C. S. Lewis & Mere Christianity: The Crisis That Created a Classic

CS Lewis and Mere ChristianityGet a chance to WIN a copy of C. S. Lewis & Mere Christianity: The Crisis That Created a Classic by Paul McCusker BEFORE you can even buy it!

It contains twelve chapters giving you a variety of background information about Mere Christianity that was first written in the 1940’s for radio. Details about HOW to win are below.

Please note, as with most of my contests, it is ONLY open to those living in the U.S. & Canada (sorry, but it’s the publisher who mails the prize and they set the limits). See complete rules below. Also you MUST enter by Wednesday, June 18th at 6pm.

ALL YOU HAVE TO DO TO ENTER is simply leave a comment below telling me what you enjoyed most about Mere Christianity OR any fact/trivia about it. So, either give your opinion OR some fact about it (NOT both).

Again, the  DEADLINE to enter is Wednesday, June 18th at 6pm Eastern.

TWO random individuals from those who enter will be the winners! You will be notified by email, so leave an address you check frequently (the notification will be from lewisminute (at) gmail.com).

****COMPLETE RULES/DETAILS****

  • Only those living in the U.S. & Canada are eligible to win.
  • Enter only ONCE.
  • Prizes are promised by the publisher and are agreed to be given by them…so they determine how far they will mail a prize.
  • If you are one of the random winners you must reply within 48 hours of notification or another person will be selected (email will come from lewisminute (at) gmail.com)
  • Entries are assigned a number and a random number generator is used to pick the winners.
  • Prizes may be substituted by the publisher and this is beyond my control.

19 comments

  1. Gary Fisher /

    My favorite “Mere Christianity” fact is that it originated as a radio series commissioned by the (British) government.

  2. Lewis’s use of Richard Baxter’s term “mere Christianity” as a unifying theme for these broadcast talks.

  3. Dan Stanley /

    I have enjoyed reading and teaching “Mere Christianity” over the years and find that its wisdom continues to open the hearts and minds of young and old, even today.

  4. Jared Lobdell /

    I originally read the more conversational three separate little books before MC came out — and noticed the differences without being sure what it was I was noticing (I was about 14, I think). [personal fact, I guess]

  5. Deacon Jack H. Clark /

    I was introduced to C.S. Lewis by a Jesuit priest, scholar, friend, and mentor. Mere Christianity is in my personal library, along with other Lewis works, as classic Christian orthodoxy at its finest.

  6. Matthew Melton /

    Just re-read the book for the third time as part of a class I taught this summer. As always, I find Lewis’ first chapters most compelling, and I will never forget the first time i read it, not long after my conversion to Christianity, and how moved I was by his appeal to Natural Law. Always a good read.

  7. Josh Jacobs /

    The element of Mere Christianity I appreciate most is the illustration of Christianity being a house. Mere Christianity for Lewis is the hallway of the house and the individual expressions of Christianity are the rooms off of the hallway. There, in those rooms, Lewis writes are the chairs, fires, and meals. That analogy I have always found beautiful.

  8. Mike Turner /

    From the introduction as “mere” Christianity not being put forward to existing creeds and communions but try and help someone be brought into the “hall” of Christianity….but to only “wait” there however long though it might take to get into one of the “communion” rooms off the hall….where in the rooms are the fires and chairs and meals… to perhaps try various doors. This waiting not being passive and not to be done alone without God’s guidance: “You must keep on praying for light:….asking which door is the true one;…..not which pleases you best by its paint and paneling. In plain language, the question should never be: “Do I like that kind of service?” but “Are these doctrines true: is holiness here? Does my conscience move me toward this? Is my reluctance to knock at this door due to my pride, or my mere taste, or my personal like of this particular door-keeper?”
    It is these words that I have copied several times to remind me what I am to be looking for, having been raised a Southern Baptist but within the Methodist fold for 25 years with my church membership in a country Church and not having joined the Methodist Church here in town, a Church I’ve attended for several years with the reluctance to join being based on this exact criteria and the uncertainty therein…with forays slight though they may be into Catholic, Episcopal, one Lutheran…taking nothing off the table….Orthodox included. In defense of this all , I again use words from the introduction of Mere Christianity, “It is true that some people may find they have to wait in the hall for a considerable time, while others feel certain almost at once which door they must knock at. I do not know why there is a difference, but I am sure God keeps no one waiting He sees that it is good for him to wait.”

  9. Wartime Radio Audiences of C. S. Lewis
    Date – Market Share – Audience Size

    1. Right and Wrong: A Clue to the Meaning of the Universe
    (Wednesdays, Home Service, 4:45-5:00 PM; potential audience 35 million)
    August 6, 1941 1.6 560,000
    August 13, 1941 4.9 1,715,000
    August 20, 1941 6.2 2,170,000
    August 27, 1941 4.2 1,470,000
    September 3, 1941 3.2 1,120,000

    2. What Christians Believe
    (Sundays, Home Service, 4:45-5:00 PM; potential audience 33 million)
    January 11, 1942 3.4 1,122,000
    January 18, 1942 3.2 1,056,000
    February 1, 1942 3.2 1,056,000
    February 8, 1942 2.3 759,000
    February 15, 1942 3.1 1,023,000

    3. The Brains Trust
    (Tuesdays, Home Service, 8:15-9:00 PM; rebroadcast on
    Sundays, Forces Programme, 4:00-4:45 PM; potential audience 33 million)
    May 12, 1942 16.7 5,511,000
    May 17, 1942 15.3 5,049,000
    Combined 32.0 10,560,000

    4. Christian Behaviour*
    (Sundays, Forces Programme, 2:50-3:00 PM; potential audience 33 million)
    September 20, 1942 2.5 825,000
    September 27, 1942 3.9 1,287,000
    October 4, 1942 3.9 1,287,000
    October 11, 1942 4.7 1,551,000
    October 18, 1942 4.4 1,452,000
    October 25, 1942 3.1 1,023,000
    November 1, 1942 3.2 1,056,000
    November 8, 1942 3.0 990,000

    *(Appreciation Index, measured on September 20th, was a favorable 81 out of 100 maximum)

    5. The Anvil
    (Thursdays, Home Service, 8:00-8:30 PM; potential audience 31.5 million)
    July 22, 1943 8.8 2,772,000

    6. Beyond Personality: The Christian View of God
    (Tuesdays, Home Service, 10:20-10:10:35 PM; potential audience 30 million,
    except for potential audience of 31.5 million on February 22, 1944)
    February 22, 1944 3.1 976,500
    February 29, 1944 3.5 1,050,000
    March 7, 1944 3.3 990,000
    March 14, 1944 4.9 1,470,000
    March 21, 1944 4.6 1,380,000
    March 28, 1944 4.6 1,380,000
    April 4, 1944 4.2 1,260,000

  10. Bruce Edwards /

    The original title of the book was Mere Baseball.

    • William OFlaherty /

      Bruce: You must be thinking of the subtitle to the follow-up to The Four Love, which was The Fifth Love: Mere Baseball.

      • William OFlaherty /

        I’m not sure many will get the inside joke, but just in case there are those that do…

  11. I finally am in on one of these! If a Canadian can count, add my name to the pot. I just read through the original books, one at a time, in damaged but early copies. I liked that experience. I liked having to wait.

  12. What I liked about Mere Christianity is its readability. Neither boring nor too academic.

  13. Ken Clouser /

    I have read Mere Christianity countless times. I especially love the plain-ness of the first chapter. The book laid out such an easy, relatable discussion about God and Christianity that I used it as the outline for my topic in my college speech class. Had several fruitful discussions with other students because of the manner in which the topic was presented.

  14. How to pick just one thing I love about “Mere Christianity”? I love its clarity and simplicity, its logic, its depth, its beautiful prose. It has consistently been one of the most helpful books in my walk of faith.

  15. David Hilder /

    After listening to Focus on the Family Radio Theatre’s audio production about Mere Christianity, I have an appreciation for the book’s origins as BBC radio talks during WWII.

  16. A common mistake made about the origins of Mere Christianity is that it came from three broadcast talks. Three books of talks were published before they were joined into one volume in Mere, but there were actually four sets of broadcasts–the first two appeared in one book.

  17. William OFlaherty /

    The contest is now CLOSE and winners are being notified.
    Thanks to everyone who participated!