A 'Sinner's' Guide To Jack T. Chick

A 'Sinner's' Guide To Jack T. Chick

A look into the weird, hilarious and oftentimes disturbing world of Chick Tracts.
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Have you ever found yourself stopped in the middle of the street, with an odd pamphlet or comic book shoved rudely into your personal space? If you happened to read this strange little comic did you find absurd ramblings of brimstone and global conspiracy? If you answered no to both of those questions then congratulations, you’ve gotten lucky! If you answered yes then you have likely come face to face with the bizarre world of Chick Tracts.

Chick Tracts are a long running series of short evangelical comic pamphlets designed to spread the gospel of Jesus by an American publisher named Jack Thomas Chick. His company, creatively named Chick Publications, claims to have sold over 750 million different comics, books, posters, and videos throughout the world, all with the goal of spreading their religious and political ideals. Chick and his followers are a part of the “King James Only” movement, which argues that every English translation of the bible published after the King James Version is heretical, immoral, and contributes to social decay. Chick personally sees to the scriptwriting of each tract, making sure his own specific opinions and ideas are idolised, while attempting to attack opinions and facts that do not coexist well with his antiquated, often hostile, approach to the rest of the world.


Chick’s cartoonist crusade against the acceptance of others began in the 1960s, chasing a variety of topics with each publication. A classic (and laughable) example of his fearmongering can be seen in the 1984 comic “Dark Dungeons,” which posits that fantasy literature and gaming, specifically the tabletop roleplaying game “Dungeons and Dragons,” are works of the devil. “Dark Dungeons” contains a scene of a girl literally hanging herself after her character dies in the game, insinuations that role-playing gamers are being coerced by Satan (or willingly working for him), and the claim that fantasy books and games should be burned if one wishes to love Jesus. This particular tract has since gotten a film adaptation that, in some scenes, recreates panels directly from the comic with shot-for-shot accuracy. How seriously the film takes its source material is up for debate, but it still stands as a showcase of Chick’s work and the surreal impact it has had over the years. For more on “Dark Dungeons” and its ever amusing movie companion I highly suggest watching JonTron’s review of the film on YouTube, which is able to go into more specifics than I am here.

Outside of attacking gamers and fantasy fans Chick’s works become less humorously out of touch and more venomous in their nature. Chick Publication’s website contains a banner proclaiming to have been “equipping evangelism for over 50 years” with their particular form of hate speech and fearmongering preaching. Over the years Chick Tracts have accused a variety of other religions of heresy, immorality, Satanism, and of controlling a world government designed to destroy “true” Christian values (I honestly wish I was making that up). They have published over 20 different tracts targeting Catholics alone, with many more in circulation depicting offensive caricatures of Jews, Muslims, and others that Chick has deemed blasphemous by his insanely draconian standards.




Exploring Chick’s website is an exercise in extended self-torture, scrolling through seemingly endless pages of nonsensical hate speech and cringe worthy self-righteousness. As an atheist who accepts scientific thought and believes in the theory of evolution I find myself as one of the great multitude on Chick’s dizzying list of heretics and sinners. His website contains pages and articles with titles such as “Butterfly Gives Darwin an Absolute Breakdown,” “Doubt in the Bible Behind Cultural Decay,” “Proven step-by-step methods that will help you bring Jehovah’s Witnesses to Christ,” and one page in particular that claims that moderate Muslims “would prefer to replace US constitution with a caliphate,” which is so completely and utterly lacking in self-awareness that it would be funny if it wasn’t so bloated with ideological danger. Nobody seems to be safe from this spiritual war fought through comics and cartoons, with sections of the official site outright stating that “Good works cannot save you,” and arguing that ‘good people’ are not truly good unless they accept Jesus and subscribe to the stringent tenets of extremist evangelism. So no matter how kind that Jewish neighbour or atheist friend of yours is, they’re doomed to eternity in hell unless you save them with the power of Christ!




One of the most common tropes in Chick Tracts is the character of the goodly, kind Christian being subjugated to a vast, societal, liberal conspiracy meant to oppress them and destroy Jesus’ work. Whether it is a boy in school being bullied and punished by students and teachers alike when he expresses his knowledge of the “truth” that evolution is a conspiracy, or the weird reversal of reality in the comic “Sin City” where a man protesting homosexuality is referred to as a “stinking straight” and then beaten senseless by a leftist police force, essentially turning him into a martyr, this theme is heavily prevalent in most of Chick’s work. The assumed goal of this role is to self-victimise, casting those that Chick is actually attacking as the truly hostile force encroaching upon his violently theocratic existence. Oftentimes there is some sort of homosexual, devil-worshipping character working to pull the strings of the world with the over-the-top theatrics of old school supervillains.


While Jack T. Chick’s extensive body of work can oftentimes be laughed off as the insane ramblings of a religious zealot, it also should not be ignored. While it can be difficult to take any of his publications seriously over the years he has attacked everything from scientific knowledge and secular law to members of other religions and minority groups. His hate speech may be comical and purposely “politically incorrect” as he has argued, but that does not stop it from being harmful. He repeatedly attacks ideas of peaceful coexistence, refusing to look past religious, societal, and political lines that subjugate others while placing himself and his followers as truly worthy of God’s love. These views not only cast many Christians in an unfortunately negative light, but also promote intolerance and ignorance, using scare tactics in an attempt to force others into his rigid system of worship and control. In the end the greatest counter to Jack T. Chick and his ilk is to promote unity, intellectual freedom, and the loving acceptance of others.

Cover Image Credit: blogspot.com

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He Calls The Unworthy-Worthy, And To The Sinners He Calls Friend

You own the skies, and still you want my heart.
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I think it's so human and honest of us when we feel inadequate.

Because we recognize we all have weaknesses.

Maybe it's for a job, a new position, becoming a parent, spouse, or being a friend

All real fears.

We all know our limitations, our flaws, and the mistakes that we've made.

Knowing we hurt people, we disappoint them, and maybe even fail ourselves at times.

And sometimes this fear stops us from pursuing something, and other times, it's through being that parent or spouse, realizing you have to push through, there is no way out now that you discover a grace.

That though you were inadequate before, and maybe still are, there is this grace that allows us to learn and to develop new skills we may not have had before.

I think the same thing can be said for Christianity. There are so many of us that see all the mistakes we've made, the disappointments, and flaws, and believe we are unworthy.

We are incapable of ever being a Christian.

We can talk ourselves out of it, and others do it to us as well.

The danger is that we are always going to feel underqualified, and incapable, and others will always be there right alongside us saying the same things, but you have to know what's true about you. Because at the end of the day, positive reinforcement, and love is not always going to be shown to us through our friends, or our loved ones, and we are the worst at giving that to ourselves.

But that doesn't mean we give up.

We all might not feel qualified, or worthy of something, but that doesn't mean we don't try, and we don't put our best foot forward.

In Mark 2:17, Jesus says, " I have not come to call the righteous, but the sinners."

None of us meet the standard.

We will never be good enough Christians for other Christians.

We cannot meet the standards of others, and even some of the standards we set for ourselves.

As Christians, I think we need to stop pretending that we are any better than anyone else because it isn't true. No degree, no amount of missions trips, or Sunday services make you more qualified, or worthy.

We are all so unworthy, so underqualified, and inadequate.

Which is why we are ALL in desperate need of a Savior.

No one is too far gone, or undeserving.

"For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Jesus Christ our Lord."







Cover Image Credit: Milada Vigerova

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Throw Away That Old Shirt And The Bitterness You Bought With It, It's Time For Spring Cleaning

Forgiving may be harder, but it's far less painful than the resentment you're harboring.
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When I was a freshman in high school, I went through so much petty girl drama. What teenage girl didn't? Looking back, I know now how stupid it all was, but it meant the absolute world to me at 14-years-old.

I remember feeling betrayed by someone I thought was a close friend. So while shopping at Forever 21, I bought a shirt that read the words from Luke 6:31 .

"Do to others as you would have them do to you."

The shirt, for those who know about the drama, was another passive-aggressive, petty move by an insecure teenage girl. In my head, I thought that maybe she would read it and understand what she did to me. Maybe she'd be convicted of all the wrong she did and apologize. And I did wear it.

All throughout high school and even a year in college, the shirt was in my closet available to wear. Every time I wore it, I thought of her and her betrayal.

The shirt was supposed to empower me, but the power I felt when first purchasing it diminished each and every time I wore it. Each time I never got an apology reminded me of the hurt that she had caused me.

Now reading in Luke 6, I am reminded of that shirt and how I completely let the verse be taken out of context. I let it justify the anger and resentment I held towards this one girl.

The passage says this:

"Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you...Do to others as you would have them do to you."

I'll admit. It was easier wearing that shirt and parading it around so SHE would recognize that SHE was wrong. It's not as easy recognizing just how wrong I was.

It was ME.

I wish I could go back and wear that shirt again. I wish I used it as a reminder to love her, to be good to her, to bless her, and to pray for her. Now, most 14-year-old girls don't think about it that way, but I think about it a lot now.

I wish I had thrown away that shirt long before I did. With it, I harbored so much anger and bitterness.

Maybe there's someone you're holding a grudge against or there's someone you're having a hard time loving. Let this be a reminder that the resentment and pride you feel of being right does not compare to the peace and joy you receive in forgiving and loving.

It's time to take the log out of our eyes and realize that we're the ones in the wrong if we choose to hold the grudge rather than extend grace to the ones who hurt us.

No, it's not easy.

But thankfully we have a God that does - what seems to us - the impossible.

I urge you friends, throw away that shirt and the bitterness that comes with it.

"Get rid of all bitterness, passion, and anger. No more shouting or insults, no more hateful feelings of any sort. Instead, be kind and tender-hearted to one another, and forgive one another, as God has forgiven you through Christ."
Ephesians 4:31-32
Cover Image Credit: Amanda Holt

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