Daily Archives: November 23, 2008

important reading from Jack

I thought that on day two I would think about the writing of Lewis (nickname Jack) that I have found helpful. The first one that comes to mind is the book I talk through with my students every year – Mere Christianity. This is not one but actually four books in one. This had its origin in radio talks during WW2 which were transcribed and edited and then in 1952(?) combined into one volume. I know college courses which use it for teach logical argument (presumably the five chapters of book one) but I find that the practical section of book three is most thought provoking. Within book four one finds theological musings. Two specific lessons that I can quickly offer from this book are “we need more reminding than teaching” and “pride is the great sin.” Probably one of the most famous things from Mere is the “Liar, Lunatic, Lord” theory.

Screwtape Letters would be next in my list because Lewis makes me think about my life in practical terms. I think the main thing that I remember from this work is that fact that one of the Enemy’s best tools is distraction. And he (the Deceiver) knows that if he can get me a little off course from God, it is easier and more sustainable than trying to get me way off course… “cards are better than murder, if cards will do the trick”

The Space Trilogy has much to be offered, but the one point I would take from it is that we are “bent.”

The Chronicles of Narnia are great to read. I read them through a couple of summers ago and found that they were amazingly full of spiritual lessons thorugh this rich story telling. Yes, they are great for kids, but man do they read chock full of theological musings.

The Weight of Glory is a sermon transcribed and turned into essay which then becomes a title for a group of essays and sermons. This is ‘thicker’ reading than what I have mentioned above. Once this small volume has been consumed, the next step up is God in the Dock which is even ‘thicker’ both in size and in depth of writing.

The last book I would mention (this is not meant to be exhaustive) is Till We Have Faces which is an interesting retelling of a Greek myth.

Last year I read the Collected Letters (3 thick volumes) which do as advertised, give a window into the soul. But this is for those who wish to invest time into a more serious understanding of the heart amd mind of Jack. 

So that is what I think are some of the more (though I would never presume to claim that I know better than others, these are just my entries in line with C S Lewis week) helpful writings of C.S.Lewis.

Happy C. S. Lewis week!

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