Fish do what their Maker created them to do
The sun does what its’ Maker created it to do
Wildflowers do what their Maker created them to do
But man has a quarrel with His Maker
Many of you, and I myself, admit that Mere Christianity is challenging!
So I find it fascinating that when Lewis was on the radio, amidst the horror of World War II, men and women who were educated and uneducated; rich and poor, and religious or irreligious listened with rapt attention. When Lewis would come on the radio, one who was there said they would say:
Shut up blokes! Mr. Lewis in on!
When God shakes our world, we often become desperate
for Him, and cry out to Him, and He comes running to help us,
opening our understanding as only He can do.
So if you are still here, or jumping in now, it shows you have
a hungry heart, and may we together ask Him to help us understand.
At twenty-two, God shook my world through my sister’s visit.
So I read Mere Christianity because, as Solomon says, “the fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom.” I needed to know:
Is there really a God?
Is He really Jesus?
What is the meaning of the universe?
Since I wasn’t even a Christian with HIs Spirit in me,
I believe He, in His mercy, was giving me understanding.
Still, there was much in the book I didn’t understand,
but I understood enough to fall on my knees and say:
My Lord and My God.
1. What stands out to you from the above and why?
2. Why do you think you are still here, even though this is challenging?
Monday: The Point of “Book 1: A Clue To The Meaning of The Universe”
Book 1 concentrates on showing there must be a God, a moral lawgiver.
Chapters 1 through 5 make up Book 1. Lewis lays the foundation in Chapter 1 with two premises that he re-states at the end of chapter 1.
3. What are they?
I think one of the reasons Mere Christianity has been so successful is that Lewis had the discernment to start, not even with Christianity and Jesus, but with a more basic question — which is where most men were and are today: How do we know there is a God? Instead of starting with the evidence of creation, which many do, but are dismissed if their listener is convinced that no God was needed to create the world, Lewis starts with evidence of a moral law that we did not invent, but that is solidly in our hearts. Even little children sense it.
So Lewis takes this truth, which humans know to be true, to illustrate that there must be an intelligent and moral being, who puts this law in the hearts of humans. This is the only “law” that can be disobeyed, for we cannot disobey the laws of nature, such as gravity, but we can disobey the moral law, and, we do. Chapters 2-5 build on this main truth. So Book 1, made up of Chapters 1-5, is to support the premise that there an intelligent being, a moral “God” who puts this law in the hearts of men and women. Beginning tomorrow, we will look at the short chapters of 3 and 4. Then next week we will finish “Book 1” of Mere Christianity. “Book 2” gets into actual Christianity.
4. To review Chapter 2, can you briefly explain why neither the “herd instinct” (what most do) or education is sufficient to explain why man is driven by a moral law?
Tuesday: Reading Chapter 3. The Reality of the Law
Wednesday: More objections addressed
6. Lewis addresses the objection that we behave morally because we have found it benefits us, not because there is a God who put this in our hearts.
A. How does Lewis dismantle that objection?
B. Share a time when doing the right thing actually hurt you, at least short-term.
7. Some say we behave morally because it benefits society, which it does. But how does Lewis explain that this is circular reasoning?
Thursday: Read Chapter 4. What Lies Behind the Law
8. Read or watch this video of chapter 4, or both. What stands out to you from this chapter and why?
Friday: The Materialist and Religious View
9. How would you summarize the “materialist view” (see paragraph 2 of ch. 4)
10. Why can science never answer either of these questions: “Why is there a universe” and “What is its’ purpose?” (The rest of the chapter)
This reminds me of Keller’s sermons on Genesis 1. He says that people approach Genesis 1 thinking it will answer “How was the universe created?” when it actually answers “Why was the universe created?” (To glorify God)
11. What is your take-a-way and why?