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Avatar opens a Pandora's box of questions for Christians

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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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