Rivista e Edizione

Volume 20 (2022): Edizione 5 (December 2022)
Doctoral Supplement. Postgraduate Research in Contemporary Evangelical Higher Education: Academic Perspectives on Variegated Theological and Historical Topics. Edizione Editor: Marcel V. Măcelaru

Volume 20 (2022): Edizione 4 (December 2022)
Miscellaneous Theological Investigations. From Economy, Literature, and Hermeneutics to Christology, Exegesis, and Typology. Edizione Editor: Corneliu C. Simuț

Volume 20 (2022): Edizione 3 (July 2022)
A Multi-Angle Examination of C. S. Lewis's Till We Have Faces. Theological, Philosophical, Ethical, and Literary Insights from one of Lewis's Greatest Novels. Edizione Editor: Zachary Breitenbach

Volume 20 (2022): Edizione 2 (June 2022)
Reform according to Right Law: the Use of Legal Tradition in Reformation Theology. Edizione Editor: André A. Gazal

Volume 20 (2022): Edizione 1 (March 2022)
Confessing the Trinity. The Trinitarianism of Particular Baptists, 1640s-1840s. Edizione Editor: Michael A. G. Haykin

Volume 19 (2021): Edizione 4 (December 2021)
Miscellaneous Theological Studies: Biblical, Apologetic, Historical, Patristic, Theodicean, and Systematic. Edizione Editor: Corneliu C. Simuţ

Volume 19 (2021): Edizione 3 (July 2021)
Islam and Islamism. The Challenge for Modern Liberal Democracies. Edizione Editors: Raphael Lataster, Rumy Hasan

Volume 19 (2021): Edizione 2 (June 2021)
Fundamental Aspects of Christological Anthropology: Theological and Philosophical Perspectives in Contemporary Debates. Editor: Christopher G. Woznicki

Volume 19 (2021): Edizione 1 (March 2021)
Revivalism in Central European Protestantism, 1840-1940: Hungarian Calvinists, British Evangelicals & German-Austrian Pietists during the Spiritual Renewal of Protestant Churches in the Austro-Hungarian Empire. Editor: Ábraham Kovács

Volume 18 (2020): Edizione 6 (December 2020)
The Catholic Reformation. Ecclesiology, Justification, Freedom, Sin, Grace & the Council of Trent. Editor: Eduardo J. Echeverria

Volume 18 (2020): Edizione 5 (October 2020)
Roman Catholic, Reformed Catholic and Evangelical Protestant. Reformation Ediziones Five Hundred Years Later. Editor: Edizione editor: Joshua R. Farris

Volume 18 (2020): Edizione 4 (August 2020)
Edizione 4 (Aug 2020): From Paris to Tortosa, via Barcelona (1240-1413), Characters, Ediziones and Problems in Medieval Jewish-Christian Disputations. Editor: Francesco Bianchi

Volume 18 (2020): Edizione 3 (July 2020)
In the Footsteps of the Divine Artist. On the Religious and Spiritual Dimension in Art. Editors: Wessel Stoker and Frank G. Bosman

Volume 18 (2020): Edizione 2 (June 2020)
De Corpore – ‘On the Body’ through the History of Idea, Views of the Body in Philosophy, Literature and Religion. Editor: Ramona Simuț

Volume 18 (2020): Edizione 1 (March 2020)
Baptist and Reformed Theologies of Vision and Deification (2). Constructive Ediziones in Contemporary Research. Editors: Joshua R. Farris and Ryan A. Brandt

Volume 17 (2019): Edizione 4 (December 2019)
Patristic Thought in Byzantine and Protestant Theology. From Gregory Palamas and George Pachymeres to Luther, Calvin, Anglicans, and Anabaptists. Editor: Andre A. Gazal

Volume 17 (2019): Edizione 3 (July 2019)
Contemporary Evangelicals on Carl F. H. Henry’s Theology. From Philosophy, Evangelism, and Apologetics to Education, History, and Practice. Editor: Robert W. Talley

Volume 17 (2019): Edizione s2 (July 2019)
Single Author Supplement 2: The Background and Nature of the Dissensions in 1 Corinthians 1-4. Apollos' Role and Paul's Response. Author: Corin Mihăilă

Volume 17 (2019): Edizione 2 (June 2019)
Baptist and Reformed Theologies of Vision and Deification. Editors: Joshua R. Farris and Ryan A. Brandt

Volume 17 (2019): Edizione 1 (March 2019)
The Father, Son, and Spirit in Early Christian Theology, Second Century Examples. Editor: Paul A. Hartog

Volume 17 (2019): Edizione s1 (January 2019)
Single Author Supplement 1: Theological Patterns in Reformation Thought. English, American, and Scottish Protestants on Christ, Revival, and the Covenant. Author: Dinu Moga

Volume 16 (2018): Edizione 4 (December 2018)
Tome huitième: Celebrating 500 Years since the Reformation, 1518-2018. Contemporary Perspectives on History and Theology in British Baptist Thought. Scottish and English Baptists on Salvation, Politics, and the End of Times. Edizione editor: Alasdair Black

Volume 16 (2018): Edizione 3 (July 2018)
Tome septieme: Celebrating 500 Years since the Reformation, 1518-2018. Teaching Leaders, Leading Teachers. Biblical and Historical Perspectives on Education and Leadership: Jeffrey M. Horner Edizione editor: Jeffrey M. Horner

Volume 16 (2018): Edizione 2 (June 2018)
Tome sixième: Celebrating 500 Years since the Reformation, 1518-2018. Contemporary Perspectives on Molinism. Theories, Responses to Objections, and Applications, Edizione editor: Kirk R. MacGregor

Volume 16 (2018): Edizione 1 (April 2018)
Tome cinquième: Celebrating 500 Years since the Reformation, 1518-2018. Insights into Contemporary Baptist Thought. Perspectives on European Baptist Theology and History, Edizione editor: Toivo Pilli

Volume 15 (2017): Edizione 4 (December 2017)
Special Edizione: Tome quatrieme: Celebrating 500 Years since the Reformation, 1517-2017. Investigating the Magisterial Reformation and Its Radical Contenders. Contemporary Evangelicals on Reformation Research: from Lutheranism and Zwinglianism to Anabaptism and Baptism, Edizione Editor: Marvin Jones

Volume 15 (2017): Edizione 3 (October 2017)
Special Edizione: Tome troisième: Celebrating 500 Years since the Reformation, 1517-2017. Theologizing about Spirituality, Pedagogy, and Soteriology. Miscellanea Antiqua, Medievalia, Reformatorica & Moderna by Corneliu Simuț

Volume 15 (2017): Edizione 2 (July 2017)
Special Edizione: : Celebrating 500 Years since the Reformation, 1517-2017. ‘On the Soul’ through the History of Ideas. Views of the Soul in Philosophy, Literature & Relivion by Ramona Simuț

Volume 15 (2017): Edizione 1 (May 2017)
Edizione title: Tome premier: Celebrating 500 Years since the Reformation: 1517-2017. Anthologizing History, the Bible, and Theology. Miscellanea Celtica, Humanistica & Reformatorica by Thomas O’Loughlin and Corneliu C. Simuț

Volume 14 (2016): Edizione 3 (December 2016)
Avant-Premiere: Celebrating 500 Years since the Reformation, 1517-2017. Contemporary Perspectives on Reformed Orthodoxy. Reformed Confessions, Scholastic Thought, and Puritan Divinity in Post-Reformation Protestantism, Edizione Editors: Gijsbert van den Brink, Aza Goudriaan

Volume 14 (2016): Edizione 2 (October 2016)
Transformative Poetry and Its Role in Catholic Theology. Dutch Contributions to Contemporary Catholic Research. Edizione Editors: Archibald L. H. M. van Wieringen, Marcel Sarot. Translator: Brian Heffernan

Volume 14 (2016): Edizione 1 (June 2016)
African Hermeneutics in the Twenty-First Century. Social History and Indigenous Theologies in Contemporary African Research. Edizione Editor: Zorodzai Dube

Volume 13 (2015): Edizione 2 (October 2015)
Edizione title: The Long History of Lutheranism in Scandinavia. Contemporary Voices in Finnish Historical Research. Edizione Editor: Pirjo Markkola

Volume 13 (2015): Edizione 1 (June 2015)
Edizione Title: The Value of Controversy. Defining Early Modern Religion through Ritual and Writing. Edizione Editor: Angela Ranson

Volume 12 (2014): Edizione 2 (October 2014)
Special issue title: Exploring the Contours of Patristic Thought. Studies on Exegesis, Christology, and Soteriology in the Early Church

Volume 12 (2014): Edizione 1 (June 2014)
Established and Emerging Voices in Richard Hooker Research, Edizione Editor: Paul A. Dominiak

Volume 11 (2013): Edizione 2 (December 2013)

Volume 11 (2013): Edizione 1 (June 2013)

Volume 10 (2012): Edizione 2 (June 2012)

Volume 10 (2012): Edizione 1 (January 2012)

Dettagli della rivista
Formato
Rivista
eISSN
2284-7308
Pubblicato per la prima volta
20 Sep 2012
Periodo di pubblicazione
3 volte all'anno
Lingue
Inglese

Cerca

Volume 20 (2022): Edizione 3 (July 2022)
A Multi-Angle Examination of C. S. Lewis's Till We Have Faces. Theological, Philosophical, Ethical, and Literary Insights from one of Lewis's Greatest Novels. Edizione Editor: Zachary Breitenbach

Dettagli della rivista
Formato
Rivista
eISSN
2284-7308
Pubblicato per la prima volta
20 Sep 2012
Periodo di pubblicazione
3 volte all'anno
Lingue
Inglese

Cerca

6 Articoli
Accesso libero

Self-Knowledge, Who God Is, and a Cure for our Deepest Shame: A Few Reflections on Till We Have Faces

Pubblicato online: 19 May 2022
Pagine: 3 - 20

Astratto

Abstract

Till We Have Faces is a retelling of the Cupid/Psyche myth with a few twists, namely, a nonstandard narrator and the inability of Psyche’s sister, Orual, to see the palace. Both innovations lead the reader to understand better the dynamics at play in Orual’s effort to disrupt Psyche’s life with her husband/god. The inability to see, on Orual’s part, at first suggests that the nature of the story is primarily epistemological. What is it that can be reasonably known or inferred? Digging deeper, however, reveals that the epistemic elements are actually penultimate, and that instead the book bolsters an ethically robust epistemology. Who we are deeply affects what we can see. Before Orual could apprehend the nature of the gods, she had to be brutally honest about who she herself was. A victim of abuse who was constantly shamed for reasons beyond her control, she is a sympathetic character in several ways, but she gradually moves from being victim to victimizer, treating others as means to ends, and, in the case of Psyche, ‘loving’ her in a way that was more hate than love. Self-knowledge was needed for Orual to apprehend the truth. She comes to realize her treatment of Bardia, Batta, Redival, and especially Psyche was not as pure and altruistic as she had thought. She had to come to terms with the ugliness within herself, and her penchant for consuming others, before she could hope to see the beauty and love of the gods for what they were.

Parole chiave

  • C. S. Lewis
  • ethics
  • epistemology
  • shame
Accesso libero

Insights of C. S. Lewis Concerning Faith, Doubt, Pride, Corrupted Love, and Dying to Oneself in Till We Have Faces

Pubblicato online: 19 May 2022
Pagine: 21 - 31

Astratto

Abstract

In Till We Have Faces (TWHF), C. S. Lewis combines his passion for pagan mythology with his knack for communicating Christian truths via story, powerfully illustrating a number of theological and moral positions that are prominent in many of his other writings. This article examines two major themes in TWHF that are also emphasized heavily within Lewis’s prose: (1) maintaining faith (which is examined from various angles) in the face of various emotionally-driven temptations to doubt; and (2) recognizing that pride prevents us from knowing God and corrupts the love we have for others into a jealous hatred. The article uncovers a variety of ways that Lewis masterfully paints a picture via the characters and the story of TWHF that exemplifies religious and ethical insights within these two themes.

Parole chiave

  • faith
  • doubt
  • pride
  • love
  • dying to self
Accesso libero

Sehnsucht as Signpost: The Autobiographical Impulse of C. S. Lewis

Pubblicato online: 19 May 2022
Pagine: 33 - 53

Astratto

Abstract

For half a century, readers of C. S. Lewis had only two problematic and at times obscure spiritual autobiographies (The Pilgrim’s Regress and Surprised by Joy) to use in attempts to understand Lewis’s journey to faith through what he called Joy, Sehnsucht, or longing. Both books, though important and full of key insights, in some ways hid more than they revealed. Recent discoveries, however, have widened the arc of autobiography. Lewis’s landmark pre-Christian account of his conversion to theism, ‘Early Prose Joy’, published in 2013, monumentally widened and deepened our understanding of Lewis’s spiritual journey to faith. And the fragmentary poem ‘I Will Write Down the Portion that I Understand’ also adds significant insight, at least into Lewis’s composition process of grappling with conversion. Insightful recent scholarship by Alister McGrath suggests widening the scope of what we consider spiritual autobiography in Lewis to include A Grief Observed; this idea opens the door to a broader view of how autobiography functions both in Lewis’s compositional life and in the categorization of his writings. This essay accepts that invitation, finding clear autobiographical efforts to capture the role of Joy in Lewis’s early poetry, including Dymer, and in his late novel Till We Have Faces. That last book, written with soon-to-be-wife Joy Davidman, serves crucially to change the focus of Lewis’s spiritual autobiographies from Joy to love. By thus expanding and exploring Lewis’s autobiographical arc, this essay brings to light an almost teleological understanding of love and the central theme of Lewis’s life and work.

Parole chiave

  • spiritual autobiography
  • Lewis
  • grief
  • joy
  • love
Accesso libero

Writing in a Pre-Christian Mode: Boethius, Beowulf, Lord of the Rings, and Till We Have Faces

Pubblicato online: 19 May 2022
Pagine: 55 - 72

Astratto

Abstract

In this essay, I compare and contrast how Boethius (in Consolation of Philosophy), the author of Beowulf, J. R. R. Tolkien (in The Lord of the Rings), and C. S. Lewis (in Till We Have Faces) found ways to integrate their Christian theological and philosophical beliefs into a work that is set in a time and place that possesses the general revelation of creation, conscience, reason, and desire, but lacks the special revelation of Christ and the Bible. I begin by using Lewis’s own analysis of the Consolation in his Discarded Image to discuss what it means for a Christian author to write in a pre-Christian mode. I find a model for such writing in Ecclesiastes, and discuss how Boethius, while confining himself to the pagan wisdom of Greece and Rome, points the way from philosophical consolation to theological transformation. I then use Tolkien’s ‘Beowulf: The Monsters and the Critics’ to unpack the distinction between the author’s Christian faith and the purely pagan consolation he offers to his characters, and locate that dynamic in the epic itself. Next, I explore how Tolkien, in imitation of Beowulf, balances a deep sense of loss and fatalism with an intimation of a higher providence guiding all. Finally, I show how Lewis, in imitation of Boethius, finds in the pagan world of his novel seeds of a greater revelation to come.

Parole chiave

  • Lewis
  • Tolkien
  • Boethius
Accesso libero

Reflecting Christ in Life and Art: The Divine Dance of Self-Giving in C. S. Lewis’s Till We Have Faces

Pubblicato online: 19 May 2022
Pagine: 73 - 90

Astratto

Abstract

This essay examines how C. S. Lewis, in Till We Have Faces, illustrates the Christian’s journey of sanctification through the pre-Christian story of his main character, Orual. She must gain two ‘faces’ in this process that correspond to the two books she writes. First, she must gain the face of self-knowledge through humility. The key components to this face are her memory and the act of writing of her first book, which together create a mirror to reflect her sin back to her. Second, Orual must gain the face of transformation through divine agape love. The humility she learned from her first face now allows her to enter what Lewis describes as the dance of self-giving, which is a crucial element to the second face of transformation in its mortification of Orual’s sin and selfishness. In the second face, Orual gains access to an ‘actual language’ that transcends merely verbal words and involves worshipping the god with her whole being, as do we in being transformed to reflect Christ more clearly. Orual’s writing is a form of this ‘actual language’, and her second book that shares her personal encounter with the god of the mountain reflects to others the beauty of the divine. Similarly, Christians should reflect Jesus with their lives and their art, which are inextricably intertwined because a life lived for Him is the highest form of artwork they can create.

Parole chiave

  • memory
  • language
  • sanctification
  • agape love
Accesso libero

The Mystery of Grace: A Theological Reading of C. S. Lewis’s Till We Have Faces

Pubblicato online: 19 May 2022
Pagine: 91 - 107

Astratto

Abstract

Till We Have Faces is profitably read at three levels: for its surface story, as a crime drama, and as an exploration of the theological mystery of grace. By transposing the myth of Psyche into the mystery genre, Lewis prepares the reader for Orual’s unreliability as a narrator and lures the reader into the novel’s theological depths. Part Two of the novel contains a series of visionary labors which Lewis borrows from Lucius Apuleius but recasts as feats achieved jointly by Orual and Psyche. The theological reading in this article finds textual support for rereading Part One of the novel as depicting Orual, by grace, unknowingly performing Psyche’s labors. Read thusly, the novel is a working out of Lewis’s belief that God can change the past—that grace can reach back into our histories and retell our story. By ascribing to the mutability of the past, Lewis sidesteps the dispute among various branches of Christianity over whether prevenient grace (the grace that pursues us prior to conversion) is both irresistible and salvific. An examination of four sources of grace in Orual’s life (love of beauty, love of wisdom, religious practice, and bereavement) reveals that what would have been common grace in her life becomes salvific as it leads to her redemption. This exposition also shows the novel’s indebtedness to the many classical Greek sources to which Lewis alludes within it, as well as its affinity with some of the ideas of Simone Weil.

Parole chiave

  • C. S. Lewis
  • grace
  • Christian humanism
  • prevenient
  • beauty
6 Articoli
Accesso libero

Self-Knowledge, Who God Is, and a Cure for our Deepest Shame: A Few Reflections on Till We Have Faces

Pubblicato online: 19 May 2022
Pagine: 3 - 20

Astratto

Abstract

Till We Have Faces is a retelling of the Cupid/Psyche myth with a few twists, namely, a nonstandard narrator and the inability of Psyche’s sister, Orual, to see the palace. Both innovations lead the reader to understand better the dynamics at play in Orual’s effort to disrupt Psyche’s life with her husband/god. The inability to see, on Orual’s part, at first suggests that the nature of the story is primarily epistemological. What is it that can be reasonably known or inferred? Digging deeper, however, reveals that the epistemic elements are actually penultimate, and that instead the book bolsters an ethically robust epistemology. Who we are deeply affects what we can see. Before Orual could apprehend the nature of the gods, she had to be brutally honest about who she herself was. A victim of abuse who was constantly shamed for reasons beyond her control, she is a sympathetic character in several ways, but she gradually moves from being victim to victimizer, treating others as means to ends, and, in the case of Psyche, ‘loving’ her in a way that was more hate than love. Self-knowledge was needed for Orual to apprehend the truth. She comes to realize her treatment of Bardia, Batta, Redival, and especially Psyche was not as pure and altruistic as she had thought. She had to come to terms with the ugliness within herself, and her penchant for consuming others, before she could hope to see the beauty and love of the gods for what they were.

Parole chiave

  • C. S. Lewis
  • ethics
  • epistemology
  • shame
Accesso libero

Insights of C. S. Lewis Concerning Faith, Doubt, Pride, Corrupted Love, and Dying to Oneself in Till We Have Faces

Pubblicato online: 19 May 2022
Pagine: 21 - 31

Astratto

Abstract

In Till We Have Faces (TWHF), C. S. Lewis combines his passion for pagan mythology with his knack for communicating Christian truths via story, powerfully illustrating a number of theological and moral positions that are prominent in many of his other writings. This article examines two major themes in TWHF that are also emphasized heavily within Lewis’s prose: (1) maintaining faith (which is examined from various angles) in the face of various emotionally-driven temptations to doubt; and (2) recognizing that pride prevents us from knowing God and corrupts the love we have for others into a jealous hatred. The article uncovers a variety of ways that Lewis masterfully paints a picture via the characters and the story of TWHF that exemplifies religious and ethical insights within these two themes.

Parole chiave

  • faith
  • doubt
  • pride
  • love
  • dying to self
Accesso libero

Sehnsucht as Signpost: The Autobiographical Impulse of C. S. Lewis

Pubblicato online: 19 May 2022
Pagine: 33 - 53

Astratto

Abstract

For half a century, readers of C. S. Lewis had only two problematic and at times obscure spiritual autobiographies (The Pilgrim’s Regress and Surprised by Joy) to use in attempts to understand Lewis’s journey to faith through what he called Joy, Sehnsucht, or longing. Both books, though important and full of key insights, in some ways hid more than they revealed. Recent discoveries, however, have widened the arc of autobiography. Lewis’s landmark pre-Christian account of his conversion to theism, ‘Early Prose Joy’, published in 2013, monumentally widened and deepened our understanding of Lewis’s spiritual journey to faith. And the fragmentary poem ‘I Will Write Down the Portion that I Understand’ also adds significant insight, at least into Lewis’s composition process of grappling with conversion. Insightful recent scholarship by Alister McGrath suggests widening the scope of what we consider spiritual autobiography in Lewis to include A Grief Observed; this idea opens the door to a broader view of how autobiography functions both in Lewis’s compositional life and in the categorization of his writings. This essay accepts that invitation, finding clear autobiographical efforts to capture the role of Joy in Lewis’s early poetry, including Dymer, and in his late novel Till We Have Faces. That last book, written with soon-to-be-wife Joy Davidman, serves crucially to change the focus of Lewis’s spiritual autobiographies from Joy to love. By thus expanding and exploring Lewis’s autobiographical arc, this essay brings to light an almost teleological understanding of love and the central theme of Lewis’s life and work.

Parole chiave

  • spiritual autobiography
  • Lewis
  • grief
  • joy
  • love
Accesso libero

Writing in a Pre-Christian Mode: Boethius, Beowulf, Lord of the Rings, and Till We Have Faces

Pubblicato online: 19 May 2022
Pagine: 55 - 72

Astratto

Abstract

In this essay, I compare and contrast how Boethius (in Consolation of Philosophy), the author of Beowulf, J. R. R. Tolkien (in The Lord of the Rings), and C. S. Lewis (in Till We Have Faces) found ways to integrate their Christian theological and philosophical beliefs into a work that is set in a time and place that possesses the general revelation of creation, conscience, reason, and desire, but lacks the special revelation of Christ and the Bible. I begin by using Lewis’s own analysis of the Consolation in his Discarded Image to discuss what it means for a Christian author to write in a pre-Christian mode. I find a model for such writing in Ecclesiastes, and discuss how Boethius, while confining himself to the pagan wisdom of Greece and Rome, points the way from philosophical consolation to theological transformation. I then use Tolkien’s ‘Beowulf: The Monsters and the Critics’ to unpack the distinction between the author’s Christian faith and the purely pagan consolation he offers to his characters, and locate that dynamic in the epic itself. Next, I explore how Tolkien, in imitation of Beowulf, balances a deep sense of loss and fatalism with an intimation of a higher providence guiding all. Finally, I show how Lewis, in imitation of Boethius, finds in the pagan world of his novel seeds of a greater revelation to come.

Parole chiave

  • Lewis
  • Tolkien
  • Boethius
Accesso libero

Reflecting Christ in Life and Art: The Divine Dance of Self-Giving in C. S. Lewis’s Till We Have Faces

Pubblicato online: 19 May 2022
Pagine: 73 - 90

Astratto

Abstract

This essay examines how C. S. Lewis, in Till We Have Faces, illustrates the Christian’s journey of sanctification through the pre-Christian story of his main character, Orual. She must gain two ‘faces’ in this process that correspond to the two books she writes. First, she must gain the face of self-knowledge through humility. The key components to this face are her memory and the act of writing of her first book, which together create a mirror to reflect her sin back to her. Second, Orual must gain the face of transformation through divine agape love. The humility she learned from her first face now allows her to enter what Lewis describes as the dance of self-giving, which is a crucial element to the second face of transformation in its mortification of Orual’s sin and selfishness. In the second face, Orual gains access to an ‘actual language’ that transcends merely verbal words and involves worshipping the god with her whole being, as do we in being transformed to reflect Christ more clearly. Orual’s writing is a form of this ‘actual language’, and her second book that shares her personal encounter with the god of the mountain reflects to others the beauty of the divine. Similarly, Christians should reflect Jesus with their lives and their art, which are inextricably intertwined because a life lived for Him is the highest form of artwork they can create.

Parole chiave

  • memory
  • language
  • sanctification
  • agape love
Accesso libero

The Mystery of Grace: A Theological Reading of C. S. Lewis’s Till We Have Faces

Pubblicato online: 19 May 2022
Pagine: 91 - 107

Astratto

Abstract

Till We Have Faces is profitably read at three levels: for its surface story, as a crime drama, and as an exploration of the theological mystery of grace. By transposing the myth of Psyche into the mystery genre, Lewis prepares the reader for Orual’s unreliability as a narrator and lures the reader into the novel’s theological depths. Part Two of the novel contains a series of visionary labors which Lewis borrows from Lucius Apuleius but recasts as feats achieved jointly by Orual and Psyche. The theological reading in this article finds textual support for rereading Part One of the novel as depicting Orual, by grace, unknowingly performing Psyche’s labors. Read thusly, the novel is a working out of Lewis’s belief that God can change the past—that grace can reach back into our histories and retell our story. By ascribing to the mutability of the past, Lewis sidesteps the dispute among various branches of Christianity over whether prevenient grace (the grace that pursues us prior to conversion) is both irresistible and salvific. An examination of four sources of grace in Orual’s life (love of beauty, love of wisdom, religious practice, and bereavement) reveals that what would have been common grace in her life becomes salvific as it leads to her redemption. This exposition also shows the novel’s indebtedness to the many classical Greek sources to which Lewis alludes within it, as well as its affinity with some of the ideas of Simone Weil.

Parole chiave

  • C. S. Lewis
  • grace
  • Christian humanism
  • prevenient
  • beauty

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