Father Paul Eberle

Father Paul Eberle

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I first read C.S. Lewis’ famous work, The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, while in seminary many years ago.

It is one of the few books I have read multiple times.

The Christian symbolism immersed throughout helps me see the Gospels with fresh insight.

If you have read it, you likely know what I mean. It is about the power of grace.

Good overcoming evil. 

Love breaking the bonds of death.

Obedience shattering the misery of disobedience.

Sacrificial offering saving us from ourselves.

The children - Peter, Susan, Edmund, and Lucy are the main characters of the book. They are the Sons of Adam and Daughters of Eve and represent you and me.

Aslan, the great and awesome Lion, represents Christ. Toward the beginning of the book, Edmund has betrayed the others and tries to keep hidden his allegiance with the evil White Witch who rules over Narnia and represents Satan.

But Aslan returns and is “on the move” and even from a distance the evil spell which keeps Narnia a cold, sad land begins to break. 

The first time Aslan is mentioned to the children, Edmund feels a “mysterious horror,” but Peter feels “suddenly brave,” Susan feels something “delicious and delightful” in the air, and Lucy feels like you do “when you wake up on Christmas morning, or on the first day of school holiday.”

Aslan’s awesome power, just as the power of Jesus Christ’s name, brings feelings of unease in those who lie, such as Edmund, and feelings of bravery, joy, and peace in those who have been obedient and truthful, such as the other three children.

When we hear the name of Jesus Christ, what emotion stirs within our heart? Do we move closer to or further away from the Presence of his name? 

It is clear Edmund can do nothing to undo the result of his own lies. Only Aslan (Christ) can undo the power of sin.

Only God’s grace can redeem us. Aslan breaks the power of the evil spell by allowing himself to be sacrificed on the Stone Table (the Cross).

The wicked White Witch (Satan) did not know that when an innocent one (Aslan-Christ) chooses to take the place of the guilty (Edmund – you and I), then death would start working backward and the Resurrection to new life would prevail.

Jesus, thank you for your Sacrifice, so that we may have the hope and promise of Eternal Life.

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