Sunday, July 20, 2014

Mere Christianity: Mini-Review

One of the marks of a certain type of bad man is that he cannot give up a thing himself without wanting every one else to give it up. that is not the Christian way. An individual Christian may see fit to give up all sorts of things for special reasons--marriage, or meat, or beer, or cinema; but the moment he starts saying the things are bad in themselves, or looking down his nose at other people who do use them, he has taken a wrong turning. (p. 72)

Mere Christianity is C. S. Lewis's attempt to explain Christianity at its most basic level--leaving out denominational hot-buttons and aiming to establish theology and doctrine that all Christians subscribe to and agree make up the faith. In the prologue, he describes turning to Christianity as entering the main hallway of a large house--there are many doors leading from the hallway to the rooms of the house (the various denominations) and each room is furnished a bit differently. But, so long as all the inhabitants follow the general rules of the house, there is no reason to suppose that one person's room is any better than another. His job is to explain the general house rules.

The book was adapted from a series of informal radio broadcasts and the tone of the writing reflects this. The writing is quite conversational, as if Lewis had stopped by for a friendly chat about the details of the Christian faith. His analogies are a bit dated, but they still clearly reinforce the points he makes. Very engaging and easy to read. ★★★


Peggy Ann said...

Been meaning to read this for years. Its been languishing on my shelf. I always thought it would be quite heavy material but you make it sound like an easy read. Thanks Bev.

Bev Hankins said...

Heavy material...but the conversion from radio talks make it seem more like conversation than heavy reading.

Unknown said...

I have read and re-read this book, many times, for over 35 years. It is definitely a favorite. I don't know what it is exactly but I just "get" his way of thinking and explaining.

fredamans said...

Not sure this would be for me... I am not one to normally enjoy overhearing conversations and this is kind-of the same thing, right?! LOL
Great review though!