Fifty years ago today, while John F. Kennedy was aboard Air Force One en route to Dallas, Texas, from nearby Fort Worth, C.S. Lewis died of kidney failure at his home in Oxford, England. Though his death preceded President Kennedyâ€™s by about an hour, C.S. Lewisâ€™ passing was not noted in the papers until several days later, because of coverage of Kennedyâ€™s assassination. This week, however, Great Britain has been observing the 50th anniversary of the death of one of the finest men of letters ever produced on British soil, culminating in a ceremony today with the dedication of a memorial stone in Poetâ€™s Corner in the South Transept of Westminster Abbey.
Clive Staples Lewis, born November 29, 1898 in Belfast, Ireland, was far more than a poet. A precocious student of the humanities, Lewis (who was known to friends and family as â€śJackâ€ť) developed a fascination for a broad range of topics, including...
GS, Acts 17:28 Paul quotes a pagan Greek and then says" AS EVEN SOME OF YOUR OWN POETS HAVE SAID, for we are indeed his offspring." You are making the common mistake of assuming that Lewis was s preacher or minister. He was not, said so himself, but expressed his God given talent within his calling. I really do not understand how people really believe that we can only parrot the Scripture verbatim without using allegory, hyperbole, and imagination. God owns poetry, allegory, all of it. Why do we turn God into some cold, colorless, distant deity? That's the Muslim god. Or why do we jump to extreme conclusions such as his use of mythology as some advocating or acceptance of the occult, paganism, or witchcraft? The Bible does also speak if mis judging someone as well based on presumption. The hypocritical judge and judge both share a place in hell apart from the grace of His. I believe Lewis's writing should be thoroughly read and rightly assessed before anyone blankets it with hell bent judgment.
1517, I see in no way Paul using pagan teachings to teach the Gospel on Mars Hill. He rebukes their pagan beliefs. Any how, like I said earlier, his C.o.N is full of pagan abominations (magic, witchcraft, half man half beast creatures), which like I said the Bible strongly speaks against. There is no substitute for Gods word, if one wants to teach the Gospel, they need to use the Bible, not allegorical mythology.
2 Corinthians 6:14-15 "Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: FOR WHAT FELLOWSHIP HATH RIGHTEOUSNESS WITH UNRIGHTEOUSNESS? WHAT COMMUNION HATH LIGHT WITH DARKNESS? 15 AND WHAT CONCORD HATH CHRIST WITH BELIAL? or what part hath he that believith with an infidel."
These verses are mostly about not having too much fellowship with the lost, but as instruction in righteousness, it still illustrates my point. Notice he says what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? What Concord hath Christ with belial? He is clearly saying the two don't mix. Paul says to be ye separate and have nothing to do with it.
GS, You mention to TT that no one should use pagan abominations to teach the gospel. That would include the Apostle Paul then. Read Acts 17 when Paul is at Mars Hill with the philosophers and debaters. He quotes a Greek (PAGAN) playwright/poet. Mr. Lewis used what he knew to express his faith in Christ, as TT pointed out, like Paul in Acts 17. Similarly, Augustine used his extensive knowledge of Roman beliefs (Roman version of Greek mythology) his magnus opus City of God. We cannot place God in a box when it comes to imagination and storytelling. God owns ALL truth, as highlighted in Acts 17, and uses men and women IN their calling. Mr. Lewis' calling was a professor of Medieval Literature, imaginative storyteller, and layman apologist. He was not a huckster of the occult, trying to preach a pagan christianity.
TT, my reference to it being abominable is due to the fact it is supposed to be Christian, yet is full of pagan abominations. The Bible speaks very strongly against witchcraft, and magic, which is glorified in the Chronicles of Narnia. His teaching mythology has no weight with me, because that is also abominable. Also, I don't see a clear, Biblical Gospel message in it as well, but even it did present a clear Gospel message, one should not use pagan abominations to teach the Gospel. Hope that helps you see My position.
Thank you, 1517 and John UK, for the eloquent words about Mr. Lewis. He was a remarkable writer and apologist who very deftly and genuinely defended the Christian faith.
It seems as if those bashing Lewis have not actually read any of his works. GsTexas, you find the Chronicles of Narnia heretical? Is it due to his use of mythology? He was a professor and taught mythology. It is a children's story that very brilliantly presents the simple gospel to children. Also, Mike, I don't believe anyone is "following him."
Try more than a few quotes, GsTexas...These are some I have read and have thoroughly enjoyed.
-Surprised By Joy-an autobiography chronicling his childhood, years of atheism, and coming to Christ. -Mere Christianity-a classic of Christian apology. -Pilgrim's Regress-loved this. -Chronicles of Narnia-fantasy, "fairy" story by someone who very obviously KNOWS his Savior. -Screwtape Letters-fiction; a demon writes letters to his protege about how to distract mortals from God; an excellent study on the human condition.
I thank God for raising up men like C.S. Lewis who can think deeply and expressly themselves so eloquently. God uses many different types of people to reach many different types of people. The atheists don't own intellectualism...
I've read a few quotes, and what not by CS. Lewis, and found them quite Edifying. His Chronicles of Narnia however, is downright heretical. Some of his other books sounded interesting, but I have not gotten around to reading them. A lot of people bash him, and claim that he was lost. I don't have an opinion on the matter because I have not read enough of his material to know what he believed. I can only hope his view of Christianity had nothing in common with his abominable Chronicles of Narnia.
Anyone who changes his name to that of his dying dog at the amazing age of four deserves to be read, for sure. Jacksie Lewis, which he later allowed to be shortened to Jack.
Christened in the Anglican church, he avowed atheism in his teens, but later in life was compelled to believe and embraced Christianity. His friend Tolkien would have him a Catholic, but he returned to his Anglican roots.
I would like to read some of his work, but I am afraid it would go right over my head. But I may have a read of his book which tries to reconcile human suffering and pain with a holy and loving God.
Mike, Why do feel it appropriate to bash the man? Who's "following" him? I find it disheartening when someone comments on a person's obvious God given talent to write and express his faith, though flawed like anyone else, with clarity and imagination. Just because someone reads an author's work doesn't mean they are a follower. I have read Melville. Does that make me a whaler? Lighten up.
I have enjoyed Mr. Lewis' writings. I particularly enjoyed his Pilgrim's Regress and Space Trilogy. I appreciated his candor and wit as well as his philosophical acumen. I have no doubt he was called as an educator, reminding me that God has his servants everywhere, which gives me comfort. I personally have a connection with him, as I lost my first wife to illness, and was comforted by his Problem with Pain and A Grief Observed. I will continue to cherish his books, especially in the cold, wet season, which is fitting when reading an Oxford author.