Felix Felicis and the Providence of God in Harry Potter and The Half-Blood Prince (Theology Through the Eyes of Fiction Series)

As a Bible and theology professor, I receive a lot of questions. And over time, I find that certain questions perplex and gnaw at students more often than others. Likely one of the most frequent questions (and also most urgent) I have received from students relates to the way in which the Bible affirms both divine sovereignty and human freedom. Many students feel the tension … Continue reading Felix Felicis and the Providence of God in Harry Potter and The Half-Blood Prince (Theology Through the Eyes of Fiction Series)

Cloudy with a Chance of Confusion: Obedience Clouded by Culture and the Importance of Memory for Virtuous Living in The Silver Chair (Theology through the Eyes of Fiction Series)

Have you ever found yourself in a moment, having just sinned, and you can’t explain for the life of you why you have just done what you did? I know I have. In fact, most sin in my life is of this kind. I don’t want to sin, and yet sin continues to wage war against me and I sometimes lose that battle. I know … Continue reading Cloudy with a Chance of Confusion: Obedience Clouded by Culture and the Importance of Memory for Virtuous Living in The Silver Chair (Theology through the Eyes of Fiction Series)

Follow the Leader, Even When He’s Invisible: Discipleship in Prince Caspian (Theology through the Eyes of Fiction)

I sometimes wonder how I would have responded if Jesus had walked up near my fishing boat and said “Follow me.” Our willingness to follow anyone is mostly dependent on who we believe them to be and whether or not they are worth following. When it comes to Jesus, the depth of our commitment, the strength of our courage, and the sincerity of our love … Continue reading Follow the Leader, Even When He’s Invisible: Discipleship in Prince Caspian (Theology through the Eyes of Fiction)

Bent Out of Shape: The Nature of Sin in Out of the Silent Planet (Theology Through the Eyes of Fiction Series)

 I have found in my experience that most people, even unbelievers, are fine with admitting they are sinners (though they disagree on what constitutes sin), but few really want to define what that means. I wouldn’t expect an unbeliever to understand the depths of sin, but I would hope that we as believers could do better. Often we can’t. Too often we view sin in … Continue reading Bent Out of Shape: The Nature of Sin in Out of the Silent Planet (Theology Through the Eyes of Fiction Series)

Of Dragons, Beastly Boys, and Other Sinners: Eustace and Repentance in Voyage of the Dawn Treader (Theology Through the Eyes of Fiction Series)

 I’m often confronted by a stark contrast between what the Bible says about repentance and faith and the way many in the church portray it. It’s not my goal to explain how we got to this place, but I suspect a large part of the problem arose out of what was a serious and faithful desire for evangelism. Much of the evangelistic strategy of the … Continue reading Of Dragons, Beastly Boys, and Other Sinners: Eustace and Repentance in Voyage of the Dawn Treader (Theology Through the Eyes of Fiction Series)

Mirror, Mirror On the Wall, Who’s the Ugliest of Them All? True Self-Reflection in the Fight Against Sin in Till We Have Faces (Theology Through the Eyes of Fiction)

Why is it that the rich have such a difficult time entering the kingdom of God? I think it’s because those who never lack never feel that they have a need. But of course, as creatures created for fellowship with God that has been fractured by sin, we all have a need; a deep, desperate need for God and His salvation through Jesus. But before … Continue reading Mirror, Mirror On the Wall, Who’s the Ugliest of Them All? True Self-Reflection in the Fight Against Sin in Till We Have Faces (Theology Through the Eyes of Fiction)

Salvation through Suffering in The Man Who Was Thursday (Theology Through the Eyes of Fiction Series)

 In Jesus’ well-known Sermon on the Mount (Matt 5-7), Jesus tells his followers that they are blessed when others revile and persecute them in the name of Christ. The rest of the New Testament repeatedly affirms this reality. Paul says in 2 Timothy that all who aspire to live godly lives will face persecution. James says to count it as joy when we encounter various … Continue reading Salvation through Suffering in The Man Who Was Thursday (Theology Through the Eyes of Fiction Series)