Aragorn: Ranger, Strider, King

Aragorn is much like Gandalf in many ways. Just as Gandalf is symbolic of Christ, Aragorn has his own similarities to our savior as well. Aragorn is a king, just as Christ is to us.

Aragorn first shows up in Bree as what the hobbits think is just Strider. The hobbits are misled by the appearance of Aragorn, just like the apostles didn’t recognize Christ after his resurrection.

Throughout the first part of the journey, the hobbits are suspicious of Aragorn and aren’t sure if they should be trusting him. They had no choice but to follow him to Weathertop. Once they see that they can trust Aragorn when he fights off the Black Riders, they don’t really have the time to see Aragorn for who he is, because they are worried for Frodo. Often when we have trials and worries, we forget to look to Christ, the one who saved us.

When the fellowship go through Moria, after Gandalf fell, Aragorn had to take the place of Gandalf as the leader of their group, which he does humbly. Just like Gandalf did, Aragorn still lets Frodo make the decisions, like we are free to make decisions on earth. At Amon Hen, when Frodo makes the decision to leave on his own is an example of this.

When Boromir is felled by three arrows, Aragorn is the first to make it to him. He stands by him until his last breath, and lets him know that he is forgiven for his actions. Boromir then realizes who Aragorn is, in a sense. He realizes the king Aragorn will be.

Aragorn is an excellent tracker. This shows Aragorn’s knowledge of where he is going in life. He knows his purpose, he is to be king, but he doesn’t flaunt the idea around. He is humble. Christ also knew what his purpose on earth was.

Notice how the first thing Aragorn does is make sure Merry and Pippin are all right. His first priority is the safety of those he was left to watch over. He feels responsible for them and loves them like Christ loves us. Christ’s ultimate goal is our spiritual well-being and safety.

After Aragorn sees that Merry and Pippin are safe, he heads to Edoras with Gandalf, Gimli and Legolas. While he is there, he is able to witness the ways Gandalf handles hard situations. Aragorn steps down from his leadership role and leaves Gandalf to take charge again. We don’t see too many significant actions from Aragorn until he and Gandalf are no longer in company with each other. They sort of combine together to form all the aspects of Christ.

The rallying of the Army of the Dead is one of Aragorn’s most significant roles in the Lord of the Rings. His power of the ghosts shows that he is a part of death and life. Christ was resurrected, his body made perfect, making him part of heaven and earth. He is far more powerful than anything, he simply chooses to teach his people through humility and earthly weakness. Aragorn was a perfect example of power and humility.

Aragorn is also a healer. He was the only one who could heal Eowyn after she was injured so deeply. Christ also has the power of spiritual and physical healing. The physical healing from Aragorn symbolizes the healing Christ did on the earth. Only Christ can remove sin from us. Through Christ, all things are made possible.

When Aragorn finally becomes king is similar to when Christ is resurrected.

You may be thinking, “I thought Gandalf was supposed to symbolize Christ.” Well, he does. But just as Christ used many different parables to teach basically the same principles, Tolkien represented Christ with more than one character. People learn in different ways. That is why there are different parables. What may touch one person, might not affect another. Therefore, there needs to be more than one representation of important things.

Most importantly, we see Aragorn face trial. When Frodo offers Aragorn the ring, he has to resist the temptation to take it. We see Christ experience a similar thing. Satan tries to tempt Christ in any way he can, and Christ is able to resist it. It wasn’t necessarily easy for Christ to resist, or else it wouldn’t have been temptation. He did, however, know his decision beforehand, therefore, he was able to resist when the moment presented itself.

Gandalf is sort of the representation of Christ’s life in sequence, Aragorn is representing Christ’s roles and works on the earth. Aragorn has always been the most noble of all characters, not only out of Tolkien’s characters, but of almost all fantasy novels. Aragorn will always be the one true king.