Tonight, Katie and I watched "Supernatural" and then I drove her home to her dorm. On tonight's episode, one of our heroes, Dean, is closely confronted with death --in this case, literally, to the tune of Blue Oyster Cult's (Don't Fear) The Reaper. In the adventures that ensue to avoid and defeat this menace, it is emphasized that our cynical duo will need the power of something they are sorely lacking - Faith.
But in a show about the supernatural (heh), where does the concept of faith fit into the milieu? As I drove Kate home, we debated this and it seems that she knows quite a bit about the subject and we both had some interesting points.
Many would assume that Christians want to deny the possibility of or the power of the supernatural. However, God performs miracles. In his time on this earth, Jesus performed many miracles. The Bible, in fact, does not explicitly deny the existence of ghosts or demons. In fact, many stories seem to emphasize or talk about them with assuredness that they do exist.
One interesting example in Mark 5:2-15 has Jesus driving a host or legion of demons from a man into a group of pigs. Our preacher, Stacy, referenced this passage one Sunday and made the joke that this is where "Deviled Ham" comes from.
So to say that believing in the supernatural is a sin is wrong. These things exist, miracles exist and continue to happen and there is a lot more to this world than we know. However, the Bible does seem to indicate that these ghosts, demons, premonitions and apparations are not to be sought out. Actively seeking to contact or passively allowing these to contact you should be avoided.
In the western world, this could be better defined as "the occult" which is more specific than supernatural events. Popular culture tends to want to confuse the two, adding an element of mystery and taboo to any supernatural event or miracle. At the same time, the impact or importance of actual 'occult' practices are depicted in a more innocent way than Christians should be comfortable with.
The antagonist in the show tonight was clearly rationalizing and confusing the two for their own goals. There was a strongly reinforced belief and delusion that God had chosen this character to have a certain power over life and death when in reality, it was through occult practices that their powers were gained. It seems funny that an 'extra' character on the show, a skeptic versus the faith healer, was one of the first to fall victim to the reaper but be rescued just in time by our heroes. There are more evils --worse evils-- on the horizon gunning for Sam and Dean and I hope that they work more elements into the show to reinforce the fact that they will need lots of FAITH on their side in order to win.