To capitalize on the Potter mania that is sweeping across the world, the Church of England has released a guide on how to evangelize using the popular Harry Potter phenomenon.
The guides author, Owen Smith, is a youth worker at St. Margaret's Church in the United Kingdom and also wrote Mixing it Up with the Simpsons a book that was released earlier this year by the Church of Englands publishing company in hopes of showing how Christianity is relevant to life today through issues tackled in the popular U.S. TV cartoon series.
In his latest work, Mixing it Up with Harry Potter, Smith enables youth leaders to draw parallels with daily life and help young people discuss ''big issues.'' more >>
With the fifth installment of the Harry Potter film series released Wednesday, discussion of whether or not the boy wizard is appropriate for Christian audiences is expected to become more heated and wide-spread.
Many ministry leaders in the past have criticized the Harry Potter series over its use of magic and argue that it promotes the occult an assertion that, if true, could be serious since the movies and literature target children who can be most affected by negative spiritual content. more >>
The church is faced in the postmodern age by several distinct apologetic challenges. Internally, the church must defend the faith against ignorance, against compromise, against doctrinal apathy, and against denial. The church now suffers from a breathtaking deficit of doctrinal instruction and biblical truth. In some churches, the great truths of the Christian faith are unknown, and in others, these truths are left dormant and untaught. Beyond this, the very real dangers of doctrinal corrosion and heresy threaten.
Externally, the Gospel must be defended against secular atheism, postmodern relativism, naturalistic scientism, materialism, and current syncretisms. The Gospel must be proclaimed in the face of rival systems of belief and alternative worldviews, new and old.
This is where the task of Christian apologetics begins. In the Apostle Paul we find a model of Great Commission proclamation matched to an apologetic argument an argument in defense of Christian truth. In Acts 17:16-34, we find Paul standing at Ground Zero of apologetic ministry in the first century. more >>
Children are becoming increasingly exposed to the supernatural which is being seen in nearly every kind of cultural medium including books, television shows, and films and which many parents are unaware of. A Christian ministry recently released a book to give parents guidance on supernatural issues and how to address it with their kids.
Spellbound, by Marcia Montenegro, was newly released to equip Christian parents to discuss matters of the supernatural with their children from a Biblical point of view. The guide comes as more Christians worry about the influence of such popular childrens "heroes" as Harry Potter.
The Harry Potter novels by J.K. Rowling have been reported as the fastest-selling books and the best seller in the history of children's books. All four Harry Potter movies, based on the novel series, have raked in at least $259 million at the box office. Additionally, children are further exposed to the wizardry and other supernatural elements of the popular novel series through video games. more >>
Given the renewed interest in Dan Brown's novel, The Da Vinci Code (just released in paperback editions), this commentary and review of the book is republished by request. It was originally published July 29, 2003.
The summer publishing season seems always to include a thriller that leaps to the top of the best-seller charts and stays there until the fall--when readers get serious and return to school and work. The Da Vinci Code is this year's winner, sitting at the top of the Amazon.com ratings this week and listed at second place in the New York Times hardcover fiction list. The book was on the top of that list last week, and it has made the list for 18 straight weeks. Not bad for a book with a seemingly unmanageable mix of plot structure, conspiracy theories, and mountains of detail about Catholic orders, renaissance art, theological heresy, and theoretical mathematics. Hooked yet?
I was forewarned about the heresy in the book, and so I started reading with a determination to force my way through an unpleasant read. It wasn't hard. As a matter of fact, the plot was so engaging, and the content of the book was so rich, that I had a hard time putting it down. Dan Brown may or may not actually believe what he writes, but he writes so well in this genre that the average reader will not even care. That is the problem. more >>
LONDON Britains leading black church leaders have released a joint statement rebuking a BBC documentary, saying that the program portrayed inaccurate stereotypical attitudes towards children among black Christians.
A BBC2 documentary, entitled Witch Child, was screened on Apr. 4 and followed Dr Richard Hoskins, a specialist in African religions.
During the program the practice of exorcism was filmed in the Congo in graphic detail, and it was alleged that young children in Britain are abused and even killed by their parents or relatives with the belief that they have been possessed by evil spirits. more >>