Summary: Lucy’s opening of the wardrobe into a new world can symbolize the opportunity for our hearts to connect with God. No matter what our situation, trial, or need, God is only a blink away. Open the door . . . see the light.
Title: “Believing the Incredible”
Is it possible that someone can open a door and enter into a new world? The truth about our existence is that there is another world near us. And this world is not so visible, but it is the one that we’ve always hoped for, where life-purpose and adventure are found. And even though it’s not visible, it is even more real: the world of the Spirit that transcends our material existence. For the hidden truth about life is this: that . . .
(Lamp Post #1) - We Live in Two Worlds
There’s the world we can see and the spiritual world where God’s presence is always transcendent and real. In The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, Lucy steps through the wardrobe into another world, and we too are “this close” to opening the door and seeing the light of God in our hearts.
Every person is looking for meaning. Every person wants to be connected with something bigger than themselves. In fact, this quest for tuning in to the divine, this quest for finding our purpose to be a part of something greater than ourselves, this quest to be a part of the ultimate purpose of the universe has been built into our genetic code, it seems. Think of the great hero tales of all history. The story of Narnia takes in the elements of the great mythological stories of western civilization: the stories of heroes going off to fight dragons and evil.
What is behind these stories? In the hero journeys we keep seeing the same script, the same “screenplay,” revisioned. It’s like each story is a piece of the same hero story. Think of the Iliad and the Odyssey as Ulysees returns from the Trojan wars to reclaim his wife and kingdom. Then there is Jason and the Argonauts. Likewise in the legend of Beowulf, he’s battling the monster Grendle and becoming the savior for Denmark’s freedom. In the stories of King Arthur we find the utopia of Camelot with the equality of the Round Table and freedom for all. And then more recently we have the story of Superman: a baby who came from another world to save our planet. And then there’s Luke Skywalker in Star Wars who finds his destiny in setting the universe free from the evil empire. And then Neo, the chosen one (The Matrix), who sets people free from enslavement to the machine world.
And you find these stories in every culture around our globe: the hero’s journey. It’s the story of redemption. The themes are always similar: there is a hero with a quest. Next, the hero’s journey is thwarted by adversaries both within and without. Then there is an apparent defeat: the running of the gauntlet. And there the final self-revelation leads ultimately to redemption. This is the hero’s journey, and it is seen in stories from every culture.*
So what do we make of this? How do we interpret this information that informs us that in every culture there is a hero that brings redemption to his world? Some have looked at the facts and said, “I guess Jesus is just another myth, just one more hero’s journey.” That might be the response of the secular anthropologist. But I would like to suggest a radically different interpretation: that . . .
(Lamp Post #2) - The life of Jesus is the Ultimate Hero Epic.
I’m putting forth the idea that all stories of all time are sub-plots to the real story of history: that God sent his own Son to redeem our world, that God at creation placed in the hearts of his children this innate knowledge that one day a hero would come and bring true eternal redemption. And all the stories of dragons and monsters were pieces of this giant puzzle trying to make sense of our world, but only when Jesus came did all the pieces fit together.
Jesus is the best of all the hero stories put together, and there is no story greater, nor can anyone even imagine a story that could top this: God becomes a baby born on earth who is sort of the anti-hero who refuses violent overthrow to win the world and in spite of his unconditional love is executed in a brutal death only to rise again and live in the hearts of all who come to him in faith. That is the ultimate redemption story! There is no story that can match it. In fact Tolkien wrote, “There is no tale ever told that men would rather find was true, and none which so many skeptical men have accepted as true on its own merits.”**
And so what I take from this is that every person is born hearing the music of the universe, the tune we all know by heart. And that is the song of Jesus. And when people find him, they realize that they have really been looking for him their whole lives. As Paul wrote in Romans 1, “For the truth about God is known to them instinctively. God has put this knowledge in their hearts.” (Rom. 1:19 nlv) And this is what C. S. Lewis did in The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe: he told the story of Jesus (His life, death and resurrection) using the mythology of culture all around the world.