Perhaps no book written by C.S. Lewis has had more influence on people turning to Christ than Mere Christianity. George Marsden stated in a newspaper review that “since 2001, the book and had been translated into at least 36 languages. Marsden has written a book that deals exclusively with Lewis’s book and according to him (in 2016), 3.5 million copies of it have been sold. (100 million copies of the Chronicles of Narnia have been sold.)
Marsden’s book, C.S. Lewis’s “Mere Christianity”: Princeton University Press published a biography (Lives of great religious books) in 2016.
The contents of his book on Lewis are: 1) War service; 2) Broadcast talks; 3) Loved or hated; 4) A classic as afterthought; 5) Into the evangelical orbit; 6) Many-sided Mere Christianity; 7) Critiques; 8) The lasting vitality of Mere Christianity. An Appendix, “Changes in Mere Christianity” compares the original version to later publications to the original three books.
“So the question this present volume seeks to answer is this: what is it about this collection of informal radio talks that accounts for their taking on such a thriving life of their own?” (p. 2) Marsden claims that the answer to his question involves knowing something about Lewis, the circumstances in which the book was written, the purpose of the book and its intended audience. He attributes “The lasting vitality of Mere Christianity” (the title of his chapter 8) to a number of factors:
- Lewis looks for timeless truths as opposed to the culturally bound
- He uses human nature as the point of contact with his audience
- Lewis sees reason in the context of experience, affections and imagination
- He is a poet at heart, using metaphor and the art of meaning in a universe that is alive
- Lewis’s book is about “mere Christianity”
- Mere Christianity does not offer cheap grace
- It is based on the luminosity of the Gospel message itself
George Marsden is the Francis A. McAnancy Professor of History, Emeritus, at the University of Notre Dame.
The original 1943 publication of Mere Christianity is based on broadcasts that Lewis gave for the BBC. Additional publications include:
1) a revised and enlarged edition, with a new introduction, of the three books The Case for Christianity, Christian Behaviour, and Beyond Personality. Collier Books. NY: Macmillan Publishing Company. 1981.
2) Mere Christianity: An anniversary edition of the three books The Case for Christianity, Christian Behaviour, and Beyond Personality. Edited and with an introduction by Walter Hooper. NY: Macmillan Publishing Co., Inc. The long introduction by Hooper (in this 1981 edition) gives the history of Lewis’s association with the BBC and where the lectures included in the book were first presented.
3) Broadcast Talks, from two series “Right and Wrong: A Clue to the Meaning of the Universe” and “What Christians Believe,” given in 1941 and 1942. London: Geoffrey Bles, 1942.
Appendix A includes some of the letters that Lewis wrote in response to listeners’ questions. Lewis explains that he is not trying to convert anyone with his talks, nor is he focusing on any particular denomination and “the book, however faulty in other respects, did at least succeed in presenting an agreed, or common, or central, or ‘mere’ Christianity” (Preface, xl).
Appendix B is on “Sexual Morality” and Appendix C is called “The Anvil,” which was a programme conducted by Dr J.W. Welch, Director of the Religious Broadcasting Department of the BBC.
Chapters in Christian behaviour (published separately in 1943) are: 1) The three parts of morality; 2) The “Cardinal Virtues”; 3) Social morality; 4) Morality and psychoanalysis; 5) Sexual morality; 6) Christian marriage; 7) Forgiveness; 8) The great sin; 9) Charity; 10) Hope; 11) Faith; 12) Faith. (Not a typo—there are two chapters on “faith.”)
In the Mere Christianity preface Lewis warns that he offers no help to anyone who is hesitating between two Christian “denominations.” He believed that divisions among Christians should be discussed only when people with opposite points of view were present (vi). He uses the word “Christian” to mean those who accept the common doctrines of Christianity (ix). He uses the analogy of a hall with many rooms and that each has “fires and chairs and meals.” The hall is for waiting to enter one of the doors, which each person must knock on and, upon entering, ask which door is the true one, not which one he likes best. The focus is not upon whether we like the particular kind of service but upon the truth of the doctrines concerning holiness, and not because of our pride or personal taste. People all over the world that they ought to behave in a certain way, but in fact they do not and in so doing they break the “Law of Nature.”
Book I. Right and Wrong as a Clue to the Meaning of the Universe. 1) The Law of Human Nature: How people focus on fairness (right and wrong) as a universal value but with a “law” already within them 2) Some Objections: Moral law is simply an instinct, like others but Lewis points out that if it was we ought to be able to point to an instinct called good and call it up for the right behavior; 3) The Reality of the Law—it is not what we do but a law that tells us what to do and which we do not do, something beyond the actual facts; 4) What Lies Behind the Law—if it were a blind force it would never interfere with what we want to do; 5) We Have Cause to Be Uneasy—Christianity does not begin with comfort, it begins with dismay because of our knowledge of good and evil.
Book II. What Christians Believe: 1) The Rival Conceptions of God—atheism turns out to be too simple because the universe has no meaning; 2) The Invasion—Christianity believes the ‘Dark Power’ was created by God and went wrong; 3) The Shocking Alternative—God cannot give us peace and happiness unless it comes from Him; Jesus is either who he said he is or a lunatic (41); 4) The Perfect Penitent—the “formula” is that by dying, Jesus disabled death and washed away our sins. Jesus’s sufferings were possible only because he was good; true, but it would be an odd reason for rejecting them; 5) The Practical Conclusion—we believe things “on authority” and it is no difference for Christians. “…if you are worried about people outside, the most unreasonable thing you can do is to remain outside yourself. Christians are Christ’s body, the organism through which He works. Every addition to that body enables Him to do more. If you want to help those outside you must add your own little cell to the body of Christ who alone can help them Cutting off a man’s fingers would be an odd way of getting him to do more work.”
Book III. Christian Behaviour: 1) The Three Parts of Morality—Lewis notes that when we think about morality three are three areas: relations between people, between the things within us and with the power that made us; 2) The “Cardinal Virtues”— Prudence (practical common sense), temperance (going the right length and no further), justice (fairness, honesty and truthfulness) and fortitude (perseverance); 3) Social Morality—the application of Christian Principles to the life around us; 4) Morality and Psychoanalysis—what a good man is and does and the philosophy of Freud is in contradiction to general philosophy and moral choices; 5) Sexual Morality—it is everything to be ashamed of if this is all we think about. We learn to accept some desires and reject others. We have two things inside of us: The Animal self and the Diabolical self and the latter is the worse of the two. “That is why a cold, self-righteous prig who goes regularly to church may be far nearer to hell than a prostitute. But, of course, it is better to be neither” (80); 6) Christian Marriage—“The monstrosity of sexual intercourse outside marriage is that those who indulge in it are trying to isolate one kind of union (the sexual) from all the other kinds of union which were intended to go along with it and make up the total union”; 7) Forgiveness—For Christians “thy neighbor” includes “thy enemy”. “We may kill if necessary, but we must not hate and enjoy hating. We must punish if necessary, but we must not enjoy it; 8) The Great Sin—Pride or Self-Conceit and the opposite is Humility. “The real test of being in the presence of God is that you either forget about yourself altogether or see yourself as a small, dirty object. It is better to forget about yourself altogether”; 9) Charity—one of the “Cardinal” virtues. “Do not sit trying to manufacture feelings. Ask yourself, ‘If I were sure I loved God, what would I do?’ When you have found the answer, go and do it’”; 10) Hope—It is since Christians have largely ceased to think of the other world that they have become so ineffective in this. Aim at Heaven and you will get earth ‘thrown in’: am at earth and you will get neither”; 11) Faith—you must train the habit of faith because if it depends on our moods, they change; 12) Faith—a second or higher sense: “A man who starts anxiously watching to see whether he is going to sleep is very likely to remain wide awake”.
Book IV. Beyond Personality: or First Steps in the Doctrine of the Trinity: 1) Making and Begetting—we don’t get to God by studying nature or feeling the presence of God, we need a map to follow. We read that Christ was begotten, not created. Lewis calls nature Bios and the spiritual life Zoe. “The world is a great sculptor’s shop. We are the statues and there is a rumour going around the shop that some of us are some day going to come to life”; 2) The Three-Personal God—God is the thing to which he is praying—the goal he is trying to reach. God is also the thing inside him which is pushing him on—the motive power. God is also the road or bridge along which he is being pushed to that goal. So that the whole threefold life of the three personal Being is actually going on in that ordinary little bedroom where an ordinary man is saying his prayers” (127); 3) Time and Beyond Time—“You cannot fit Christ’s earthly life in Palestine into any time-relations with His life as God beyond all space and time. It is really, I suggest, a timeless truth about God that human nature, and the human experience of weakness and sleep and ignorance, are somehow included in his whole divine life” (132); 4) Good Infection—If you want joy, power, peace, eternal life, you must get close to, or even into, the thing that has them. They are not a sort of prize which God could, if He chose, just hand out to anyone” (137); 5) The Obstinate Toy Soldiers—when we were children we might have thought that it would be fun if our toy soldiers came to life but they are all separate and if one came to life it would make no difference to the rest. Human beings are not like that; 6) Two Notes—turning toy soldiers into real people would not be difficult if the human race had not turned away from God. A Christian should not be either a Totalitarian or an Individualist; 7) Let’s Pretend—“Very often the only way to get a quality in reality is to start behaving as if you had it already. That is why children’s games are so important” (147). We don’t need to act like Jesus died 2000 years ago and is not now with us; 8) Is Christianity Hard or Easy—“In the same way the Church exists for nothing else but to draw men into Christ, to make them into little Christs. If they are not doing that, all the cathedrals, clergy, missions, sermons, even the Bible itself, are simply a waste of time” (155); 9) Counting the Cost—“To shrink back from that plan [Christ making a difference] is not humility; it is laziness and cowardice. To submit to it is not conceit or megalomania; it is obedience” (159); 10) Nice People or New Men?—“The change will not be completed in this life, for death is an important part of the treatment?” (161) Some people are slowly becoming less Christians (162). “We must not suppose that even if we succeeded in making everyone nice we should have saved their souls. A world of nice people…would be just as desperately in need of salvation as a miserable world—and might even be more difficult to save” (167) 11) The New Men—“It is when I turn to Christ, when I give myself up to His Personality, that I first begin to have a real personality of my own” (174).
Brown, Devin. 2015. Discussing Mere Christianity Study Guide. Grand Rapids: Zondervan. [On my Kindle]
How to use this study guide. Introduction: It all began with a letter. Session 1: Our sense of right and wrong; Session 2: What’s behind our sense of right and wrong; Session 3: The rival conceptions of God; Session 4: Free will and the shocking alternative; Session 5: Christian behavior and the great sin of pride; Session 6: The Christian virtue of hope; Session 7: God in three persons; Session 8: Counting the cost. Afterword: A life-changing response.
Bruce L. Edwards edited four volumes on Lewis, published in 2007. Volume 3 is on Lewis as “apologist, philosopher, & theological. Chapter 3 (51-75) is by Joel D. Heck and is called “Mere Christianity: Uncommon Truths in Common Language.”
The term “Mere Christianity” comes from a theologian named Richard Baxter. Lewis takes the meaning to be “historic Christianity, centered in the incarnation of Jesus Christ” (51) Lewis is avoiding denominational interpretations and providing a “common core of beliefs that nearly all Christian denominations have held since the first century A.D.” (ibid) He had vetted his first broadcast materials with four theologians: Presbyterian, Methodist, Church of England and Roman Catholic. MC is autobiographical because it reviews Lewis’s own thought process and how he reached his conclusions. Heck’s summary: “Mere Christianity contains uncommon truth in common language” (68).
In an appendix, Heck gives an overview of the original broadcast dates and themes that became Mere Christianity (69-70
Goffar, Janine, Compiler and editor. 1998 . The C.S. Lewis index: A comprehensive guide to Lewis’s writings and ideas. Wheaton, IL: Crossway Books.
“This extraordinary volume is a combination topical index and “concordance” of C.S. Lewis’ best-known works, both fiction and non-fiction. It catalogs nearly 14,000 alphabetical entries — both words and theological concepts — from his various books, including Mere Christianity, God in the Dock, Surprised by Joy, The Four Loves and the Screwtape Letters. A wonderful resource endorsed by leading Lewis scholars the world over, it serves as both a tool for locating useful quotations and as a window to topical study for all who wish to explore the range and depth of thought from this inimitable 20th-century Christian scholar.” (From http://www.abebooks.com/Goffar-Janine/author/2872351)
In 1974 Roger Lancelyn Green & Walter Hooper published a biography. Then in 2002 it was revised and given the title: C.S. Lewis: A biography. Fully revised & expanded. Chapter 9 (240-268) is on “Mere Christianity.” Lewis’s invitation, given by the BBC, and Lewis’s subsequent exchange of letters is included in the chapter. His feelings about the talks and responses to them are also included. They conclude: “However modern or unusual the dress of his apologetics, Lewis was a thoroughgoing supernaturalist who appealed to the reason as well as the imagination in explaining [doctrine]” (267).
Griffin, William. 1998. C.S. Lewis: Spirituality for mere Christians. NY: The Crossroad Publishing Co.
Contents: Introduction. 1) Diversion; 2) Blues; 3) Broadcasts; 4) Buffoon; 5) Trudge; 6) Festoon; 7) Business. Afterword. Notes. Bibliography.
“Lewis’s spiritual legacy, if it’s anything, is to believe oneself, and to encourage others to believe, the basic doctrines of Christianity and to put into action the basic practices of Christianity as they are taught by one’ denomination. All Christians are included, none excluded. It doesn’t require hopping, skipping, and jumping to another denomination” (198).
William Griffin is an editor, novelist, journalist, literary agent and publishing consultant.
Walter Hooper ( ed. 1996), in C.S. Lewis: A Companion and Guide has a section on theology that outlines and discusses these books by Lewis: The Problem of Pain; Mere Christianity; The Abolition of Man; Miracles; Reflections on the Psalms; The Four Loves; and Letters to Malcolm.
In the preface of his book, Reading C.S. Lewis: A commentary (2016), Wesley A. Kort says “An overarching intention behind this book is to suggest the sense of the whole and to see why his broader project led him to give attention to religion and to value Christianity so highly” (viii).
In chapter 4, “Mere Christianity,” (85-108) Kort notes that the talks by Lewis were “an attempt by the BBC to consider the question of England’s ‘national character,’ a topic that enjoyed a recurring place in English consciousness since the end of the eighteenth century” (85). According to Kort, it is this idea that led Lewis to try and articulate the essence of Christian belief. Kort makes other observations that are relevant to Mere Christianity:
Lewis begins with reasonable and sharable assumptions about human beings
Lewis believes there is a right way and a wrong way to live and that humans can distinguish—the “Law of Human Nature”
- Humans are inclined to choose evil, given their pride and self-interest
- God responds to human evil and need vis à vis the atonement
- Sexual morality limits humans to sex belonging to marriage
- Charity implies and demands humility and a concern for others
- God is personal and we approach him through prayer
- This demands a transformation on the part of the individual
Peter Kreeft has outlined an imaginary dialogue between C.S. Lewis, John F. Kennedy & Aldous Huxley called “Between Heave & Hell.” The time is on the date the three men died: November 22, 1963 and the location is “somewhere beyond death.” Lewis is represented as a theist, Kennedy as a humanist and Huxley as a pantheist.
“These three men also represented the three most influential versions of Christianity in our present culture: traditional, mainline or orthodox Christianity (what Lewis called “mere Christianity”), modernist or humanistic Christianity (Kennedy), and Orientalized or mystical Christianity (Huxley)” (7).
“Peter Kreeft, Ph.D., is a professor of philosophy at Boston College and at the King’s College (Empire State Building), in New York City. He was baptized in the Spirit in 1972; is in wide demand as a speaker at conferences, and is the author of over 75 books…” (From www.peterkreeft.com/about.htm)
McCusker, Paul. 2014. C.S. Lewis & mere Christianity: The crisis that created a classic. [Focus on the Family]. Carol Stream, IL: Tyndale House Publishers.
“Mere Christianity is one of the best books of Christian apologetics ever written. Arguably, no book other than the Bible itself has had as much influence for the cause of the gospel over the past 60 years. The story of how that message came to be created, during the rigors of World War II in England, is fascinating in and of itself. But it also addresses a very important question: How do we present the gospel effectively to a culture that has Christian foundations but has become largely secularized and ignorant of biblical truth? C. S. Lewis & Mere Christianity develops the circumstances of Lewis’s life and the inner workings of the BBC. It also goes into greater detail about life in the middle of war against Nazi Germany, and Lewis’s series of broadcasts that extended into 1944.” (From Amazon)
Contents: Prologue; 1) “Peace for our time”; 2) The Kilns at war’ 3) Reporting for duty; 4) Déjà vu; 5) The very real phony war; 6) Crossing the line; 7) The blitz; 8) Convergence; 9 “The art of being shocked”; 10) The rim of the world; 11) The high cost of success; 12) Miracles, Narnia, and Mere Christianity. Acknowledgments. Notes. Bibliography.
Paul McCusker is an author and dramatist who scripted the Chronicles of Narnia and other Lewis works for the Focus on the Family Radio Theatre.
Metaxas, Eric and Devin Brown. 2015. Discussing Mere Christianity: Exploring the history, meaning, and relevance of C.S. Lewis’s greatest book. Study Guide with DVD. Zondervan. [On my Kindle]
Contents: How to use this study guide. Introduction: It all began with a letter. Session 1) Our sense of right and wrong; Session 2) What’s behind our sense of right and wrong; Session 3) The rival conceptions of God; Session 4) Free will and the shocking alternative; Session 5) Christian behavior and the great sin of pride; Session 6) The Christian virtue of hope; Session 7) God in three persons; Session 8) Counting the cost. Afterword: A life-changing response.
David Mills, (ed. 1998), The pilgrim’s guide: C.S. Lewis and the art of witness has the following contents: Introduction by David Mills (xi-xiii); Contributors (xiv-xviii); followed by:
The Character of a Witness: 1) Bearing the Weight of Glory: The Cost of C.S. Lewis’s Witness by Christopher W. Mitchell (3-14); 2) Teaching the Universal Truth: C.S. Lewis among the Intellectuals by Harry Blamires (15-26); 3) A Thoroughly Converted Man: C.S. Lewis in the Public Square by “Bruce L. Edwards (27-40).
The Work of a Witness: 4) Saving Sinners and Reconciling Churches: An Ecumenical Meditation on Mere Christianity by Michael H. Macdonald and Mark P. Shea (43-52); 5) God of the Fathers: C.S. Lewis and Eastern Christianity by Kallistos Ware (53-69); 6) The Heart’s Desire and the Landlord’s Rules: C.S. Lewis as a Moral Philosopher by James Patrick (70-85); 7) Speaking the Truths Only the Imagination May Grasp: Myth and “Real Life” by Stratford Caldecott (86-97); 8) The Romantic Writer: C.S. Lewis’s Theology of Fantasy by Colin Duriez (98-110); 9) To See Truly through a Glass Darkly: C.S. Lewis, George Orwell, and the Corruption of Language by David Mills (111-132); 10) The Triumphant Vindication of the body: The End of Gnosticism in That Hideous Strength by Thomas Howard (133-144); 11) Fragmentation and Hope: The Healing of the Modern Schisms in That Hideous Strength by Leslie P. Fairfield (145-160); 12) The Abolition of God by Sheridan Gilley (161-167); 13) Awakening from the Enchantment of Worldliness: The Chronicles of Narnia as Pre-Apologetics and The Structure of the Narnia Chronicles by Stephen M. Smith (168-184); 14) Growing in Grace: The Anglican Spiritual Style in the Narnia Chronicles by Doris T. Myers (185-202); 15) The War of the Worldviews: H.G. Wells and Scientism versus C.S. Lewis and Christianity (203-220); 16) Tools Inadequate and Incomplete: C.S. Lewis and the Great Religions by Jerry Root (221-235); 17) Nothningness and Human Destiny: Hell in the Thought of C.S. Lewis by Kendall Harmon (236- 254).
Appendices: A Reader’s Guide to Books about C.S. Lewis and Other Resources by Diana Pavlac Glyer (257-273); A C.S. Lewis Time Line compiled by David Mills, with Michael Nee, James Kurtz, Dan Klooster and Sarah Mills (274-293); The Source of C.S. Lewis’s Use of the Phrase “Mere Christianity” (294); Permissions (295-297).
“The Pilgrim’s Guide is intended for the serious general reader, though academic readers should find it helpful. The book explores the art of Lewis’s witness, which was both a moral art, in the formation of his character, and an intellectual art, in knowing how to speak the Word so that it would be heard. The distinction is a poor one, in some ways, because, as Lewis himself know, one can only communicate what one knows, and one only knows what one sees, and one sees well or badly depending on one’s character” (xi).
Mr. David Mills is director of publishing at Trinity Episcopal School for Ministry and editor of the school’s journal Mission & Ministry.
Robert E. Morneau has prepared a book entitled, 1999. A retreat with C.S. Lewis: Yielding to a pursuing God. (1999). Day Three, “More Than Mere Christianity. Conversion,” enjoins participants to “come together in the Spirit.” Considerations are:
- The human causes God uses to continue the conversion process
- How God brings liberation into one’s life: physical, psychological and spiritual
- Why courtesy is insufficient for discipleship
- Techniques to improve one’s life and faith
- Responding when the ‘old self’ is reactivated
- How Christ’s sayings have radically altered attitudes and behaviour
- How God interrupts one’s journey and provides progress
Phillips, Justin, ed. 2002. C.S. Lewis in a time of war: The World War II broadcasts that riveted a nation and became the classic Mere Christianity. HarperSanFrancisco.
Contents: Author’s Introduction. 1) 1 September 1939; 2) The BBC;s Early Vision; 3) Censorship Kicks In; 4) The Radio Talk; 5) Broadcasting House Bombed; 6) Lewis Approached: Right and Wrong; 7) Life in Oxford; 8) Getting Lewis to Air; 9) What Christians Believe; 10) Communicating Core Beliefs; 11) Attracting Attention; 12) The Joys of Domesticity; 13) Radio Drama; 14) The Man Born to be King; 15) ‘ Not my pigeon, I think’; 16) A Pox On Your Powers; 17) ‘We understand and we regret…’; 18) The Legacy. Acknowledgments. Appendix 1: The BBC Sound Archives; Appendix 3: The History of Mere Christianity; Appendix 3: The Anvil. Index.
Appendix 2, 203-207 compares the order and title of broadcasts with the chapters in the publication.
“… Justin Phillips explores the fascinating story of the radio broadcasts that evolved into Lewis’s seminal work, Mere Christianity, and the enthusiastic response they evoked in London during World War II….. C.S. Lewis Goes to War reveals a new facet of Lewis, never before explored, which will intrigue and delight any Lewis fan.” (From the back cover)
Justin Phillips was a radio journalist for the BBC for over twenty years….Phillips died in 2000.
Root, Jerry, Mark Neal and Stephen A. Beebe. 2015. The surprising imagination of C.S. Lewis. Abington Press.
Religious Writing: 2) Hunting the woolly mammoth: Shared imagination in Mere Christianity.
Urban, Steven. 2015. Mere Christianity study guide: A Bible study on the C.S. Lewis book Mere Christianity. Amazon.com.
“Mere Christianity Study Guide takes participants through a Bible study of C.S. Lewis’s classic, Mere Christianity. This weekly format Bible study workbook is the only study that digs deep into each chapter and in turn into Lewis’s thoughts.” (From Amazon)
Contents: The author. Foreward. Author’s course note and study formats. Introduction: Why a “thinking” faith? Preface. Book 1 Right and Wrong as a Clue to the Meaning of the Universe: 1) The law of human nature; 2) Some objections; 3) The reality of the law; 4) What lies behind the law; 5) We have cause to be uneasy. Book 2 What Christians Believe: 1) The rival conceptions of God; 2) The invasion; 3) The shocking alternative; 4) The perfect penitent’ 5) The practical conclusion. Book 3 Christian Behavior: 1) The three parts of morality; 2) The ‘Cardinal Virtues’; 3) Social morality; 4) Morality and psychoanalysis; 5) Sexual morality; 6) Christian marriage; 7) Forgiveness; 8) The great sin; 9) Charity; 10) Hope; 11) Faith; 12) Faith. Book 4 Beyond Personality: First steps in the doctrine of the Trinity: 1) Making and begetting; 2) The three-personal God; 3) Time and beyond; 4) Good infection; 5) The obstinate toy soldiers; 6) Two notes; 7) Let’s pretend; 8) Is Christianity hard or easy? 9) Counting the cost; 10) Nice people or new men; 11) The new men. Appendices for ‘Further Up and Further In’: Appendix 1) “Anti-intellectualism” in today’s education, culture and church and the consequences on Christianity; Appendix 2) The law of human nature around the world; Appendix 3) Rival conceptions of God; Appendix 4) Made for each other: the Gospel and the world; Appendix 5) Evolution and thinking (Or is C.S. Lewis an evolutionist?) Appendix 6) The purpose of giving; Appendix 7) Producing a “Christian Society”; Appendix 8) Psychological make up & choice; Appendix 9) Hope: Longing for heaven; Appendix 10) Transformation: From compatible to intimate; Appendix 11) New men: Theological gas or reality? Appendix 12) C.S. Lewis’s spiritual secret.
Chad Walsh, in C. S. Lewis: Apostle to the skeptics (1949), notes that “A careful reading of Lewis’s books leaves the conviction that he is squarely in the middle of the Christian tradition: an uncompromising defender of the doctrines telescoped into the Creeds, but chary of excessive Bibliolatry” (75). That is what “Mere Christianity” represents.
Wolfe, Judith and Brendan Wolfe. 2011. C.S. Lewis and the Church: Essays in honour of Walter Hooper. London: Bloomsbury T & T Clark.
Part III: Lewis and the Churches: In “Mere Christianity’ and Catholicism” by Ian Ker (129-134), Ker gives a sympathetic reading to Lewis but comes down on the side of the [Catholic] “Church” being paramount to an individual’s beliefs.