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Mere Christianity by C. S Lewis

Mere Christianity (original 1943; edition 1984)

by C. S Lewis

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14,861134133 (4.29)178
Title:Mere Christianity
Authors:C. S Lewis
Info:Macmillan Pub. Co (1984), Edition: Macmillan paperbacks ed, Paperback
Collections:Your library
Tags:Christian apologia

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Mere Christianity by C. S. Lewis (1943)

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D-E-E-P! ( )
  shdawson | May 5, 2015 |
Frequently brilliant, yet occasionally frustrating. Sometimes timeless, at times quite dated. What I dislike is the occasional concession-too-far when theological ground could (and should) be held. What is disappointing is just how much this book has aged in the last decade or so, particularly in its sections on morality. But what I love is Lewis' willingness to trust even the non-Christian reader with strong theology, and his ability to use delightful, brief word pictures to bring even the deepest truths home. In that, he follows his Master brilliantly. ( )
  markbarnes | May 4, 2015 |
I just finished reading this book for the second time and I actually changed my rating from two stars to one. I've never seen someone use so many words to spout such utter nonsense and wild speculation. I have no idea why apologist hold Lewis up as the inspiration behind their need to defend Christianity. He provided no evidence but only made bold assertions. It was particularly disheartening to read all the parts where the author either asserted that he knew what God was like or that he knew how God thought. This book (and the fact that so many modern Christians hold it in such high esteem) is absolutely horrifying. ( )
1 vote jimocracy | Apr 18, 2015 |
To begin with, I have to say outright that I admire C.S. Lewis. I enjoy his writing. I think his scholarly work was brilliant and I adore his fiction. I also think that his writings as a Christian apologist are in some ways the most difficult to place in his oeuvre, and it is these works that people, at least people I know, either tend to love or hate.

I enjoyed Mere Christianity. I had read it before. If you are expecting sophisticated theology, or an intellectual defense of Christianity, this is not the book for you. It does not have the rigor of his academic works and I do not believe this was ever Lewis' intention. The book remains popular because it is a clear explanation of "mere" Christianity, as I believe Lewis understood it as a "mere" man. It reads like a series of brief chats. In fact I think the book was conceived as a series of talks to be given on the radio and expanded from that. The talks are meant to be simple. They succeed because I think they address many issues experienced by real people who are Christians or are struggling with Christianity. I think if one is struggling with the meaning of life or with how to live a good life and is open to the emotional sides of life aside from just the intellectual, there are parts of this book that are bound to resonate. This is one of the reasons for its continued success. Theologically, Lewis may not always pull off his explanations, he might not even explain something in a way that has since become accepted, but I feel he carries this off as he explains it as the current state of his own evolving understanding.

That said, much that is said is dated, is written for a different time and world-view. This might be difficult for some people, although the fundamental principles remain the same several generations later. And as usual, Lewis makes me think, and reevaluate, both when I agree with him and when I don't. ( )
  dooney | Jan 19, 2015 |
Where do I even start. I haven't read any of Lewis' non-fiction before though I've wanted to for ages. I'm so glad I chose this as my first one. Basically I don't have the words to do the book justice. It is terribly profound. It is logical and oh, so simply deep. At first I found the writing as if I was being talked to like a child but I did have to realise the book was first written in the 1940s and I got used to the style along with realizing that I am a child, a child of God. As I said I do not have the words to do the book justice and that is how I felt throughout reading the whole book. His explanations of why there must be a God ... the God ... Our Father, are so simplistically logical that I was literally stunned and wished I could have thought of that myself. He goes on to describe the whole Christian religion, from the standpoint of an atheist who converted because it was the only sensible answer to his searching. As a Christian, Catholic, myself I didn't need the proof but I found it utterly enlightening the way he explained things so simply. He covers all the points most non-believers raise as he raised them himself on his journey and C.S. Lewis was one of our great modern thinkers. I could have read this book quickly but it took me a while to read as after I had read 1, sometimes 2, chapters I just had to stop because I wanted to remember, muse upon and discuss the next day with my coffee group, the way he had made me look at things from a different angle. This is "the" book to read for those looking, searching and trying to find God, even before you decide upon a denomination. Lewis even talks about this. The book is completely Christian without denominational influence. He was Church of England (Anglican/Episcopal) but he talks of how one should find their own denomination without bias. Now that I've read the book, this is one I'm going to keep by my bedside and read a chapter from now and then to learn his phraseology and allegory to help myself when speaking with non-believers. Truly a classic of the 20th century that should be read by all because even if the book doesn't convert you it will give you the true meaning of Christianity and let you know why these Christians you meet aren't perfect. ( )
  ElizaJane | Oct 31, 2014 |
Showing 1-5 of 132 (next | show all)
Cotton candy apologetics - engaging and conversational but shallow.
I am well aware of Lewis' writing talent and he is clearly an intelligent individual, so I feel unqualified to "critique" Mr. Lewis. However, I would like to comment on why, at least for me, Lewis' arguments for the existence of God are uncompelling.

» Add other authors (10 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Lewis, C. S.primary authorall editionsconfirmed
Gresham, DouglasForewordsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Norris, KathleenForewordsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Nylén, AnttiForewordsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Every one has heard people quarrelling.
"You must make your choice. Either this man was, and is, the Son of God: or else a madman or something worse. You can shut Him up for a fool, you can spit at Him and kill Him as a demon; or you can fall at His feet and call Him Lord and God. But let us not come with any patronizing nonsense about His being a great human teacher. He has not left that open to us. He did not intend to."
"A man who jibbed at authority in other things as some people do in religion would have to be content to know nothing all his life."
"The bad psychological material is not a sin but a disease. It does not need to be repented of, but to be cured... Human beings judge one another by their external actions. God judges them by their moral choices."
"We must get over wanting to be needed: in some goodish people, specially women, that is the hardest of all temptations to resist."
"How monotonously alike all the great tyrants and conquerors have been: how gloriously different are the saints."
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The 'Lewis' DVD sets which feature sergeant Lewis,in the British television series,have nothing to do with the author C.S.Lewis.
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0060652926, Paperback)

In 1943 Great Britain, when hope and the moral fabric of society were threatened by the relentless inhumanity of global war, an Oxford don was invited to give a series of radio lectures addressing the central issues of Christianity. Over half a century after the original lectures, the topic retains it urgency. Expanded into book form, Mere Christianity never flinches as it sets out a rational basis for Christianity and builds an edifice of compassionate morality atop this foundation. As Mr. Lewis clearly demonstrates, Christianity is not a religion of flitting angels and blind faith, but of free will, an innate sense of justice and the grace of God.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 14:03:34 -0400)

(see all 6 descriptions)

Discusses the essence of Christian faith and the doctrine of the Trinity.

(summary from another edition)

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