This is a continuation of a review of the book Mere Christianity by C.S. Lewis. Of course it is recommended that you read along in the text as we move on to book two; “What Christians Believe.” Without further introduction let us examine the next section of this great text.
Chapter six; The Rival Conceptions of God
Lewis continues his masterwork with a somewhat puzzling comment, “If you are a Christian you do not have to believe that all the other religions are simply wrong all through.” Unfortunately, this is not a commonly held belief among many Christians. Though it can be said of other religions as well, many seem to believe that they have a monopoly on the truth. However, it is important that a Christian views other religions as wrong and that they are different from Christianity. Here Lewis goes on to divide worldviews along the lines that are important in this ongoing discussion of the moral argument for God: the materialist vice the theist. Then among theist views he divides those that believe god is somehow “beyond good and evil.” The one that calls a cancer evil because it kills a man, but that person could just as easily say that a surgeon is evil because the surgeon kills the cancer. In both the atheistic view and the pantheistic view, there really is no such thing as evil. In the Christian view God is separate from creation and there are things in creation that work against God’s will. Lewis finishes this chapter with a knock-down argument against any naturalist answer to the so-called “problem of evil.”
“My argument against God was that the universe seemed so cruel and unjust. But how had I got this idea of just and unjust? A man does not call a line crooked unless he has some idea of a straight line. What was I comparing this universe with when I called it unjust? If the whole show was bad and senseless from A to Z, so to speak, why did I, who was supposed to be part of the show, find myself in such violent reaction against it? A man feels wet when he falls into water, because man is not a water animal: a fish would not feel wet. Of course I could have given up my idea of justice by saying it was nothing but a private idea of my own. But if I did that, then my argument against God collapsed too–for the argument depended on saying that the world was really unjust, not simply that it did not happen to please my fancies.”
Chapter seven; The Invasion
Lewis takes this chapter to discuss two types of invasion, one of over-simplified Christianity. Just as atheism is too simple in leaving so much out and having no explanation for too many things so too is watered-down Christianity. This is a type of Christianity that “simply says there is a good God in Heaven and everything is all right--leaving out all the difficult and terrible doctrines about sin and hell and the devil, and the redemption. Both these are boys’ philosophies.” The goal is not simplicity; religion is never simple. The world is not simple, why would we expect relationship to God to be simple? Even a “simple” child’s prayer is not truly simple. It’s enemies of Christianity that often set up this simple version in order to tear it down.
To read the full article click here: http://www.christianapologeticsalliance.com/2014/12/19/equipped-vol-1-no-2-the-word-became-flesh-and-dwelt-among-us/
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