Kickin’ It Old School

Two quotes to really get your brain going from the C.S. Lewis book I’ve been reading. Both are from the chapter on “Christian Apologetics,” which was an address given in 1945 to Anglican pastors & youth workers.

Many of you know my stance that Christians must be excellent at what they do when dealing with non-believers. In other words, we should ensure that our conduct is honoring to Christ so that our message may not get diluted when we have the chance to talk about Christ. For example, my neighbors know that I’m a pastor, so if they see me angrily yelling at my wife or not doing my part to keep my home looking presentable or stealing their mail, well, when it comes time to speak…I haven’t earned the right to be heard. Imagine my smile when I came across this little quote when C.S. Lewis on influencing those non-believers in the scientific community:

“What we want is not more little books about Christianity, but more little books by Christians on other subjects–with their Christianity *latent* (emphasis his)…The first step to the re-conversion of this country (in this case, the U.K.) is a series, produced by Christians, which can beat the ‘Penguin’ and the ‘Thinkers Library’ on their own ground. Its Christianity would have to be latent, not explicit: and of course its science would have to be perfectly honest. Science twisted in the interests of apologetics would be sin and folly.”

Did you catch that, patrons? As early as 1945 we were starting to publish to ourselves and having little effect outside our own little huddles…and, apparently, Christians were using “bad science” to challenge the scientific community. Interesting that Lewis addressed this. Oddly, when I point out the certain organizations with radio prominence have done this, I get blasted because I’m “attacking” other believers. And, don’t think I didn’t notice the use of the word “latent.” I believe that’s crucial when dealing with non-believers.

And, as I had stern opinions regarding the close-mindedness of my Tribe during the election year and subsequent election of our new president, imagine how happy this little quote made me a little later on in the article:

“…we may, of course, state our political opinions: but we must make it quite clear that we are giving our personal judgment and have no command from the Lord. Not many priests have these qualifications [professional experience in national politics]. Most political sermons teach the congregation nothing except what newspapers are taken at the Rectory.”

May I add here what channels a pastor (or congregation member for that matter) gets their news from or what talk show hosts they listen to?

I’m really glad C.S. Lewis lived and wrote, man. It’s a shame our Tribe didn’t apply more of this stuff we had the chance. Of course, it’s never too late to start, eh?

Just felt like stirrin’ it up today kids. It was gettin’ kind of vanilla in here. Have at it, patrons.