Just Announced: Philippians Sermon Series

Summary: As the crew of the Dawn Treader move towards Aslan’s Country they find the longing, the glory, and the Lamb.

Introduction: C. S. Lewis’ masterpiece, The Voyage of the Dawn Treader is the third book in the Chronicles of Narnia. It comes to the big screen the weekend of December 10. We are actually purchasing a large block of tickets for 5 pm showing of the movie on Saturday, December 11. The tickets are discounted at $6.50 each. If you’ve gone to the movies lately, you’ll know that it’s a good price. Please let me know today or by e-mail or Facebook if you want us to reserve you tickets. Yes, you can invite friends. This would be a great event to invite somebody from outside FCC to come and experience with you.

C. S. Lewis is considered one of the greatest Christian thinkers of our century and wrote the Narnia fantasy series that has sold more than 100 million books in 29 different languages. The Chronicles of Narnia is a 7 book series that follows the adventure of some English children who discover another world—the magical land of Narnia. I’ve asked you to indulge me for two weeks, as we will be sharing some lessons from this classic allegory by Lewis. On December 12, we will start a series on Matthew.

Many are familiar with the two books in the “The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe” and “Prince Caspian” because of the recent movies. In this book we are introduced to Aslan the great Lion who represents Jesus. The children Peter, Susan, Edmund and Lucy discover Narnia through a wardrobe. They discover a land filled with talking animals that is under the White Witch’s spell where it is always winter and never Christmas. The redemption of Narnia comes through the death of Aslan, and victory through His resurrection. The four children return in Prince Caspian which takes us back to Narnia. It’s a year later for them…but its 1300 hundred years later for Narnia. They find the ruins of their castle, Cair Paravel, and a world that shuns the “old stories” of Aslan. It’s up to Caspian and the children to fight to restore the Kingdom of Aslan to its previous glory.

The main characters in “The Voyage of the Dawn Treader” are the great lion, Aslan (the Christ figure), Lucy, Edmund, Prince Caspian, and the noble mouse Rheepicheep. Last week’s message was entitled “The Voyage.” I believe that C. S. Lewis used ‘voyage’ as a metaphor for the Christian life. On life’s ‘voyage’ we find adventure, transformation, and rescue. The ship the Dawn Treader was given the mandate to find and rescue the 7 lost lords. Near the end of their adventure, and to wake three sleeping lords, a small contingent has to sail to “Aslan’s Country.” We would know that as Jesus country or heaven. “Aslan’s Country” is simply a metaphor for heaven. As believers we are all on a voyage moving closer to “Aslan’s Country.”

As we move closer to Aslan’s Country we discover the…

1. Longing. The crew is told they must send someone to ‘go on into the utter east and never return into the world’—to Aslan’s country. Reepicheep responded, ‘That is my heart’s desire.’ The noble mouse longed for Aslan’s country…yet he struggled with what Lewis describes as ‘second things.’ You will see in the movie that Reepicheep is often more concerned with his honor than Aslan’s country.

We too have this deep longing for heaven. C. S. Lewis in Mere Christianity wrote, “If I find in myself a desire which no experience in this world can satisfy, the most probably explanation is that I was made for another world.”

In “The Weight of Glory” Lewis describes a longing of “something in the universe from which we now feel cut off, to be on the inside of some door which we have always seen from the outside.”

The apostle Paul wrote this about longing in 2 Corinthians 5: 1-10. For we know that if the earthly tent we live in is destroyed, we have a building from God, an eternal house in heaven, not built by human hands. 2 Meanwhile we groan, longing to be clothed instead with our heavenly dwelling, 3 because when we are clothed, we will not be found naked. 4 For while we are in this tent, we groan and are burdened, because we do not wish to be unclothed but to be clothed instead with our heavenly dwelling, so that what is mortal may be swallowed up by life. 5 Now the one who has fashioned us for this very purpose is God, who has given us the Spirit as a deposit, guaranteeing what is to come.

6 Therefore we are always confident and know that as long as we are at home in the body we are away from the Lord. 7 For we live by faith, not by sight. 8 We are confident, I say, and would prefer to be away from the body and at home with the Lord. 9 So we make it our goal to please him, whether we are at home in the body or away from it. 10 For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, so that each of us may receive what is due us for the things done while in the body, whether good or bad.

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