mere christianity sparknotes
In the first part of the book, Lewis discusses the “law of human nature.” When studying human history, he claims, one is struck by how similar different societies’ moral codes are, at least at a fundamental level. More is expected of us, but God helps us in ways that others do not. Some religious groups, the Pantheists, believe that the all-powerful being, God, is neither good nor evil. The act of making choices involves what he calls our “raw material” and that is different for every person. He argues against the notion that we should be free to follow our impulses; no impulse, sexual or otherwise, can be followed freely at all times without restraint. God comes in and begins to make improvements and at first you understand what he is fixing, but then he begins to knock things down that seem to be destructive. These letters are presented with the expectation that readers have a basic understanding of Christian beliefs, such as the story of the Fall. Mere Christianity study guide contains a biography of C.S. He argues that “Pride leads to every other vice” (122). He is beyond personality, but he is not impersonal; he is super-personal. In Mere Christianity, C. S. Lewis argues for the logical validity of Christianity, defends the religion from its critics, and looks in detail at what the life of a Christian is like. While there are many different Christian sects that worship Christ in different ways, Lewis argues that they can agree on the basic facts about Christ’s existence, and therefore can all attain salvation. Lewis was invited to give the talks by James Welch, the BBC Director of Reli… C.S. Secondly, that they do not in fact behave in that way. After you claim a section you’ll have 24 hours to send in a draft. The story does not occur in the Bible, but in it, Satan (then called Lucifer) and a group of angelic followers rises up against God. It analyzes Christianity and gives some of the author`s views on it. It can be applied to any society. Mere Christianity Summary. He is within us and beside us as he brings us toward him. This, then, is how we know there is a moral law that we ought to obey even though our behavior alone indicates no such pattern. It provokes other sins and makes it impossible to know God, since prideful people cannot know anything greater than themselves. After a Christian becomes familiar with obeying the moral law of God, they sometimes reach a point of despair, during which they realize their own sinful nature. Lewis then explains this in terms of the Trinity, or three-person God. SuperSummary, a modern alternative to SparkNotes and CliffsNotes, offers high-quality study guides for challenging works of literature. This detailed literature summary also contains Topics for Discussion on Mere Christianity by C. S. Lewis. In Mere Christianity, C. S. Lewis argues for the logical validity of Christianity, defends the religion from its critics, and looks in detail at what the life of a Christian is like. It is not acceptable to break a promise when the feelings go away. She does not make them, and it remains dirty, and although this is against her will it is also her will for them to choose on their own that has made it possible. The most shocking part is the appearance of Jesus, who claims to forgive sins. However, in Christianity, evil isn’t equal to good—evil is “spoiled good”; i.e., the perversion or corruption of goodness. On the contrary, Lewis argues, the only way to truly be an individual and fulfill one’s potential is to worship Jesus Christ. These notes were contributed by members of the GradeSaver community. We can hate what a person does without hating them, which we do for ourselves all the time. While it’s popular to say that “being in love” is the only reason to get married, Lewis argues that being married is actually much more beautiful and majestic than being in love—a married couple must remain together for a lifetime, demonstrating their loyalty and respect for one another as human beings, rather than just following their emotions. Christianity is not about mere improvement but about Transformation. In Part Three of the book, Lewis studies the life of a good Christian. Lewis, a book recommended to me by my sister. They know the Law of Nature; they break it. In the Christian view there is an evolutionary “Next Step” that is already at work. We hope this study program provides you with greater understand-ing as you explore Lewis’s timeless book. To love one’s neighbor is to wish him good, not to feel fond of him or to say nice things that are untrue. MERE CHRISTIANITY by C.S. Anonymous "Mere Christianity Summary". LitCharts Teacher Editions. This does not mean believing something in spite of evidence. Lewis was born in Belfast, Ireland on November 29, 1898. The rule … Written by people who wish to remain anonymous. The Mere Christianity Critical Analysis Journal is a powerful tool to strengthen critical thinking while cultivating a biblical worldview. Lewis discusses the overlap between Christianity and psychoanalysis. Lewis' book Mere Christianity is a good book for an unbeliever to read to establish a rational basis for belief in Christianity. However, that we do have more inside information into mankind, since we are ourselves human, than we would have just by observation. Introductory Study Guide for Mere Christianity Created by: Liz Evershed, C.S. It is a force that likes goodness, and we know that “if there does exist an absolute goodness it must hate most of what we do” (31). The third Theological virtue is Faith. It means that, once you have accepted something on the basis of evidence, you continue to believe it in spite of your changing moods. Next, he examines forgiveness. Lewis’s forceful and accessible doctrine of Christian belief. C.S. It is more like a hall out of which doors open into several rooms. He was arguably one of the intellectual giants and influential writers of the twentieth century. She’s kind of a big deal. “Mere Christianity is C.S. Most groups will choose to cover the entire book in… this section. Other religious groups, such as Muslims, Jews, and Christians, believe that God created the universe, yet is distinct from it; thus, God is good, and wants humans to work hard to make the universe a better place. Lewis spends time defending the most unpopular aspect of Christian morality—the notion of chastity. This 69-page guide for “Mere Christianity” by C. S. Lewis includes detailed chapter summaries and analysis covering 33 chapters, as well as several more in-depth sections of expert-written literary analysis. Mere Christianity Summary Mere Christianity was written by C.S. OTHER SEARCH RESULTS (6) The Screwtape Letters Themes Lewis, literature essays, a complete e-text, quiz questions, major themes, characters, and a full summary and analysis. Mere Christianity, by Clive Staples (“C. This complex notion is where theology began. Lewis's Mere Christianity Chapter Summary. There is a cost, and it is often more than we have bargained for. There is no other option. Our natural temperament is not so much within our control and not so important as our choices, and whether we give ourselves and our raw material to God. Things can go wrong because we want to be the center, we want to be more than God. A Christian has God in him to make him good. Therefore we cannot judge based on someone’s outward appearance or action; it may be that they have done far more with their raw material than someone who began in much better place and have not made use of it. Lewis compares the Holy Trinity to a die: just as a die “contains” six square sides, and yet is one three-dimensional object at the same time, so too does God “contain” three parts and yet remain one being. From the creators of SparkNotes, something better. One of the most challenging aspects of Christianity, Lewis writes, is faith, especially in the challenging sense of having faith in God’s salvation. When we act as though we are better than we are, we turn ourselves into people who are better. Lewis explains this through the metaphors of a fleet of ships and of a musical band. The Question and Answer section for Mere Christianity is a great “Nice” people need saving just as much as “unkind” people do. Read the Study Guide for Mere Christianity…, View Wikipedia Entries for Mere Christianity…. Lewis then attempts to resolve the apparent contradiction in the existence of a good God who allows evil things to happen by arguing that God gives people the gift of free will: they face the challenge of behaving virtuously in spite of the temptations of evil—a challenge for which they will be richly rewarded in Heaven. The original text plus a side-by-side modern translation of. He begins with the premise that a Natural Law must exist, as humans did not invent it, but humans respond to it and cannot escape its influences. Search all of SparkNotes Search. In Book IV, Lewis says that Theology is like a map. He calls our fundamental and universal understanding of fairness, or right and wrong, “The Law of Human Nature,” distinguishing it from other natural laws (such as gravity) by the fact that humans can choose whether or not to obey it. When the feeling of being in love fades, it is replaced by a deeper, quieter love. There is a division among religions on the nature of God: a Pantheistic notion of a God who is beyond good and evil, and exists in everything in the universe without distinction between good and bad, and a God who created the universe and is very much on the side of good as opposed to evil. S.”) Lewis, was first published in 1952 as an expansion of some radio talks Lewis had given during World War II. At the end of part two, Lewis introduces Jesus Christ, the cornerstone of the Christian religion. He also distinguishes it from social convention, arguing that, if all morality were truly subjective, then there would be no sense in arguing that one morality is better or worse than the other. The fact that we are made by someone else for a purpose means we have more duties than if we only belonged to ourselves. This is like free will. He is not bound by it, and every moment is the present for him. This, he argues, is where one must arrive before one can except Christianity. They are appealing to some kind of standard of behavior they expect the other person to know. It is the only way. However, the world is not split into fully Christian and fully non-Christian. Book 1: Right and Wrong as a Clue to the Meaning of the Universe Chapter 1: The Law of Human Nature 1. The book got published in the year 1952. All virtues uphold the three parts of morality, and all sins contradict at least one of these parts. Evil is, instead, a parasite; it is a defected form of goodness, and cannot exist on its own. It does not, he argues, really matter what one believes about how it works; we must simply know that it does work, though Lewis seems to advocate more for the latter—that Jesus taught us by example how to repent. Mere Christianity Summary Mere Christianity was written by C.S. Looking around the world, it is obvious that good has been corrupted into evil almost everywhere. Simply put Transcendentalism is a philosophy that asserts the spiritual and romantic world over the material and empirical world. He intends to come and live in it Himself” (205). Lewis discusses the major divisions of belief in God. How to Use This Study Guide These study questions will help you to get the most out of the lectures by Dr. Christopher Mitchell on Mere Christianity. Lewis Foundation Intern 2000-01 Introduction Mere Christianity is possibly Lewis’ most frequently read work, and was originally given as a series of broadcast talks during the Second World War. You may have heard of her. Lewis argues for the existence of God, and then proceeds to outline what he believes are the fundamental tenants of Christianity. These three beings are at play in the world and in every Christian as we become “little Christs,” which Lewis tells us is the sole purpose of Christianity. The Screwtape Lettersis predicated on an eternal struggle between the forces of good and evil. Lewis resolves this apparent contradiction by arguing that God exists outside of time, meaning that he experiences humans’ past, present, and future in the same instant, whereas humans have free will within time as they experience it. Atheism, therefore, is too simple, as is what Lewis calls “Christianity-and-water” which is a belief that there is a God and everything is good, leaving out the dark parts of theology. Digital Transformation @lockheedmartin | UMUC | Professor | Published 1st Cloud Computing Dissertation #ai #quantum#blockchain #digital RSS Feed Lewis argues that moral law isn’t just an arbitrary human invention—it’s actually a real, timeless thing—invented by an all-powerful being who stands outside the confines of material space and time, and reveals itself to humans through moral law. Lewis delves here more fully into the Trinity: the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. Instant downloads of all 1392 LitChart PDFs (including Mere Christianity). Since Christ is our example, and because we can become like Christ, there is a “Christ-life” that is spread to us in three ways: baptism, belief, and Holy Communion/Mass/The Lord’s Supper. C. S. Lewis, Mere Christianity Lewis is saying that Jesus had to be who he said he was or else he was a liar or he was crazy/out of his mind. Instant downloads of all 1393 LitChart PDFs You can help us out by revising, improving and updating Of his own qualification to speak on Christianity he said: If you do not feel love toward someone, act as though you do. In Heaven, people lose their desires for earthly things, and thus, the basic components of their so-called “personalities” on Earth. He distinguishes between making and begetting and between biological life, or Bios, and spiritual life, or Zoe. Lewis's Mere Christianity is mainly an argument that no matter what denomination of Christianity one belonged to, the umbrella of "Christian" was broad enough to include them, and we should behave like a family, not as rival armies. By becoming human, then, Christ has infected humanity with his Spiritual life. None of us, he argues, would probably like a fully Christian society, since we have all departed from God’s plan in some way. Lewis reviewed "In Behalf of the Fool" (1979) It was suggested to the Fool some time ago that C.S. This is important because God cannot be love unless he contains two or more beings. In Book III, Lewis outlines the three parts of morality. Lewis was born in Belfast, Ireland on November 29, 1898. As such, I wanted to share with you my reading of Mere Christianity by C.S. Each choice changes a central part of us and molds us into the person we are becoming. resource to ask questions, find answers, and discuss the novel. Lewis briefly discusses the four “Cardinal virtues”—prudence, temperance, justice, and fortitude, and explains why they’re necessary for living morally. Mere Christianity Summary. Lewis goes on to argue that God is beyond and outside of time. One must acknowledge that there is a Moral Law, and that he has broken it, and that we need to be set right again. All our attempts at the Christian virtues will ultimately fail. We have a duty to forgive our enemies. We are thankful for their contributions and encourage you to make your own. However, this can never be successful: we are created to run on God Himself, and there is no happiness outside of him. Problem of Pain, The Screwtape Letters, Mere Christianity, The Four Loves and the Posthumous Prayer: Letters to Malcolm, are only a few of his best-selling works. He also wrote some delightful books for children and some science fiction, besides many works of literary criticism. In becoming what Lewis calls “little Christs,” there is an element of pretending. In the act of prayer, a human being assumes the guise of Jesus Christ; with practice and faith, prayer can help human beings become divine by leading them toward salvation in Heaven. Lewis argues for the existence of God, and then proceeds to outline what he believes are the fundamental tenants of Christianity. Lewis argues that pride is the most dangerous of all sins, since it encourages humans to place themselves “above God.” He suggests that many people who consider themselves to be good Christians actually worship a “false God,” and secretly think themselves to be superior to everyone else—a state of mind that will lead them to damnation unless they’re careful. You can look at my more detailed notes, but this is an overview of the content of Book III of “Mere Christianity”… Chapter 1 – “The Three Parts of Morality” Morality isn’t about interference but our own good “…moral rules are directions for running the human machine. Mere Christianity is a book by author C. S. Lewis who is best known for the series “Chronicles of Narnia.” Lewis was raised in Christianity but became an atheist at 15 years. When Lewis was a much younger man, he found it impossible to believe in a just God who would allow Earth to become a sad, unjust place. The Son is a product of the Father, but there was never a time when the Son did not exist. Mere Christianity is a 1952 theological book by C. S. Lewis, adapted from a series of BBC radio talks made between 1941 and 1944, while Lewis was at Oxford during the Second World War. Find summaries for every chapter, including a Mere Christianity Chapter Summary Chart to help you understand the book. Lewis notes here that he is not “within a hundred miles of the God of Christian theology” (25); he has merely arrived at the existence of “Something which is directing the universe” (25) and which seems to urge us toward morality. The way the content is organized, “Would not have made it through AP Literature without the printable PDFs. It is not God, but it points us to God. At the end of the first chapter in Mere Christianity, Lewis lays out the scope of his argument: "First, that human beings, all over the earth, have this curious idea that they ought to behave in a certain way, and cannot really get rid of it. This is difficult, but we can start small. We could not say that Nazi morality is inherently worse than any other set of morals. Furthermore, we ought not to compare a Christian to another non-Christian, but to the person they would be if they were not Christian. Our, "Sooo much more helpful than SparkNotes. Virtues are not qualifiers for getting into Heaven, but by practicing them they mold individuals into the kind of people God wants, the kind of people who will be happy with the Heaven God has created. Ultimately, Lewis explains, we must give ourselves over to Christ completely in order to both become like him and to fully become ourselves. Mere Christianity Book 3, Chapters 1-4 Summary & Analysis ... Book 3, Chapter 1 Summary: "The Three Parts of Morality" Lewis begins by noting several overly simplistic ideas about morality—for example, that it is primarily something meant to interfere with people’s lives rather than to help them. Many people who think of morality just focus on fair play. The Mere Christianity Critical Analysis Journal sold through Homeschool Adventure Co., is a wonderful tool to strengthen critical thinking while building a biblical worldview. Suggestions Use up and down arrows to review and enter to select. He acknowledges, however, the apparent irony in that not all Christians are nice than non-Christians. eNotes plot summaries cover all the significant action of Mere Christianity. Since he claimed to be God, we have only three options: he is a lunatic, he is evil and a liar, or he is God. The Cardinal virtues are Prudence, Temperance, Justice, and Fortitude. A good Christian must trust their fate to God, while also working hard to be good. A companion to Lewis’s classic work, the Journal can be used for independent study with teenagers or adults, or as a group study in families, homeschools, co-ops, classrooms, Sunday school, and small groups. So today we offer an excellent summary of his important and very popular apologetic work, Mere Christianity. However, the only way for an atheist to criticize the Christian model of God would be to appeal to some standard for “just” and “unjust”—i.e., the same standard that led us to accept the existence of God in Part One. (Mere Christianity must be purchased separately.) About the Author C. S. Lewis was one of the most influential writers of Christian literature in the 20 th Century. Lewis then discusses what he calls the “worst sin” which is pride, the opposite of humility. In Mere Christianity, C.S. Mere Christianity. It is how we conclude that, “there is something above and beyond the ordinary facts of men’s behavior, and yet quite definitely real—a real law which none of us made, but we which we find pressing on us” (20). However, he does not believe that sexual sins are the worst; the worst are the ones that are “purely spiritual” such as hatred, since their effect on the soul is worse. God gave us desires that can be satisfied, and the fact that we desire something that cannot be had in this world means that there is another world. First heard as informal radio broadcasts and then published as three separate books – The Case for Christianity, Christian Behavior, and Beyond Personality – Mere Christianity brings together what Lewis saw as the fundamental truths of the religion. We are thankful for their contributions and encourage you to make your own. Lewis (Clive Staples Lewis). Non-conformists by focusing on a “mere” Christianity. In Book I, Lewis explores the notion of right and wrong, which he argues is, at its core, an inherently human characteristic that is not, as some would argue, merely a social construct. Pantheists believe that God is the universe, meaning that everything in the material universe is divine. What is the problem in ingnoring the other two parts of morality. FreeBookNotes found 8 sites with book summaries or analysis of Mere Christianity. 2. If there is a Mere Christianity SparkNotes, Shmoop guide, or Cliff Notes, you can find a link to each study guide below. Detailed explanations, analysis, and citation info for every important quote on LitCharts. God, who is all-powerful, casts them out … However, there is a difference between loving one’s neighbor and feeling affection toward them. There are seven virtues in Christianity. Teachers and parents! Until nineteen fifty-four he was a Fellow and Tutor in English Literature at Oxford University. Teach your students to analyze literature like LitCharts does. C. S. Lewis defends Christianity by building a logical foundation for belief and constructing an entire theology upon that foundation. The notes have been summarized so that a group or discussion leader can lead one chapter per meeting, or the chapters can be grouped together to cover multiple chapters per meeting. He distinguishes the Law of Human Nature, or Moral Law, from the herd instinct. In order for there to be any comparison at all, there must be some true or correct morality to compare them to. 1. 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