Suzanne Collins has created a modern masterpiece that has captured the minds of both young and old. But there is something disturbing about this fictional world. What is it that strikes us as unusual about Panem? I don’t think it is the unforgivable corruption of the government. Nor even the slaughter of innocent children by other innocent children.
What Suzanne Collins has masterfully created is a godless world. A world that is completely void of any trace of religion–an atheistic world. In reality, no such world could exist. There will always be a believing remnant. But, for a moment, let’s put aside the fact that this type of world could not exist. Has Ms. Collins rightly displayed an atheistic world? Or, to put it another way, what would the world look like if there was no God?
The book of Judges presents the closest picture of the nation of Israel that–for a period of time–lived as though there was no God. Every man did that which was right in his own eyes. That period of time was an incredible low for the nation of Israel. The corruption was disgusting.
Historically, Rome was a pagan empire until the time of Constantine. Although this empire had some checks and balances, the government was morally bankrupt. Emperors used Christians as torches to light their gardens and arenas. Christians were sent to their death through gruesome arena games. Some could effectively argue that the gladiator games were not much different than Panem’s Hunger Games.
What is it that strikes us to the core about Panem? Panem accurately depicts a world devoid of God. The Hunger Games–in the guise of a fictional world–puts the “old man” under the microscope for all the world to see. I would strongly recommend the Hunger Games to anyone who would like to get a glimpse of a god-less, gospel-less world. Suzanne Collins has masterfully created this world.