by Tom Goodman
December 13, 2005
The weekly newsmagazine, U.S. News and World Report, called him “God’s Storyteller.” That was the title of the magazine’s recent cover story about C.S. Lewis, the writer of The Chronicles of Narnia. With the film
release of the first book in the Chronicles this past weekend, attention has returned to Lewis. This Oxford professor of medieval and Renaissance literature gave the most famous defenses of Christianity in the twentieth century. He died
on the same day of President Kennedy’s assassination: November 22, 1963.
The Narnia series has been translated into 30 languages and has sold nearly 100 million copies since Lewis wrote it in the 50s. Many more people will read the seven books of the series after seeing the film version of the first
book. While you’re checking out his children’s books, take a look at some others, too. Among his fiction works, you might like his Space Trilogy (Out of This Silent Planet, Perelandra, and That Hideous
Strength). He also wrote The Great Divorce, a fable showing how people end up in Hell through their own choices. A popular devotional book is The Screwtape Letters, written as the correspondence of a senior demon,
training a junior demon on how to ruin a man.
Among his nonfiction works, his most famous is Mere Christianity—he used the word “mere” to mean “simple.” Anne Rice recommended the book in a recent interview. (You may know that after writing some famous graphic vampire novels,
she recently converted to Christianity.) It’s impressive that this simple explanation of our faith is still so famous, considering that it was originally a series of 15-minute radio addresses on the BBC during the Nazi bombing of
London. I also enjoyed his books, Miracles and The Problem of Pain, which address some of the fundamental concerns about God that thoughtful people have. In addition, every college student needs to read The Abolition of
Man before submitting to the postmodern culture of your peers. Although written in 1943, Lewis foretold the West’s slide into relativism and its consequences.
For a complete list of Lewis’s works, go to http://cslewis.drzeus.net/books/. Also, here are a few articles about Narnia that intrigued me:
The Left vs. Lewis
The Christian Vision of God in the Narnia Chronicles
What Aslan of Narnia teaches us about God’s dangerous side
What the Narnia tales tell us about humanity
Ross Douthat: Narnia's secular critics are missing the whole point (requires
Be sure to come to Hillcrest this Wednesday for a special time of prayer for the Upward Basketball ministry. Also, don’t forget to come this Sunday night at 6:00 p.m. for our Festival of Christmas Music. And finally, to the cast,
technicians, stage hands, and waitstaff of the Dessert Theater: Excellent job! Another great year of introducing THEMs to Hillcrest!
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