The Wages of Sin
Eko was a paradox of faith and pride. As the ultimate demonstration of the duality of his nature, his final refusal to confess and repent was quickly followed by a recitation of the opening lines of the 23rd Psalm just before his life was brutally put to an end. I have strong feelings about this episode but I wrestle with wondering if I arrive at these emotions because of my Christian perspective or if it is really what the writers intended for the audience to experience. With that in mind...
I was immediately and continually drawn to the book of Romans while digesting this episode. In the 6th chapter, I believe the Apostle Paul explains Eko's situation to a tee when he says,
"Previously, you let yourself be a slave to impurity and lawlessness, which led ever deeper into sin. Now you must give yourself to be a slave to righteous living so that you will become holy. When you were a slave to sin, you were free from the obligation to do right. And what was the result? You are now ashamed of the things you used to do, things that end in eternal doom. But now you are free from the power of sin and have become a slave of God. Now you do those things that lead to holiness and result in eternal life. For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life through Christ Jesus our Lord."I don't know if the producers intended to bring up the whole Jesus thing but to me, Messianic redemption was what Eko most obviously and desparately needed....and he was so close to finding it. He knew that the wages of sin is death but he sought to redeem this price on his head with his own means (40 days of silence, building a church, etc) never acknowledging that redemption is a gift to be received and not a privilege to be earned. His denial of his sins and his stubborn refusal to confess his need and receive life as a gift is what ultimately led to his demise.
What do you think? Was Eko's fate a result of his refusal to accept the island's offer of redemption? Or do you think the opposite...that his steadfast pride and self assurance represented a redeemed state and he was killed because his "redemption" was complete?