Frequently Asked Questions About 'The Da Vinci Code'
Frequently Asked Questions About 'The Da Vinci Code' from Focus on the Family LINK
- I’ve seen the book in stores, and heard lots of people talking about it, but what is this "Da Vinci" thing all about?
Since its release in 2003, The Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown has sold 40 million copies, and a motion picture version will hit theaters May 19. The plot deals with surprising discoveries of the “true” facts about Jesus and Christian history. The book asserts that Jesus was not the divine Son of God, but a mere man whose true mission and identity have been distorted.
Though largely suppressed throughout history, the real story (according to Dan Brown’s book) of Jesus was that he and Mary Magdalene were married; she bore His children; Jesus desired that she be the leader of the church; their descendants survive to this day; the teachings of Christ were hijacked and revised by power-hungry men like Peter; millions throughout history have been misinformed about what Christianity truly is; and finally, these secrets have been known by a select few (such as Leonardo DaVinci, who attempted to present these facts to the world through “clues” incorporated into his paintings).
- As a Christian, why should I care about a book or movie that is — after all — just fiction?
Some have questioned why Christians are voicing objections to what is essentially a fictional story. The concern raised by numerous clergy and Christian scholars stems from the author’s claim — on the very first page — that The Da Vinci Code is based on “fact.” Though the book is a novel, its content demeans and distorts the core teachings of the Christian faith. For Christians, if the truth about our Savior isn’t worth defending, what is?
- This book hasn’t really shaken my faith; but I wonder, how solid is the evidence for the Bible and Christianity?
Answer: The evidence in support of Christianity is overwhelming, and we believe is more than sufficient to satisfy any honest inquirer. In the New Testament, 2 Peter 1:16 (NKJV) asserts that Christianity is not based on "fables." Jesus Christ’s coming was predicted in the ancient Jewish Scriptures, and His life and teachings are accurately recorded in the New Testament. The evidence confirming Jesus’ miraculous deeds, His crucifixion at Passover and subsequent physical resurrection have persuaded countless seekers, meticulous thinkers and rigorous historians. Apologists (those who rationally defend the Christian worldview) have amassed much historical data and credible research from a number of disciplines pointing to the conclusion that, yes, Christianity indeed rests on solid historical foundations.
- A friend of mine who has read The Da Vinci Code asked, "Why would it matter if Jesus had been married?" Since our faith is the most important thing, would it really have mattered?
Answer: It is important to remember that our views about Jesus should not be in conflict with what the Bible clearly teaches about Him. Any one is free to believe anything, but we must ask, “What is your authority? What basis do you have for your conclusion?”
Dan Brown has written that Jesus was married and the Bible has been corrupted. But scholars from numerous Christian backgrounds have responded by pointing out, “The evidence shows otherwise.” In the Bible (a book shown to be trustworthy by many compelling lines of evidence), we find that Jesus’ mission was not procreation, but salvation. Establishment of marriage, family and an earthly home were not Jesus’ purposes.
Galatians 4:4 (NIV) tells us why Jesus was born: "But when the time had fully come, God sent his Son, born of a woman, born under law." Why should we believe an assumption about Jesus that is non-biblical and without any evidence? In reality, Jesus didn’t need Mary Magdalene, because He already has a bride. The New Testament book of Romans (chapter 7) states that believers are espoused, engaged to be "married" to Jesus. Saved, forgiven, redeemed believers from all of history make up Jesus’ perfect "bride," not a fallen human. As far “faith” being the most important thing — remember that one's beliefs should be shaped in light of God’s revelation, not man’s speculation.
- How may individuals and churches effectively respond to The Da Vinci Code?
Answer: Focus on the Family believes there are core spiritual truths — beliefs dear to both Protestants and Catholics — that are worth defending. These include the identity of Jesus; his mission and purpose; the origin, content, and trustworthiness of the Bible; the origin of the church; the message and teachings of the earliest Christians; the motives of early church leaders; and the relevancy of Christianity today. The Da Vinci book will be the subject of Dr. Dobson’s daily radio broadcast on May 1-2, and will feature a recent interview that was recorded with Lee Strobel, Erwin Lutzer and Focus’ director of teen apologetics, Alex McFarland.
To encourage further study by individuals and groups, Focus on the Family highly recommends The Da Vinci Deception, by Erwin Lutzer, Ph.D., and Discussing The Da Vinci Code (a DVD-based curriculum), by Lee Strobel.
For outreach-minded churches, Focus on the Family encourages participation in a wonderful evangelistic opportunity scheduled for Sunday, May 21. On that date, apologists Lee Strobel and Mark Mittelburg will interview Dr. Erwin Lutzer regarding his research on The Da Vinci Code. This exciting content will be aired live via satellite television over the Church Communications Network. Your church can join with nearly 3,000 others around North America and receive this historic broadcast as it happens. And Strobel, Lutzer and Mittelburg will take on-air questions from around the nation.
This evangelistic telecast will provide a wonderful chance for your church to “reach and teach.” Ultimately, issues raised by The Da Vinci Code present believers with a unique opportunity: to openly talk about Jesus Christ and church history! Dan Brown’s book has suddenly made it okay to discuss Christian truth claims and specifics of the biblical worldview. Focus on the Family has created this Web site and other resources as part of our vision to encourage families and churches in their walk and witness.
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