Mere Christianity, The War Against the West
, Progressive Party (United States, 1912)
, Viktor Orbán
, C. S. Lewis
is a book by C. S. Lewis
, adapted from a 1943
series of BBC
radio chats broadcast while Lewis was an Oxford
don during World War II
and it is considered a classic work in Christian apologetics
. The transcripts of the broadcasts, expanded into book form, originally appeared in print as three separate pamphlets, The Case for Christianity
, Christian Behavior
, and Beyond Personality
The title, Mere Christianity
, indicates the intention of Lewis, an Anglican
, to describe the Christian
common-ground. He aims at avoiding controversies to explain those things that have defined Christianity in nearly all places and times. Lewis restates the fundamental teachings of the Christian religion
, for the sake of those basically educated as well as the intellectual
s of his generation, for whom the jargon
of formal Christian theology
did not retain its intended meaning.
Of course, the book has not been received entirely without controversy
. For example, the chronicle of Lewis's conversion
contains some of the author's reasons for believing which, as may be expected, some have found to be compelling while others have found unconvincing. In particular, a scrutiny of the work reveals that an excluded middle
is central to his key arguments. Lewis famously argues:
:A man who was merely a man and said the sort of things Jesus said would not be a great moral teacher. He would either be a lunatic—on the level with a man who says he is a poached egg—or he would be the devil of hell. You must take your choice. Either this was, and is, the Son of God, or else a madman or something worse. You can shut Him up for a fool or you can fall at His feet and call Him Lord and God. But let us not come with any patronizing nonsense about His being a great human teacher. He has not left that open to us.
This argument and its variations are referred to as the "Trilemma
", though Lewis himself didn't use that name. Critics answer that especially in this case, the form of argument is misapplied resulting in a false dilemma
, which avoids consideration of reasonable alternatives (such as the idea that Jesus need not be consistent in his position in order to be a moral teacher). Still others suggest that this is not so much a logical flaw, but that the argument is based on the questionable premise that the biblical texts are reliable and true.
Further, both Christian and non-religious critics have suggested that Lewis created common ground out of beliefs and sentiments that can only be made to appear similar by being purposely vague. In fact, he makes explicit his use of purposeful vagueness at the beginning of the book, when he describes the common ground of all religion
s, with his point being that Christianity
is not mathematics
, even if like mathematicians, Christians may claim that there is only one right answer.
Lewis bases his case for Christian belief on the existence of a Moral Law, a "Rule about Right and Wrong" commonly known to all human beings. This "law" is like mathematical laws in being real, not just a matter of convention, contrived by humans. But it is unlike mathematically expressed laws of nature
in that it can be broken or ignored by humans, who possess free will.
After introducing the Moral Law, Lewis argues that the uncreated God
who is its source takes primacy over the created Satan
whose rebellion undergirds all evil. Then the death and resurrection of Christ
, the Son of God, is introduced as, in the Christian view, the only way in which our inadequate human attempts to redeem our own sins could be made adequate in God's eyes.
had tried to set up on his own, to behave as if he belonged to himself," Lewis says of the futility of our own attempts at moral self-justification and consequent need for repentance and "surrender." God "became a man" in Christ, says Lewis, so that "our human nature which can suffer and die" could be "amalgamated with God's nature" and make full atonement possible.
There are many theological theories about what "the point of this dying was," writes Lewis. None is fully adequate to the thing itself, any more than a verbal description of a mathematical model, such as that of an atom, is fully adequate to the mathematics per se. Thus does Lewis make nuanced logical distinctions between core religious truths and theological explanations thereof, throughout his book.
The last third of the book breaks from attempts to logically address issues of belief and instead starts to explore the ethics
resulting from belief.Mere Christianity
is widely admired and influential across a spectrum of trinitarian
Christians, which may attest to the author's success in accomplishing the aim of restating theology in a way that avoids many controversies. The work is also widely admired by many nontrinitarian
The title has influenced Touchstone: A Journal of Mere Christianity
and William Dembski
's book Mere Creation
. Charles Colson
's conversion to Christianity resulted from his reading this book, as did Francis Collins
*http://www.bbc.co.uk/religion/religions/christianity/people/cslewis_16.shtml Audio of the last remaining broadcast talk
from bbc.co.ukCategory:Christian studies booksCategory:C. S. Lewis booksko:순전한 기독교