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Walking with Frodo: A Devotional Journey Through the Lord of the Rings

(Paperback - Oct 2003)
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Parable recommended!

Overview

Tolkien's Lord of the Rings epic tale has long captivated readers with its parallels to biblical truth. And now, "Walking with Frodo" looks at the biblical themes found in the classic Lord of the Rings trilogy. The 18 devotions pair vices and virtues (deception vs. honesty, light vs. darkness, good vs. evil) displayed by characters in The Lord of the Rings and bring to light what the Bible has to say. A must-have for longtime and new series fans.

Details

  • SKU: 9780842385541
  • SKU10: 0842385541
  • Title: Walking with Frodo: A Devotional Journey Through the Lord of the Rings
  • Qty Remaining Online: 4
  • Publisher: Thirsty Books
  • Date Published: Oct 2003
  • Pages: 179
  • Illustrated: Yes
  • Age Range: 14 - 20
  • Grade Level: 9th Grade thru College Junior
  • Weight lbs: 0.46
  • Dimensions: 7.92" L x 5.22" W x 0.54" H
  • Features: Table of Contents, Price on Product, Illustrated, Glossary, Bibliography
  • Themes: Theometrics | Evangelical; Cultural Region | British Isles;
  • Category: YOUTH
  • Subject: Devotional

Chapter Excerpt


Chapter One

Choosing Darkness

The Balrog made no answer. The fire in it seemed to die, but the darkness grew. -From The Fellowship of the Ring, Book Two, Chapter Five

Think back to the opening night of The Two Towers.

Your LOTR-junkie friends have just stood in line for six hours to buy tickets. They now hand you a ticket in exchange for several buckets of movie popcorn (it occurs to you later that they had the better deal), predicting in low tones that madness will erupt the instant the theater opens. But this is something you have anticipated and trained for together. Your plan:

Step #1: Lock arms.

Step #2: Mosh. If that fails:

Step #3: Bodysurf to the eighth row (middle seat) and hold fast till the others arrive.

The training pays off. You storm the doors and seize the eighth row, popcorn miraculously intact. After arm-wrestling a couple of junior high kids into submission, you and your friends get comfortably seated. The movie won't start for another hour, but what's one hour? You've been waiting a whole year.

Just when you've decided that you desperately need to go to the bathroom, the lights dim and the action begins. You've talked about this for months, but nothing in your wildest dreams has prepared you for the stomach-lurching shot over the mountains into the Mines of Moria; and nothing has prepared you for Gandalf's epic struggle with the Balrog, falling headfirst down the abyss.

How on earth did those CGI guys do it?

But most importantly, how does Gandalf do it?

In the previous flick, Gandalf stands on the bridge looking small and frail against the looming giant of a whip-cracking Balrog. You can hardly believe that Gandalf will survive the fall into the abyss, let alone everything that happens afterwards. But you have read the books (after all, you and your friends areLOTR junkies). And you know the nightmare has only just begun.

The Balrog is portrayed in the movie as a creature of fire and flame. Tolkien also presents it as a creature of darkness-one of many-and not the darkest of the dark, either (don't forget Shelob). In The Fellowship of the Ring Tolkien writes,

What it was could not be seen: it was like a great shadow, in the middle of which was a dark form, of man-shape maybe, yet greater; and a power and terror seemed to be in it and to go before it.

The idea that darkness would present itself as a being-with not only a visible form but also an intellect and will-is terrifying. When this being first appears in The Fellowship of the Ring, there is instant panic among the members of the Fellowship. It's like they've suddenly been struck blind with fear, confusion, and despair. Such an encounter is more than any of them bargained for in this journey they agreed to take with Frodo, a kind of nightmare that surpasses anything Frodo himself could have imagined before leaving the front door of Bag End. Aragorn and Boromir beg to fight the creature, but Gandalf says, "Fly! This is a foe beyond any of you." In the end, only Gandalf stands fast, and it costs him everything.

So here's the point.

There is such a being, though he may not have a visible form like what Tolkien or the LOTR movie gurus created. (In fact, C. S. Lewis, author of The Screwtape Letters, pictured him dressed in a business suit.) And the analogy is far from perfect.

But he's real.

At the heart of the spiritual opposition to the Creator God of the universe is a character who goes by many names: Satan, Beelzebub, the devil, the enemy, the evil one. Satan was once an angel who rebelled against God. He fled from the light of God's presence to establish his own throne in darkness, taking a host of rebellious angels with him (Jude 1:6). Jesus said of him, "I saw Satan fall like lightning from heaven" (Luke 10:18). Satan has been waging war with God and all who belong to him ever since.

Whatever the murky history of his past, Satan is real. He specializes in absorbing light, in casting shadows, and in generating great vacuums of fear and spiritual blindness. He is especially good at blocking the way of those who have sworn allegiance to Jesus Christ and at stopping them from accomplishing whatever tasks God has given them to do (1 Peter 5:8-9). He has also mastered the art of convincing people that he doesn't exist, that there's no such thing as darkness (Isaiah 5:20). And he takes particular delight in enslaving people to the darkness before they have a chance to love the Light, by teaching them to hate the Light itself (John 3:19-20).

This is the lesson of the Balrog from deep within the heart of Moria:

You are small. Your foe is big.

So what are you going to do about it?

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. Ephesians 6:12

THE WORD ON DARKNESS

Take some time to read one or more of the following Bible passages:

Isaiah 5:20; John 3:19-20; 1 Peter 5:8-9

GOING FURTHER:

What evidence do you see of the power of darkness at work in your world?

Who among your friends or family is ignoring this reality?

Who has given in to paralysis, despair, or exhaustion in the face of darkness?

Who actually likes the darkness and hates the Light?

What about you: What is your response to the darkness?

What are you going to do about it?

(Continues.)

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