Daring to Disagree with CS Lewis…the Safety of God
In The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe (C.S. Lewis) Lucy sees Aslan the great lion for the first time. She was afraid, and rightly so. Lucy whispered to Mrs. Beaver ‘Is he safe?’ ‘Safe?’ Mrs. Beaver replied, ‘Of course he’s not safe! But he is good, he’s the King I tell you!’
The great lion Aslan was meant by Lewis to be a picture of Jesus, not an exact imitation, but a “type”. And so this line from this well-loved book has been quoted extensively. I’ve most heard it quoted to counter the non-biblical view that following Jesus is a path of ease or boredom, or the quote is meant to show the ‘wild’ side of God, that He IS God and is the supreme ruler, that we can’t contain Him in our boxes of comfort. But does that mean that we shan’t (Lewisian influence here) call Him ‘safe’?
I do agree that devotion to Jesus is one of joy and radical surrender; and I DO agree that God is GOD, that He rules and reigns as loving creator LORD. However, I wouldn’t have said it the way Lewis said it. God IS safe and He is good. In Him, our fears, insecurities, anxieties get swallowed up by the safety of His loving refuge…His very presence. No, He’s not boring, and no, He’s not a genie in the bottle we pull out for our means. This is the radicalness of who He is: He IS the KING and He is powerful…yet very safe!
Keep me safe O God, for in You I take refuge. I said to the Lord, ‘You are my Lord’ apart from You I have NO good thing! Psalm 16:1,2
Loving people well, and living holy lives with our sexuality requires a good, powerful and safe God. We have one friends, we have One!