What work or works of literature contain one or more of the listed Biblical allusions?1. Eye of the Needle/Rich Man/Camel2. John the Baptist/Head on a platter3. Ruth4. Manna5. Jacob and the...

What work or works of literature contain one or more of the listed Biblical allusions?

1. Eye of the Needle/Rich Man/Camel
2. John the Baptist/Head on a platter
3. Ruth
4. Manna
5. Jacob and the Ladder
6. Psalm 23
7. Jezebel
8. Golden Calf
9. Sodom & Gomorrah
10. Solomon
11. The Good Samaritan
12. Daniel in the lion's den
13. last supper
14. Calvary

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auntlori's profile pic

Lori Steinbach | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted on

Wow. You could literally go on forever with a list like this. I can think of all kinds of smaller references to the Bible stories on your list, but the one I would like to focus on is the last one. The picture of Jesus dying on a cross to save the sins of mankind is dramatic and therefore not particularly overused. In other words, it takes a big story to use a Calvary allusion. I can think of many, but three which, as a senior in high school, you may have read are Lord of the Flies, The Grapes of Wrath, and A Tale of Two Cities. A quick overview of each should give you enough to work with.

In Lord of the Flies, Simon is the Christ figure. He knows the true nature of man and tries to tell the rest of the boys on the island in an attempt to save them. Instead, he is killed by them.

In The Grapes of Wrath, Casey is also a Christ figure, though he certainly commits his share of sins. He is a preacher whose life is taken from him because he is a symbol of something the people in power hate. He tries to unite the workers in order to improve their lives; he is killed for his efforts.

Finally, Sydney Carton in A Tale of Two Cities is the embodiment of Calvary as he literally sacrifices (voluntarily gives up) his own life for another's. He does so out of love, just as Jesus did; and though he wrestles with the idea just as Jesus did in the Garden of Gethsemene, Sidney does make the ultimate sacrifice.

Allusions are only useful if the reader knows the orginal; these three works clearly depict the familiar sacrifice of blood made by Jesus on Calvary. I have included three excellent eNotes sites if you need or want to do a little more research on any of these characters or novels.

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