CHARLOTTE, N.C. (Christian Examiner) – Christian radio host and author Hank Hanegraaff says discerning Christians who enjoy the "Star Wars" movies can use the newest film as a way to discuss spiritual matters with their friends.
Hanegraaff, the host of the popular "Bible Answer Man" broadcast, was asked in a recent broadcast whether Christians should see the movie. The caller, a fan of the films, asked: "Do you think that I'm doing Christianity or God any sort of injustice [by seeing it]"?
"Star Wars: The Force Awakens" opens today in select theaters.
Hanegraaff has been critical of the "Star Wars" worldview.
"I think you can enjoy the movie for the entertainment and the fun, but also in the process you're not just enjoying but you're exercising and sharpening your discernment skills," Hanegraaff answered. "Because when you have a cultural phenomenon that so many people participate in, to be completely blind to what's communicated means that you cannot effectively communicate to someone else.
He continued, "So, since you have a passion for this, God will most certainly use that passion, and what is entertaining on the one hand ought to be educational on the other. And you may be able to use the deviations in terms of worldviews as opportunities to share [the Gospel] with family members and friends."
The latest issue of the Christian Research Journal, which is published by the ministry that produces the radio broadcast, critiques the "Star Wars" worldview in-depth.
In an earlier broadcast this fall of the "Bible Answer Man" broadcast, Hanegraaff gave an overview of his concerns with "Star Wars."
"Star Wars is replete with a non-Christian worldview – concepts including Gnosticism, Buddhism, Eastern meditation, occultism, and – very significantly – moral relativism," he said. "[It] posits a yin-yang balance of opposing powers which it calls ... the Force. Occult elements of Star Wars include telepathy, telekinesis, mind-reading, Spiritism.
"And when it comes to its epistemology, Star Wars roots knowledge firmly in the realm of subjective feelings and urges its viewers on with such pithy admonitions as 'feel, don't think,'" Hanegraaff continued. "So far from being Christian, the Star Wars worldview is diametrically opposed to Christianity.
"The films may be entertaining, but the claims they make about faith and reality, about knowledge and morality, do not correspond with truth," he concluded.