The Legacy of C.S. Lewis
When I think of the true giants of the Christian faith over the past 100 years, several names come to mind. Billy Graham and Mother Teresa would be near the top of my list. Others like Francis Schaeffer, G.K. Chesterton, E. Stanley Jones, and Charles Colson would be in my top 10. But near the very top of that list would be C.S. Lewis. Lewis was a man who had brought a dimension to the Christian faith that has greatly influenced the generation that has followed. Though Lewis was neither an evangelist, theologian, or a missionary, at least in any traditional sense, he left a legacy that surpasses that of virtually all others.
Clive Stapleton Lewis wrote over sixty books dealing with theology, apologetics, science fiction, fantasy, poetry, and literary criticism. He wrote such Christian classics as The Screwtape Letters, The Chronicles of Narnia, The Abolition of Man, The Problem of Pain, and Mere Christianity.
Lewis had the ability to blend reason and imagination. He provided a confirmation of the intellectual validity for Christianity. He saw truth as not merely a subjective opinion, but an objective reality that could be grasped by the human mind. But he also demonstrated the power of an imagination that could be used as a vehicle to communicate truth. Lewis used fantasy and myth-making (like his friend, J.R.R. Tolkien, author of The Lord of the Rings), to give us new eyes though which to see the message of the gospel.
Lewis was prophetic in his writing, for he was a man of great insight, who understood his times and where ideas ultimately lead. In his book, The Abolition of Man, written in 1947, he warned that an educational system based on moral relativism would have dire consequences. It would produce as he called it, “men without chests,” men who had lost touch with the moral law and their own conscience. They would be men who were “unable to reason with their own hearts.” The current state of Western culture bears witness to his solemn warning.
If you have not read any of the works of C.S. Lewis allow me to encourage you to do so. He was a profound thinker that has left us a rich legacy. “Though he is dead, he still speaks” (Heb. 11:4).