About a month ago I posted an article about my disliking to the C.S. Lewis book "Mere Christianity" you can read that post here.
and for the first time in a long while I'm going to repost a comment left by one of you lovely readers. so without further ado, here's Joel.
I don't read your blog, but Rady tagged this post. I'm a huge CS Lewis fan, mainly from the standpoint that I'm a reason/logic guy and most of his writings use that approach.
Your points are solid. I've been reading his work for a long time and thought I might offer a perspective on some of this that comes from reading his other works as well.
1. He can be very long winded. Just because he's held in high regard doesn't mean he says things simply. I do often read his books when I intended to fall asleep. I still learn a great deal from him.
2. The Apostle Paul wasn't married either, and in fact uses much the same disclaimer in 1 Cor 7 when speaking about such things. We would still consider his teachings very thoroughly (God's Word afterall, right?).
3. I've long disagreed with CSL on his stance of evolution. The Problem Of Pain is another great work of his. But he says some really outlandish things that really end up sounding more like a man searching for truth while confidently stating things he isn't really sure of. After considering this for a while I realized that he was born in an era when science really was starting to take off. Creationism was being challenged, and there really wasn't an antidote or clear response from the Christian community. He was a man of logic and to that point his scholarly friends and influences were bringing seemingly logical arguments for which there was no better, more "logical" Christian response. He was bound by the limits of the knowledge he had to work with. I wonder if he'd have a much different view of things if he were alive today.
4. Lastly, to your point about scripture. He rarely ever uses scripture to back up his arguments, especially in Mere Christianity. I liken this to someone using the color green to describe the color green to someone who has never seen green. If you are an atheist or a "normal person" and you don't believe the validity of the Bible, using scripture to describe truth is going to seem really inadequate, and maybe even comical. He uses other approaches to reveal that the Bible, more importantly God, is who He really is. If you want solid Biblical teaching to back up what you believe, there are many many other authors who approach things from a scriptural context. He doesn't often intend to reach the reached. His writing, as I've viewed it, is intended to reach those who view scripture very skeptically.
So overall, I don't disagree with your observations. He was after all just a man. He was flawed. I see a lot of his approach in myself. I often times must make a "confident" argument known to then begin disassembling it in my own mind to make sure it can be stated as confidently as I originally presented it.