The Theology of a Mere Christian: C.S. Lewis

The Theology of a Mere Christian: C.S. Lewis

C.S. Lewis is perhaps the most well-known Christian author and theologian of the Twentieth century.  He is a hero among evangelicals and he is respected among many Roman Catholic and Orthodox theologians.  His writings were vast, perceptive, and full of imagination.  In fact, I cannot commend his writings enough.  The writings of Lewis have challenged me, encouraged me, comforted me, and fed me with the truth of God and my guess is that I am not alone.  However, for all of the things of Lewis we ought to commend there are some things that we must approach with caution and discernment.  These do not negate the value of his teachings at large but they ought to be addressed for what they are: limitations of a mere Christian.  In fact, the only theologian you will ever stumble across that does not ‘miss the mark’ and contain some errors is Jesus of Nazareth and even He, as a man, grew in his understanding (Mt. 2:41-52; Heb. 5:8-9).

In light of the great influence of this man I want to share with Mint Hill Presbyterian a series I wrote that set out to analyze his thought and provide an overview of C.S. Lewis’s theological views.  This is in no way comprehensive but it does try to touch upon some of the more important issues and concerns in his theology.  The series will run for over a year and is structured by six main divisions: God, Scripture, Creation, Fall, Redemption, and Consummation.  There are also several subsections within each main section (except for the God section).  The purpose of this series is not to bash Lewis or naively praise him but to give an honest account of what he believed.  Therefore, you will find some of my own commentary here and there but by and large what follows will be his theological views.

The Theology of a Mere Christian: God

C.S. Lewis did not spill a lot of ink developing an elaborate and sophisticated theology of God.  My guess is that he thought other theologians could do a much better job at that but he does discuss a few things that should be noted.  The first is that Lewis believed that the God of the Bible was different than all other concepts of god or gods.[1]  For example, Lewis understood that while God created the universe, and that the universe reveals His glory, He is also distinct from it which is contrary to the pantheistic notion of deity.[2]  Lewis also believed that the God of the Bible is a Person, and not just one person, but three Persons in one Being.[3]  In other words, Lewis was a Trinitarian.  Other aspects of his theology of God surface throughout his writings but it is safe to say that C.S. Lewis had an orthodox understanding of God.

[1] Lewis, C. S. The Complete C. S. Lewis Signature Classics. Reprint edition. (New York, NY: HarperCollins, 2009), 40.

[2] Lewis, Signature Classics, 40.

[3] Ibid, 133.