Friday, February 8, 2013

Reflections on the Psalms

by C. S. Lewis

Grade: 5 stars

Thoughts: C. S. Lewis is faaaabulous. He starts out right off the bat with tackling the difficult stuff: the curses and and the death and the law and the judgement. One of Lewis's strongest points is making analogies to help understand difficult concepts like this, so of course this part was great. But my favourite chapter by far was "Nature". Here he discussed my current theological pet peeve:
"[T]he difference between believing  in God and in many gods is not one of arithmetic. As someone has said 'gods' is not really the plural of God; God has no plural." (pg. 82)
And this is not because Christianity believes that there is only one god or something--it's because the type of God Christianity believes in cannot by nature exist more than once. In fact, if there is more than one of that type of God, it is the same God. Thus the trinity. One God. Three persons.
Anyway, I'm rubbish at explaining exactly what I mean, and in cases like this, one kind of needs to be exact. But to sum up: the non-transcendence of God (as in capital-G God) in so much modern entertainment really bugs me, so it was interesting to see a similar idea discussed so many years ago.

There are so many other ideas he is excellent at explaining--I especially liked the chapter on non-literal meanings of scripture, and his discussion of The Song of Songs on page 128. (His shout-out to Ecclesiastes on pg. 115 was great too--Ecclesiastes is one of my very favourite books of the Bible.)

And here I'd like to quote the whole part about Akhenaten (one of my all-time favourite historical personages) from about pages 84-9, but that's obviously too long and I way behind on reviews. So read it yourself. Akhenaten is awesome, and C. S. Lewis is nicely balanced in his approach to him.

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