Saturday, July 30, 2016

Reading Mere Christianity by C.S. Lewis - Some Highlights

I am a big fan of the Narnia Chronicles by C.S. Lewis (as you can tell with what I wrote at this link). I read them all at least twice as a child, and I also enjoy the radio drama adaptations by Focus on the Family and the films to some extent. I have previously had the chance to read some of Lewis’ essays about faith and the church. But it wasn’t until this week that I ordered Mere Christianity and began to read it.

Something that surprised me is that Lewis’ writing is still easy to read, 64 years after it was published (and 74 years since the original radio broadcasts were aired). As I read, I can easily follow his train of thought – and his arguments flow naturally onto the page. If someone had asked me last month of books to introduce to a seeker of Christianity, I wold have recommended Strobel’s The Case for Faith and The Case for Christ, or something like the Alpha Course. However, having read seven chapters of Mere Christianity, I would now recommend it to someone wanting to know what the Christian believes.

What I find personally convenient, is that each chapter was originally one episode of Lewis’ broadcasts on the BBC in the 1940s. This means that they are each a similar length. In the edition I am reading, each chapter is about six pages long. This is handy for me, because I can read one chapter in one sitting, then go and get a drink or do some random housework, and then come back to read the next chapter. This is my preferable reading style. It is similar to TV with ad breaks!

Another thing that surprised me is the number of apparent typos within the text I am studying. I am planning on contacting the publisher when I have finished the book to inform them of the location of each typo, which hopefully can be edited out for the next edition.

I enjoy C.S. Lewis’ writing style in both the Narnia books and also in his Christian work for adults. I am enjoying reading Mere Christianity, and would happily recommend it to anyone. I enjoy reading easily digestable chapters, and I am looking forward to read the rest, and maybe move on to Lewis’ other writings for grown ups.