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The Da Vinci Code, Fact or Fiction?

What's all the fuss over the Da Vinci Code?

..... Dan Brown’s book and popular 2006 movie, The Da Vinci Code, caused quite a bit of controversy over its promotion of skepticism of the Bible and the life of Jesus. The stir over Brown’s work is not the first of its kind, and won’t be the last, but is a great example of a movement to erase the public’s confidence in the Bible. From the school of higher criticism and atheist professors to the so-called Jesus Seminar and pop culture works like The Da Vinci Code, many institutions and individuals are doing everything in their power to stop YOU from believing that Jesus is the Son of God and that the Bible is God’s Word. Why do some people want to turn you away from Jesus? How do they promote their ideals? What does a popular book and movie have to do with this? Let us consider these questions beginning with the last one.

What does a popular book and movie have to do with your religious beliefs?

..... While Brown’s story is a work of fiction he claims that its basis is in historical fact. The book opens with “FACT” in bold letters followed by claims about secret societies and the statement, “all descriptions of artwork, architecture, documents, and secret rituals in this novel are accurate.” A statement such as this at the beginning of a story can only be meant to influence what the reader thinks rather than to promote entertainment value. Later in the book (Chapter 55) Brown has his characters hold a pseudo-historical discussion in which they state the Bible is not a Divine book but the product of man. That discussion erroneously and misleadingly states that there are more than 80 gospels about the life of Jesus, but that the 4 found in the Bible were placed there by the Roman Emperor Constantine for political purposes. That story is a lie, and not one reputable historian will say that there is a hint of truth in it. The 4 Gospels in the Bible were known and accepted by Christians in the 2nd century AD, long before Constantine.1 Also, the pseudo-gospels (there are far less than 80) that have been found were not known by early Christians, and many bear clear marks of forgery.2 Finally, the Dead Sea Scrolls, which the book’s characters claim are detrimental to Christianity, are not copies of any book of the New Testament, but rather testify to the accuracy of the Old Testament.3 From this it is obvious that no research was done into Biblical history for The Da Vinci Code, but rather Brown uses folklore, legend, or speculation in an attempt to cast doubt on the Word of God.
..... Brown has his characters try to discredit Christianity outright by claiming that the Council of Nicaea voted to make Jesus the Son of God, that Jesus married Mary Magdalene and birthed the blood line to the French throne, that ancient man understood the true path to heaven was through sex rites, and that the Catholic Church has tried to suppress this information. Again, no historian or reputable scholar will side with Brown’s claims because such ideas have been discredited long ago. Yet, Brown pushed forward with a book whose presuppositions are all false. This brings us to our second question…

How are deceptions about Jesus, the Bible, and Christianity popularized?

..... The methods that Dan Brown used in The Da Vinci Code are a great example. Those who are hostile towards God will frequently make up “facts” and rewrite history to fit their ideas. For example, the Jesus Seminar votes out parts of the Gospels because they just don’t think it happened.4 Members of the seminar debate their own “technical papers” to appear scholarly but in they end, they simply deny the authenticity of the life of Jesus recorded in the Bible. Since the seminar includes “experts”, markets itself as renewing the quest for the historical Jesus, and has a scholarly name people merely assume it are a legitimate religious body doing legitimate work. In reality, the seminar is doing nothing more than trying to make people stop believing that Jesus is God. The Da Vinci Code uses a similar scheme. Brown writes a book based on fables but tells people they are facts. His fabricated facts seem to prove that the Bible is not true so readers are encouraged to doubt. The media and movie makers, many of whom are admittedly hostile toward the Bible, then seize on the opportunity to promote a not-so-subtle but well packaged attack on the Holy Book. As the masses hear Brown’s thoughts and people talk about them, the false ideas are cemented in the popular mind. These new urban legends make it difficult for people who don’t know the actual facts to accept what the Bible says. This leads to our third question…

Why do people attack the divinity of Jesus, the truth of the Bible, and the legitimacy of Christianity?

..... It can logically be argued that there are two reasons to attack an entity, either fear or greed. People who attack Christianity and its tenants may be motivated by greed—the desire for money, fame, power, etc. More than likely, they may be motivated by fear. In general people don’t like the idea that the Bible says they are sinners (breakers of God’s law) and that they cannot get to Heaven without Jesus. The thought of being personally flawed is offensive to the modern mind and one who dares to point out those flaws will not be liked. Since the Bible and Christianity point out individual sins that people like to ignore, they are frequently the object of ridicule and attack. Scorners hope that if they can get people to stop believing the Bible, no one will call them sinners and they will have no more guilt. Yet, no amount of slander or hatred against God can change the fact that mankind is sinful and needs a Savior, Jesus Christ.
..... Friends, don’t let gimmicks, fast talk, and self proclaimed know-it-alls make you doubt the Bible. God gave mankind His Holy Word in increments (the books of the Bible) that are all consistent with each other. Their origin is not in dispute and nothing has been left out. The Bible has all the information you need to get to Heaven and live a life on Earth that pleases God. Read it and believe it!

Do your own research. Examine The Da Vinci Code, starting with:

..... - http://answers.org/issues/davincicode.html
..... - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Criticisms_of_The_Da_Vinci_Code
..... - The Da Vinci Code: Fact or Fiction, Hank Hanegraaff and Paul Maier, Tyndale House Publishers, May 2004

Examine the Bible, starting with:

..... - http://www.answersingenesis.org/home/area/faq/bible.asp
..... - From God to Us, Norman Geisler and William Nix, Moody Press, 1974
..... - What If The Bible Had Never Been Written?, D. James Kennedy and Jerry Newcombe, Thomas Nelson Publishers, 1998
..... - Why I Believe, D. James Kennedy, W Publishing Group, 1999

Notes: 1,2,3 http://answers.org/issues/davincicode.html
.......... 4 http://www.westarinstitute.org/Polebridge/Excerpts/voting5g.html

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