Susan & Lucy saw the Lion slowly walking away from them into the wood. Without a word they both followed him. On and on he led them, into dark shadows and out into pale moonlight, getting their feet wet with the heavy dew. He looked somehow different from the Aslan they knew. His tail and his head hung low and he walked slowly as if he were very, very tired. Then, when they were crossing a wide open place where there were no shadows for them to hide in, he stopped and looked round.

“Oh, children, children, why are you following me?”

“We couldn’t sleep,” and Lucy

“Please, may we come with you – wherever you’re going?” asked Susan.

“Well – ” said Aslan, and seemed to be thinking. Then he said, “I should be glad of company tonight. Yes, you may come, if you will promise to stop when I tell you, and after that leave me to go on alone.”

Then He said to them, “My soul is very sorrowful, even to death; remain here, and watch with me.” And going a little farther he fell on his face and prayed, saying, “My Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me; nevertheless, not as I will, but as you will.”

And so the girls did what they would never have dared to do without his permission, but what they had longed to do ever since they first saw him – buried their cold hands in the beautiful sea of fur and stroked it and, so doing, walked with him. And presently they saw that they were going with him up the slope of the hill on which the Stone Table stood. They went up at the side where the trees came furthest up, and when they got to the last tree, Aslan stopped and said,

“Oh children, children. Here you must stop. And whatever happens, do not let yourself be seen. Farewell.”

Then he came to the disciples and said to them, “Sleep and take your rest later on. See, the hour is at hand, and the Son of Man is betrayed into the hands of sinners. Rise and let us be going; see, my betrayer is at hand.”

And both the girls cried bitterly and clung to the Lion and kissed his mane and his nose and his paws and his great, sad eyes.

Then the soldiers of the governor took Jesus into the governor’s headquarters, and they gathered the whole battalion before him. And they stripped him and put a scarlet robe on him, and twisting together a crown of thorns, they put it on his head and put a reed in his right hand. And kneeling before him, they mocked him, saying, “Hail, King of the Jews!” And they spit on him and took the reed and struck him on the head. 

The witch gave a wild fierce laugh. “The fool!” she cried. “The fool has come. Bind him fast.”

They rolled the huge Lion over on his back and tied all his four paws together, shouting and cheering as if they had done something brave, though, had the Lion chosen, one of those paws could have bent he death of them all. But he made no noise, even when the enemies, straining and tugging, pulled the cords so tight that they cut into his flesh. “Stop!” said the Witch. “Let him first be shaved.”

I gave my back to those who strike, and my cheeks to those who pull out the beard; I hid not my face from disgrace and spitting. (Isaiah 50:6)

And they surged round Aslan, jeering at him, saying things like, “Puss, Puss! Poor Pussy,” and, “How many mice have you caught today, Cat?” and, “Would you like a saucer of milk, Pussums?”

Now the mend who were holding Jesus in custody were mocking him as they beat him. They also blindfolded him and kept asking him, “Prophesy! Who is it that struck you?”

At last she drew near. She stood by Aslan’s head. She stooped down and said in a quivering voice, “And now, who has won? Fool, did you think that by all this you would save the human traitor? Understand that you have given me Narnia for ever, you have lost your own life and you have not saved his. In that knowledge, despair and die.”

And when they came to the place that is called The Skull, there they crucified him, and the criminals, one on his right and one on his left. Then Jesus, calling out with a loud voice, said, “Father, into your hands I commit my spirit!” And having said this he breathed his last. 

The Chronicles of Narnia by C.S. Lewis

The Bible English Standard Version

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