In two of my recent post, I have done book reviews on books that would be considered faction. They are fictional books used to tell a truth or a real story. There are those out there that just do not like the genre. They say that you should never get your doctrine from one of those stories. I have a hard time with that assertion. Jesus used Parables to illustrate truth. Preachers will tell you that you cannot preach a sermon without telling a story. In fact some of them hire an assistant pastor with the task of finding illustrations for their sermons. Not exactly good use of a personnel but that is not the problem I am dealing with today.
The point is that Fiction can be a wonderful way to illustrate the true story. So here in is the problem. In reading these stories distinguishing the fact from the fiction. When you read these stories, sometimes you have great story lines and sometimes not so great. The Harbinger had a horrible story line but his facts were spot on. Dan Browns "The De Vinci Code" on the other hand had a great story line and the facts were horrible. Actually the facts of the De Vinci code set up the Anti Christ but I diverge.
The point that I am trying to make is that there are people out there that will never set foot in the non fiction side of a library but will go to the fiction side to find a good read. For those people we need to be doing a better job is our fictionalized accounts of prophecy. The books by Tim LeHaye were good but to make a good story he ignored certain prophetic truths. Joel Rosenberg, in his series of pre rapture events did a great job. I though both the facts and the story went well together.
When you write in the genre, you have to have both aspects spot on. Great fiction and great facts to go with it. Great fiction includes, developing the characters and having great conflict. Sometimes you may have to take the story places that a Christian author generally should not take a story. I am talking about violence primarily but could include language and sex. The conflict will keep the reader interested and lead to a climax. Again, the Joel Rosenberg series does a great job in this category. Tim LeHaye does well here too.
When you have that right you have to go back and say, does this line up with scripture? When you realize that fiction just brings out what you think that the scripture is saying then you have to make sure it doesn't violate any of the principals. Tim Lahaye for instance violates the principal of 2 Thes 2:11-12, that those who have had a chance will be deceived by the strong delusion. So the developing of the main character in his series was all wrong.
All in all, I think we need good Faction. There is a good market for it. Make the stories good, and let's keep the facts correct when we write it.