Michael Ward: Planet Narnia
By Wes Rickards
The 700 Club
Original Air Date: December 13, 2010
Pat Robertson: These deal with the planets, each planet having a symbol...
Michael Ward: That’s right. It was believed that 400 years ago, before the invention of the telescope, that there were seven celestial bodies, each with its own set of qualities and influences. C.S. Lewis taught at Oxford for 30 years and taught at Cambridge for nearly 10 years. Lewis studied that symbolism of the heavens very closely, and he described these seven heavens as spiritual symbols of permanent value, which he thought were especially worthwhile to his own generation.
Robertson: These are big hunks of rocks that run around in the Heavens, and he thinks they have actual mystical powers?
Ward: No, he didn’t believe they had literal influences, but he did believe they had spiritual significance.
Robertson: Take the planets. What’s the significance of Jupiter?
Ward: As I looked into C.S. Lewis’s understanding of Jupiter, I discovered that Jupiter in Lewis’s mind with Christ’s sacrifice on the cross. Because if you look at Jupiter, there’s a great red spot on the surface of Jupiter. In fact, you can see it on the cover of my book. That’s why I’ve got this great red eye right here, and Lewis talked about that being the redness of blood and Jupiter, the planet of kingship, bleeding sacrificially was a symbol of was Christ did on earth.
Robertson: You’ve got Aslan, and everyone assumes that Aslan is Christ. But, what is he? Is he part of Jupiter? What is he in terms of these seven planets?
Ward: Lewis took the seven spiritual symbols, and he turned them into stories. Jupiter being the king provided Lewis with a way of talking about Aslan’s kingly qualities, about Jesus’s kingly qualities – the king of kings, the Lord of Lords. Not just about Aslan, but about the story he participates in in each book. So that The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe is actually a story about boys and girls becoming kings and queens, becoming more and more like the Jesus character in each story.
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