C. S. LEWIS QUOTES

Christian author (1898-1963)

Let me make it quite clear that when Christians say the Christ-life is in them, they do not mean simply something mental or moral. When they speak of being "in Christ" or of Christ being "in them", this is not simply a way of saying that they are thinking about Christ or copying Him. They mean that Christ is actually operating through them; that the whole mass of Christians are the physical organism through which Christ acts--that we are His fingers and muscles, the cells of His body.

C. S. LEWIS, Mere Christianity

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Atheists express their rage against God although in their view He does not exist.

C. S. LEWIS, The Problem of Pain

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Tags: atheism


A Christian is not a man who never goes wrong, but a man who is enabled to repent and pick himself up and begin over again after each stumble.

C. S. LEWIS, Mere Christianity

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Tags: repentance


To be a Christian means to forgive the inexcusable, because God has forgiven the inexcusable in you. This is hard. It is perhaps not so hard to forgive a single great injury. But to forgive the incessant provocations of daily life -- to keep on forgiving the bossy mother-in-law, the bullying husband, the nagging wife, the selfish daughter, the deceitful son -- how can we do it? Only, I think, by remembering where we stand, by meaning our words when we say in our prayers each night, "forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us".

C. S. LEWIS, "On Forgiveness", The Weight of Glory

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Every story of conversion is the story of a blessed defeat.

C. S. LEWIS, foreward, Smoke on the Mountain

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Don't bother much about your feelings. When they are humble, loving, brave, give thanks for them; when they are conceited, selfish, cowardly, ask to have them altered. In neither case are they you, but only a thing that happens to you. What matters is your intentions and your behaviour.

C. S. LEWIS, letter to Genia Goelz, June 13, 1951

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To love at all is to be vulnerable. Love anything, and your heart will certainly be wrung and possibly be broken. If you want to make sure of keeping it intact, you must give your heart to no one, not even to an animal. Wrap it carefully round with hobbies and little luxuries; avoid all entanglements; lock it up safe in the casket or coffin of your selfishness. But in that casket -- safe, dark, motionless, airless -- it will change. It will not be broken; it will become unbreakable, impenetrable, irredeemable.

C. S. LEWIS, The Four Loves

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Tags: love


If there's anyone who can appear before Aslan without their knees knocking, they're either braver than most, or else just silly.

C. S. LEWIS, The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe

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People who have not been in Narnia sometimes think that a thing cannot be good and terrible at the same time.

C. S. LEWIS, The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe

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As long as what you are afraid of is something evil, you may still hope that the good may come to your rescue. But suppose you struggle through to the good and find that it also is dreadful? How if food itself turns out to be the very thing you can't eat, and home the very place you can't live, and your very comforter the person who makes you uncomfortable? Then, indeed, there is no rescue possible: the last card has been played.

C. S. LEWIS, Perelandra

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Don't be scared by the word authority. Believing things on authority only means believing them because you've been told them by someone you think trustworthy. Ninety-nine per cent of the things you believe are believed on authority. I believe there is such a place as New York. I haven't seen it myself. I couldn't prove by abstract reasoning that there must be such a place. I believe it because reliable people have told me so. The ordinary man believes in the Solar System, atoms, evolution, and the circulation of the blood on authority -- because the scientists say so. Every historical statement in the world is believed on authority. None of us has seen the Norman Conquest or the defeat of the Armada. None of us could prove them by pure logic as you prove a thing in mathematics. We believe them simply because people who did see them have left writings that tell us about them: in fact, on authority. A man who jibbed at authority in other things as some people do in religion would have to be content to know nothing all his life.

C. S. LEWIS, The Case for Christianity

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I believe in Christianity as I believe that the sun has risen: not only because I see it, but because by it I see everything else.

C. S. LEWIS, "Is Theology Poetry?"

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God whispers to us in our pleasures, speaks in our conscience, but shouts in our pains: it is His megaphone to rouse a deaf world.

C. S. LEWIS, The Problem of Pain

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Tags: pain


I didn't go to religion to make me happy. I always knew a bottle of Port would do that. If you want a religion to make you feel really comfortable, I certainly don't recommend Christianity.

C. S. LEWIS, God in the Dock

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Tags: religion


Now is our chance to choose the right side. God is holding back to give us that chance. It won't last forever. We must take it or leave it.

C. S. LEWIS, Mere Christianity

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God never meant man to be a purely spiritual creature. That is why He uses material things like bread and wine to put the new life into us. We may think this rather crude and unspiritual. God does not: He invented eating. He likes matter. He invented it.

C. S. LEWIS, Mere Christianity

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I became my own only when I gave myself to Another.

C. S. LEWIS, letter, July 17, 1953

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God made us: invented us as a man invents an engine. A car is made to run on petrol, and it would not run properly on anything else. Now God designed the human machine to run on Himself.

C. S. LEWIS, Mere Christianity

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Tags: God


All that is not eternal is eternally out of date.

C. S. LEWIS, The Four Loves

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It is Christ Himself, not the Bible, who is the true Word of God. The Bible, read in the right spirit and with the guidance of good teachers, will bring us to Him.

C. S. LEWIS, letter, November 8, 1952

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Tags: Jesus