The food theme is not as prevalent in Lewis’ The Chronicles of Narnia as they are in Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings. I have chronicled a bit of the delicious appetite of Tolkien for food here. Yet, as I make my way through Lewis’ Chronicles I came across a brief delicacy in the meeting between the Sons of Adam and Eve and the beaver family. Their meeting leads to a festive meal described in this manner:
There was a jug of creamy milk for the children to enjoy (Mr. Beaven stuck to beer) and a great big lump of deep yellow butter in the middle of the table from which everyone took as much as he wanted to go with the potatoes, and all the children thought–and I agree with them–that there’s nothing to beat good freshwater fish if you eat it when it has been alive half an hour ago and has come out of the pan half a minute ago. And when they finished the fish Mrs. Beaver brought unexpectedly out of the over a great and gloriously sticky marmalade roll, steaming hot, and at the same time moved the kettle onto the fire, so that when they had finished the marmalade roll the tea was made and ready to be poured out…”And now,” said Mr. Beaver, pushing away his empty beer mug and pulling his cup of tea toward him, “if you will just wait till I’ve got my pipe lit up and going nicely–why, now we can get to business.”
This is a fairly descriptive scene. Much like Tolkien, business/war come only after a feast.
Robert Jenson observes in the preface to his Systematic Theology, Volume I that “to live as the church in a situation of a divided church–if this can happen at all–must at least mean that we confess we live in a radical self-contradiction and that by every churchly act we contradict that contradiction (vii).” Jenson notes that theology can only done in the “unitary church of the creed.” Theology is ecclesiology. Theology functions best in the context of ecclesial harmony.
Anyone who reads as much as I do is probably familiar with the closing paragraph of the acknowledgment section of a book. It ends with the author making it clear that if there are faults in the book, they should be blamed on him and not anyone else.
Richard Mouwl’s Calvinism in the Las Vegas Airport concludes quite appropriately, in light of his topic:
All of these folks were so helpful, and I was so diligent in taking full advantage of their wise counsel, that any remaining errors or infelicities must simply be chalked up either to the mysteries of divine predestination or–more likely–to the subtle but very real continuing marks of my own depravity.
It has been almost 18 months since I posted the paragraph below. After looking through the list once again this morning, I am even more appalled than I was 18 months ago. By the way, #33 looks familiar.
It is no exaggeration to state that the 50 most influential Christians in America according to the Church Report are some of the most dangerous to the church. Granted, there are a few exceptions like John Piper, (who probably would be furious to find his name among them) but the decay of the church is revealed when their leaders are shown to be notorious for unfaithful preaching.