Christian parents, why its ok to watch 'The Golden Compass' with your kids

It was recently brought to my attention that the new movie, "The Golden Compass," is based on a book written by, Phillip Pullman. I've discovered that a lot has been written and discussed on this guy already so I won't get into that here. Feel free to Google it if you have the time. Apparently, Pullman's mission for his book series was to "kill God in the minds of children." It should come as no surprise that Christian parents across the nation are organizing a movement to keep kids from seeing this movie. If you haven't heard of this film yet, here is a preview.

After watching that trailer, I think taking my oldest son to see this film could be fun, entertaining, and allow me a great opportunity to lead into a discussion with my child about God and address any themes from the movie or questions it may bring up. As a Christian parent, I feel that it is not only our responsibility to God but vital to our children that we raise them to be free thinking, unique individuals who look God to know their true identity and desire to have a personal relationship with Him. I do not feel that the best way to accomplish that goal is by acting as a spiritual filter and trying to block or protect your children from opposing ideas or beliefs. Rather, I suggest that you embrace those questions and oppositions as wonderful opportunities to demonstrate to your kids on how to handle and reconcile them as they come up in your everyday walk of life.

“If you just say ‘no’ to your kids without engaging in a conversation, they’re going to see the movie anyway and all you’re teaching them is power, not really teaching your values,” Sister Rose Paccate, director of the Pauline Center of Media Studies in Culver City, Ca told MSNBC. “If we have faith, what are we afraid of?”

Unless our children have been properly equipped with the necessary tools and experience to deal with the notion that other people don't agree with them, they will one day "leave the nest" for college or work and be confronted with this other worldly view. They will likely feel conflicted, confused, and question their own beliefs. It is my hope for my own children that when this day comes for them, they will understand and appreciate the perspectives that are different from their own and will have been equipped to find what elements of truth do exist in them and be able to credit those truths to God and not just dismiss them out of ignorance that they ever existed in the first place.

A great book that discusses this concept and others in greater detail is, "Velvet Elvis: Repainting the Christian Faith," by Rob Bell, pastor of Mars Hill Church. I strongly recommend anyone to read this book.


Anonymous said...

Your mentally you have family book burnings? If your faith is so week it cant survive fiction, then perhaps you should re-evaluate your choices.

Chase Roper said...

Thanks for the strong opinion Anonymous reader. I'm assuming when you say that I am morally bankrupt, you are referring to the parents that I am addressing this post to. Considering that I am support of NOT preventing our children from seeing certain movies, or reading certain books solely because they present ideas or themes that contrast my beliefs.

However, I do not think that other Christian parents who make that choice for their children are in any way morally bankrupt. They just want what's best for their kids.

Anonymous said...

I am not even sure if young kids would get the message that is Anti-God. I think most Christians probably aren't seeing the movie because it would put money in the anti-god wallet. At least that's what I would think!

It does look a good film and a great opportunity to discuss the Bible with the kids.

CFHusband said...

I agree with what you're saying here. I don't have kids yet, but I am planning on going to see the movie myself in an attempt to understand our culture a little more.

I've read that the movie does not do the themes in the book justice (the whole anti-God thing). The real "danger" I see is that the movie is going to make the books a must-read for parents and kids. I could care less if Christians read or see the you said, it's a great opportunity. It's those who are already far from God that I'm concerned about.

Having said all of that, I still believe that we (the "church") do more with our stupidity and pride and hypocrisy to give people greater reason to move away from God than any movie or book ever will.


Leena said...

Thank you for this blogging, I agree completely. I don't think the movie itself is what the critics are so concerned about, according to one source(i saw referenced to are worried kids will love the movie and then buy the books that have the serious anti-Christ messages. Apparently these books are scheduled to be out in time for Christmas gifts.

I agree that as parents God expects us to equip our children (as He equips us) to be in the world but not of the world and make the choices that honor Him.


Anonymous said...

I can see your point, but I don't think we should openly expose our children to something like that. Does this mean you would take your child to a strip bar and tell him that even though most men go to these places, women have to make a living some how? I would think not.

Harold Dean Sink

Chase Roper said...

You are right, Harold, I would NOT take my children into a strip club. Nor do I think anyone could make a strong biblical case that it would benefit my children in any way for me to take them there. In fact, quite the opposite is true. I personally do not want my children to be completely unaware of the fact that people don't believe in God and have arguments against Him. This way they will have been equipped and trained properly to deal with issues and obstacles as they are confronted with them in their adult lives. Is that not the single most important thing for me to do as a parent?

Anonymous said...

The remark you made about children being properly equipped is dead on correct. We all need to be exposed to different viewpoints in order for us to really learn anything about other people. Thanks for your thoughtfulness.

Ben Kenbar said...

No !!yes you might think the movie is ok..BUT if you read the books, it is plain against the bible.
yes you might ask, if nothing is wrong in the movie, the kids might get addicted to the movie and wouldn't care if the following sequels are against God and watch the movie anyway.
Also, by watching the movie ,you'ra actually paying a amount of money to Phillip Pullman which is encouraging his kind of books.
Boycott GOlden Compass!!

Jason Grahn said...