It may just be a tad bit late to write a Halloween post, but I think this topic is extremely important. The reason is because there are beliefs that mankind is essentially good. This argument I have seen mostly out of atheists. Their argument is reasonable if their worldview is true since there would be no moral standards anyway.
However, a man named Douglas Brode , an adjunct of Syracuse University’s Newhouse School of Public Communications with a Ph.D in Social Science, might question the hypothesis that man is essentially good. Recently, after co-authoring a graphic novel called Virgin Vampires, or Once Upon a Time in Transylvania (which, although I am “judging a book by the cover”, I am not endorsing for you to read), Mr. Brode published a commentary for The Free Lance-Star called Love and death: The Vampire’s Eternal Lure. Now Mr. Brode has probably looked into vampires quite a bit, and judging from his commentary he certainly has.
What really came out to me is that he questions the assumption of a good man. In it, Brode writes, “If mankind is essentially good, as we wish — perhaps need — to believe, why then are we held spellbound in darkness by such atavistic forces?” What Brode is saying is “If humankind is so good, why do we love evil creatures?” This intrigued me quite a bit obviously.
No matter what your thoughts are on vampires, everyone I am assuming knows that blood-sucking, demonic creatures are evil. Also, they are deceptive creatures that tempt girls with romanticism, and I do not mean just in reality. In the first official vampire novel, Dracula, Bram Stoker portrays the creature of the night as romantic in the oddest of terms. Count Dracula would tempt London women from keeping chaste, although they realize that with temporal pleasure came death.
Continuing through this dark history, nothing much changes in the characteristics of vampires. Vampires are evil, blood-thirsty beings, and recently, with the release of the Twilight movies, the romantic aspect of these evil creatures once again reemerges and spellbinds many girls, in the movie and in reality. It may be sickening to some and also hilarious, especially funny for us shaking our heads hysterically as we witness people walking into the movie theater to watch Twilight (you know who you are!).
It is not just vampires that spark allurement. Think about how large the horror film franchise is. Who can go a year without a dozen or so horror movies being released? Clearly, there is lots of money involved in scaring people horribly. It is not good for our psychological wellbeing (as my mother pointed out to me time and again), so why would we spend a good ten bucks a ticket to watch something that is emotionally draining? That is the question Professor Brode asks and does not answer, perhaps because he simply doesn’t.
For Christians, the answer should be apparent. Thanks to the Fall of Man as shown through Genesis 3, we have a sinful nature. In fact, we are inherently sinful creatures. Therefore, as dark mingles only with dark, men are naturally drawn to a sense of evil, no matter how repulsed they are by it. John wrote in his gospel:
Light has come into the world, but people loved darkness instead… (John 3:19 NIV) (Ellipsis mine)
Even though I never have watched a horror movie (take that back, I watched the 1930s version of Frankenstein), I have my own sense of attraction to horror. It is not as strong as my fear of it, which is why I have never seen a horror film, but it persists and sometimes gets to me by word of mouth or some other accident. I end up fearing it to the point where I will sometimes double-check a dark room. Still, the inherent attraction to evil persists.
The allure of evil things is proof of an already existing evil that lies within us all. However, escaping is not that hard. It involves revealing yourself to the light. This is the light of mercy given to us by God through Jesus. Although evil will always want to return us to the dark, if we are truly saved then there is nothing that can take us back. Even Job, who frequently referred to how darkness consumed him in his conversation with his friends, saw that
“my redeemer lives,
and that in the end he will stand on the earth.” (Job 19:25)