Summary: "Sermon preached at Curwensville Presbyterian Church – December 4, 2005." "Knowing Jesus means knowing that Jesus does not excuse your sin, but that he offered himself as an atonement for your sins, which also means that Jesus has taken the blame for your
"Prayer Introduction: If you have walked around the church’s buildings at all you have seen an obnoxious number of Narnia posters all over the place. There are two reasons for this. First, I requested some free posters and they sent a couple hundred. Secondly, I am hoping that you are getting excited about exploring the Christian themes in The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe – the first book in C.S. Lewis’ Chronicles of Narnia series. The book has been made into a big budget movie – which comes out this Friday (December 9th) – directed by Andrew Adamson (who directed the Shrek movies), with special effects by those who did the Lord of the Rings trilogy, and produced by Walden Media (who are all about producing family friendly films) and distributed by Walt Disney Pictures.
Truthfully, my goal is not promoting the movie to you, but promoting the book to you – moreover promoting the Gospel truth that is illustrated in the book. It is my hope that you are reading the book, and that those with children are reading it together as a family – getting quality and quantity time together as a family.
If you see the movie, fine. If not, that’s fine too. Over the next 4 Sundays (and twice on Christmas Eve), the sermons are going to flesh out the Christian truths that are given in God’s Word and are illustrated in The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe. Let me say that again. If you see the movie, fine. If not, that’s fine too. Over the next 4 Sundays (and twice on Christmas Eve), the sermons are going to flesh out the Christian truths that are given in God’s Word and are illustrated in The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe.
You will be able to follow these sermons whether you’ve read the book or not; but, obviously, reading the book will greatly enhance your understanding of it as an illustration. Let me set the story line.
Set in 1940’s England, four children travel through a wardrobe and enter the magical world of Narnia. In Narnia, the children meet all kinds of talking creatures – including talking animals. They come to discover that a witch has placed a curse over Narnia, and that there is a prophecy that two sons of Adam and two daughters of Eve will break the curse with the help of Aslan.
And so, this morning we are going to look at the truth of God’s Word given in Revelation 5 and the way this truth is illustrated in C.S. Lewis’ book. Next week we will get into the turning point in the book – I don’t want to spoil it for you if you haven’t read it – so make sure you finish the book by next Sunday.
The third Sunday will be the Children’s program (note that it was going to be next week, but we are pushing it back one more week), with a kid-friendly sermon focusing on the children of Narnia. There will be two different sermons for the two different services on Christmas Eve. And then Christmas morning will close out the series as we celebrate the Lord’s birth on the Lord’s Day. It is very exciting to have Christmas on a Sunday.
Before we begin, let’s pray…We pray now for the preacher in the pulpit. He is not worthy, but by your grace he is able. And so it is through Jesus Christ that we pray – Amen!
Sermon Introduction: It was the opinion of C.S. Lewis that for a story to be a good story, it must stand on its own as a story. In other words it couldn’t be a good story, because of its religious imagery; it had to be a good story with or without the imagery. The book begins, “Once there were four children whose names were Peter, Susan, Edmund and Lucy. This story is about something that happened to them when they were sent away from London during the war because of the air-raids.”
And if you were simply to read the story as though it was just about those four children and what happened to them it would still be a good story. In fact, it is considered classic children’s literature; and in many school districts it is required reading.
The book is even more exceptional because of the Christian truths it illustrates. This morning I would have you see what the story illustrates in Hearing About Aslan; Meeting Aslan; and Knowing Aslan. Your green insert contains all of the quotations that I will pull from the book as well as other Scriptures to which I will refer – you should also have your Bible open to Revelation 5.
I. Hearing About Aslan
First, I would have you see what the story illustrates in Hearing About Aslan. It is in Chapter 8 (entitled: “What Happened After Dinner”) when Susan asks – “Who is Aslan?” “Aslan?” said Mr. Beaver. “Why, don’t you know? He’s the King. He’s the Lord of the whole wood, but not often here, you understand. Never in my time or my father’s time. But the word has reached us that he has come back. He is in Narnia at this moment.”…”Is – is he a man?” asked Lucy. “Aslan a man!” said Mr. Beaver sternly. “Certainly not. I tell you he is the King of the wood and the son of the great Emperor-beyond-the Sea. Don’t you know who is the King of Beasts? Aslan is a lion – the lion, the great lion.”