Why are the Twilight series of books so successful?
Stephenie Meyer’s Twilight series have taken the world by storm, selling over 30 million copies, as well as spawning blockbuster movies based on the books. Reviewers have suggested various reasons for the phenomenal success:
- A fascination with the supernatural
- Sexy vampires
- Forbidden love
- Our deep desire for the perfect soul-mate
- Brainwashing element in its content
Making evil attractive.
There has been a fascination with vampires for centuries. Whether dark Medieval tales, Bram Stoker’s Dracula or the old Hammer horror movies, vampires have always fascinated us. We have loved having the wits scared out of us – at a safe distance. But recently there has been a subtle and disturbing shift. The ‘old school’ vampires were obviously evil, and bent on our harm. We knew they were bad and that they literally ‘sucked’! But the new breed is ‘sexy’, given a romantic makeover and has become acceptable, amiable, and even desirable. The former safe boundaries of good and evil, right and wrong, natural and unnatural have been removed. We may have sought to make this young generation Internet-wise, but tragically have groomed one that prepares for adulthood excited and breathless with their guard down. Prey, not to vampires, but to any evil that may present itself as a legitimate pleasure, as long as it is pursued with caution.
This too is an old, old story. A strong emotional grip upon the human heart that renders the lover blind to every flashing warning light and oblivious to every siren alarm. The number of broken homes today is a sad testimony to the fact that forbidden love is still a problem for us. We long for that ‘soul-mate’ and will break down any barrier to whatever or whoever prevents us from having that person we perceive is ‘the one’ destiny has marked out for us. Right or wrong no longer come into the equation.
Fascination with the supernatural
It is ironic that a generation that almost from infancy has been fed evolutionary teaching should show such a passionate interest in the supernatural. It appears that no amount of rationalistic dogma can erase the deep awareness that there is a spiritual dimension to life. The growing interest in ‘spirituality’ generally shown by young people today seems to clearly confirm this.
The deep, aching hunger
Twilight also taps into that deep, aching human hunger to be loved. No matter how much we are told that we are mere animals (A ‘risen ape’ says one evolutionist) deep in our hearts there is that indelible sense of destiny. We instinctively know that there is more to life than just the physical. This is the reason why so many people in their quieter moments confess to feeling an inexplicable void and emptiness within. Although unable to express it in words, there is loneliness, a lack of fulfilment, a burning desire for a quality of love which no human is able to supply, and no amount of wealth, fame or success can compensate for.
Human love defective
It is not that the Bible teaches that human love is unimportant – far from it, in fact the opposite is true. Jesus summed up the Commandments by saying we should love God with all our heart, and our fellow man as we love ourselves. Our love is to be passionate, pure and consistent. It is sin (the breaking of God’s perfect law) that is behind the breakdown of every relationship.
The lover from heaven
Jesus Christ is the eternal Son of God who left heaven and came to earth to lift us from our empty, earth-bound and faulty lives in order that we might be brought into a new kind of life and experience. Christianity is first and foremost about relationships. It is God our Maker who, in his love has given us this gift of all gifts, his own beloved Son, Jesus to heal the rift between us and bring us back to God.
Jesus came to give his blood – not take ours!
This is the wonder of the Easter story, the romance to put all others to shame. That on the cross, the pure and holy Lover – who intended to do us only good and not harm – shed his precious blood and laid down his own life taking the blame for the wrong we have done and the punishment we deserve.
No glamour in death – real hope needed
Death is a terrible thing. Hollywood can glitz it up, but there is no romance in it. Christ came to deal with the problem of our sin and evil, averting the just anger of an offended holy God. As a result, he dealt also with our death problem. The resurrection of Jesus means that all who trust in him have the sting and fear of death removed for them. Love has conquered!
Invitation to reality
We need to be realists. Fiction has its place, but when it comes to the subject of life and death we need to ensure we are moving in the realm of fact not fantasy. We warmly invite you to examine the most wonderful love this world has ever seen. Why not join us this Easter as we celebrate the glorious fact that:
God so loved the world he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. John 3 v.16