The Self-Killer - Pastor Jae Hyun Lee

at 2023-07-29 08:04:36.0 / 556 Hits

Jesus Christ said, "Whoever loses his life for my sake will find it" (Matthew 10:30). How do we make sense of this incredibly challenging mystery of life and death. Similarly, Lewis says that when we read, we die to self and gain more abundant life. Reading is not something you do to make yourself stronger or smarter. The primary secret of reading is that a good book has an ego-killing "assassin" lurking within. But a person who reads a book in a selfish way will turn the pages without realizing the danger, and the assassin will not try to take his life. - Jin Hyuk Kim, The Pure Christian, IVP, 182

C. S. Lewis says that reading is like meeting an assassin who kills the self. The purpose of reading is not to make you smarter, but to kill your ego. When the ego dies, life becomes more abundant. The purpose of reading is not to acquire information and use it the way you want, but to meet the assassin lurking in the book. When I am stabbed by the assassin, I have a powerful experience of "love," "religion," or "the stars. When you meet a great spirit, your little self dies, and you gain abundant life. Good reading causes happy pain. Humans love the familiar, but we also crave the larger world. We like to think we're smart, but we also want to die to our old selves through self-destruction and emerge with a new, multi-layered view of the world.  

Bushmen in the African desert call hunger that can be satisfied by hunting "little hunger" and hunger that cannot be satisfied by hunting "great hunger". We have a hunger that cannot be satisfied by hunting for bread. Pascal said that there is a hole in man that only God can fill. Those who have the great hunger are marked. The Great Hunger comes to you like a thirsty deer to a stream. When I read with such a great hunger, the assassin is sure to come and plunge a knife into my hardened ego. There are times when I read a book and have an "aha" moment. It's a moment of blissful screaming as I'm stabbed by the assassin's sword. On the other hand, there are people who read books in their own way. The assassin walks right past them, and they turn the pages without realizing he's there.

"I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me." (Galatians 2:20)