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Avatar opens a Pandora's box of questions for Christians

Pastor Jim with Avatar movie posters
Pastor Jim at Marcus Cinema in Bay Park

What if humankind does discover life on other planets, like Pandora (which is technically a moon)? For Christians it would open a Pandora’s box of ethical and theological questions:

  • Is it right to remove natural resources from another planet for the benefit of Earth?

  • Is it right to treat the indigenous people in essentially the same manner as Europeans treated Native Americans?

  • Is it right for humans to use technology to appear in avatar form as Pandorans?

  • Is the god of the Pandorans the same as the Judeo-Christian God, or should Christians evangelize them?

  • Jesus says that the faithful are to go to all nations to spread the gospel (Matthew 28:19a). Is Christianity an earth-bound religion?

  • Is this story a product of human imagination or is it God-given?

  • In what ways can the Pandorans be considered the “better” race?

2D or 3D, there’s a lot to consider in this action-packed Sci Fi thriller. Some would argue that humans have no business raiding other planets and destroying alien cultures. Others would say it’s all part of what God intended: “…subdue [the earth]; and have dominion…over every living thing that moves upon the earth.” (Genesis 1:28 NRSV)

It’s a real stretch to begin tackling these issues, but sooner or later they may be real.

 

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