1. Jeff Miller says:

    I agree. I’m on the umpteenth draft of my manuscript which involves in part angels and demons and the fall of Satan. There is a blurred line between speculation and what we know. The challenge is keeping even the speculation theologically sound.

    • Good for you, Jeff. I think that must be one of the hardest lines to walk, but if fiction is about truth, then I think it’s necessary. I know Shannon Dittemore, for the most part, pulled it off, and it made the story much richer and true because of it.


  2. Galadriel says:

    If a story includes supernatural beings and treats them as real, they ought not contradict Scripture, which does not mean the story cannot speculate about things unknown. However, if the story includes supernatural beings in a fantasy world with no attempt to align them to the beings which appear in Scripture

    This is why I am giving the drama Supernatural a wide berth. They present demons who were once humans,  angels who possess people, and God disappeared ages ago.. all of which would be suspicious in a fantasy world, but is heretical when set in ours.

    • I’m with you, Galadriel. I don’t care at all for a story about the supernatural told from a non-biblical worldview. What would be the point? They can’t reveal truth unless it’s a negative–by omission, it proves what is true. I believe this came up in some of the comments to Donita’s Friday post. But that’s not the type of story I gravitate toward, that’s for sure.


  3. I like the way you look at it, Becky. I feel much the same way.
    I really enjoyed Shannon’s “Angel Eyes” (looking forward to reading “Broken Wings”), and much because of how she handled the spiritual world. It was biblical enough that it resonated with what I know to be true, yet she introduced speculative elements that made things interesting and opened my imagination. I felt a thrill reading her story that I hadn’t felt since my early days of reading fantasy, a sense of “anything is possible” or “what if that happened to me?” that I hadn’t felt for a long time. 
    It’s also such a freedom to be able to create our own worlds, our own rules, for when we (as Christian authors) want to explore something that just wouldn’t be biblical in our world. If we want the fun of writing a story where un-Biblical things happen to people or where different rules apply to spirit beings than we understand in our universe, we can create a whole new universe to house those ideas and to tell that story!
    Seems to me that we can have the best of both worlds. And I personally believe that I have a responsibility to stick to the truth when writing “real world” stuff. I don’t want to be responsible for misleading people. I don’t want them to think that angels take possession of humans if they don’t. Or to think that demons can be saved if they can’t. Or whatever.
    On the other hand… What would you call a story that takes place in the modern world but contains fantasy elements, such as vampires or werewolves? Do the biblical rules apply or not?
    In that case, would we treat humans and angels Biblically while “any rules we want” would apply to the vampires and werewolves? Or would we apply the rules that apply to humans (ie, they have souls that can be saved or damned to hell) to the humanoids of the story?
    I think that’s where it can get tricky. I deal with that by handling my vampires and werewolves as humans who are affected by viruses, genetic disorders and supernatural influence (demonic oppression/possession). But I wonder how others approach it?

    • Thanks, Teddi.

      Again, I think the comparison with Harry Potter is helpful. Those stories took place in this world, but the fantasy part of it, passing from the regular world into the magical world by walking through a brick wall, allowed the reader to consider everything from that point on as imaginative.

      For werewolves and vampires, since they are imaginary creatures, I don’t think there are hard and fast rules (they can’t be redeemed, they have to be evil). Even dragons. Yes, the Bible mentions the dragon in Revelation in relation to Satan, but because we don’t have dragons here today, it’s fine, I think, to create minor dragons or meech dragons or riding dragons, as Donita Paul did, or to make them malleable creatures God wishes to save, as Bryan Davis did.


  4. Kessie says:

    Angels and demons are hot right now, and I’m starting to encounter them more and more in fiction. Really it boils down to the story world’s rules. Are they biblical angels? Then I expect the author to follow biblical rules. Is it something else entirely, like Devil May Cry, or Daughter of Smoke and Bone, or Evangelion? Then I expect it to adhere to its own rules and leave the Bible alone.
    If an author can mix and match their mythologies with the Bible and still pull it off–like the Dresden Files– then I’ll read along for the sheer entertainment value. He does vampires, werewolves, the Fay, God, archangels, Odin, you name it. And somehow it just works. (He writes God with the utmost respect and none of the other supernatural beings like Him much.)

    • Cool, Kessie. That’s a good point. Just because someone is writing about angels and demons doesn’t mean they’re biblical ones. Sometimes it’s more of a “mythological” approach.
      Intriguing mention of the Dresden Files. I’ve heard of it, maybe even seen some illustrations (is it a graphic novel?), and now your description makes me think I should take a look at that one.

    • Galadriel says:

      I’ve read Dresden Files (can’t remember which ones) but some of the dreams I had afterwards spooked me on a spiritual level, so I dropped them.  I don’t think they’re bad–loved Micheal–but I just feel better staying away from them.

    • D.M. Dutcher says:

      Evangelion though defies this whole topic entirely. It has so many layers and uses a lot of Christian symbolism as well as kabbalistic myth that even if you get the rules I think it can still hit you hard. I don’t think any Christian would think about the Rapture the same way twice after watching the End of Evangelion, separate rules be darned.

      • Good point! And really, regardless of what rules an author is or isn’t consciously following, there’s always the potential for a story to hit on truth or to hit nerves that resonate profoundly.
        Makes me want to watch Evangelion again. I don’t think I was paying attention to the Christian symbolism and such when I was watching it before (years ago).

  5. […] I’ll also mention that I too used Broken Wings as a jumping off point in my article today at Spec Faith. […]

  6. Terry Palmer says:

    Whether angel or demons enter my script, my fiction compulsion requires me to ask – what if?  What if, for example, an average John Doe couple suddenly realized that Ephesians Six is right on, that angels and demons fight over them, one for light and grace, the other to kill, maim, and destroy.
    What if that same couple found they could tap into the ability to ‘see’ angels and demons or at least recognize events shaped by those entities.  What would you do?  The focus of the answer to that writing is caused by a general question I have about our nation and the spiritual direction it is taking?  It seems, although it might not be true, that most people away from church friends, etc. that God isn’t relevant in any way.  What would God need to do to stop our society and make them know ‘He Is God’ ?  That the great ‘I AM stands for light and truth, opposite of our society in general. 
    If our original couple suddenly became aware of spiritual battles and suddenly knew of great impending danger as God is about to strike this nation down with multiple natural disasters, would that wake people up.  It sure makes a great series to write.  I know that.  I’m thinking more people might be made aware if more scripts chose elements of these proportions.  What might you think?

  7. You guys all rock. I love that we have a place where we can discuss these things in a gracious friendly forum. To those who have shared kind words about my books, THANK YOU. 

  8. Rebecca, reading your post, I think you should really give my fellow Crimson Moon Press author JC Lamont’s PROPHECY OF THE HEIR a try. (Not trying to plug here, it just seems very much up your alley.) 

What do you think?