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Anglican Way Conference, July 8-10: The Apologetics of C.S. Lewis

What was it that made C.S. Lewis so effective in his ability to defend Christ and the Christian Faith?

The great 16th century German Reformer, Martin Luther, once said of the Holy Scriptures, “They need not be defended; they are like a roaring lion, simply turn them loose.” It would take a few hundred years far away from Wittenberg, Germany, in a place called, Oxford University in England, before a brilliant scholar named C.S. Lewis “turned loose the lion.” Only, Lewis was not just defending the Holy Scriptures. He offered arguments for Christianity. He also fended off a full-scale explosion of secularism that began in English Universities during the first quarter of the 20th century.

C.S. Lewis was, perhaps, the most effective Christian apologist since the Early Church. At the beginning of Christianity, there were those specially called to defend the Christian Faith. Men such as Justin Martyr, Tertullian, St. Augustine and others all had to craft arguments against many antagonists who arose to oppose the spread of Christianity.

Now we find ourselves in a period called Post-Christendom where God once again has begun to raise up Christian apologists, with Lewis at the forefront.

C.S. Lewis didn’t simply answer the 20th century critics of Christ, he offered what became his most famous work on Christian apologetics, Mere Christianity. Originally this work arose from a series of talks during WWII on the British radio network, the BBC. What these lectures did was to present a “case for Christianity.”

In presenting the positive arguments for Christ and Christianity, C.S. Lewis called upon methods ancient, modern and post-modern. In short, he effectively wielded Aristotelian logic, a masterful use of comparative religion, and the authorial skills of innovative fantasy literature for children young and old. In a sense, there’s been none exactly like him before or since.

For all of these reasons this year’s Anglican Way Institute is so important. We’ve entered another age where once again the Church desperately needs Christian apologists. Not just the kind that can tell you what’s wrong with modernity and post modernity. What we need are those who can do what Lewis did: present a positive case for Christianity showing why Jesus Christ is, “The Way, the Truth and the Life.”

C.S. Lewis offers a model of Christian Apologetics old and new for us to consider. In this year’s AWI, we will be drilling into his method that it might be replicated. To guide us is another remarkable 20-21st century Christian apologist, Dr. Peter Kreeft. Dr. Kreeft is the author of over 95 books including several on apologetics and C.S. Lewis. Dr. Kreeft will guide us through Lewis’s apologetical approach through his masterworks: Mere Christianity; The Problem of Pain; The Great Divorce; and the Screwtape Letters. Next to C.S. Lewis, he has been and is one of Christianity’s best Defenders of the Faith! Please make it a priority to come to the Anglican Way Institute this year July 8-10 in Dallas, Texas!!!


The Most Rev. Dr. Ray R. Sutton

Presiding Bishop, Reformed Episcopal Church Ordinary, Diocese of Mid-America

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