Theological Houses

Many know that in Hogwarts, they have different houses for different enneagram types, oh I mean, different styles of learning and attributes. However, the nuances of the houses do not stop there and portray some strong theological tension within the story of Harry Potter. Whether you belong to Slytherin, Gryffindor, Ravenclaw, or Hufflepuff these are all important nuances and tensions to look into.

The great thing is that there is not one house that is evil and another that is purely good. There have been good and bad nuggets within each house and the reader will notice that, much like in LOTR, the goodness of one's character is up to the very choices that one makes.

We see this play out several times across every book. Harry sometimes teeters on the wrong decision while Snape, a seemingly bad character, fills a good position. Even later we see that Malfoy, the most wretched character for 90% of the story, ends up doing some good. Most lowly and despicable is Wormtail who eventually betrays the dark lord only to find out that he was bound to him.

Back to the houses, which contain meaning behind every single name and are shown in the opening scenes of Harry Potter when he sits beneath the sorting hat. Gryffindor was written by JK rowling to reflect Christ, this is told to us by David Colbert when he explains the name is french for "Golden Griffin" and the griffin has long been a symbol of God. The lion is the king of the land, the eagle being the king of the sky. Both heaven and earth. You get the picture (think Aslan...massive lion).

The ones that can talk to snakes, the beast destined to be trampled on by Christ (Gryffindor) are the ones you'll find in the low chambers of Hogwarts (Genesis 3:14). The theological picture of opposition here should be apparent by now. The dark vs the light, the death eaters vs the life eaters. In Scripture, we have Saul who declares an understanding of the world that is not unlike that of what we see in Harry Potter. The world is fallen (Romans 8:22) and rules by the devil (2 Corinthians 4:3-4) against whom everything and everyone good are at war. The wizards (believers) fight against the principalities of the world and the powers of darkness (Ephesians 6:12). Rowling created a very blunt likeness between her wizarding world and our world that we read of in Scripture.

There is a reason that the conflict centers itself around descendants of Godric Gryffindor and Salazar Slytherin. This conflict is the one we face today - those who hold the Christian worldview and those that oppose it in darkness. Though some may fall into the houses of Hufflepuff or Ravenclaw, the battle itself is one that fights against good and evil. We will also see why this story is vitally important to humanity as a whole as well as evangelism.

This battle of pureblood, mudbloods, and half-bloods is one that we face every day in reality. This was also greatly recognized in Tolkien's novels with the woodland elves and the dwarves. We have battles within ourselves, within the community and church. We have battles that far exceed that and one that recognizes unity in the end against the darkness.

In the coming days, we will explore all this in great detail.