C. S. Lewis on going to church

Case for ChristianityI ran across these paragraphs this evening and thought them too good not to share.

“One of the things that surprised me when I first read the New Testament seriously was that it was always talking about a Dark Power in the universe – a mighty evil spirit who was held to be the Power behind death and disease, and sin. The difference is that Christianity thinks this Dark Power was created by God, and was good when he was created, and went wrong. Christianity agrees with Dualism that this universe is at war. But it doesn’t think this is a war between independent powers. It thinks it’s a civil war, a rebellion, and that we are living in a part of the universe occupied by the rebel.

Enemy-occupied territory – that’s what this world is. Christianity is the story of how the rightful king has landed, you might say landed in disguise, and is calling us all to take part in a great campaign of sabotage. When you go to church you’re really listening in to the secret wireless from our friends: that’s why the enemy is so anxious to prevent us going. He does it by playing on our conceit and laziness and intellectual snobbery. I know someone will ask me, ‘Do you really mean, at this time of day, to re-introduce our old friend the devil – hoofs and horns and all?’ Well, what the time of day has to do with it I don’t know. And I’m not particular about the hoofs and horns. But in other respects my answer is, ‘Yes, I do.’ I don’t claim to know anything about his personal appearance. If anybody really wants to know him better I’d say to that person, ‘Don’t worry,. If you really want to, you will. Whether you’ll like it when you do is another question.'”

C. S. Lewis in The Case for Christianity.

We are part of the resistance that is thwarting the usurper and church is where we network and get our instruction for proceeding with the campaign. It’s not just a place to meet friends. It is not just a place to hear motivational speeches. It is not just a place drink coffee and chat. Church is a war room where we make plans for the next offensive. It is serious business and no wonder that our Enemy wants to keep us and others away.

Do you want to know the really good news about this?

Jesus tells us that we will win. The gates of Hell cannot withstand our efforts (Matthew 16:18).