This one is such a non-issue for me personally I normally wouldn’t even think to bring it up, but every once in a while some sensationalized news story crosses my feed and I feel the need to make myself clear. I have no problem with fictionalized representations of witches, the occult, the supernatural, or anything vaguely related to the trappings of paganism. I tend to be pretty into that kind of stuff. For reference, see my beloved X-Files DVD collection, lovely set of tarot cards, and “Ten Points for Hufflepuff” t-shirt.
I have never actually met another Christian in real life who had a problem with fictionalized depictions of witchcraft. I’ve only seen such people in movies or read articles about them online. In theory the issue is that witchcraft is a form of pagan worship, and pagan ritual is evil. However fictional witches almost never bear any resemblance to actual pagans, and I don’t have any problems with pagans anyway. Most church traditions came out of pagan rituals. In fact as far as I know, the calendar of Christian holidays is based entirely on ancient pagan festivals and days we’re pretty sure saints died.
There are a lot of church groups that like using magic and fantasy stories as discussion pieces, though it’s unlikely you’ll ever read a news story about a really lovely Lutheran Lord of the Rings reading group. But any narrative that asks you to consider themes of love, sacrifice, mercy, and compassion is worth the modern Christian’s consideration.
I try to be respectful of how others choose to interpret the faith, but personally I find the rejection of magic to be childish.
Katrina, your dad told me about your blog—-I love it!
My family (evangelical, biblical-literalists) has objected to fictional depictions like these all my life. When we were kids, my mother wouldn’t let us watch ‘Bewitched’ on TV because it was about a witch. She used I Thessalonians 5:22 as her justification—-‘abstain from all appearance of evil.’
So yeah, very literal, culturally-based, and often context-free interpretations of scripture.