Dan Brown’s The Da Vinci Code is no ordinary work of fiction—but it is fiction. The hardcover edition of the book alone has sold 50 million copies, with a paperback version released just recently.1 Sony Pictures is slated to release a major motion film on May 19, 2006, that is certain to be a blockbuster.
The central theme of The Da Vinci Code is historically inaccurate. That claim, now widely known, asserts that Jesus married Mary Magdalene and sired a child. The Church (which Brown casually associates with “Roman Catholic”) supposedly covered up this fact for almost 2,000 years and apparently remains desperate to do so.
There is no reliable historical evidence to prove this thesis. It is not even close. Many unwitting readers of The Da Vinci Code naively accept the book’s claims at face value. Considering themselves to be urbane and sophisticated, they have been taken in by a cleverly written hoax.
The popularity of The Da Vinci Code shows us that people are quite willing to accept incredible hypotheses such as the ones contained in Dan Brown’s outlandish tale. While people may be open to faith, it remains to be seen whether or not they will be open to the Faith. That Faith, of course, makes claims on people’s lives. Those claims are rooted in the historical fact that Jesus Christ was born of a virgin, was crucified, died, and buried; He rose again in the body on the third day and ascended into heaven, from whence He shall come to judge the living and the dead.
1 This is the claim made by Dan Brown on his personal website. See http://www.danbrown.com/meet_dan/. At the time of this writing, the book has spent 160 weeks on The New York Times bestseller list.