My Faith Hassle

Mere Christianity

The great difficulty is to get modern audiences to realize that you are preaching Christianity solely and simply because you happen to think it true; they always suppose you are preaching it because you like it or think it good for society or something of that sort. Now, a clearly maintained distinction between what the Faith actually says and what you would like it to have said or what you understand or what you personally find helpful or think probable, forces your audience to realize that you are tied to your data just as the scientist is tied by the results of the experiments; that you are not just saying what you like. This immediately helps them realize that what is being discussed is a question of objective facts – not about ideals and points of views.

– C.S. Lewis, Mere Christianity.

 

I read Mere Christianity because I was in search of what was affirming. I wanted to feel sane, I wanted to feel “yippie, somebody gets me!” and I decided that C.S. Lewis was that person. C.S. Lewis has a reputation for resonating with many hassling Christians and I enjoyed his other fictional works and hey, he was friends with J.R.R. Tolkien. What’s there not to like?

Mere Christianity was a journey, a long journey that covered not as many pages. While I read, I would pause to breathe or laugh or pray. I would share interesting excerpts (like the one above) with my friends. Sometimes, I would pause to simply say “omo, this guy brilliant sha”. What a sound mind. What a talented writer. What a thinker.

C.S. Lewis should be intimidating but he is not. He doesn’t pretend to have all the answers. He doesn’t overwhelm you with too much theory or how much he knows. He takes deep theological truths and makes them easily comprehensible. Yes, once in a while you will have to read the paragraph three or four times, you will have to check a dictionary or pause to breathe but you won’t feel like an olodo. I promise. He lays a foundation for his arguments and takes you through it all, touching every aspect of our lives here on earth.

I think the most appealing thing about Mere Christianity is that it discusses only the fundamentals, the tenets of our faith. Lewis talks about what it means to be and live as Christians and leaves the rest to our discretion. Like I read somewhere, Lewis is “firm but not demanding, impactful but not onerous”. I couldn’t agree more.

So, I wholly recommend reading Mere Christianity. Whether you’re a hassling Christian or not, I trust Lewis’s ability to open up new worlds for you. And don’t worry about time, it’s a short book and each chapter is easily consumable. So, what are you waiting for? (I just had to say that, it’s the Nigerian in me).

Don’t forget to revert when you eventually read the book. And if you already have read it (leave a comment joor!), there are tons of other C.S. books waiting for you. I’m happy to give recommendations.

7 thoughts on “Mere Christianity”

  1. Interesting thoughts antichrist. I’d like to hear more about your view of his work. However, mere Christianity is barely scratching the surface of Lewis’s thoughts.I would suggest you read more of this deeper intellectual works like the Problem of Pain, etc. But again, faith is not simply the reasoning of facts, the same way love is not the attaching of emotions to certain predisposed physical attributes.

  2. C.S Lewis…. My man.#winks.

    The thing that gets to me when I read from the works of brilliant men like Lewis, Ravi, Sproul and the likes, is that God still has a place for virtually everyone. Be it the philosophically minded, or the genus like Einstein or the Hawkins of our time. All can find their place in His kingdom.

    Tells you how wise God really is.

  3. I agree with everything you said about C.S Lewis, very smart guy and very good at communicating his thoughts.
    I read mere Christianity twice back when I was looking for anything that would hold me tethered to my dwindling faith. On the surface, the arguments are profound, they are discussed so simply that it just makes sense. However, if you get beyond the simplicity, you see that he makes a lot of jumps and assumptions.
    Debunking Lewis will take a whole post but I’ll leave that for when you actually write about the book lol.

    1. C.S. Lewis is IMO one of the greatest Christian writers of the last century… His words are not for the feint in mind though. Prepare to think if you want to read and understand him.

    2. Interesting thoughts Antichrist, I’d love to hear your opinion of his work. Mere Christianity is just scratching the surface of his thoughts though. I think it’d benefit you to read other of his more intellectual work. But again, faith is not simply the reasoning out of facts the same way love is not the affirming fondness to predisposed physical attributes.

  4. C.S. Lewis my guy, my guy.

    I think I need to revisit his books after my John Piper and Jonathan Edwards Book tour.

    Donald and I loved this book that year. Mere Christianity is an awesome read any day.

    PS: C.S. Lewis is the author of the seven Chronicles of Narnia books (what I think is the best fictional representation of the heavenly kingdom)

  5. C.S. Lewis is my guy oh…

    I need to read all his books again, when I am done with John Piper and Jonathan Edwards.

    Mere Christianity wan burst me and Donald head. It is an awesome book for group discussion and hassling.

    PS: C.S. Lewis is the author of the seven chronicles of Narnia books (The best fictional representation of our kingdom I have seen so far).

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