Bonhoeffer uses a similar phrase 'worldly Christianity'. It's J Gresham Machen that I want to line up most closely with. See his Christianity and culture here. Having done commentaries on Proverbs (Heavenly Wisdom) and Song of Songs (Heavenly Love), a matching title for Ecclesiastes would be Heavenly Worldliness. For my stance on worldliness, see 3 posts here.

Narnia Film

We headed off to the cinema on Saturday afternoon to see the new Chronicles of Narnia film Voyage of the Dawn treader, based on the fourth (third published) in the original series of books by C S Lewis from the fifties. We went for the 3D option - costly but a great way to see a film.
It's a while since I read it so I can't tell you about how close the film is to the book. (If that is your bag try here). What I can say is that as a film it scores very well in all respects.
Obviously there are moments of 'mild peril' as I think they call it but there are no questionable scenes or language as one would expect with C S Lewis. The whole thing is done very well with special effects at an optimum level. The acting is all fine too and the presentation as a whole excellent. We start off in wartime Oxford and spend just long enough there to establish how normal these children are before heading into Narnia by means of an amazing water scene.
Once in Narnia, the story rapidly unfolds rarely losing pace. The boy playing Eustace is brilliant. I would guess Lewis is describing himself as he once was. I was slightly disappointed with the dragon turning into the boy again scene as I seem to remember more about layers coming off one after the other. However, as a starting point for discussing conversion it is still excellent. Temptation and death are among the other vital subjects opened up in this treatment - the temptations faced by Edmund and Lucy, and the passing over of Reepicheep (a fascinating character - perhaps Lewis's ideal of a true Christian - a mouse of great modesty but very brave).
Towards the end of the film we get what someone has called the John 3:16 of the books "arguably the most succinct and precise evidence of a possible parallel between Narnia and The Bible". When asked by Edmund whether or not Aslan exists in their world, Aslan replies:
"I am ... but there I have another name. You must learn to know me by that name. This was the very reason why you were brought to Narnia, that by knowing me here for a little, you may know me better there."
Hopefully this film will also help some in finding the true Aslan and the true Narnia.

No comments: