- Frodo's friend, the wizard Gandalf, possesses magical powers used to protect and defend justice. What kind of being does Gandalf seem to reflect from the real world? (See "A" below)
- Possessing the ring for an extended period of time turned a hobbit named Smeagol into a pitiable, obsessed Gollum. It begins to have similar influence on Bilbo Baggins and on Frodo. What kind of influences in our world does the ring seem to reflect? (See "B" below)
- The world of Middle-earth seems to be a dark, ominous place. But there are moments of delightful relief and heroic self-sacrifice. How do both fit a Christian view of reality? (See "C" below)
THINK ABOUT IT:
- A) Tolkien created the wizards of Middle-earth as supernatural beings similar to angels in the real world. Of course, we can't see angels - but they possess powers and must submit the use of those powers to the authority if the good Creator (as does Gandalf) or submit them to the evil revel (like Saruman).
- B) The ring of power shows the de-humanizing influence of submitting ourselves to anything other than God - be it drugs, alcohol, power, sex or any number of alluring vices. Read I Corinthians 6:12 to discover why we must guard ourselves against such addictive influences.
- C) Christianity is not naive when it comes to evil. We recognize that we live in a world dominated by dark forces serving God's enemy - the devil. But we also find hope in the redemptive power of Christ's sacrifice. (See Romans 6:23)
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