An Apologist Like C.S. Lewis?

Since C.S. Lewis’ death in 1963, many Christian writers have seen him as a role model and have tried to emulate his success at making difficult theological concepts understandable to the average reader.  In an article written last August in the Wall Street Journal, David Skeel discusses Lewis’ legacy and how recent apologists have fared in writing books in the vein of “Mere Christianity.”

Please read below for an excerpt of David Skeel’s article “Apres Lewis.”  If you have read any of the books Skeel discusses or you have read other similar books to recommend or critique, please leave a comment on our blog by clicking where it gives the number of Comments below the post.

Recently a friend assured me that a book by a well-known evangelical Christian was the new “Mere Christianity.” For an evangelical this possibly cryptic statement needs no explanation. As evangelicals, we are called to evangelize — to share the good news about Jesus Christ. Most of us also are surrounded by friends and co-workers who may be curious about our beliefs. And for over 55 years, Christians have turned to C.S. Lewis’s little book “Mere Christianity” for both of these reasons.

But much has changed in the last half-century. There is the constant hope that, even if it falls short of its prototype, a work of Christian apologetics will take its place alongside Lewis and help to explain Christianity to a new generation of readers, especially to skeptics. Even before Sam Harris and other atheists began scaling the best-seller lists, evangelicals were searching for a new “Mere Christianity,” and evangelical writers were trying to write it.

The best of the contenders can be divided into two types. Some take a “scientific” approach, trying to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that Christ was indeed the son of God who came to save us from our sins. For many years the leading example was “Evidence that Demands a Verdict” (1972) by Josh McDowell; the new superstar is Lee Strobel. The central theme for both authors is a trial, in which all the evidence will be weighed… More