Thursday, January 27, 2011

Jack Lewis, Guest Blogger pt. 4

The question is, I suppose, whether any hypothesis covers the facts so well as the Christian hypothesis. That hypothesis is that God has come down into the created universe, down to manhood — and come up again, pulling it up with Him. The alternative hypothesis is not legend, nor exaggeration, nor the apparitions of a ghost. It is either lunacy or lies. Unless one can take the second alternative (and I can’t) one turns to the Christian theory.

‘What are we to make of Christ?’ There is no question of what we can make of Him; it is entirely a question of what He intends to make of us. You must accept or reject the story.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Jack Lewis, Guest Blogger pt. 3

What are we to do about reconciling the two contradictory phenomena? One attempt consists in saying that the man did not really say these things; but that His followers exaggerated the story, and so the legend grew up that he had said them. This is difficult because His followers were all Jews; that is, they belonged to that Nation which of all others was most convinced that there was only one God — that there could not possibly be another. It is very odd that this horrible invention about a religious leader should grow up among the one people in the whole earth least likely to make such a mistake. On the contrary we get the impression that none of His immediate followers or even of the New Testament writers embraced the doctrine at all easily.

Another point is that on that view you would have to regard the accounts of the Man as being legends. Now, as a literary historian, I am perfectly convinced that whatever else the Gospels are they are not legends. I have read a great deal of legend and I am quite clear that they are not the same sort of thing. They are not artistic enough to be legends. From an imaginative point of view they are clumsy, they don’t work up to things properly.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Jack Lewis, Guest Blogger pt. 2

Part 1 of "What Are We To Make of Jesus Christ?"

‘What are we to make of Jesus Christ?’ This is a question, which has, in a sense, a frantically comic side. For the real question is not what are we to make of Christ, but what is He to make of us? The picture of a fly sitting deciding what it is going to make of an elephant has comic elements about it.

But perhaps the questioner meant what are we to make of Him in the sense of ‘How are we to solve the historical problem set us by the recorded sayings and acts of this Man?’ This problem is to reconcile two things. On the one hand you have got the almost generally admitted depth and sanity of His moral teaching, which is not very seriously questioned, even by those who are opposed to Christianity. In fact, I find when I am arguing with very anti-God people that they rather make a point of saying, ‘I am entirely in favour of the moral teaching of Christianity’ — and there seems to be a general agreement that in the teaching of this Man and of His immediate followers, moral truth is exhibited at its purest and best. It is not sloppy idealism; it is full of wisdom and shrewdness. The whole thing is realistic, fresh to the highest degree, the product of a sane mind. That is one phenomenon.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Jack Lewis, Guest Blogger

C.S. Lewis is the man. Let me just say that right now. If he had lived 1800 years earlier, he would have had at least one book in the Bible, I have no doubt. Go into a bookstore or your favorite online bookseller and select literally any book he ever wrote—every single one of them are classics. Well, except maybe for Till We Have Faces; unless you’re really really into the whole mythology behind the story of Cupid and Psyche you probably won’t get much out of it. But every other book he wrote is just absolutely chock-full of his classic wit, penetrating insight, and abundant imagination.

Lewis is a maestro at taking complex theological ideas and explaining them in such a simple and obvious way that even the most untrained layman can understand. And not only does he explain it well, he does so in a way which preserves and even highlights the mystery and awe of an eternal being, never watering a subject down or turning our faith into dry academia.  Have you read Narnia as an adult? You’ll get ten times more out of that series now than you ever did as a child.

Monday, January 3, 2011

The Year of Light and Momentary Troubles

I know it’s been quite a bit more than the ‘few weeks’ I said it would be until my next post. Sorry ‘bout that; life kinda got in the way, as I’m sure many of you can relate to.

2010 was for me a terrific year of spiritual growth and maturation…mainly because it was also a year of relentless financial and worldly hardships. When I look back on the year, though, the hardships aren’t what I see. What I see is God sustaining us through every uncertain month, in a different and unexpected way each time. I see more than ever God keeping his promises to my family, not in some theological kind of abstract ‘God is always with you’ way, but in a real, flesh and blood, down-in-the-trenches-with-us manner. (And we would like to give special thanks to all of those people who acted as His hands in helping to sustain us).