Emeth – The Last Battle (C.S Lewis)

“So I went over much grass and many flowers and among all kinds of wholesome and delectable trees till lo! in a narrow place between two rocks there came to meet me a great Lion. The speed of him was like the ostrich, and his size as an elephant’s; his hair was like pure gold and the brightness of his eyes like gold that is liquid in the furnace. He was more terrible than the Flaming Mountain of Lagour, and in beauty he surpassed all that is in the world even as the rose in bloom surpasses the dust of the desert.Then I fell at his feet and thought, Surely this is the hour of death, for the Lion (who is worthy of all honour) will know that I have served Tash all my days and not him. Nevertheless, it is better to see the Lion and die than to be Tisroc of the world and live and not to have seen him. But the Glorious One bent down his golden head and touched my forehead with his tongue and said, Son, thou art welcome. But I said, Alas Lord, I am no son of thine but the servant of Tash. He answered, Child, all the service thou hast done to Tash, I account as service done to me. Then by reasons of my great desire for wisdom and understanding, I overcame my fear and questioned the Glorious One and said, Lord, is it then true, as the Ape said, that thou and Tash are one? The Lion growled so that the earth shook (but his wrath was not against me) and said, It is false. Not because he and I are one, but because we are opposites, I take to me the services which thou hast done to him. For I and he are of such different kinds that no service which is vile can be done to me, and none which is not vile can be done to him. Therefore if any man swear by Tash and keep his oath for the oath’s sake, it is by me that he has truly sworn, though he know it not, and it is I who reward him. And if any man do a cruelty in my name, then, though he says the name Aslan, it is Tash whom he serves and by Tash his deed is accepted. Dost thou understand, Child? I said, Lord, though knowest how much I understand. But I said also (for the truth constrained me), Yet I have been seeking Tash all my days. Beloved, said the Glorious One, unless they desire had been for me thou wouldst not have sought so long and so truly. For all find what the truly seek.

“Then he breathed upon me and took away the trembling from my limbs and caused me to stand upon my feet. And after that, he said not much, but that we should meet again, and I must go further up and further in. Then he turned him about in a storm and flurry of gold and was gone suddenly.

“And since then, O Kings and Ladies, I have been wandering to find him and my happiness is so great that it even weakens me like a wound. And this is the marvel of marvels, that he called me Beloved, me who am but as a dog-“

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10 Comments »

  1. Brett Said:

    I absolutely love this passage from the Last Battle. I think it really challenges our view of a true Christian as someone who ‘believes the right things about Jesus”, as opposed to someone who “lives like Jesus.”

  2. Emeth Said:

    Lol, you’ve had much more people look at it on your blog than mine so glad that it’s actually got somewhere and people are actually reading it.

    It’s definately a challenging idea, but at the same time fills me with hope. The idea that we can get it wrong as long as we’ve tried to do the “right thing” for God and searched truly…

    Thanks for commenting

  3. Puzzle Said:

    Hooray for objective truth!

  4. Chris Said:

    This is one of my favorite C.S. Lewis passages! And you’ve chosen almost precisely the same portion to excerpt that I would have chosen. Thanks!
    …I realize my comment is a bit late. I hope you’re doing well!
    ~Chris

  5. scott Said:

    While this reply is beyond late, I wanted to pose a question. If Aslan = Jesus Christ, and Tash = any other “god”, is C.S. Lewis saying that as long as we seek “good things” and do “good things” it doesn’t matter what “god” we serve and worship, because Jesus Christ counts it as worship to Him? While I thoroughly enjoyed reading all the books, this is what I get hung up on every time. I have to admit it is a stumbling block for me. I just don’t understand how I can possibly worship any “god” but have it count as righteousness and faith in Jesus Christ? I mean what’s the first commandement, what did Jesus say was the greatest commandment? He said there were two, but He said them in order of importance.

    • Anonymous Said:

      I think what Lewis is saying is that as Christians we can’t condemn those who don’t believe as we do. Imagine being raised in a home, culture, country that hates Christ. You are told that Allah is the only true God, so you seek all your life to find him. You search is true and your heart pure, but you don’t realize that what you are seeking is Christ. Will Jesus condemn that man? Or will he say on the Judgement Day here I am, I am what you have been seeking. Consequently will that man not also, after seeing the true and living God, realize that this is what he has always been after? I think we are too quick to minimize the grace and love of the savior. It’s an interesting view point for sure, but I love the challenge. Great passage.

  6. Cindy Said:

    Thanks for posting this! I just copied and pasted it to a forum I frequent to explain why I believe Calvinists could just possibly be saved. 😆 (I included your link of course!)

    Even many Christians are following a god of their own imaginations/doctrines/expectations, and not the True Lord, Jesus Christ Son of the Living God who abides in His church through His Holy Spirit. Does this disqualify them from belonging to Him? I don’t think so.

    This passage was a difficult one for me. I love CS Lewis and I was concerned he might be shading over into heresy. Now I see he was still a few inches short of the full glory of God in Christ Jesus. His own master (by his profession), George MacDonald, could have explained it to him. God in His sovereignty; God in His all-encompassing love will not be satisfied with saving those few of us who have known Him or even have followed Him unknowing. Eventually ALL must come to the full knowledge of the Lord and receive His salvation through Christ, who is the only way, truth, and life.

    Why should He submit to having any of the creation He pronounced as “very good” taken from Him and spoiled forever? He can and He does bring all to willing and joyful obedience and membership in the family of YHWH.

  7. […] explains why a warrior who had worshipped a false god was found in heaven (the passage is found here ). That’s not dumb, even if one disagrees with it. The Catholic wouldn’t need to twist […]

  8. […] explains why a warrior who had worshipped a false god was found in heaven (the passage is found here ). That’s not dumb, even if one disagrees with it. The Catholic wouldn’t need to twist […]


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