Born of the Spirit

Born of the Spirit

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“Just as you can hear the wind but can’t tell where it comes from or where it is going, so you can’t explain how people are born of the Spirit.”

John 3:8 

Who died on November 22, 1963?

Many will correctly answer, “President John F. Kennedy.” But also on that day another person died who was mightier in God’s kingdom. His name was C. S. Lewis.

His initials stood for Clive Staples, but to his friends he was known as “Jack.” Born near Belfast, Ireland, in 1898, he was raised as an Anglican. But at the age of ten his world was shaken when his mother died of cancer. Jack wanted nothing to do with a God so cruel as to take his mother. By his early teenage years he had become an atheist.

Jack’s spiritual pilgrimage back to God began in 1926 with a conversation with a cynical friend whose belief in the Trinity challenged Lewis’ atheistic presuppositions.

Through the influence of various philosophers he read and conversations with his intellectual colleagues, including J. R. R. Tolkien, he began to realize that an absolute Spirit or God existed and that the events of the Bible had really happened.

By 1931, he had passed from merely believing in God to trusting in him as his Savior.

In 1941, Lewis burst on the literary scene with The Screwtape Letters. Books then began to flow from his pen at an amazing rate.

C. S. Lewis is considered the most influential Christian author of the twentieth century — quite a leap from the atheism of his youth.

Adapted from the The One Year® Book of Christian Historyby E. Michael and Sharon Rusten (Tyndale) pp 654-55

Content is derived from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation and other publications of Tyndale Publishing House

God is always calling us back to him

God is always calling us back to him

Telling others

“Jesus traveled throughout Galilee teaching in the synagogues, preaching everywhere the Good News about the Kingdom.”

Matthew 4:23 

Good News

In The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe when the Pevensies learn from Mr. and Mrs. Beaver that Aslan is “on the move,” it has an effect on all but Edmund “like the first signs of spring, like good news.”…And of course that promise sounds great to Peter, Susan, and Lucy — they’ve sought to do the right thing all along. But for Edmund, who has already decided to head down the wrong path on the side of the White Witch, these prophecies sound more like bad news.

The phrase “good news” has spiritual connotations, as C.S. Lewis more than likely recognized. It’s the original meaning of the word gospel, which comes from the Old English godspell or good spell, meaning “a good story” or “good news.” For Christians, the good “spell” — the great story, the wonderful news — is that Christ’s death and resurrection have saved us from the bad “spell” of sin and death: Those who believe in Jesus are free and forgiven and will spend eternity with God. That’s the gospel.

Telling people they’re messed up and are on the losing side is not good news, no matter how you spin it. It may be true, but it’s not helpful if you don’t tell the important parts of the story, too: that the forces of darkness are not going to have the last word, that the rightful King has returned, that the Kingdom will be restored. Then the hearers can wrestle on their own with whether or not they’ll choose the winning side, the side of the King.

Adapted from Walking Through the Wardrobe by Sarah Arthur (Tyndale) pp 103-9

Content is derived from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation and other publications of Tyndale Publishing House