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  "For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life."
. . .  John 3:16  . . .
THE DA VINCI CODE REVIEW
Yvonne S. Waite

The Bible For Today, Inc. *900 Park Avenue * Collingswood, NJ 08108 USA
Phone: 856-854-4452 * Fax:  856-854-2464 * www.BibleForToday.org
April/May 2006


 

As you know on my JUST FOR WOMEN radio broadcasts, I have been giving critiques of THE DA VINCI CODE by DAN BROWN. WHY? This book has made a mark in our society! It has been read by forty-two million folks all over the world. Now with a movie, as well as the plagiarism law-suit against the author settled in Brown's favor, the popularity of the book has sky-rocketed once again. To be honest with you, I did not really think that my radio listeners understood why I was spending so much valuable radio-time on this blasphemous book. Now I think they, as well as you, are beginning to realize that such warnings have merit.

Long before I read the book for myself, I was acquainted with the volume. I knew what the book jacket looked like. There were 454 pages between the covers of that volume and one-hundred-five chapters therein. I'd seen many people in airports, waiting for their planes, reading Dan Brown's masterpiece. I saw it for sale everywhere. The truth was I did not want to waste my time with such fiction for it lied to the world about my Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ. The book contends that Jesus did not die for the sins of the world. It says He escaped Calvary's cross to run away to another country in a romantic get-a-way with a woman. It is said that woman was Mary Magdalene, and that her womb was the vessel (or the Holy Grail) that held the blood of Christ. WHAT BLASPHEMY! The alleged country to which they were supposed to have fled was France. The family name to this day is supposed to be "Merovingian." So when a friend lent the book to me, I was trapped. I had no excuse. I had to read it, finishing it in about four days.

I really don't know how to tell you about The Da Vinci Code without becoming too verbose. Truthfully, I do not want to spend a lot of time reviewing it and I don't think you want to know every detail either. I read it so fast that I find myself trying to remember what it was all about and how in the world I can synthesize it for you. To start with, I had a hard time getting into the plots of the story. The chapters, which were short--an ideal format for writers to use--keep its readers interested. The Da Vinci Code is full of detailed characters and different story-lines. To me it was like several different short-stories in one book. As the writer wove the characters and plots together, it all dovetailed into Dan Brown's finished ending. Not being a reader of much fiction, I had to force myself to stay with the book for several chapters. (I had so much else to do. Here I was reading this top-selling fanciful tale.) After awhile, I became interested. Yet, I can truthfully say that I could have laid down that volume at any time and not cared.

I kept trying to figure out what the story was all about. The supposed Mary Magdalene involvement with Jesus didn't show up at first. It was many pages before I became aware of it. There was much about the PRIORY OF SION, a fictional secret society, and some information on OPUS DEI which is a real branch of the Catholic church that has an abundance of money. A religious group that had the approval of the late Pope of Rome, and maybe the present one. (Maybe you remember that I did a series of "JUST FOR WOMEN" radio programs on OPUS DEI in connection with this book, as well as on an OPUS DEI member named ROBERT HANSSEN, an American who was a Russian spy. By the way Hanssen is mentioned in this book, too)

As I read along in the book, I was glad that previously I had read several written exposes on this blasphemous novel. Those critiques made me aware of the "ins & outs" of the mysteries within Brown's imaginative mind. I do not recommend this book, but I must admit that he is a good writer. For me, it was a waste of time! In truth, because of the popularity of the book, I am reading and reporting on it for you. Brown tells us that The Da Vinci Code, is all facts and true (which it is not!). You are probably aware by now that a movie on this wicked plot is to be released in May of 2006 with TOM HANKS taking the lead and RON HOWARD as the director. Whether you want to know about this book or not, you will be hearing every detail in the near future. It is better to be forewarned.

Let's begin with the main characters. As the book begins, art lover JACQUES SAUNIERE, the renowned curator of the LOUVRE MUSEUM in Paris, France, is dying on the museum floor. He was killed, as it turned out, by a giant, red-eyed, albino monk named SILAS who killed people, afterwards flagellating himself in repentance. The dying Sauniere--a word-playing aficionado--was able to do some astounding things as he was expiring, leaving clues for his estranged granddaughter, SOPHIE. She was now a mature woman who had become a crack-police-cryptologist. Her parents and brother were killed in some kind of mysterious way when she was a young child. She had been told it was an automobile accident. Her grandfather raised her and was as a father to her all her young life. He taught her how to solve riddles and puzzles. But it was in death that his greatest puzzle-challenge was given. If solved, the puzzle and clues he left her, as he lay dying on the floor of the world-famous art museum, would reveal his murderer, the secrets of the PRIORY OF SION, and the whereabouts of THE HOLY GRAIL.

In death, Sauniere's body in the form and attitude of Da Vinci's "Vitruvian Man," lay prostrate on the floor. It was found in room five on the first floor of the of the Louvre's Grand Gallery. The famed painting, the still smiling MONA LISA, was watching in Room six nearby. Upon the dead man's chest, written in his own blood by his own hand, were veiled clues that only Sophie would understand. This book takes us with her in her quest to solve the riddles in order to arrest her grandfather's murderer--thus discovering the whereabouts of THE HOLY GRAIL.

Sad to say as a young girl, Sophie's admiration for her grandfather came to a screeching halt when she inadvertently found him in a secret room with a white-haired woman performing a sexual act. Others in white robes circled in rhythmic swaying around this couple's ritual. It was some kind of heathen worship where it was said that the participants became one with God during this act. The author said it was a form of prayer-- most unscriptural to say the least! Many years (perhaps seven--can't remember) after witnessing that PRIORY OF SION ritual, that had something to do with THE HOLY GRAIL (which is said to be Mary Magdalene), the frightened and disgusted granddaughter, never contacted her grandfather again, not even opening his many letters to her for his explanation and reconciliation.

As the book progressed, Sophie accompanied by the other main character in the book, ROBERT LANGDON a Harvard professor of religious symbology, solved Sauniere's murder. LANGDON was the person whom her grandfather wanted to help Sophie solve the puzzle-clues to his murder. These clues would lead to The HOLY GRAIL. (By the way, the "Holy Grail" turned out to be Mary Magdalene's womb or Magdalene herself.) In the process of uncovering this mystery, Sophie discovered that the white-haired woman, who was part of the sexual PRIORY OF SION ritual/worship, that had frightened her as a young person, was her grandmother (the best I could figure out) and that her brother was not dead but alive. Added to those discoveries was the fact that Grandfather Jacques Sauniere was the head-priest-figure of the Priory of Sion--just as Isaac Newton, Victor Hugo, and Leonardo Da Vinci had been years ago. (All this is according to author Dan Brown's imagination.) During all those years, to keep Sophie and her brother safe, the grandparents had separated, seeing each other rarely. Each raised a grandchild. If I got it, at the end of the book, we readers learned that Sophie was a descendent of Jesus and Mary Magdalene. (Now, I may have this wrong as the plot was very complex and I read fast and couldn't make notes, as the book was borrowed and didn't want to keep it too long.)

Sophie's grandfather, the murder-victim in this tale, had a great passion for Da Vinci's work. Perhaps it was because the two men (Sauniere & Da Vinci) were bonded together by a supposed fraternal link. Both had presided over the Priory as Grand Masters--Da Vinci supposedly reigned between 1510 and 1519 and Grandfather Jacques Sauniere until his recent murder. Dan Brown wrote on page 113, of The Code as if it were a historical fact, the following:

"The two men share a historical fraternal bond. And it all fits perfectly with their fascination for goddess iconology, paganism, feminine deities, and contempt for the Church. The Priory has a well-documented history of reverence for the sacred feminine."

I personally think that anyone--especially a born-again Christian--should NOT be enamored with the man Leonardo Da Vinci. He was the illegitimate son of a nobleman who went to Florence, Italy as an apprentice to an older successful immoral artist. Da Vinci took on the homosexual lifestyle of those about him and reveled in such sin. Yes, he made a name for himself by painting exceptional paintings and frescos, as well as scientific studies; but, unless he repented of his sins, he has no name written in Glory. I believe I read in Brown's book, or some place, that "Da Vinci was a flamboyant homosexual and worshiper of nature's divine order." Some feel that there was almost something demonic about his aura.

There are other characters in this complicated story. Paris' CAPTAIN BEZU FACEH is the main detective. Maybe he was the police chief--I can't remember. He is mentioned throughout the book. Sometimes the reader might think he was rather stupid and conceited at first, but as the plot continues, we see he was brilliant! Then we are introduced to the plush Opus Dei World Headquarters in New York City and the money-carrying BISHOP MANUEL ARINGAROSA, packing for a flight to Rome, Italy at the instructions of the "Teacher" (SIR LEIGH TEABING) who turned out to be an expert on the Holy Grail, as well as a trusted friend of Robert Langdon. Although Teabing was a wealthy and knowledgeable man concerning the Holy Grail, he turned out to be a very evil, manipulative, selfish person. In the end, he turned against Langdon and Sophie.

In the contents of the book, clues around the MONA LISA PAINTING (whom some feel, according to Brown, was a self-portrait of the artist himself) were often mentioned. A black light was used to see blood and symbolic clues near the painting and Sauniere's dead body. The account shows the reader that the Priory's tradition of perpetuating goddess worship was alluded to and often emphasized. According to Brown's fiction, the early Christian church fooled the world by spreading lies that devalued the "female prominence" and pushed our thinking that masculine leadership was wrongly favored. The thinking in The Da Vinci Code is that Mary Magdalene was Jesus' favorite disciple, that she carried on the blood line of Jesus by bearing his child or children, that this blood line exists today, and that this "truth" was pictured in code form in Da Vinci's famous painting of THE LAST SUPPER . Of course, you and I know that this is rank heresy without a trace of truth!
 

 

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