The Da Vinci Code, by Dan Brown, was first published in 2003. By April 2005, 17 million copies had been sold worldwide, in 44 languages; and sales show no signs of slowing down, but have reached 36 million copies according to Brown’s agent, Heide Lange. This is a record for a work of fiction, with some claiming that it is the most successful work in history after the Bible. It has been on the New York Times’ best selling list for three years. And now it has been turned into a movie as well.
Why Take Notice of this Novel?
Why are we even taking notice of this novel – a work of fiction? The reason we must expose it is because this book is an attack upon the Lord Jesus Christ, His blessed Gospel, and His true Church.
Paul wrote, “I am set for the defence of the Gospel” (Phil. 1:17); and Jude wrote, “it was needful for me to write unto you, and exhort you that ye should earnestly contend for the faith which was once delivered unto the saints” (Jude 3). We are to defend the Gospel, and the Name of our blessed Lord, against all heresies and blasphemies. Dan Brown’s book represents a massive assault upon the true faith, and it must be exposed. It presents a false “christ” and a false presentation of what the Bible teaches, and millions have been deceived by it into believing that Christianity is a lie, built upon falsehood and deception. And as time goes by, it is likely that this powerful myth will take on the aura of truth in the minds of many millions more. Even if they understand that the book is a work of fiction, they assume that all or many of its background details concerning “Christianity” are true. Most people are extremely ignorant of both biblical truth and real history, and thus are unable to discern the difference between fact and fiction, in the story. And therein lies the immense danger of the book. It is a satanic lie which will damn multitudes to hell, believing as they do in its presentation of “another Jesus” and “another gospel” (2 Cor. 11:4).
A man who was a chairman of Sony Pictures (which is behind the movie of the book) before becoming a producer, said: “The amazing thing about this book is that it’s provocative: is it all true? Isn’t it true? As a history book it’s extraordinary. As an exploration of the evolution of a particular religion, it’s extraordinary.” One can thus see how this fictional work, then, is already being described as “a history book” – and thus not as fiction, but as non-fiction!
Certainly millions of those who have read it are so convinced that it is substantially true, even though presented as fiction, that large numbers of them visit the sites mentioned in the book, such as Westminster Abbey in England, the Louvre in Paris, Rosslyn Chapel in Scotland, the Chateau de Villette near Versailles, etc. The owner of the Chateau stated: “This book revealed the truth that the Catholics have been hiding for thousands of years…. The book is fiction, but it’s based on truth.”
And the book has spawned copycat novels by others, as well as massively promoted interest in occult history books. The deception is going to go on and on.
The Book The Holy Blood and the Holy Grail
The Da Vinci Code draws quite heavily from a book which claims (falsely) to be a work of non-fiction, called The Holy Blood and the Holy Grail, written by Michael Baigent, Richard Leigh and Henry Lincoln, and published by Jonathan Cape in 1982. This was brought to the attention of the public in a high-publicity court case which was concluded in April 2006, when the authors of The Holy Blood and the Holy Grail brought a copyright-infringement claim against Dan Brown, claiming that his book “appropriated the architecture” of their book. The judge ruled that Brown did not steal ideas from their book, but he effectively called Brown a liar for minimising the extent to which he drew on The Holy Blood and the Holy Grail. Certainly Brown drew much inspiration, and various ideas, from this earlier book.
The cover of The Holy Blood and the Holy Grail states that the subject “could constitute the single most shattering secret of the last two thousand years.” By way of explanation, the Holy Grail is, according to medieval legend, the cup or platter used by Christ at the Last Supper, and in which Joseph of Arimathaea received the blood of Christ; and it was the object of quests by knights. Of course, this is nothing but disgusting Papist superstition, but it is believed to be true by many.
It all began back in 1972, with a BBC TV broadcast of Henry Lincoln’s The Lost Treasure of Jerusalem. This was followed by The Lost Tabernacle of Jerusalem? And then The Shadow of the Templars. Pay careful attention to these words, found on the cover of The Holy Blood and the Holy Grail:
“The response to these programmes was remarkable. A vast number of people became enthralled with the story of the nineteenth-century French priest who, in his mountain village at the foot of the Pyrenees discovered something which enabled him to amass and spend a fortune of millions of pounds. The tale seems to begin with buried treasure and then turns into an unprecedented historical detective story – a modern Grail quest leading back through cryptically coded parchments, secret societies, the Knights Templars, the Cathar heretics of the twelfth and thirteenth centuries and a dynasty of obscure French kings deposed more than 1300 years ago.”
The cover continued: “Their conclusions are persuasive, and to many will be shocking…. The secret is no mere historical curiosity. Its repercussions stretch all the way to contemporary politics and the entire edifice of the Christian faith. It involves nothing less than the Holy Grail – not as the mystical chalice of medieval legend, but as something more tangible, which has played a vital role in the shaping of Western history.”
A splurb like that is guaranteed to attract many curious readers! And the book became a great success – although nothing like the success of The Da Vinci Code which to a large extent draws upon it.
What is The Da Vinci Code About?
The author, rejecting the biblical truth about the Lord Jesus Christ entirely, writes that the divinity of Christ was a myth invented by the Roman emperor, Constantine, in the 4th century AD. And his novel lays out a huge supposed “conspiracy”: that Mary Magdalene actually married Jesus Christ, that they had children – and that “the Church” covered this truth up, destroying Mary’s character by writing of her in the Gospel accounts as an immoral woman!
Furthermore, the author claims that the “Holy Blood” is the supposed bloodline from Christ and Mary Magdalene; and that the “Holy Grail” is not a chalice, but Mary herself!
To support his theory, Dan Brown claims that the Dead Sea scrolls show a stronger association of Mary Magdalene with Christ than what we read in the Bible. He also has references to the so-called “missing Gospels”.
The book claims that in the painting called “The Last Supper”, by Leonardo da Vinci, Mary Magdalene is depicted on the right of Christ – supposedly a female apostle along with the other apostles. It claims that her place was usurped by a male hierarchy, thereby suppressing the “sacred feminine.” And it asserts that the Roman Catholic institution organised a massive cover-up of this truth.
The book makes reference to so-called Gnostic “gospels”, such as The Gospel of Mary. Other sources used by Brown to write his novel were: The Goddess in the Gospels: Reclaiming the Sacred Feminine, and, The Woman’s Encyclopedia of Myths and Secrets. These give a good idea of where Brown’s intellectual and spiritual leanings lie.
In the book, the royal historian, Sir Leigh Teabing, an eccentric obsessed with the “Holy Grail”, shelters Robert Langdon, a Harvard professor of Religious Symbology, at his French chateau. Another character is Sophie, a French cryptologist able to decipher codes and puzzles, working with Langdon. Teabing shows Sophie The Gospel of Mary, supposedly written in Greek in the second century AD. It would be best to quote directly from the book at this point:
“‘I shan’t bore you with the countless references to Jesus and Magdalene’s union [said Teabing]. That has been explored ad nauseam by modern historians. I would, however, like to point out the following.’ He motioned to another passage. ‘This is from the Gospel of Mary Magdalene.
“Sophie had not known a gospel existed in Magdalene’s words. She read the text:
“‘And Peter said, “Did the Saviour really speak with a woman without our knowledge? Are we to turn about and all listen to her? Did he prefer her to us?”