Just Announced: Philippians Sermon Series

Summary: This is a 90 minute worship service including sermon to open a series revolving around the movie Narnia

(Sound and video techs: This weekend we’re doing the same thing before the service that we did last week. Prelude music should be some good Christmas music. This music should be started as early as possible i.e. immediately after the band finishes their rehearsal. At 5 minutes til start the Christmas countdown video muted)

Opening Song

Holy is the Lord

Hear our Praises/Gloria Medley

Welcome and Announcements

Advent Candlelighting

Sermon Song:

Open Up Your Eyes


Maybe you’ve heard the new Christmas Carol called "OH, LITTLE BANK AMERICARD," sung to the tune of "O Little Town of Bethlehem?"

Oh, little Bank Americard, you bring me Christmas Cheer. Without your clout, I have no doubt no gifts I’d give this year.

Your credit line allows me to run up bills quite large And when I’m through exhausting you, I’ll use my Master Charge.

(Same tune, sung in late February) Oh, little Bank Americard, you bring me discontent. I calculate your interest rate is over twelve percent.

Each month, your cry for payments my letter-box bombards; I’m one more sap caught in your trap. Next year I’ll just send cards. --

It may seem a little strange that we are building our Advent series around a “fairy tale” as C.S. Lewis called his series, The Chronicles of Narnia. Let me set your mind at ease, we’re going to do what Lewis himself hinted at concerning all of the Chronicles of Narnia: enjoy the truths in the stories and learn from the truths behind the stories.

The series has sold over 85 million copies in 30 different languages. But unlike other fantasies, where stories glamorize witchcraft, evil potions & dark spells. CS Lewis clearly defines good and evil and as you’ll find out over the next nine weeks, presents a world Narnia where the spiritual truths of the Scriptures become crystal clear.

Ultimately, Narnia is about righting what has been wronged through the only means possible – a term we call redemption, paying the price to buy back what has been taken away. So the seven books in the Chronicles of Narnia series are about redemption –If that sounds Biblically familiar it was meant to be.

Lewis’ desire was to portray good as good and what happens when evil is allowed to rule. The story is filled with Biblical truth, some of which we will discover together over the coming weeks.

We will use the journey of four children as a springboard to some important Christmas truths. So, let’s get started by watching a video that will help you to understand the story better.

Roll “The Story” Video Here from the Narnia DVD

Though none of us have seen the movie yet, the pivotal scene near the beginning features Lucy. Lucy walks into the room and stands before the cloth covered object. A decision is made and she pulls back the cover revealing a wardrobe. Slowly she opens the door...

“To her surprise it opened quite easily, and two moth-balls dropped out. Looking into the inside, she saw several coats hanging up – mostly fur coats. There was nothing Lucy liked so much as the smell and feel of fur. She immediately stepped into the wardrobe, and got in among the coats...she took a step further in-then two or three steps-always expecting to feel woodwork against the tips of her fingers. But she could not feel it...And then she saw that there was a light ahead of her...” [from, The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe, chapter one)

The story begins with one little girl opening a door and beginning a journey that lasts a lifetime in another world. Soon others follow, but it seems that even though they are mostly together, each is on a journey of their own.

If you’re going to begin the journey you have to open the door.

Do you long to go beyond this ordinary life, to find adventure in magical lands like Narnia? The quest is not to be taken lightly. You just may discover there is another Kingdom out there—closer than you realize, as near as your heartbeat, just through that door. Are you ready?

There was something very special about that particular wardrobe and that specific door. But more importantly there was something that made her open that door and step inside. There was something that kept her moving toward the back of the wardrobe and eventually into Narnia.

Once in Narnia, once she saw the light of the lamp post, something kept her moving. Later when her brothers and sisters joined her something kept them moving as well. The call of Mr. Beaver in chapter seven summarized their journey: “Further in, come further in.” Mr. Beaver called.

In many ways the first Christmas story chronicles a similar journey. The world on the other side of Christmas was a cold, dark place.

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