Wednesday, September 03, 2014

Mere Christianity by C.S. Lewis

The first weekly devotional classic in my current study (see previous post) is Mere Christianity by C. S. Lewis.  C. S. Lewis (1898-1963) is one of the most important Christian thinkers of the twentieth century.  At age 33 Lewis was "surprised by joy" (his description of his conversion to Christianity.)

I read the entire book Mere Christianity several years ago, but the material in this excerpt seemed new and fresh to me.  Here Lewis discussed the question, Is Christianity hard or easy?   Here are two of the most meaningful quotes from this great piece of literature.

"It is hard; but the sort of compromise we are all hankering after is harder - in fact it is impossible.  It may be hard for an egg to turn into a bird; it would be a jolly sight harder for it to learn to fly while remaining an egg.  We are like these eggs at present.  And you cannot go on indefinitely being just an ordinary egg.  We must be hatched or go bad."

"The church exists for nothing else but to draw men into Christ, to make them little Christs.  If they are not doing that, all the cathedrals, clergy, missions, sermons, even the Bible itself, are simply a waste of time."

According the C. S. Lewis the road that appears the easiest to us is actually the hardest (example: the student who waits until the end of the semester to cram for a test.)  He further points out that the pursuit of personal happiness by being morally good just ends in frustration.

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