Tag: Lewis

The Moral Law, Comfort, & Wishful Thinking

I’m teaching my C. S. Lewis course at my university again this semester. The students began their Lewis reading with Surprised by Joy, his insightful autobiography. We are now focused on Mere Christianity and discussing the significance of that book. Every time I come back to it, I’m deeply impressed all over again, and I always seem to find nuggets of truth and wisdom that stand out more clearly than in my previous reading. This time I was struck particularly… Read more »

Narnia: Layers of Meaning

All summer I worked on developing courses on C. S. Lewis’s Chronicles of Narnia. In one sense, it was labor, but some labors provide spiritual satisfaction. This was one of those labors. I’m now presenting the fruit of that labor to a room of seventy people at my church who seem eager to learn what Lewis has given us in these presumably “children’s” tales. What they are discovering, I trust, is that they are just as meaningful to adults. I’m… Read more »

The God He Never Wanted to Meet

C. S. Lewis didn’t start out as a great Christian apologist. His imagination didn’t lead him to Narnia at first—that was a later development. In his earliest years, sent away to a boarding school at age nine, he had a kind of Christian faith, but only the kind that called for him to carry out certain duties such as prayer. And he lived in fear of hell. Perhaps that’s why he abandoned that childhood faith in his pre-teen years. One… Read more »

To Love at All Is to Be Vulnerable

Re-reading any work by C. S. Lewis is hardly a waste of one’s time. I go back continually to what he has written because I keep finding new treasures, even in passages that I already know to some extent. For instance, in The Four Loves, there is a part that is often quoted—I have quoted it—yet I forgot the context in which Lewis penned it. It’s in the final chapter, the one on “Charity.” The greater context is the concern… Read more »

The Glorious Last Battle

I finished my project of preparing all seven books in the Chronicles of Narnia for teaching this fall and winter at my church. Each one was a joy to develop, but I looked forward the most to doing the final book in the series, The Last Battle. When I teach my basic C. S. Lewis course at the university, this is the one Narnia book I have students read. Most are already familiar with The Lion, the Witch, and the… Read more »

Lewis on Love of Country

In my recent re-reading of C. S. Lewis’s The Four Loves, I came across a section that I had forgotten, which deals with one’s love of country—both the positive and negative aspects. This had a particular appeal to me as I prepare to teach American history once again to university students, many of whom are rather blank slates when it comes to knowledge of the past. “We all know,” Lewis begins, “that this love [of country] becomes a demon when… Read more »

“I Know Grief Is Great,” Said the Lion

The Magician’s Nephew was the Narnia book that took C. S Lewis the longest to write. He conceived it as a way to explain the origin of Narnia, as well as an imaginative answer to how a wardrobe could have such magical powers and why a lamp-post seemingly pops up in the middle of a forest. I believe he succeeded admirably. As I’ve explained in previous posts, I have been preparing to teach the Narnia series at my church. Doing… Read more »