Wednesday, January 17, 2007

are you sick?

Pete Secord sent me this memorable quote from C.S. Lewis' Mere Christianity in response to Sunday's message on Jonah 3. Good stuff.

God is the only comfort, He is also the supreme terror: the thing we most need and the thing we most want to hide from. He is our only possible ally, and we have made ourselves His enemies. Some people talk as if meeting the gaze of absolute goodness would be fun. They need to think again. They are still only playing with religion. Goodness is either the great safety or the great danger – according to the way you react to it. And we have reacted the wrong way.

……Christianity simply does not make sense until you have faced the sort of facts I have been describing. Christianity tells people to repent and promises them forgiveness. It therefore has nothing (as far as I know) to say to people who do not know they have done anything to repent of and who do not feel that they need any forgiveness. It is after you have realized that there is a real Moral Law, and a Power behind the law, and that you have broken that law and put yourself wrong with that Power – it is after all this, and not a moment sooner, that Christianity begins to talk. When you know you are sick, you will listen to the doctor. When you have realized that our position is nearly desperate you will begin to understand what the Christians are talking about.

…They tell you how the demands of this moral law, which you and I cannot meet, have been met on our behalf, how God Himself becomes a man to save man from the disapproval of God.

1 comment:

Suzette Lyons said...

That is something I need reminding of very often. I liked that Jonah got it and then forgot. It made me feel a little better. It is so hard to see and so easy to forget?