Tuesday, June 21, 2016

life wrapped up with death

Lewis tells us the difference between Zoe and Bios today in A Year with C.S. Lewis.

He says that the difference is akin to what we find between statues and living things. And this brings us precipitously and suspiciously near a kind of false dualism - thinking that flesh is bad and spirit is good. There are even verses that give this impression.

But we know from other blogs, and other readings from Lewis, and other verses in the Bible that this form of dualism is wrong. THINGS are not bad in themselves. God MADE things, and He called them good. He LIKES things. And Lewis himself is the one who said that He likes them - we know this because He made them.

But what Lewis points to is a fundamental difference between Zoe (eternal life) and Bios (here and now life). This difference is found in how the two of them relate to death. See, Bios is wrapped up in death. It has death built in. Written into the A, C, G, and T's of our DNA we find a program for our Bios lives to end. It's part and parcel.

But Zoe is the eternal life that we have to look forward to. It's the difference, for instance, between when Jesus rose from the dead to eternal life, and when Lazarus was brought back to life... but then died again. Jesus had Zoe. Lazarus, even in his resurrected form, still had Bios. That's why, even though people like Lazarus and the widow of Nain's son came back to life, Jesus is the one referred to as the first fruit of the new, eternal life. Because His new life was different from everything that had come before.

And that's what we look forward to.

God, help us to begin living in your kingdom while we're still in our Bios, so that we are ready for Zoe when it comes.