Baby Boomers often ask, "Where were you when you heard President Kennedy was dead." Nov. 22,1963 is a significant date in U.S. history No one doubts whether this event occurred. The Zapruder tape provides visual proof of JFK's assassination. However, no consensus exists to explain the assassination. Conspiracy theorists have made a fortune postulating who was behind it.
Why do conspiracy theories abound? Those in authority-whatever the sphere--- haven't always been trustworthy As a result, people are jaded and cynical. They no longer blindly trust what politicians, employers, or religious leaders say.
Consequently, "The Da Vinci Code's" success should surprise no one. New Hampshire native Dan Brown has written a riveting suspense novel. Brown leads his readers on a spellbound journey from beginning to end. The success of Ron Howard's film adaptation of the book is assured.
Dan Brown's "The Da Vinci Code" is to the Roman Catholic Church what Oliver Stone's "JFK" is to the U.S. government. Among other things, Brown asserts through his character Leigh Teabing that Constantine commissioned the writing of our current Bible. Constantine excluded the Gnostic gospels (Thomas, Judas, Mary Magdalene, etc.) because they questioned Jesus' divinity. As a result, Constantine colluded with the Roman Catholic Church to select only the four Gospels: Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John.
But, the conspiracy doesn't end there. Since "history is written by
the winners," the Roman Catholic Church was able to silence the Gnostics.
Brown's book asserts that Mary Magdalene was not only an apostle, but was
The guise of non-fiction
The inaccuracies in "The Da Vinci Code" are too numerous to list in
entirety. The central problem lies with the first page of the book: "All
descriptions of artwork, architecture, documents, and secret rituals in
this novel are
accurate." Although the book is fiction, it's written under the guise of non-fiction.
I am not an apologist for the Roman Catholic Church.
Jesus and the Bible, which records both His teaching and the claim of His divinity, do not belong to the Roman Catholic Church alone. "The Da Vinci Cod" is an attack on orthodox Christianity as a whole. Dan Brown, a professing Christian, denies this.
If someone wants to believe his book is wrong, that is perfectly fine.
If someone wants to believe it's true, that's good by him as well.
As he said on New Hampshire National Public Radio, "I welcome the debate."
Reflecting postmodern philosophy, he said "history is inaccurate." In
other words, Dan Brown believes history is one big conspiracy. Nothing
we read can be trusted-except obscure Gnostic literature. I wonder if Brown
the holocaust took place. An increasing number of scholars question the historicity of this horrific event, which took place less than 70 years ago.
If people can question something for which there are still eyewitnesses
and documented historical evidence, how much more will such people struggle
to trust the veracity of the Bible, which was written over the course of
1,600 years? The Torah was written--according to conservative scholars-as early as 1446 B.C.E. and Revelation was written as late as 95 CE.
Brown's character Leigh Teabing cites that "[the Bible did not arrive by fax from heaven…The Bible is a product of man…Not of God."
Such logic is not new I am not advocating that the Bible was faxed from heaven or that man was not involved in the process.
Although trustworthy and holy men were part of the process, God possesses the ultimate responsibility for authoring and preserving the Bible.
The Dead Sea Scrolls to which Brown makes numerous erroneous historical statement, reinforce the Bible's accuracy and trustworthiness. A complete scroll of Isaiah was found in the Qumran caves.
Although a 1,000 years older than any previously known manuscript, it displays remarkable harmony with the more recent ones scholars had been relying on to translate the Bible before their discovery.
The French philosopher, Pascal challenged doubters of Christianity to make a wager. If the doubter dies without faith in Christ only to discover they were wrong, what do they lose? According to Pascal, they lose everything - peace in this life and in the one to come.
What about the believer? What do they lose out on if they're wrong? Nothing. Pascal asserts that a life lived according to Christ's teaching is superior to the one lived apart from Him.
What if the believer is right? They've gained everything! They enjoy eternity with Christ.
Who are you going to wager on? I'll place my wager on the Bible over
"The Da Vinci Code" any day.
Rev. Ray G. Jones, Jr. lives in Pawcatuck where he is pastor of Lighthouse Community Baptist Church. E-mail comments or questions to him at firstname.lastname@example.org