Mark D. Roberts

Mark D. Roberts

Bible Cut from Harry Potter Film!

Okay, I’ll admit that my headline is more suitable for a tabloid than my blog. But, hysterics aside, what I’ve just proclaimed is true. The Bible was cut out of the film version of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows.

To be more accurate, I should say that the biblical verses included in the book were not carried over into the film. That’s right. The Bible was quoted in J.K. Rowling’s text of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, in two crucial places, in fact. But these quotations did not show up in the film in a recognizable way.

Allow me to explain. (What follows will include some spoilers.) In Chapter 16 of Deathly Hallows, Harry Potter and his sidekick, Hermione Granger, find themselves in a church graveyard on Christmas Eve. Here, they discover the gravestone for the mother and sister of Albus Dumbledore, former headmaster of Hogwarts. On this stone, which includes the names “Kendra Dumbledore” and “Her Daughter Ariana,” there is a quotation: “Where your treasure is, there will your heart be also” (p. 325). Sound familiar? That is indeed a quote from the Bible. In Matthew 6:21 of the King James Version, Jesus says: “For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.” One certainly wonders how Albus Dumbledore and his brother Aberforth knew these words of Jesus and valued them so much as to put them on the tombstone of their beloved mother and sister. But, alas, Rowling never tells us. This stone with its biblical quotation does not show up in the movie at all.



Yet there is another gravestone that does feature more prominently in both the book and the film. It is the stone memorializing Harry’s parents, who were murdered by the evil Lord Voldemort. In the novel, their gravestone includes both of their names, James Potter and Lily Potter, along with their dates of birth and death. Beneath this information is found an inscription: “The last enemy that shall be destroyed is death” (p. 328). This is a direct quotation of 1 Corinthians 15:26 in the King James Version. In the film, this inscription appears to be present on the gravestone, but it is obscured by snow. I, at least, was not able to read it onscreen.


Plus, in the book, there is a tender bit of dialogue between Harry and Hermione concerning this line from the Bible:

     Harry read the words slowly, as though he would have only one chance to take in their meaning, and he read the last of them aloud.
     “‘The last enemy that shall be destroyed is death’ . . .” A horrible thought came to him, and with it a kind of panic. “Isn’t that a Death Eater idea? Why is that there?”
     “It doesn’t mean defeating death in the way the Death Eaters mean it, Harry,” said Hermione, her voice gentle. “It means . . . you know . . . living beyond death. Living after death.” (p. 328)


Nice exegesis, Hermione!

But none of this appears in the film version of The Deathly Hallows. I’m not surprised. Nor am I hinting at some sort of conspiracy to mask the Christian elements in Harry Potter. Many of the finest elements of the novel don’t make it into the movie, understandably so.

But, I must say, I missed the ironic and telling richness of the graveyard scene. There are Harry and Hermione, in a churchyard on Christmas Eve, hearing a Christmas carol sung in the little church (in book and movie), reading gravestones that feature biblical quotations from St. Paul and Jesus. One might even wonder if the ultimate defeat of Voldemort might require someone to sacrifice his life for his friends, dying so they might live, so that the world might be saved from terrible evil. But that would be way too much Christianity for the Harry Potter books, don’t you think? 

  • David

    One of the most interesting things about the “Harry Potter” series is the tension between good/evil, justice, destiny (which even in the books invoke references to God, even in a post-Christian cultural sense) and the magic.
    It is just silly for evangelicals to knee-jerk reject the “Harry Potter” phenomenon strictly on the basis of “magic”. My family enjoyed reading them together and pointing out the nuances of theism in the stories.

  • Mark D. Roberts

    David: Thanks for the comment. And, yes, there are plenty of those nuances, including the main story.

  • Susan McCool

    These verses are displayed prominently in the United Nations building and grounds, without attribution:
    “They shall beat their swords into plowshares” (on a statue from the old USSR), which is Isaiah 2:4,
    “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you” (on a mosaic of the Norman Rockwell painting), which is Matthew 7:12 and Luke 6:31. (Yes, other faiths claim this sentiment, but Jesus is the only one who phrased it in the positive sense.)
    World government, Washington, and Hollywood never know quite what to do with the Bible!

  • Daniel formerly from Knoxville

    Oh, COME ON !! I guess they should’ve done a close – up of the Bible verse from 1st Corinthians on Harry’s parents tombstone, rather than just an allusion to it.
    Don’t be so nit – picky.

  • Glenn

    As usual people will go to any lengths, try anything new searching for the truth. The truth has been staring them in the face the whole time but the Gospel doesn’t appear and “sexy” “different” so they will continue to walk by it time and again. People just don’t understand our faith, it seems like gibberish and nonsense to the Ungodly. Harry Potter is truly a wolf in sheeps clothing. It doesn’t appear to be threatening but it is instilling an entire generation of children into the ways of the Darkness. Evil does Not Always come to us with a Dragon looking, Horned Fire Breathing entity. No, sometimes they appear as an innocent Kid doing curses and incantations and leading people away from the truth. That is the real danger. It is the same as Hitler using Indoctrination casmps on the Children of germany. Do I seem a bit over the top here? I just want us all to be aware of the real enemy and where he is hiding waiting to devour us all. That is what he does!

  • Vicki McCarthy

    The Bible quotations should have been made clearer and been present, and not cut if only to overcome the evil that is also in the movie,because without God in our lives, the one and only there is no good and His Word is true. Though the believers know what is intended the non believers don’t, especially if they don’t know His Word. A “good” opportuntiy there may have been lost.

  • Esq327

    If you’ve read the book, and obviously, you have, then you know that the end of the story requires one of the items you have hinted at. Also, since the 1st installment of the last Potter book covered more than 1/2 of the text, and there are 2 installments, it only makes sense that the biggest elements of the story from the first half need to be explored in the second 1/2 or the 2nd 1/2 will be very short indeed. The whole Dumbledore family story has been left out except for hints that it is out there. The battle of Dumbledore v. Grindlewald, what happened in Dumbledore’s family, how Dumbledore plotted to keep the devil’s powerful wand from passing to the anti-christ/voldemort, even though he knew he would get his hands on it.
    What I am saying is that there are plenty of opportunities for flashbacks and for the important bible verses to come out and be used. After all, as you said, there are important clues for the story in those verses.

  • Julie

    I could read the verse on the Potters’ gravestone just fine, myself.
    And yes, it was a nice exegesis from Hermione in the book…that kind of thing makes me speculate that maybe Hermione was raised in a Christian household…and that Harry would have been had his parents not been murdered when he was a baby…
    I’ve also speculated that Ron Weasley’s family is Irish Catholic, but that’s because 1. they have 7 kids and 2. they all have red hair. lol

  • Gloria

    Really? Why WOULD a movie based on wizards want to quote a verse from the Bible, THE VERY WORD OF GOD WHO STATES WITHIN ITS PAGES THAT WITCHCRAFT AND SORCERY ARE AN ABOMINATION TO HIM!!! Seems like maybe the movie should also be considered inappropriate for anyone believing the Bible and the instructions that are given to them by GOD!!

  • Charlene Hilliard

    Thank you for your input ~ as a children’s minister and a great grandma . I can’t read every thing so its great to rely on the Saints to help put “another eye on it “…

  • Shelley

    The shocking thing is that the Bible was even included in the book. Then again satan has been known to use the Word(s) of God to twist the truth in the past. Even with Jesus. I believe that including the verses in the first place is a dangling carrot for people to think this series is ok for Christians to read. I can hear it now, “It’s ok because it even quotes the Bible”. I agree with Glenn. Satan has used this series and others; such as all the vampire series to dumb down our children when it comes to recognizing a wolf in sheeps clothing. I am shocked at the people who approach this topic with a “it’s not the big a deal” attitude. I think God has been very clear about how we should approach witchcraft, curses and incantations. We are not to mess with these things. We know they are from the devil. There are some things in theology that are easy to see how they could be interpreted differently but this is not one of them. Mess with these things and you are playing in the devils ballpark. Not a place I would like to play or have the children I love play.

  • Neil Gilligan

    Warning! I would not even touch a Harry Potter book. I was teaching on discernment and ask for a Harry Potter book to be placed on a wooden table, and it was. I asked the people to discern the evil on it. And they all did. They felt the discernment that same way they discerned evil spirits that were in the house we were cleaning. (Now some might think this is as mythical as Harry Potter books but read on…)
    After they all felt the evil defilement on the Harry Potter book I took the book and put it out side. Then I asked them to discern the space where the book had been placed. They did and again they discerned evil defilement there. They were shocked! I was not. I explained the evil intent of Harry Potter is to lead people away from Jesus Christ and into the occultic practices of Harry Potter. Not only is the content of the book evil but evil spirits cover it with ungodly defilement so when someone that touches the book will get it on their hands and clothing. Then when they walk around the demons can see and smell the defilement and come to those people and get them to think about Harry Potter and his ungodly practices. I would not touch a Harry Potter book.
    Pray for the Lord to bring His Holy Fire to cleanse your hands and body.
    My discernment gifting opened up once I was Clothed in Jesus Christ and I wrote about it in “Transformed by the Power of God by Neil Gilligan.” it is a prophetic word for the body of Christ to get Clothed in Christ today. Get the book, get dressed and glorify the Lord.

  • Mea

    Never is the entirety of the text of a book included in the screenplay so quit the whining! Most Harry Potter fans read the books and see the movies anyway. As for you wimps who are so afraid of these wonderful stories that you want to call them evil and full of witchcraft – they are just fun and exciting books! They do not encourage any sort of evil-doing; just a great imagination. I wonder how great the faith is of a person who is so afraid that reading a book will damage his.

  • g

    That HP stories has Bible references in them is not surprising. Witches are Pagans and not ‘Satanists’ it is the over-arching broad strokes of Christians that paint witches as Satanists and demonic. Sad truth is, pagan witches really have never before been known to eat or sacrifice Christian children but Christians have been known to hang and burn witches. And by-the-Way HP is a FANTASY. There is no such thing as ‘Witches that fly and have workable spells yada yada. It is a ‘religion’ that is practiced with NO ‘magic’ that works. DEMON POSSESSED BOOKS???
    Wow,! Gee neil, asked everybody to ‘Discern the Evil’ about leading your sheep to a conclusion..if you wanted a REAL’ test..Hide the book somewhere in the house..TELL no ONE that it is there, ask no one if they discern completely mute about it..Guess one will discern anything…you just do what Hypnotists do, they lead the stupid sheep to a conclusion they want them to arrive at by making statements and asking leading questions like ‘Discern the evil’. That statement begs the question that the book is evil, and it creates fear in the followers that if they don’t come to the ‘right conclusion (your conclusion) they will be ostracized from the group.
    Group think mentality led by a Cult leader.
    I repeat, witchcraft as shown in HP doesn’t exist..NEWS FALSH it is a dragons and fairies .!

  • Daisy

    Are you people absolutely insane? A book cannot be evil. You are personifying an object with human characteristics. My children read these books and watch these movies and I am thrilled to see them enjoying a harmless fantasy.
    What a sad grim world you must live in to see Satan in everything that is full of wonder and delight.
    And touching the book will get “Evil” on your hands and clothes?
    I have one word for you: PSYCHIATRIST.

  • Abambagibus

    ‘g’, …whatever that stands for, and a minuscule one at that, …signifying humility?… should be proud of her/his perspicacity. She/he could never misconstrue the particular as the universal, as do most. I am happy to have seen a bit of vision in the dark. And, tho Daisy well expresses the bluntness of her point, to see goodness in all and in everything could be a pointless endeavor in the face of the sharpness of hate. As for Mister Potter and company, however, it too is a pointless endeavor to attack them in the face of the love they’ve engendered. Or do the frigidly loving Christians prefer that we subserviently cower before the hotly angry altar of fire and brimstone?

  • Rick

    I honestly can’t believe that in this day and age there are people who still believe that there are really witches that fly on broomsticks and carry wands and can turn people into toads and such. Really??? The fight between good and evil is very clear in HP and it’s not rooting for evil to win by any means. I wonder how many of those who believe the series is evil have even read one of the books?
    Chill out and do something constructive for God. Railing against a harmless book just turns non-believers off.

  • LutheranChik

    Speaking as a casual mainline-denominational visitor here — the ignorance and hysteria I see in some of the above comments is far scarier to me than any fiction I can think of.
    Don’t let the Muggles get you down, Mark.

  • Jossy

    I mean, I understand both sides of the argument. Isn’t it obvious to those who believe in the bible that God does not like the mention of witchcraft? I like the Harry Potter movies – it’s such an adventure. Magic is everywhere, look at the genie from Aladdin. It will be extreme to cut all of these movies out from our lives. If there are some people that do, then amen to them. But yes, Harry Potter is based solely on the one thing the Bible considers, “an abomination to the Lord.” Deut. 18:9-12. It includes casting spells and sorcery. SO just try to understand the people’s point of view when they say Harry Potter is “bad” or “godless” or just plain evil. At least Rowling had some bible verses in her book. Then again, what child will grow up and want to be a sorcerer or witch? It’s just the fact that the THEME of witchcraft is portrayed so vividly in these movies that causes tension. I think back in Bible times, witchcraft was more predominant that nowadays, so it definitely would be a problem then. Now, it’s more of a fantasy but, I might not like describing this movie to Jesus if he ever asked about it…

  • Tracy G

    I will not allow my children to watch Harry Potter, Twilight, nor any other movies that promote spiritism or glorify it. SO many ppl marvel at those books bc they say, “It encourages my child to read..” but that’s the PARENT’S job and it’s also the parental responsiblilty to make sure what their child is reading is wholesome. Why don’t those parents read the bible with their children?
    I used to study and practice maleficia (black witchcraft)and demonology and I hate to break it to you people…BOOKS CAN BRING EVIL INTO YOUR HOMES AND HEARTS. Satan is sly and cunning and ‘lures’ us into sin by making things seem harmless and ‘fun’. To say that Harry Potter is harmless is to deny that watching violent films or playing violent video games does not affect a person’s behavior either. I realize the ‘road to sin is broad” but I cannot believe that so many cannot see the truth for themselves. I am a sinner but, at least I can admit my faults, rather than pretending I’ve done nothing wrong so I can sleep better at night. Read the BIBLE for warnings of involvement in spiritism. DOn’t think bc you ‘believe’ in God that you will be saved bc remember…Satan also believes in God and can even quote scriptures. You ppl are being mislead. WHy would you care to see or read anything having to do with witchcraft (whether it’s ‘real’ or not) when you should be concentrating on bettering yourselves, strengthening your families, and building your spiritual armor. What a waste. Do you really think Jesus would ever be seen watching a Harry Potter film? Wolves in sheep’s clothing are turning you away from the truth and eternal salvation. I used to promote satanism and witchcraft and Yahweh (Jehovah- in english) SAVED MY LIFE!

  • Karen

    I would like to say Amen to Tracy G’s comment. I couldn’t have said it better if I had tried! God bless you Tracy and to everyone for that matter. Praise the Lord!

  • Tangular P

    Mark you hit it right on the mark(no pun intended) about the biblical quotes that JK Rowling writes in her books. After all she has said that some of her literary influences were CS Lewis and EB White well known for writitn the books The Chronicles on Narnia series and Stuart Little books respectively. But you forgot one character that did die to help others so that they might live and that was Professor Albus Dumbledore. He was a father figure to many,especially to Harry Potter who lost his mother and father to terrible evil. And even though Harry learned to be a wizard he never used his powers for evil. Harry never used his powers to get back at his aunt,uncle,and cousin who treated him badly when he was little. Dumbledore gave up his life so that he could protect Harry and the whole Hogwarts School. Something that he cherished with all of his heart. So you missed the point a little bit. The book and movie is the show that good does triumph over the bad even when one has to give up something-like their life.

  • carletta

    MArk, you are doing an excellent job along with the others that subscribe to your warnings. Raising awareness on our inability to discern good and bad in life is vital in today’s world. Thank you again.

  • g

    Dear Jesus,
    Have you seen the Harry Potter movies? It is about good triumphing over evil couched in a story line uses Fantasy witches and magic to tell the story. Many who claim to know you are at a fever pitched hysteria over it so please keep torches out of their hands as I imagine that they are thinking murderous thoughts towards those sinners.
    And please Jesus, will you clue them in that HP is a fantasy and that witchcraft as portrayed in HP is a COMPLETE FANTASY AND NOT REAL? Seems your followers have lost all rationality and sensibilities and still cling tenaciously to myths, legends and fairy tales. I am thankful that you never killed Disney for portraying Fairies and witches in Sleeping beauty, or mermaids, or talking animals or the portrayal of Lucifer in Night On Bald Mountain in Fantasia. Thank you for not killing Tchaikovsky wrote so much beautiful music like Nutcracker even though he was homosexual. Please help your people leave the middle ages in their thinking and come into the 21st century. Thanks

  • Rick

    G – Thank you for the prayer. I can only add a hearty AMEN! Couldn’t have said it better myself. I hope He was listening. Some of His children seem to have gone overboard and lost their common sense.

  • Emzy

    God bless you Tracy G, we know the truth but often times we really need reminding.

  • Daisy

    Tracy G ~
    Sometimes I think that people of certain Christian leanings suck all the fun and the joy from life. I grew up in a church that celebrated nothing. Now that I am an adult, I celebrate everything. The world God created is meant to be celebrated. Fantasy is pleasant and enjoyable. Watching or reading Twilight doesn’t mean my kids want to be vampires – they want to escape into a world of mystery and romance and true love. Yes, I could definitely find something “better” to do, something more “productive.” But enhancing a love of life, imagination and personality in my children is also a vital task. If you eschew everything that is just plain fun, don’t be surprised when your kids grow up and turn away from your beliefs. God is light and joy – don’t take that away from your kids by your grim definition of “productivity.”

  • Yohana

    our God power is above all powers and my faith only in God, Jesus and Holy Spirit. Our power is our faith in God, Jesus and Holy Spirit.
    Like Jesus told us about mustard seed, He told us if we have faith as big as mustard seed … we can move mountain, mustard seed is the smallest seed from all seeds but we can move the mountain with it … so awesome!! and for me the most awesome … our power from God that activating by our faith in God can do amazing things without choosing the right spell word like in the Harry Potter, well that is my opinion >’

  • sister cookie

    I as a child and as an adult have loved and worshipped our LORD faithfully. Never has my broad imagination interfered with my faith. When you know the LORD and teach your family to love Him from the cradle nothing can stop what is real in your soul. Faith and Bible study will stay the distance with Christ. For man or child.

  • L

    For all those who say they won’t let your kids read Harry Potter, have you read Harry Potter? Do you know it’s about? Magic you say? Sure, there’s magic. Harry is a wizard. But, what else? There’s got to be a plot and a story. What’s the story? That good triumphs over evil. The main overall theme is love. It doesn’t teach kids to be witches and wizards. It’s fantasy. But, all fantasy books are bad right? What? That’s not true? Is the WIZARD of Oz bad? The Sword in the Stone?
    It’s popular thinking to hate Harry Potter because it has magic in it. Harry Potter has actually helped me understand the Bible more. I’m going to spoil this for all you people, but in the end Harry sacrifices himself to Voldemort so all the rest will not die. Sacrificing himself he ends up not dying. He is the Christ figure in this story. It’s not Christian Allegory, but I am able to compare things in Potter and the Bible and understand the Bible better. I’m not understanding it wrong. I’m understanding it better. It works for me. I don’t want to be a witch. I don’t want to be a wizard. I don’t want to practice magic. Most of the people who read these books don’t want to do that. They know it’s fantasy and not real. It’s the ones who claim the books to be evil that don’t seem to grasp that concept.
    My aunt practiced witchcraft as a teenager and it is not what is in the books. The spells in the books aren’t real in that they don’t work. Take some ash wood, you won’t find anything magical to put in it’s core (phoenix feather, dragon heartstring, unicorn hair, whatever), but put something inside like a bird feather, and say “Stupefy.” Nothing is going to happen. Why? Because magic isn’t real. It’s fantasy for a fantasy book series.

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