31 of 37 people found the following review helpful
A fine example of Christian apologetics,
This review is from: Miracles: A Preliminary Study (C.S. Lewis Classics) (Paperback)
I have had to read Miracles for a book review. I'm training for ordained Christian ministry and never expected, during my three years of study, to read any book as interesting and darned right clever as this one. Most of them are very boring!
Like many people, I had only read 'The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe' when I was younger but never knew how starved of Lewis' passion for Christ, which is reflected through his theological publications, I had been. He is clearly very much in love with God whom he sees as incomparable with Nature.
The genius of 'Miracles' to me, lies in the fact that it is a very readable evangelistic text disguised as 'a philosophical preparation for the possibility of the existence of Miracles'. Lewis' method is very good. He uses a mixture of friendly sarcasm, reverse psychology and intense detail to get right alongside the reader who he assumes is not a Christian. As a Christian myself, I felt that the book was wasted on me, it should be being read by a person who does not yet know Jesus Christ as their Lord.
Most of the book is dedicated to excrutiating explanations of the Incarnation, God's use of the Miraculous in His constant governance of the Earth and Prayer.
If I had any problem with the book it would be that at times it is quite un-focussed on Christ. Lewis cites the Incarnation (God made Man in Jesus Christ) as God's primary miracle but he does not really explain what this means for the ordinary person in terms of grace (undeserved love of God for us all)and cancellation of sin through the Cross. Maybe, as an evangelistic type of person, I will never be satisfied with any book like Miracles! At times the book feels like a labour of love, his writing on the Law of Nature is painstaking and at times, a little tedious but this, I believe, is only a reflection of his passionate desire for the reader to know Christ. He just has to take you everywhere before taking you home to God!
One last obvious and unintended problem is founded in the fact that this book was written for a different age when the post-modernist free for all denial of absolute truth was just a glint in the modernist's eye. Lewis would also clearly be shocked that unlike his own 'unvenerated' age, sexual intercourse has lost its mystery and need for self-control. I think he would be shocked by today's society - or lack of it.
But really, this is a terrific book. Reading Miracles as a committed Christian, I can see the method he uses and where he will take the reader. It's as if he is speaking in code to Christians! But this code is no secret, to decipher it is to know the greatest gift ever given to humankind, the person of God in Jesus Christ.
It is only when you are almost finished does Lewis just about admit that he had an alterior motive for writing Miracles. But by then, he hopes, the reader will be ready to begin looking into the riches of the Christian Gospel (good news), not just the possibility of the Miraculous!
Go and read it or I could send you my notes on the book. Feel free to get in touch.