Narnia At-A-Glance

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When he wrote Chronicles of Narnia, C. S. Lewis wanted the story to get past the “watchful dragons” of young minds trained by an increasingly secular British culture to help the readers understand the good news of Jesus Christ.

How “Christian” is Narnia the book series? Here is a quick guide to the series in Lewis’ own words from a letter written in March 1961 to a young girl named Anne. (Source: “Bluspels and Flalansferes: A Semantic Nightmare,” in Selected Literary Essays, Walter Hooper, ed. (London: Cambridge University Press, 1969), 426.)

“I think you will probably see that there is a deeper meaning behind it. The whole Narnian story is about Christ. That is to say, I asked myself ¢â‚¬ËœSupposing that there really was a world like Narnia and supposing it had (like our world) gone wrong and supposing Christ wanted to go into that world and save it (as He did ours) what might have happened?’ The stories are my answers. Since Narnia is a world of Talking Beasts, I thought He would become a Talking Beast there, as He became a man here. I pictured Him becoming a lion there because (a) the lion is supposed to be the king of beasts; (b) Christ is called ¢â‚¬ËœThe Lion of Judah’ in the Bible; (c) I’d been having strange dreams about lions when I began writing the work. The whole series works out like this.

The Magician’s Nephew tells the Creation and how evil entered Narnia.

The Lion etc the Crucifixion and Resurrection.

Prince Caspian restoration of the true religion after corruption.

The Horse and His Boy the calling and conversion of a heathen.

The Voyage of the “Dawn Treader” the spiritual life (especially in Reepicheep).

The Silver Chair the continuing war with the powers of darkness.

The Last Battle the coming of the Antichrist (the Ape). the end of the world and the Last Judgement.

The book is clearly Christian but how about the Disney movie “The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe?” Here is what Ted Baehr of Movieguide said after seeing the whole film prior to release. “After months of anticipation, those who love NARNIA can rejoice that Disney and Walden have given them a wonderful movie that tells the story in an entertaining, exciting, thrilling, and respectful way¢â‚¬¦ Very, very few people will see the slight divergences that the movie takes from the novel. And, even fewer will see the few very subtle theological shifts in the new movie. So the great news is that the movie works well and is a great tool for the Church to help people understand the truth of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.”

ENJOY the movie!

If you are a real Narnia fanatic, don’t forget to try David Buckna’s Narnia Quiz

And for more information about Lewis check out The C.S. Lewis Foundation.

Yours for the pursuit of God in the company of friends, Dick Staub.

PS. And remember, “these are the best of times and the worst of times, but they are the only times we have.” (For Now).

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