Sunday, August 15, 2010

More on Christian Horror

I've already touched on this subject, here and here. But Mike Duran, who's a Christian horror writer whose first book is coming out soon, has more on the subject:
Likewise, the “dread” invoked by the Christian writer is dissimilar to that of the atheist. Scripture warns, “It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God” (Heb. 10:31). This “fear” is pivotal to “Christian horror.” Whereas the atheist author invokes the fear of the absence of God, the Christian invokes the fear of the presence of God. The “horror” is in His existence, not His non-existence. Of course, this “horror” is for those who deny Him, ignore His warnings, and refuse His mercy. Sadly, terror awaits those on the “wrong side” of the Universe.
Perhaps there is no greater horror than that of an atheistic worldview. Forget blood, gore, and ghoulies. A world without meaning and purpose is the ultimate horror. A universe that arose by chance, exists without meaning, where lives plummet toward annihilation is the worst kind of horror. The child huddled in bed, fixated upon the dark closet, becomes the adult gaping into the void of what, he believes, is a godless universe. And unlike the Christian novelist, the atheist author has nothing but more “dark closets” to offer their readers.
It's an interesting post, but there are some things I'd quibble with. For example, the argument that only those who "deny Him, ignore His warnings, and refuse His mercy" have any reason to fear God. The Bible's account makes it clear that anyone who meets God feels dread. "The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom." (Proverbs 1:7) We tend to whitewash this, to say what the Bible really means is respect. The word, though, also means terror. And terror is probably a better description of what people feel when they meet God, or even an angel, than respect, in the Biblical accounts.

Why is that? What is scary about God? It's not that he is capricious or abusive. It's that he's unfathomable. Completely beyond our ken, and because we don't understand him, yet are completely under his power, we fear him. What's more, we realize that we are unworthy of him. We are fallen and sinful creatures, who by all rights should be the subject of his wrath. Thus fear is the natural and right response--it simply acknowledges the truth about who he is and who we are. That is why fear is the beginning of wisdom.

Now if I only knew how to capture this in a story...

1 comment:

  1. Totally agree with you on this, Donald. I can't imagine a Christian standing before the Judgment Seat of Christ with anything but absolute terror.


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