This is my first book of C.S. Lewis outside the Chronicles of Narnia Series. I want to balance my reading list with good, wholesome and inspiring Christian books so I tried the works of Lewis and look for an e-book. Fortunately, I found one online, so I started with Screwtape Letters.
The Screwtape Letters is a series of letters written by Screwtape, a senior demon, to his nephew and a neophyte tempter, Wormwood, about the different ways to tempt a newly converted Christian they referred to as “Patient”. Their aim is to secure the “Patient’s” eternal damnation in hell. In this book, C.S. Lewis tried to describe the spiritual battles between Christians and the forces of evil in a different point of view.
At first, I felt uncomfortable reading the parts where Lewis referred God as “the Enemy” and Satan as the “Father” because being a child of God, I know it’s the other way around. But looking at it as a literary piece, this is actually the spice of the story and this what makes the book special to me, that I really can’t help but admire Lewis for his wisdom and creativity.
After reading the book, I was enlightened and reminded of the truths we humans should believe about God:
- God loves us and He wants no one of us to perish but He wants us to have eternal life with Him and so He his Son to die for us and pay for our sins (John 3:16). To have eternal life, we have to accept Jesus in our life and believe He is our Lord and Savior. By dying on the cross, he redeemed us and provided the forgiveness of our sins–past, present and future.
God promised that for us who receive Jesus, He gave the right to be called His Children. No one can separate us from His love thus, our salvation through Jesus is assured and no one can take it away from us, not even Satan.
What Satan only wants from every human is to steal, kill and destroy. He is like a lion who is always looking around for prey, ready to devour anytime thus we should always be on guard. He will try all possible means for us to turn away from God.
God promised us victory. What Jesus did on the cross is already complete. Because of that, we are victorious in Christ so we have the power to win any battle including spiritual battle with the real Enemy. Therefore, we must not lose hope and stand firm on our faith that God has already given us the holy life through Jesus and all we have to do is to live it and stop doing the things that are not pleasing to Him. This book provided some examples of the unpleasant things that may seem insignificant but can eventually lead to our own destruction because the devil knows how to manipulate our thoughts so we really need to be careful.
Of course, the best way to defeat the Enemy is to lay down all our battles to God by praying and petition. The Bible said, “Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people. (Ephesians 6:10-18). This is actually the passage that keeps on popping out of my mind the entire time I was reading the book.
This book only wants to point out that we need to recognize that just like Heaven, Hell is also real and Satan also exists. He is continuously looking for possible “recruits” and deceiving people by suggesting different lies in our minds to keep us from turning to God. But God is loving and gracious. He will never let His children fall if we will only remain in Him. God wants all His children to be reunited with Him in eternity, but sadly, not everyone can go to heaven because not everyone has accepted the Truth. He gave us free will to choose how are we going to live our life here on earth. So in every moment and every action of our lives, we are given two different options: to do His will or to follow our own will? And we need to choose well because one may be the highway to hell.
If you are looking for a book about living a Christian life, then I highly recommend this one but of course living a holy life according to God’s standard can only be achieved if we continuously seek to know Our Creator more through reading his written Word.