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The DaVinci Code: Faith, Fact, or Fiction?
With so much information available to us today, it’s not hard to get confused is it?
Two years ago, author Dan Brown wrote a novel that debuted at the top of the NY Times bestseller list. And it has been at or near the top of that list every week since.
So we are going to do something different today than we have ever done. We’re going to discuss this book.
The Da Vinci Code has sold over 10 million copies, it’s been translated into over 40 languages. This Friday’s edition of the USA Today had a two page spread about how every church, museum and chateau mentioned in the book have now become major tourist attractions throughout Europe.
This kind of attention is not unprecedented. Clancy and Grisham have sold as many copies and created as much chatter with some of their works.
But a few months ago, one of our Board members convinced me to talk to you about this book because this book is different.
It’s a book that has become a catalyst for all kinds of questions.
Questions about the church.
Questions about Jesus Christ.
Questions about God.
All of a sudden, lots of Americans, and lots of New Songers are asking questions that I haven’t heard since seminary. Questions about the Bible, about the ancient church councils, about the Gnostics, questions about books like the Gospel of Thomas.
Dan Brown makes some claims about these sorts of things, and he makes some claims for historical accuracy. On page 1 he says:
All descriptions of artwork, architecture, documents, and secret rituals in this novel are accurate. – Dan Brown, the Da Vinci Code, p. 1
As you read the book, you begin to wonder if Mr. Brown has more in mind that merely making money and entertaining readers. More on that later.
If you haven’t read the book, you might be interested in knowing that it will come out in movie form next year. Ron Howard and Columbia Pictures are producing it, and Russell Crowe is rumored to be the leading man. So when the movie comes out, you will hear about it. Some are predicting that it will have a wider influence than The Passion.
The Da Vinci Code is a well-written mystery, based on a conspiracy. And though fascinating to read about the unsuspecting Harvard professor, the energetic French policeman, the Royal British Knight, and the Albino Monk-turned-assassin (nod at me if you’ve read the book), and of course the heroine of the book, “Sophie” whose name means “wisdom,” in Greek. As you read you recognize that this is something that is changing the way people think.
It’s a plot about the Holy Grail. It you’ve read it and you’ve seen “Indiana Jones and the Search for the Holy Grail,” you know that Harrison Ford and Sean Connery had it wrong, the Holy Grail is not a cup. It’s a woman. A woman with a huge secret that has been covered up for the last 1700 years.
To understand what the book is talking about, you need some background in three areas. So let me tell you three stories. (I left you an entire blank page on the back of your
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