Friday, December 27, 2013

Overcoming Deceit

“The heart is more deceitful than all else And is desperately sick; Who can understand it?”

Last night, during a re-read of The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, I was particularly taken by the scene in which Edmund first encounters the White Witch. The Witch happens upon Edmund when he first arrives in Narnia, and questions him, wanting to know if he is human, and whether he may be part of a prophecy fortelling her removal from the throne of Narnia. Once she discovers that this is probably the case, she begins to seduce Edmund with his favorite, Turkish Delight. When he finishes, Edmund wants more, but cannot figure out why. Lewis explains it in this way.

“The Queen knew quite well what he was thinking; for she knew, though Edmund did not, that this was enchanted Turkish Delight and that anyone who had once tasted it would want more and more of it, and it would even, if they were allowed, go on eating it until they killed themselves.”

Sin is the same way. It’s delicious. It feels right. Others often validate it. It seeps in the dark places when you least expect it. It lies to you, until you are someone you barely recognize. Edmund trades his family and ultimately, almost trades his life grasping for the “feeling” he got eating the Turkish Delight.

I chase after sin in my own ways, usually by believing lies and emotions over what I know God says about me and about Him, but knowing that my heart is wicked is a comfort. I can choose to tell myself the truth. God’s way is better. It isn’t easy. It isn’t intuitive. It’s often less “fun.” But I know that I am being protected from the destructiveness of wanting more and more and more of what my heart wants to try and heal itself. Different translations of the Bible say that the heart is “beyond cure.” I am never going to cure my sin with what my heart wants – more sin! Jesus is the only cure.

For me, that is a very settling proposition.

1 comment:

  1. So true. Great post. I often use Edmund's seduction to explain to my students how his actions didn't just affect him but others as well. Same with our sin...