual forces opposed to God, that we humans are mixed up in a battle for our souls.

We may choose to show this battle using muted symbolism, overt allegory, or something in between. Hidden behind the story or tromping through it, something or someone represents evil. Just so, something or someone portrays God, portrays good. In the middle stands the protagonist, in some way struggling with or because of those conflicting forces.

This is life depicted in its truest form—the spiritual entwined with the physical—but made understandable because the concrete represents the abstract.

Next time we’ll look at why we should never outgrow fantasy.

Published in: on May 22, 2006 at 6:00 am  Comments (4)  
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