The Subtle Sin
Never mind the well-addressed question Should a Christian play dungeons and dragons? A better question would be:
Should Christians play chess?
It has an obvious theme, in the traditional White against Black sides, good versus evil. The symbology of the good guys is obvious:
King - Secular Leader, but with the Church close on his side (King's Bishop)
Queen - All the King's secular forces combined into a powerful tool of his administration. Starts at his side, to show His dominance. Straight and Diagonal movement shows the ability to apply to all problems and situations.
Bishop - liaison between Man and God, the administration of the House of the Lord on Earth. Keeps to one color, to show that the church has limitations in its applicability, BUT there are TWO Bishops, one for the Church, one for the Congregation, and between the two of them, they can get anywhere. Shows the transparent MYTH of Separation of Church and State.
Knight - The Special Forces, able to attack from unseen angles, and retreat across obstacles. The 90-degree component seen by many to symbolize the duality of God's Might and Man's Will.
Rook - Portrayed in most modern sets as a castle, examination of early structures leads many to conclude it is actually a church, historically. Either way usually exemplifies a building made of Stone, and "On this stone I shall build a church."
Pawn - All the multitudes of Man, serving God best by stepping blindly forward.
Of course, the Black side, the Evil, has the same components. Considering that the Dark One has his followers and his Bishops, we know what God has stated about False Religions: "As we said before, so say I now again, if any man preach any other gospel unto you than that ye have received, let him be accursed."
This makes it seem that someone playing chess, especially on the White Side, is acting out a morality play, attacking the forces of Darkness and crushing them under his heel. There lies the trick that ensnares millions of innocent souls every year.
Evil has, mathematically, as much of a chance to win as Good. The only restriction between the colors is that White moves first. In reality, The Good side should have more power than the evil, for the Lord has said, regarding HIS believers: "Behold, I give unto you power to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy: and nothing shall by any means hurt you." Unfortunately, the 'powers' given to the individual units of a chess set are evenly matched by their direct opponents.
Anther problem is the power of the Queen. She is clearly portrayed as the King's wife, but granted greater power and maneuverability. She travels and works independently of the King, if nominally at his 'bidding.' This directly conflicts with MANY biblical verses, to wit:
A further heresy implicit in the play of Chess, is that of returning lost souls to play. If a simple pawn makes it unmolested to the final rank of the enemy's side, he can be transmuted to any other piece of the game. In this manner, lost pieces can be regained. The bible clearly shows that there is only one event of importance following an individual's death, and that is the judgement. After that, the soul is sent Heavenwards or dropped into the Lake of Fire. Reincarnation is the devil's idea.
In addition to problems with the rules, certain conventions of game play are offensive to any True Christian that has seen the Truth. It is possible, if care is not taken, to move the Knight in such a manner that the outline of a Pentagram is described on the board, an incontrovertible sign of Satan.
Most frighteningly, throughout most of the game, the mechanism of capturing a piece results in removal of the lost piece. In the final move, of EVERY chess game, the King is not captured. Instead, the losing player lays his King down on the board, mimicking a ritualistic HUMAN SACRIFICE!
Does it still sound like a simple 'Game?'
For Further Consideration:
Chess is so addictive that prisoners and isolated individuals have been known to carve their own sets out of random materials at hand.
The forces of Darkness have managed to get introductory chess books into almost EVERY school library in the entire country! Our children are ENCOURAGED to take up the Devil's Pastime! They often play it in pairs, unsupervised by any responsible adults.
Unlike more traditional games, like Monopoly or Yukon Solitaire, chess does not stop at a mere Winner/Loser concept. Implicit in each game of chess, at least ONE person HAS to die before the game can be over.
And finally, in various times and places, people have been known to dress up in costumes and actually 'Act Out' a chess game! A game that encourages people to see themselves as carved and painted pieces of wood deserves at least a little more scrutiny!
At the best, it's origins are lost in pagan antiquity, and not easily subjected to objective Christian scrutiny for unbiased analysis.
At the worst, Satan eased it into place in anticipation of the reaction to AD&D. Think of that the next time you tell you children "Why don't you play chess, instead?"