by Sandy Kirby Quandt
In The Last Battle, C.S. Lewis’ final book in The Chronicles of Narnia series, Lewis paints his vision of what it might be like when Jesus leads his people to Paradise. A vision that had me in tears.
As the title suggests, this is the last and final battle in Narnia where good and evil have fought through the ages. With that said, if you haven’t read the book, and I suggest you do, and don’t want any “spoilers” perhaps you should skip down to the maroon quote.
As those of Narnia who stand for what is good and right battle against what is evil and unjust, their final battle cry becomes, “Further up and further in.”
When they reach a great golden gate, they aren’t sure what to do until they hear a voice say, “Welcome in the Lion’s name. Come further up and further in.”
At one point as those who have gone further in gather around Aslan he says, “You do not yet look so happy as I mean you to be.” Lucy explains they are afraid he’ll send them back, as has often been the case, but Aslan assures her he won’t. He tells her, “No fear of that. Have you not guessed?”
He tells those around him they are no longer in the Shadow-Lands—as they called death. He tells them the (school) term is over. The holidays have begun.
Lewis finishes his chronicles of Narnia with these words.
And for us this is the end of all the stories, and we can most truly say that they all lived happily ever after. But for them it was only the beginning for the real story. All their life in this world and all their adventures in Narnia had only been the cover and the title page: now at last they were beginning Chapter One of the Great story … in which every chapter is better than the one before.
You and I are living the cover and title page of our stories. When we enter the Shadow-Lands and go further on and further in to stand before the Lion of Judah, Jesus Christ our LORD and Savior, that’s when our story REALLY begins.
That will be the beginning of our Great Story. The one God planned for us before time began. It will be a story in which EVERY chapter is better than the one before.
Can you imagine it? I’m not really sure I can, but I know it will be beyond anything I could ever dream, hope, or imagine.
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And the one sitting on the throne said, “See, I am making all things new!” And then he said to me, “Write this down, for what I tell you is trustworthy and true: It is finished! I am the A and the Z—the Beginning and the End. I will give to the thirsty the springs of the Water of Life—as a gift! Everyone who conquers will inherit all these blessings, and I will be his God and he will be my son. But cowards who turn back from following me, and those who are unfaithful to me, and the corrupt, and murderers, and the immoral, and those conversing with demons, and idol worshipers and all liars—their doom is in the Lake that burns with fire and sulphur. This is the Second Death.” Revelation 21:5-8 (TLB)
I wish you well.
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