C.S. Lewis' insight into spiritual warfare.
|C.S. Lewis has become a popular author lately. Where I used to order his books from bookstores, I am able to find them on the shelves of the bookstores now.
What is the reason for all of this fuss over Lewis' books lately, especially his Narnian Chronicles? I mean, people did read his works in the '50's and '60's, right? Yes, but the general population knew nothing about Narnia, much less his better known books such as The Screwtape Letters.
I believe Lewis' works are in demand right now because of the rise of the evangelical Christian church. The Evangelicals, it seems, agree with Lewis that there is a certain amount of spiritual warfare within a Christian's lifetime, and that the battles that take place during this warfare provide a Christian with the potential for victory within this context. Some people speak of spiritual "muscle" being built during spiritual warfare. I am defining "spiritual warfare" as the battles fought to protect oneself from the baser elements of the world we live in, and to place the Christian in a place so as to be in a right place with the God of Abraham, Issac, and Jacob.
In the Narnian chronicles, we find the basic elements of Good vs Evil. With one difference: the warriors here are children. The children not only learn how to fight the evil, represented by witches, hags, werewolves, and just those who refuse to believe in Aslan, by doing exactly what Aslan (who represents Christ here) tells them to do. They are presented swords and bows and arrows, so their objective is surely to eliminate the enemy. Not toy with the enemy, or hope the enemy will come to his senses, but to eliminate him. The children are taught an all or nothing faith in Aslan. In Narnia, noone may be lukewarm. It is all or nothing, and this is the only way to win a war of any type, whether in Iraq, or Narnia, or the Evangelical Church. The enemy will always know when you are not prepared. YOU will know when you are not prepared, and the loss on your part will be a great one to recover.
If course, in our own spiritual warfare, we do not use a sword, except for the sword of the spirit. We also use other spiritual weapons, with the understanding that these are what we need to win the war. Everything Christ tells us to do is for our own protection, so that we may reign with Him as Kings and Priests. Yet I see a parallel, and the message is driven home to me that, just as in Narnia, it is in my hometown to be all or nothing. A fight to the finish.
Oh, did I mention that the Kings and Queens in Narnia were Children? Yet successful in their jobs because of their obedience to Aslan. Amazing. Maybe there's hope for me!