In taking all of this paranormal activity into consideration, whether in pop culture or in passages straight out of the Bible, the common mistake is to gravitate toward one of two extremes. On one end, you have people with an unhealthy obsession with the otherworldly. Teenage girls become obsessed with Twilight and find themselves wishing that the world of sexualized vampires and werewolves was a reality into which they could venture. Those convinced that a zombie apocalypse is imminent stockpile food, weapons and survival gear to prepare themselves for the impending onslaught of the undead. And many Christians become fanatical about demons and Satan, going around casting out the evil that they believe lurks behind every sin and mishap in life. People in this category have an unhealthy focus that completely misses God’s power and sovereignty, as well as the biblical truth that “the Spirit [the Holy Spirit] who lives in you is greater than the spirit [Satan, demons, evil] who lives in the world (1 John 4:4). If you tend to lean in this direction, finding yourself mesmerized with thoughts of supernatural forces and otherworldly beings, the remedy is to allow the Bible to bring you some balance. As we read in 2 Timothy 1:7, “For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind (NKJV).”
On the other end of the spectrum are those who write off everything that they cannot tangibly touch and see as a myth and a fairytale. In the same camp are those who legalistically sequester themselves from anything that even mentions the mystical out of self-imposed moral obligation, a fear of instantly being pulled to the other extreme, or because those sort of things simply “just aren’t Christian.” The problem with this standpoint is that the Bible does talk about strange and supernatural beings and events. Every culture in human history has had their own set of paranormal stories and beings woven into their social fabric. And Satan, demons and evil are real. Burying your head in the sand drastically limits your ability to engage others in a culturally relevant way, and also denies realities that we find clearly recorded in scripture. In this case, the Bible also brings balance by reminding us that real evil forces exist and are something we need to be aware of.
Opportunity for redemption
One thing is for certain; 10 out of 10 people die. As such, people across the board have a yearning to know what lies beyond. For those of us who have placed our faith in Jesus, we have a confidence and certainty that our afterlife will be spent with God in a heavenly environment that is too wonderful to comprehend. And it is because we have that heavenly assurance that we can boldly engage those who are uncertain, yet who are intrigued by the supernatural creations of today’s media.
Bottom line? Don’t allow yourself to be obsessed, and don’t allow yourself to be ignorant, but do take the opportunity to engage with those wresting to know what exists beyond this life. As Paul says, “Yes, I try to find common ground with everyone, doing everything I can to save some” (1 Corinthians 9:23). Perhaps that common ground today, for some, just might be found in the world of lycans and vampires and zombies (oh my!).
Justin is the Staff Writer for the Good News. Email him at [email protected] or follow him on Twitter at @thejustinyoung.