Going without physical food will yield pretty terrible results in your life, including malnourishment, extreme fatigue, organ failure, and eventually death. We as living human beings need food in order to function, let alone thrive.
Similarly, as Christians, we need the spiritual food of God’s Word to function and thrive. Without regular intake of reading and absorbing the Scriptures, we will become spiritually malnourished and thus susceptible to all kinds of attacks and injuries to take us out of the race in pursuit of God.
I’m reminded here of the section in The Chronicles of Narnia: The Silver Chair when the evil Witch-Queen of Underland is attempting to bewitch the story’s four heroes, Jill, Eustace, Prince Rilian, and Puddleglum. She has them cornered in a room and Prince Rilian is demanding they be set free from Underland and return to Narnia.
The Witch casually glides across the room, throws some green powder on the fire that ushers a sweet smell into the environment and pulls out an instrument like a mandolin. It’s all very creepy and slow as the narrative explains what happens.
She began to play it with her fingers—a steady, monotonous thrumming that you didn’t notice after a few minutes. But the less you noticed it, the more it got into your brain and your blood. This also made it hard to think. After she had thrummed for a time (and the sweet smell was now strong) she began speaking in a sweet, quiet voice. “Narnia?” she said. “Narnia? I have often heard your Lordship utter that name in your ravings. Dear Prince, you are very sick. There is no land called Narnia.”1
The Witch lulls the heroes into a hypnotized state, and as their heads hang low, they begin to verbally agree with the Witch that Narnia wasn’t real and Underland was all that existed. However, in one final gathering of his strength, Puddleglum stomps out the fire with his bare foot and claims loyalty to Narnia and Aslan the Lion (the book series’ Christ figure), breaking the spell over everyone.
Our culture is, in many ways, like the Witch-Queen of Underland—attempting to lull us into a hypnotized state of denial about the truth. It is trying to convince all believers that our true home doesn’t exist and we should just quietly submit to its enchanting authority.
But it does exist, and the main avenue in which God has explained its glorious details to us is through his Word—the Bible. God’s Word is the means by which he primarily communicates with us and if the God of the universe chooses to speak, we should be quick to listen by feasting on every syllable. We need the true-north-pointing pages of Scripture to stamp out the “sweet-smelling fire” that’s lulling us to submit to the culture’s influence. There is great power, refreshing comfort, clear direction, lavish grace, helpful truth, and beautiful wonder in the Word of God, and every Christian should consume it with urgency.
Feast on the Bible and follow him.
1 – C.S. Lewis, The Chronicles of Narnia: The Silver Chair (New York: HarperCollins), 181-182.