"The Terrible Good:" The Inklings on Sacrifice and Atonement

For Tolkien, Williams, and Lewis, all of life is meant to reflect the nature of its Creator, a divine dance of co-inherence and self-giving love. Sacrifice, literally, "making sacred" is both the means by which participation in divine life is made possible and the essence of that divine life. Lewis's avowed mentor, George MacDonald, wrote: "When he died on the cross, he did that, in the wild weather of his outlying provinces in the torture of the body of his revelation, which he had done at home in glory and gladness" (Creation in Christ).

Thus, Tolkien, Williams, and Lewis loved the "Blessed Sacrament," for it reflected the truth, beauty and goodness at the heart of all things. "There you will find romance, glory, honour, fidelity, and the true way of all you love on earth, and more than that: Death: by the divine paradox, that which ends life, and demands the surrender of all, and yet by the taste (or foretaste) of which alone can what you seek in your earthly relationships (love, faithfulness, joy) be maintained…" (Tolkien, Letters).

4/13/2016 4:00:00 AM
  • Religion and Sacrifice
  • Public Square
  • Atonement
  • C.S. Lewis
  • Charles Williams
  • J.R.R. Tolkien
  • Reconciliation
  • Sacrifice
  • Christianity
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