C.S. Lewis

C.S. Lewis

C.S. Lewis (1898-1963) was born (Clive Staples Lewis) into a Protestant family in Belfast, Ireland on Nov. 29, 1898. He was the second son of Albert Lewis, a lawyer, and Flora Hamilton Lewis. He endured a rather unhappy and lonely childhood. He was especially crushed by the unexpected death of his mother from cancer when he was not yet 10 years old. Her death left a hole in his heart and caused him to be disillusioned about God’s nearness. He lost his faith as a teenager and became an atheist. After attending schools in Hertfordshire, Northern Ireland and Malvern, he was educated at home from 1914-17.

Lewis chose to volunteer for active duty in World War I, he served in the British Army from 1917 to 1919. He graduated from University College, Oxford, in 1923. He was fellow and tutor in English at Magdalen College, Oxford, for nearly thirty years (1925-54). From 1954 to 1963 he was professor of Medieval and Renaissance English at Cambridge.

He published two books of poetry, and was in the midst of his work on The Allegory of Love, a study of the concept of courtly love in Mediaeval literature, when he finally returned to a belief in God (in 1929) and became a Christian (in 1933.)As Surprised by Joy (his autobiographical book) demonstrates, the watershed in Lewis's life was his conversion from atheism to Christianity. Lewis' conversion was sparked in part by his reading, especially the works of George MacDonald, the 19th century Scottish Presbyterian minister and novelist, and G.K. Chesterton, a Christian apologist and London journalist, and in part by discussions with believing friends, most famously Owen Barfield and J.R.R. Tolkien.

With J.R.R. Tolkien and Charles Williams, Lewis formed a literary group called 'The Inklings', which took shape in the 1930s.

He is best known for being a Christian novelist and apologist. Lewis first burst onto the North American scene with The Screwtape Letters in 1942, although he is probably best known for his children's fantasy books, The Chronicles of Narnia, and Mere Christianity, an excellent introduction to the Christian faith.

Lewis was briefly married to Joy Davidman. They met in 1953, married in 1956, but she sadly died of cancer in 1960.

His death, occurred on November 22, 1963—the same day President Kennedy was assassinated.



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Books by C.S. Lewis

52934: Screwtape LettersScrewtape Letters
By C.S. Lewis

Wormwood, a demon apprentice, has been given his first earthly assignment---secure the damnation of a young man who's just become a Christian. He seeks the advice of an experienced devil---his uncle Screwtape. Their correspondence discloses the psychology of temptation from the other side. Invaluable insights on temptation, pride, the power of prayer, and the ultimate victory of faith over the forces evil.


2926X: Mere ChristianityMere Christianity
By C.S. Lewis

C.S. Lewis sought to explain and defend the beliefs that nearly all Christians at all times hold in common. His simple yet deeply profound classic, originally delivered as a series of radio broadcasts, is a book to be thoroughly digested by believers and generously shared with skeptics.


653019: MiraclesMiracles
By C.S. Lewis

"The central miracle asserted by Christians is the Incarnation. They say that God became Man. Every other miracle prepares the way for this, or results from this." This is the key statement of Miracles, in which C.S. Lewis shows that a Christian must not only accept but rejoice in miracles as a testimony of the unique personal involvement of God in His creation. Using his characteristic lucidity and wit to develop his argument, Lewis challenges the rationalists, agnostics, and deists on their own grounds and makes out an impressive case for the irrationality of their assumptions.


1456: God in the DockGod in the Dock
By C.S. Lewis

God in the Dock is one of the best looks at the broad spectrum of Lewis' apologetic efforts, as it is a compilation of 48 essays and 12 letters on topics as varied as science and Christianity, religion, Christmas, and more. This book is divided into four sections. Section one contains essays that are considered purely theological, section two contains essays which are "semi-theological," section three is primarily ethical essays, and section four includes 12 of Lewis' letters, in the order they were published in various publications. God in the Dock stands as one of the best defenses of Christianity made by Lewis.


127666: Letters to MalcolmLetters to Malcolm
By C.S. Lewis

The last book Lewis wrote. In this fictional exchange, Lewis muses on why we pray if God is omniscient; whether there is an ideal form of prayer; which of our many selves we show to God when we pray; the value of a common liturgy; and impromptu vs. rote prayer. He also creates glosses on the Lord's Prayer.


2969X: The Problem of PainThe Problem of Pain
By C.S. Lewis

For centuries Christians have been tormented by one question above all -- If God is good and all-powerful, why does He allow His creatures to suffer pain? C.S. Lewis sets out to disentangle this knotty issue but wisely adds that in the end no intellectual solution can dispense with the necessity for patience and courage.


52381: A Grief ObservedA Grief Observed
By C.S. Lewis

Written after his wife's tragic death as a way of surviving the "mad midnight moments," A Grief Observed is C.S. Lewis's honest reflection on the fundamental issues of life, death, and faith in the midst of loss. This work contains his concise, genuine reflections on that period.


652950: Great DivorceThe Great Divorce
By C.S. Lewis

C.S. Lewis takes us on a profound journey through both heaven and hell in this engaging allegorical tale. Using his extraordinary descriptive powers, Lewis introduces us to supernatural beings who will change the way we think about good and evil. In The Great Divorce C.S. Lewis again employs his formidable talent for fable and allegory. The writer, in a dream, finds himself in a bus which travels between Hell and Heaven. This is the starting point for an extraordinary meditation upon good and evil which takes issue with William Blake's The Marriage of Heaven and Hell.


2942X: The Abolition of ManThe Abolition of Man
By C.S. Lewis

Is education primarily about reading and writing, or should it also strive to develop morality? In his inimitable and eloquent style, Lewis offers three essays that reflect on society and nature and seek to persuade readers of the necessity of instilling within our students universal values such as honor and courage. As relevant today as when it was first published 60 years ago.


6018: The Pilgrim's RegressThe Pilgrim's Regress
By C.S. Lewis

The story of John and his odyssey to an enchanted island which has created in him an intense longing. John's pursuit of this longing takes him through adventures with such people as Mr. Enlightenment, Media Halfways, Mr. Mammon, Mother Kirk, Mr. Sensible, and Mr. Humanist and through such cities as Thrill and Eschropolis, as well as the Valley of Humilation. The first book written by C.S. Lewis after his conversion, The Pilgrim's Regress is, in a sense, a record of Lewis's own search for meaning and spiritual satisfaction that eventually led him to Christianity.


1430: Christian ReflectionsChristian Reflections
By C.S. Lewis

C.S. Lewis had the unusual ability to use, with scintillating brilliance, the resources of wit and learning in the service of the Christian faith. While many readers are familiar with Lewis's full-length books, fewer have had opportunity to sample the diverse range of his shorter, more concise writings. The wide variety of his interests is clearly evident in Christian Reflections.


248X: Reflections on the PsalmsReflections on the Psalms
By C.S. Lewis

Lewis's most extended discussion of Scripture! He wants his readers to admire the Psalms as great works of poetry, so he explains how parallelism works. He also stresses the importance of the Psalms in singing and worship, how they provide words for our prayers and display an obvious "gusto" for God.


9301: The Four LovesThe Four Loves
By C.S. Lewis

Love has not one but many faces. C.S. Lewis, in this candid, wise and warmly personal book, describes the four basic kinds of human love--affection, friendship, erotic love, and the love of God. He explores the possibilities and problems of the love between parents and children, the love of men for other men and women for women; the love of men and women for each other; and the love of God that may enrich all love. Lewis also explores the questions of sex, possessiveness, jealousy, pride, false sentimentality, good and bad manners in loving, and the need for more laughter between lovers.


653205: The Weight of Glory: And Other AddressesThe Weight of Glory
By C.S. Lewis

Nine sermons and addresses delivered by Lewis during World War II, including "Transposition," "On Forgiveness," "Why I Am Not a Pacifist," "Learning in War-Time," and his most famous, "The Weight of Glory." "These display color, power, and profound thinking,"---Evangelical Beacon.


0118: Surprised by JoySurprised by Joy
By C.S. Lewis

In "Surprised By Joy", C.S. Lewis tells of his spiritual jouney that led him from the Christianity of his early youth into atheism and then back to Christianity. Lewis writes in the preface: "How far the story matters to anyone but myself depends on the degree to which others have experienced what I call 'joy'"


318345: The Latin Letters of C.S. LewisThe Latin Letters of C.S. Lewis
By C.S. Lewis

More than any other of his published works, this book shows the strong devotional side of Lewis, and contains letters ranging from Christian unity and modern European history to liturical worship and general ethical behavior. Moreover, these letters are often intimate and personal.


1428X: Letters to An American LadyLetters to An American Lady
By C.S. Lewis

In 1950, C.S. Lewis began a correspondence with an American lady he would never meet. Thirteen years later, his life - and letters - came to an end. These letters reveal facets of Lewis's character little known even to devoted readers of his fantasy and scholarly writings. Here is Lewis the man - generous, wise, compassionate, remarkably human. And, most significantly, here is Lewis the devoted Christian - patiently offering encouragement and guidance to another Christian through the day-to-day joys and sorrows of ordinary life.



765488: The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe Movie Tie-in Edition, mass marketThe Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe
By C.S. Lewis

A classic from C.S. Lewis! Four adventurers step through a wardrobe door and into a land enslaved by the power of the White Witch. But when almost all hope is lost, the return of the Great Lion, Aslan, signals a great change, and a great sacrifice.


65501: Chronicles of Narnia, Boxed SetChronicles of Narnia, Boxed Set
By C.S. Lewis

Invest in a handsome unabridged souvenir set of Lewis's Chronicles of Narnia for your home library. Included are stunning pictures from the movie The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe, plus seven volumes sure to captivate children and adults, and provide hours of excellent reading.

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C.S. Lewis from Mere Christianity:

A man who was merely a man and said the sort of things Jesus said would not be a great moral teacher. He would either be a lunatic—on the level with a man who says he is a poached egg—or else he would be the devil of hell. You must make your choice. Either this man was, and is, the Son of God: or else a madman or something worse. You can shut him up for a fool, you can spit at him and kill him as a demon; or you can fall at his feet and call him Lord and God. But let us not come with any patronizing nonsense about his being a great human teacher. He has not left that open to us. He did not intend to.


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