The Golden Compass

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There has been a lot of talk recently in some Christian circles about the Golden Compass. Confession time….I’m not really up to speed on it…though I’ve heard from one side of things pretty strongly–that the film/book are anti-God…or at least preach false messages about the existence/presence of God.

We’ve talked before on the blog about Christianity and culture–specifically, should Christians see things that are in conflict with their beliefs. This is a good question, and one that transcends any blog post…even any book. I would encourage everyone to read Dick Staub’s The Culturally-Savvy Christian for a worthy treatment of the subject.

My personal view is that each person can use popular culture as a place for theological reflection. This includes TV, movies, literature, music, and the like. I agree with Robert Johnston who noted the shift from identifying pop culture as a place "about God" to "God’s place"…meaning that within pop culture one can encounter the transcendent–meet God–and do theology.

This, of course, doesn’t mean we should watch just anything, listen to just anything. It means that we thoughtfully engage the world in a way that challenges us to think about God. It also keeps us relevant…so that when we talk to those who don’t know God, it’s not a quantum leap from our world to theirs. In truth, there’s just one world, anyways. What separates Christians from everyone else is that their worldview that is shaped by their faith in God, Scripture, and the church. But, we all live in the same world.

So, should you take your kids to see the Golden Compass? I’m not, but my kids are young. If you are a parent, God has called you to spiritually lead and form your children. Come to a decision that you believe honors Christ first, and you will have made the right decision.

Dr. Tim Spivey is Lead Planter of New Vintage Church in San Diego, California. He is the author of numerous articles and one book, "Jesus: The Powerful Servant." A sought after speaker for events, Tim also serves as Adjunct Professor of Religion at Pepperdine University. Tim serves as a church consultant, and his writings are featured on ChurchLeaders.com, Church Executive magazine, Faith Village, Sermon Central, and Giving Rocket.

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