Theology and Harry Potter

July 15, 2011 — 2 Comments

harry-potter-deathly-hallows-pt-2-movie-poster Well, today is the day.

Or if you’re super nerdy, last night was the night.

Either way, the final Harry Potter film is now in theaters, which I think we can all agree is the best 8 part movie franchise. Are you planning to see it, or have you already? Or are you more or less ambivalent toward Harry Potter? Are you opposed to Harry Potter because of the witchcraft?

I’m sure there are more options, but I thought it might be helpful in the wake of all the excitement to open a conversation about Harry Potter and how to think theologically about the book series and the films. On the one hand, some people may think that unqualified acceptance of Harry Potter is naive and shows a lack of Christian discernment. On the other hand, others may think that a similarly unqualified rejection of Harry Potter is blind to what the story is really about. I was myself in the first group for quite a while, but have since moved into the second. I’ll detail more tomorrow about how I changed my mind, but where are you when it comes to the Harry Potter phenomenon?

As you think over things, you may find this article by Andrew Peterson helpful, as it looks like he and I experienced a similar change of mind. In the meantime, I’ll be seeing the movie this afternoon, and I’ll be back tomorrow with some thoughts on it.

What do you think?


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I'm an avid reader, musician, and high school Bible teacher living in central Florida. I have many paperback books and our house smells of rich glade air freshners. If you want to know more, then let's connect!

2 responses to Theology and Harry Potter

  1. I was young when the first books came out, and my parents, teachers (christian school), and friends were against the Harry Potter series. Naturally, I took a similar position against Rowling’s work.

    I went from being against it, to apathetic, to an advocate.

    This work of fiction tells an overarching story of the battle between good and evil. The evil oppresses the weak and powerless to make them slaves (Hitleresque) . The good champions for the weak, enslaved and powerless (even if they’re enemies of the cause…ie – the Dursley’s). Its a beautiful story with elements taken from the classic works of Lewis and Tolkien.

    I encourage Christians to practice discernment and to not waste an opportunity to engage in a fictional story that points to the Big Story of sacrificial love.

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