Friday, May 3, 2024

Force

 

God vs. The Force

Bodie Hodge, M.Sc., B.Sc., PEI

Biblical Authority Ministries, May 3, 2024

 

“May The Fourth Be With You”

 

Echoing off of the famous Star Wars line, “May the force be with you”, May 4th, has become synonymous as Star Wars Day. It’s hard to believe how much a science fiction movie series has captured the world at large. It is rightfully listed among other highly influential fictional series like Harry Potter (based on the religion of witchcraft), Lord of the Rings (based in Christian-themed paganism), and others.

When Geroge Lucas’s Star Wars hit theaters in 1977 (it was the first movie I saw in a theater!), incredible spaceships, realistic laser weapons, and of course lightsabers had us in awe—not to mention the special effects that transformed the world of movie-making.

But it was the Force that seemed to get people to stop and think. An all-powerful “force” that binds the all things together, has prophecies, and good and evil “prophets” if you will, who wield that power (Jedi and Sith).

Western Culture In The Late 1970s

 

Now stop for a moment and understand the culture that we were in at that time. 1977 was the emergence of the first fully immersed generation in the USA that didn’t have the Bible in the classroom (yanked out in the 1960’s). No longer was the Bible viewed as the standard of truth in education and culture at large.

When Christianity was kicked out of the classroom, religion wasn’t kicked out of schools. It was replaced with godless religion of secular humanism and its various brothers and sisters—like various forms of paganism and eastern mysticism like New Age that were hitting the scene. In classrooms, evolutionism was taught as fact and few realize this is just a rehashed ancient pagan religion called Epicureanism. Paul argued against these Epicureans in Acts 17 at Mars Hill in Greece.

But the backdrop of the USA and other Western nations was a secular and pagan takeover and Christianity was seen as “old news”.  Now take an entire generation of kids who have little basis in Bible knowledge (outside of their “Bible stories” at Sunday school and church if they still attended) and have been taught years of secular forms of humanism and paganism and see what happened when they watch Star Wars.

Many loved it and immersed themselves into it. I loved it but I had to remind myself it was fiction. But others, starting thinking about it from a religious perspective very soon after the movie release!

The Religious Love Affair of Star Wars

 

Frank Allnutt wrote a book in 1977 called The Force of Star Wars.[1] In the book, he draws out many comparisons to Christianity. Again, rightfully so:

·        Good vs. evil (a Christian concept)

·        Jedi are likened to prophets in one sense

·        The force is likened to “God”

·        Many other things

Although these concepts are borrowed from the Bible, this doesn’t make Star Wars “Christian” by any means. Allnutt recognizes this throughout the book, but uses these concepts as springboard to discuss Christian things.  


A closer look at Jedi and Sith reveal they are nothing like the godly prophets of old. I’m reminded of the quote from Obi-wan in Episode 3, “only a Sith deals in absolutes”, which is an absolute and thus self- refuting. The Force is impersonal unlike the personal God of the Bible.

Like many false gods, they echo or model after certain aspects of God (i.e., they counterfeit). But they are not God nor in a position to be competition for the true God. The point is that even though there are a few minor similarities between the Force and the God of the Bible, it is really just a pagan religion. But in reality, it is more than that. Let’s evaluate the religious thrust in Star Wars a little more closely.

 

The Jedi Church—A Dualistic Religion

 

Did you know that the Star Wars universe is now fully religious. For example, in New Zealand, there is a registered religion call the Jedi Church. This is not to be confused with church (the bride of Christ discussed extensively in Scripture). But like the Church of Scientology, they borrow the name from the Bible but church mean something different in their belief systems.

Though pagan in many respects, Star Wars branches out and mixes with other religions too. The Jedi Church website says in its welcome:

“The Jedi Church believes that there is one all powerful force that binds all things in the universe together. The Jedi religion is something innate inside everyone of us, the Jedi Church believes that our sense of morality is innate. So quiet your mind and listen to the force within you!”[2]

If this sounds like an Eastern religion like Hinduism or New Age, there is a reason for that. It is an Eastern religion. Eastern religions have an impersonal god who cannot communicate with man by revelation (communication is a personal attribute). Morality is innate which is a common pagan belief (i.e., you dictate your own morality and you are basically good enough to do that). When they say that the “force is within you!”, this is part of monism, a common belief in Eastern mysticism religions.

They want to borrow from the Bible that the Force is all powerful (an attribute of the God of the Bible) but the Force is not omniscience (knowing is a personal attribute anyway).  

Another aspect of this religion is that it is dualistic in its fictional universe. Both good and evil are equal and opposite.

Some might mistakenly think Christianity is like this too—having both God (good) and Satan (evil). However, this is not at all the case in light of Scripture. God is all-powerful, and Satan, a created being, rebelled and sinned and his power is next nothing compared to God who created him and sustains his very existence. God wins and Satan loses. Satan has an eternity of God’s wrath upon him in Hell.

Dualism is the name of this religious style (dualism is form of paganism by the way going back to its leading proponent—Plato) and it is intimately intertwined in the “Star Wars universe”. Although Allnutt recognized that Star Wars borrowed certain Christian elements and themes, the fact is that this is a pagan religion modelled after Eastern Mysticism.

Reminder—It’s Fiction

 

What we need to do is be discerning. Remember, Star Wars books and movies are openly fiction. Nothing more. They rehash pagan ideas, Eastern ideas, and even borrow Christian elements and themes for the purpose of entertaining (and money making too!).

Can I sit down with some popcorn and enjoy a Star Wars movie? Of course I can—the movies often offer great entertainment value. Simply put, keep it at that. For at the end of the day, it is still fiction. And remember God really does uphold and sustain all things into existence. With that, I bid you farewell and , “May the Lord be with you”.



[1] Frank Allnutt, The Force of Star Wars, Bible voice, Inc., Van Nuys, California, 1977.

[2] Jedi Church, Welcome, accessed May 3, 2024, https://www.jedichurch.org/.

How Old Is The Earth

How Old Is the Earth? Bodie Hodge, B.Sc., M.Sc., PEI on May 30, 2007; last featured May 22, 2024 Featured in  The New Answers Book 2 B...