Saturday, 23 April 2011
Mere Christianity by C.S. Lewis is a classic piece of Christian writing. It is considered as one of the most influential books in shaping the evangelical church (ranked third by Christianity Today, see here). So I thought I would give it a go. I had that thought about three years ago, and so I started it. Then I gave up. So, about a year later I tried again. And gave up again too. But finally, I finished it.
Do not think for a moment that my repeated failed attempts say something about how good the book is. It's more telling about how I am easily distracted and forget to bookmark where I've got to. I've got to admit, the style is quite heavy and hard to plough through. You can only do it in 30 page stints, otherwise your brains may melt. But it's worth it.
C.S. Lewis explains some key Christian doctrine with clarity and really useful analogies. It discards the common myths about Christianity and explains clearly why and what the actual reality is. It covers quite a few topics, from the Trinity to Sexual Morality. It offers helpful illustrations with some of the mind-bending aspects of Gods (like the Trinity, and the eternal nature of Jesus), and he doesn't just explain the problems away. He observes that they are difficult, and that they should be. He also highlights how his illustrations are flawed and uses these flaws to point to the awesome and indescribable nature of God.
If you can get past the heavy and old-fashioned writing style it's well worth the effort.
I'm currently writing this in the Trago Lounge (Third Place Communities and all that) as my internet is down at home. We were briefly joined by the Easter Bunny. That was exciting.]