The Bible in The Magician’s Nephew: The Great Tree of Narnia
I love this Narnian passage! It reminds me of a similar one in the Book of Revelation:
Now I don’t know what this Tree in Heaven looked like because John the Revelator doesn’t tell us. But I imagine that it has to be even more glorious than that ancient Tree found in Narnia. However, we do know that the purposes of the Trees is similar.
The holy Tree in Heaven is for “the healing of the nations” of our world, while the Tree in Narnia is for the protection of the nation. Isn’t it funny what a powerful role trees play in the Story of the Bible and Narnia?
It was, I believe, the same Tree of Life found in the Garden of Eden that would have granted Adam and Eve and their descendants everlasting life. That wond’rous Tree was specifically planted in their midst and we imagine that they would have eventually eaten of the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil had they not been exiled from Eden.
Just as a Tree granted us life, so another Tree granted us death. And so we see a similar theme continued in The Magician's Nephew. In Part I, we saw how Jadis a.k.a. the White Witch stole into Aslan’s Garden illegally and took some of the fruit for herself, an action expressly prohibited.
And now, by Aslan’s word, we see that her desire was also her punishment. And is was with the “sons of Adam” and “daughters of Eve.” Eve’s desire for knowledge, impressed upon her by “that serpent of old,” was granted her, but with it, came death unexpected. She, like Jadis, did not believe the Word of the Great Lion and subjected herself and her descendants to a mortal fate. Yet the Tree remains the protection of the area.
And while we may not have access to Eden anymore, try though we might (because it’s a portal! *smile) we who live on with Christ will have access to this great Tree of Healing for the Nations. And in fact, I believe we can pray for these leaves of healing to penetrate our earth even now. After all, are we not called to pray “Thy Kingdom come, Thy will be done, on earth as it is in Heaven"?
There are many types and shadows or earthly replicas of heavenly truth mentioned in Scripture:
The Garden of Eden
I’m sure there are others. And like the other earthly replicas, they are an extension of heaven on earth, temporal types of eternal truths. Again, this takes me back to the Narnian tales. We see another tree mention in the end of The Magician's Nephew:
We may not be able to build magic wardrobes, but we can see the power of the leaves of the Great Tree’s healing for the nations (which comes from God)--as well as the revival (River of God) that comes with it--when we pray according to God’s Word.