Posted by: L. E. Barnes | August 16, 2010

Monday Message

Grasping at divinity–this, according to Fr. Robert Barron, is the recurring theme in at least 3 of the Indiana Jones films. People seek to control the divine, and in turn want to control others.

I’ve read that the key difference between religion and magic is that religion is an attempt to please and serve God/the gods (whichever one believes in) whereas magic is an attempt to force God/the gods to do your bidding. Unfortunately, some well-meaning believers attempt–typically without realizing what they’re doing–to blur the lines between the religion and magic, thinking that they too can bend God to their will. For instance, I read an article by a fellow who was discussing the extremes to which some Christians had taken their views on prayer, especially in the area of faith healing. He said he encountered a wheelchair-bound woman in church who insisted that according to the Bible she had the authority to command God to heal her body so she could walk again. (I don’t know about you, but I would consider such a remark to be utter blasphemy.) Likewise, I’ve heard of people who would go up to a person they had become infatuated with and claim, “God told me that He wants you and me to get married!” Hmmmm… Can you say “manipulation”?

Of course, this all goes back to Genesis chapter 3, with the serpent telling Eve that the forbidden fruit will make them like God. And the Indiana Jones films seem to focus on this primeval thirst for divine power and knowlege, along with its attendant consequences. If you overstep the God-given boundaries for us, you’re going to pay for it somehow.




  1. […] Monday Message […]

  2. Father made really interesting points. In recent years I have finally understood that it is always God who bends towards us, and that of ourselves we cannot even reach towards Him without Him already giving us the power to do so. As far as Indiana Jones goes, I’m going to look at those movies in a different light, now. I don’t like many movies, but I sure enjoyed the Indiana Jones movies. Maybe Father has put his finger on why.

  3. I always liked Indiana Jones as well. Father Barron’s ideas certainly provide food for thought.

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