A major character in the Harry Potter series is supposedly “gay,” revealed author J.K. Rowling in a recent Carnegie Hall appearance. At the risk of giving the Potter books more publicity, which may be exactly what the author wants, I cannot resist the opportunity to comment. Actually, pardon me while I scream at the top of my lungs, just a little.
Here’s my scream: “The Harry Potter books and movies are harmful to kids!”
For years now, some of us have been decrying the Harry Potter tales, saying they were not for children. They dishonor God, they glamorize sorcery, and the spirit surrounding the series is dark, sinister and anti-Christian. Teaching children positively about wizardry and witchcraft ought to have tipped off most believers, but no – there were those who went out of their way to criticize those of us who were concerned, saying we were overreacting, that it was just harmless fun. These were just lessons in “good” and evil, with Harry, of course, being “good.”
So what does one do now that millions of children are totally devoted to Harry and the characters? Rowling is a master manipulator. The affiliations have taken hold. No matter how you try to shield kids, they are sure to learn online or at school or somewhere that the admired headmaster of the Hogwart’s school, professor Dumbledore, has been pronounced “gay” after the series is complete. What does a true Christian parent do with that information?
I am personally hoping for abject repentance. After all, there’s not one of us who doesn’t have some kind of blind spot, even after we are saved by the blood of Christ, and it’s only because of His Spirit living in us, not the Potter spirits, that we can pick ourselves up and go on when we use poor judgment.
Will these parents carefully remove the books from their children’s collections and explain why to their kids? Or will some continue to desert clear biblical teaching and allow their kids to maintain hero-worship of an “out” homosexual?
Will some find ways to re-cast homosexuality into something different than the “abomination” it’s called in Scripture? Will it become something more like a sad disability, one that the “mean religious right” targets for nefarious purposes? The demands for same-sex marriage and the promotion of homosexuality in schools are the products of well-funded, relentless and totally anti-Christian forces that Christian conservatives did not engineer. Still, some of our brethren (and sistren) straddle a line between two worlds, desperately calling for an exception for people who they claim just “are” homosexual. Not seeing the danger and forgetting it’s called a sin, there is not the willingness to firmly condemn the behavior as Scripture does.
Well, how much tutoring of our children in love and respect for homosexuality will it take before cultural Christians finally say, “Enough”? Christian kids are leaving the faith in droves, and it’s because we adults aren’t making sense. We are unwilling to stand up and proclaim the awesome light and hope of the Gospel as contrasted with the sin and bondage of practices like sorcery and homosexuality. Light shines gloriously in contrast to dark, not gray.
Will we allow our kids to believe it would be perfectly appropriate for the headmaster of any school to be homosexual? After all, many teachers in public schools are now homosexual. Some elite private schools do have homosexual headmasters. Parents are not only allowing it, some pat themselves on the back for the lesson in tolerance being learned daily by their kids. If only they could see down the road to the compromise of morality this will produce as their children grow, not to mention the detour directly away from authentic Christian faith, they might think differently.
Dumbledore is the most admired adult in the Potter series. He’s the one who privately tutors Harry to perfect his sorcery skills. He’s the one who starts the Order of the Phoenix, the “good wizards” who battle the “evil wizards.” Of course, these are the definitions that Rowling, Scholastic Publishing and the fans use. In biblical terms, all of it is sin and darkness, clearly outside the light of Christ. There is no such thing as “white witchcraft” or “good Harry Potter wizardry.” It just doesn’t exist.
But Dumbledore is a made-up figure, and as such, he’s up for critique, review and remodeling. Why make him “gay,” one wonders? Why now? An agenda seems to be lurking. The link between pagan/occult spirituality and outlaw sexuality has always been strong, one more reason to keep impressionable kids away from the increasingly weird genre of “fantasy” books and movies. These spirits are real and seek to intrigue, deceive and sidetrack the children handed to them. And that’s exactly what we are doing – handing them our precious children, believing there’s no harm.
American Christians forget their roots. Christianity is more than some code of ethics. It’s a spiritual relationship – with the good and perfect Head of the spirit realm. Many professing believers discount what they are dealing with, and some are flat-out biblically illiterate. Others don’t buy the spiritual model described in Scripture. They don’t really think Satan is a “roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour” (1 Peter 5:8). They scoff at the prohibition against sorcery and witchcraft in Deuteronomy 18 and elsewhere and reject the fact that there’s no exception if it’s just for fun.
In the emerging church, mysticism is gaining traction. Empty your mind, and let whatever come in, Christians are told. “Whatever” can be one or more demons, disguised as “angels of light” (2 Corinthians 11:14). Is that what you want? Is that what you want for your children?
The upcoming holiday of Halloween is the highest holy day of real witches and wizards, yet many Christians still refuse to give it up. The spirits that lurk all around that “fun” observance seek to convince us “it’s just a dress-up party,” or “it’s for the candy!” Can parents get on their knees, after reading Scripture, and listen to the Lord?
Just what are we willing to give up that’s popular in the world? It’s going to get tougher. It will be Harry Potter and worse. Where do you draw the line? How much rationalization can a true Christian make?
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Linda Harvey is president of Mission America, which monitors both the homosexual agenda directed at children as well as paganism among American youth. Her upcoming book from AMG Publishing is “Not My Child: Contemporary Paganism and the New Spirituality.”