Friday, March 14, 2008

God's Sovereignty and Christian Fiction - Day 3

Continuing on from my March 8th post, how can writers show the sovereignty of God along with a strong hero or protagonist? I used two examples from The Shadow and Night and The Legend of the Firefish, where two heroes believed very strongly that God was in control. These books had some very good, rich spiritual themes that they were communicating. I want to state up front that what I'm drawing out of these books to discuss are most likely not points the authors were trying to make. Please don't read too much into my analysis, because I'm using the stories to try and explore a different question.

Having said that, is there any problem with my question? If we go to Webster's Universal College Dictionary, sovereignty can be defined as "3. supreme and independent power or authority in a state." The Evangelical Dictionary of Theology states the sovereignty of God is "the Biblical teaching that God is king, supreme ruler, and lawgiver of the entire universe." To sum up, God is in control.

In fiction, generally a hallmark of a good story is a protagonist who acts. Stories and plots can carry a hero along, even one who is rather weak and not actively doing something. Usually though, readers prefer a strong leading man or lady - someone who may be thrown at times by what is happening within the framework of the story, but then finds a way to face the conflict and triumph over it. Many writing books talk about the need to have the main character ACT - to do something and not just be pushed around like a rag doll.

I think the potential conflict between God's sovereignty and a strong hero becomes more evident with these definitions. I'll look more at this conflict next.

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