Even if you haven’t watched it, you have probably heard of Netflix’s hit show Stranger Things. Below Dr. Heiser discusses whether it’s possible to see the gospel in Stranger Things.
The show has been growing in popularity and viewership since Netflix released season one in July 2016. Within four days of season three’s release, over 40 million households had started it, and over 18 million had finished all eight (hour-long) episodes.1
With the show having such a cultural impact it is worth asking, What, if anything, can Christians learn from the series? This is the question Michael Heiser explores in his new book and video series The World Turned Upside Down: Finding the Gospel in Stranger Things.
In the video series, Dr. Heiser discusses themes from Stranger Things and explores how they illustrate similar themes found in the Bible. He looks at what it means to be lost, unable to save yourself and requiring a supernatural intervention, how the Church should be a family with a shared purpose or mission, and how believers battle enemies both internal and external.
The video series works for both individuals and small groups. Each segment concludes with suggested readings from related biblical passages and reflection questions you can meditate on yourself or use to facilitate discussion in a small group. With so many people finding value in the entertaining story created by the Duffer brothers, it’s good to reflect on how the story’s themes reflect those in the story told of Scripture. As Dr. Heiser says in the introduction:
Good storytelling connects the dots so the reader or viewer sees the big picture. The Bible actually does that very well, but we aren’t trained to see it. For that reason, I actually think this [series] will not only help you find the gospel in Stranger Things, I also think it will help you see the shape of the Bible’s own story. I hope that when you see the big themes and cosmic conflicts in Stranger Things for what they are—hidden in plain sight—you’ll be able to appreciate the big picture of the Bible, especially God’s desire to have you be part of His family and to satisfy the longings of your heart.
Learn how Stranger Things illustrates the human condition and its solution in the gospel. Order The World Turned Upside Down: Finding the Gospel in Stranger Things book and video series today.
- According to numbers released by Netflix.