“Is “Lord of the Rings” OK for Christians to Read?”

Some young people in our church are reading some books called Lord of the Rings. Are these books suitable for Christians or are they ungodly books like that Harry Potter series? Apparently the teens think they are “harmless entertainment” from what I understand and they really enjoyed the Trilogy (read all 3 books). Please give me at least a sort of detailed explanation on where you all stand one way or another.

Dear _____,

We really ought to have an article on the Lord of the Rings trilogy. . .

It was written by a solid Christian, J.R.R. Tolkien, with a strongly Christian worldview. It is a tremendous blessing that something so biblical in its understanding has received the attention from Hollywood and the movie-going public that this trilogy has, and it has triggered further interest in reading the books that inspired the movies. We are completely behind the Lord of the Rings books.

I would like to point you to a helpful article by one of my personal heroes, Gene Edward Veith, who wrote an essay on LOTR in World Magazine: www.worldmag.com/world/issue/12-08-01/national_1.asp

Hope this helps!

Sue Bohlin
Probe Ministries

Published July 2004

Addendum, Feb. 2013:

Our friends at LeaderU.com created a marvelous Special Focus with the release of the LOTR movies that features links to excellent articles:

Lord of the Rings: True Mythology
Is Lord of the Rings, the most popular in the UK of all works in England’s great literary legacy, based in pagan myth or Christian themes—or both? Dig into the story behind the stories and their master storyteller in our Special Focus.