#365 – The Prisoner of Azkaban: 14-18

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Chapter 18 was a really bad place to stop reading in The Prisoner of Azkaban. Sirius Black was on the scene, Lupin was explaining how everyone was connected and Snape had just revealed himself from beneath the invisibility cloak. Then chapter 18 ended and, because I ran out of time, I wasn’t able to keep reading. So, at the time of writing, I have no idea what happens in chapter 19 of The Prisoner of Azkaban. It’s like I just watched “Best of Both Worlds: Part 1” and have to wait a whole summer for part 2.

Even though I was left on a cliffhanger, I’ll try to gather some thoughts from chapters 14-18 of The Prisoner of Azkaban.

Snape’s Grudge

As I’ve written about previously I really like Snape because I know Alan Rickman plays the role in the Harry Potter movies. Even though he treats Harry unfairly, I still have a soft spot for Snape. In these chapters of The Prisoner of Azkaban, we finally learn why Snape gives Harry such a hard time. Harry’s father was part of a practical joke played against Snape. Even though the joke took place years before Harry was even born, Snape still holds onto his grudge. Snape has allowed his grudge to grow and fester to the point that it affects his treatment of Harry, who never did anything to Snape. Grudges grow quickly and can infect our lives with bitterness and anger. Grudges are dangerous which is why we should follow Paul’s advice out of Ephesians and not allow the sun to go down on our anger.


Hermione is running herself ragged. By the end of the school year she isn’t getting any sleep, she has bags under her eyes and even Ron knows to tread lightly around her. We’ve all got a little Hermione in us and when things get busy we can find it difficult to stop and rest. The summer is a busy time for our youth group and since the students got out of school a few weeks ago I feel like I’ve been running nonstop. We also had our golf tournament this week and I’m preaching this weekend. And I’m sure all of you are just as busy if not busier. We have to learn from Hermione’s mistakes, though, and take the fourth commandment seriously. If we don’t stop to rest we’ll end up burnt-out and without the energy to invest in relationships. We need to make time for Sabbath even if it’s just a few hours a week. I’m taking my own advice and going to Hawaii in about week because I don’t want to have bags under my eyes like Hermione.

Animal Cruelty

I’m not a big animal rights guy. I really enjoy eating meat and I think that once we make sure all the people are taken care of we can focus our attention on animals. That, however, does not mean that I kick cats and want to see Japanese fishermen continue slaughtering dolphins. Poor Buckbeak is executed because Draco Malfoy sucks. Buckbeat didn’t do anything to Malfoy that Malfoy didn’t deserve. Executing Buckbeak constitutes as cruelty to animals because it was thoroughly unjustified. God doesn’t like injustice and he doesn’t like cruelty to animals. God commands his people not to boil a baby goat in its mother’s milk. God isn’t opposed to eating a baby goat but it is cruel to boil that baby goat in the milk that once sustained it. I’m all for doing away with animal cruelty, mostly for the sake of the animals, but also so I never have to see that depressing Sarah McLachlan commercial again.

The Prisoner of Azkaban has been great and I’m really looking forward to the end. I can’t imagine that I won’t be able to find time in the next day to finish the book and see what happens with Harry, Ron, Hermione, Lupin, Black and Snape. I’m almost as excited as I was when I saw Locutus for the first time.

What thoughts do you have from chapters 14-18 of The Prisoner of Azkaban.


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