Ansric: But what did you think of the story itself? Would you buy it?
Genie: I don't usually buy books. I either get them online or read them at a library.
Tom: When it's closed.
Genie: It's easier that way. Otherwise I'd have to assume a visible identity, and even then they wouldn't expect me to speedread a stack of books.
Ansric: What about the rest of you? Would you buy Flashpoint?
Rod: I would.
Allen: I'll agree with the big guy on this, though I still think more hacking would be better--and maybe a Catholic character or two. What did you think, Genie?
Genie: I have no preference about denominational representation, but it does seem odd that they would use physical conflict over cyber-terror. Given the probable cost of their equipment and their refusal to take lives, hacking would be more efficient. If they targeted components whose loss would not harm people, they could still effectively bring the system down. Trading identities and information on people at random would be good, or they could simply de-classify all information and randomly boost ordinary people's bank accounts. The chaos and humiliation could be leveraged into a campaign to get the local governments to re-assert control.
Allen: That does sound reasonable.
Charlie: But it wouldn't do anything about the spiritual conflict, which is the main problem. God gave us these bodies not only to interact with his creation but to interact with the spiritual world. I don't think you can do spiritual warfare with hacking. Mr. Creed got that right: a spiritual problem needs a spiritual solution. Our technology only positions us for the same on-our-knees work Christians have always done.
Genie: I would think that superhumanity would imply super-spirituality. If I became a Christian, my mind would still be an asset, wouldn't it?
Charlie: No more than any other mind that's yielded to God. The power and glory are his. And I think you'd find--I think you have found--that all superhumanity magnifies is sinfulness. If we could improve our spiritual state by our own efforts, that would be salvation by works, so all that gets improved is the fleshly side of us--our sin nature.
Genie: I don't know. There are other superhuman characters; what do they say?
Ansric: Heather from "Changelings" and Martin both agreed that the arm of flesh counts for nothing; only the power of God matters. Mike Q. Fagin from The Janus File just said that the book wasn't written by a superhuman, or he would know that we aren't made for that anymore. Then he said something about a curse and walked away. Colin from The Gate of Hell agreed with him.
Rod: He would. They're almost twins, except Mike's a nutcase and Colin's doom incarnate.
Genie: Mike is not a nutcase. He's the most intelligent person I've ever met, but his powers are a burden to him. That's why he goofs around. I thought his salvation somehow mitigated his problems, though.
Ansric: Others like him are generally sociopaths, and he isn't. That's a big difference. Anyway, Heather and Martin said that the key is superhumanity God's way, by the Spirit of God coming upon people--though they allowed that it still doesn't make much difference in spiritual matters. Their unusual spiritual insights and powers are gifts from God to help them perform their duties. And even Guardians and Heralds fail. Now, last call for opinions.
Tom: I like the humor, and the spiritual points were well done. Dad was bothered by a few things, but he said he wanted to see the next installment before deciding.
Rod: I think it's pretty good. And it's simple enough even Allen could read it.
Allen: I think it should have pictures to help people like Rod. Oh, I forgot--there aren't any people like Rod.
Charlie: I think the Holy Spirit can deal with any problems, but it is a good start.
Clarice: I wish he'd told what happened to Legacy. And I think e-girl should tell the story sometimes.
Genie: It's outside my field in more ways than one, but I think it's a good example of Christianizing the genre.
1 year ago