C.S. Lewis is widely considered to be one of the best Christian apologists of the 20th century.
Though he was led to Christianity by his Catholic friend J.R.R. Tolkien, Lewis became Anglican and remained one the rest of his life. Nonetheless, his writings have helped lead innumerable people to the Catholic Church he never joined himself.
Here are 19 of his most powerful quotes:
1) “If we find ourselves with a desire that nothing in this world can satisfy, the most probable explanation is that we were made for another world.”
2) “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.”
3) “There are no ordinary people. You have never talked to a mere mortal.”
4) “The Christian does not think God will love us because we are good, but that God will make us good because He loves us.”
5) “God can’t give us peace and happiness apart from Himself because there is no such thing.”
6) “A man can no more diminish God’s glory by refusing to worship Him than a lunatic can put out the sun by scribbling the word ‘darkness’ on the walls of his cell.”
7) “It would seem that Our Lord finds our desires not too strong, but too weak. We are half-hearted creatures, fooling about with drink and sex and ambition when infinite joy is offered us, like an ignorant child who wants to go on making mud pies in a slum because he cannot imagine what is meant by the offer of a holiday at the sea.”
8) “True humility is not thinking less of yourself; it is thinking of yourself less.”
9) “Human history is the long terrible story of man trying to find something other than God which will make him happy.”
10) “A silly idea is current that good people do not know what temptation means. This is an obvious lie. Only those who try to resist temptation know how strong it is… A man who gives in to temptation after five minutes simply does not know what it would have been like an hour later. That is why bad people, in one sense, know very little about badness. They have lived a sheltered life by always giving in.”
11) “Die before you die, there is no chance after.”
12) “No man knows how bad he is till he has tried very hard to be good.”
13) “Aim at Heaven and you will get Earth ‘thrown in’: aim at Earth and you will get neither.”
14) “Progress means getting nearer to the place you want to be. And if you have taken a wrong turning, then to go forward does not get you any nearer. If you are on the wrong road, progress means doing an about-turn and walking back to the right road; and in that case the man who turns back soonest is the most progressive man.”
15) “Christianity, if false, is of no importance, and if true, of infinite importance. The only thing it cannot be is moderately important.”
16) “Everyone thinks forgiveness is a lovely idea until he has something to forgive.”
17) “Love may forgive all infirmities and love still in spite of them: but Love cannot cease to will their removal.”
18) “I know now, Lord, why you utter no answer. You are yourself the answer. Before your face questions die away. What other answer would suffice?”
19) “God is no fonder of intellectual slackers than He is of any other slacker.”
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