For years the church has proclaimed warnings about the dangerous characters lurking in our world waiting to bring the rule of Satan. We cringe in fear at the horrors that could be committed by a completely secular society. We tell the world that it will all fall under the sway of a charismatic, but ultimately evil ruler who will attack Christians, impose worship of himself, and engage God in a climactic, if not apocalyptic war for dominance of the universe. Does this sound like fiction yet? Oh, but many Christians have bought into it. Tthey’re believers alright in the Left Behind Series.
So it’s certainly a measure of justice, not poetic or even prosaic lest we give Brownie too much credit, that Dan Brown’s work of fiction (The DaVinci Code) has become so wildly popular and has even been considered truthful and historical. I suppose if enough people believe something, then it must be true. Ah, but the irony of it all. Both are conspiracy theories of a sort, both have evil forces in high places opposing those who are weak and seemingly powerless. Yet the underdogs pull through in the end. At least the underdogs in the DC fight fair. In the LBS they utilize divine intervention.
And let’s face it, Brown knows just as little about early church history as Lahaye and Jenkins know of about Revelation and its genre of apocalyptic literature. Both masterfully seized on compelling topics that gripped the public’s imagination, told stories that kept the pages turning, and played the marketing game well. They didn’t write literature, but they didn’t write boring novels either. I dare you to try reading The Rule of Four. It will make you appreciate Dan Brown’s ability to at least tell a good story.
In the end, the plots are vaguely familiar, generally unbiblical, and equally inflamatory, both pitting Christians against pagans. In the LBS, Christians are preserving God’s truth and fighting against evil, while in the DC, Christians are suppressing the truth and trying to hide a perfectly reasonable conspiracy theory. And so I think it’s fair enough to say that we’re even.
Gnostic/Pagan/Atheist Alliance 1
Now we just need to line up, slap our hands together, and say, “Good game, good game, good game, good game, good game, good game.”
Christians should never have thought they could get away with the Left Behind Series. It’s too weird, too destructive, too accusing, and worst of all, too popular. We were due for a DaVinci Code. That has put us back in our place.