40+ Best Mere Christianity Quotes by C.S. Lewis

Are you looking for Mere Christianity quotes? If yes, you have come to the right place.

We have compiled a list of quotes from Mere Christianity by C.S. Lewis for you to read.

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Book 1

“People say things like this: ‘How’d you like it if anyone did the same to you. “

“Men have differed as to whether you should have one wife or four. But they have always agreed that you must not simply have any woman you liked. “

“We feel the Rule of Law pressing on us so—we feel the Rule of Law pressing on us so—that we cannot bear to face the fact that we are breaking it, and consequently we try to shift the responsibility. “

“The thing that says to you, ‘Your herd instinct is asleep. Wake it up,,’ cannot itself be the herd instinct. “

“The Moral Law is not any one instinct or set of instincts: it is something which makes a kind of tune (the tune we call goodness or right conduct) by directing the instincts. “

“The reason why your idea of New York can be truer or less true than mine is that New York is a real place, existing quite apart from what either of us thinks. “

“I conclude then, that though the difference between people’s ideas of Decent Behaviour often make you suspect that there is no real natural Law of Behaviour at all, yet the things we are bound to think about these differences really prove just the opposite. “

“What we, from our point of view, call a ‘bad’ tree is obeying the laws of its nature just as much as a ‘good’ one. “

“A man occupying the corner seat in the train because he got there first, and a man who slipped into it while my back was turned and removed my bag, are both equally inconvenient. But I blame the second man and do not blame the first. “

“The Moral Law, or Law of Human Nature, is not simply a fact about human behaviour in the same way as the Law of Gravitation is, or may be, simply a fact about how heavy objects behave. “

“The so-called laws may not be anything real—anything above and beyond the actual facts which we observe. “

“Since men were able to think, they have been wondering what this universe really is and how it came to be there. And, very roughly, two views have been held. First, there is what is called the materialist view. “

“We do not merely observe men, we are men. “

“Since that power, if it exists, would be not one of the observed facts but a reality which makes them, no mere observation of the facts can find it. “

“When people say this we must ask them whether by Life-Force they mean something with a mind or not. “

“If anyone is feeling that way I should like to say three things to him. “

“We have two bits of evidence about the Somebody. One is the universe He has made. “

“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. “

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Book 2

“When I was an atheist I had to try to persuade myself that most of the human race have always been wrong about the question that mattered to them most; when I became a Christian I was able to take a more liberal view. “

“The Christian reply, ‘Don’t talk damned nonsense. “

“The universe seemed so cruel and unjust. But how had I got this idea of just and unjust. A man does not call a line crooked unless he has some idea of a straight line. “

“Both these are boys’ philosophies. “

“But the moment you say that, you are putting into the universe a third thing in addition to the two Powers: some law or standard or rule of good which one of the powers conforms to and the other fails to conform to. “

“The same point can be made in a different way. If Dualism is true, then the bad Power must be a being who likes badness for its own sake. But in reality we have no experience of anyone liking badness just because it is bad. The nearest we can get to it is in cruelty. “

“But I freely admit that real Christianity (as distinct from Christianity-and-water) goes much nearer to Dualism than people think. “

“Christians, then, believe that an evil power has made himself for the present the Prince of this World. And, of course, that raises problems. Is this state of affairs in accordance with God’s will, or not. “

“The moment you have a self at all, there is a possibility of putting yourself first—wanting to be the centre—wanting to be God, in fact. “

“Among Pantheists, like the Indians, anyone might say that he was a part of God, or one with God: there would be nothing very odd about it. “

“The central Christian belief is that Christ’s death has somehow put us right with God and given us a fresh start. “

“What the scientists believe is a mathematical formula. The pictures are there only to help you to understand the formula. They are not really true in the way the formula is; they do not give you the real thing but only something more or less like it. “

“Only a bad person needs to repent: only a good person can repent perfectly. “

“It is easier for a grown-up to do something than for a child. That is why the teacher is able to form the letters for the child because the teacher is grown-up and knows how to write. “

“Now the Christian belief is that if we somehow share the humility and suffering of Christ we shall also share in His conquest of death and find a new life after we have died and in it become perfect, and perfectly happy, creatures. “

“I cannot myself see why these things should be the conductors of the new kind of life. But then, if one did not happen to know, I should never have seen any connection between a particular physical pleasure and the appearance of a new human being in the world. “

“The Christian thinks any good he does comes from the Christ-life inside him. “

“Now, today, this moment, is our chance to choose the right side. God is holding back to give us that chance. It will not last for ever. We must take it or leave it. “

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Book 3

“Moral rules are directions for running the human machine. Every moral rule is there to prevent a breakdown, or a strain, or a friction, in the running of that machine. “

“The voyage will be a success only, in the first place, if the ships do not collide and get in one another’s way; and, secondly, if each ship is seaworthy and has her engines in good order. “

“It is easy enough to remove the particular kinds of graft or bullying that go on under the present system: but as long as men are twisters or bullies they will find some new way of carrying on the old game under the new system. “

“It is dealing with the third that the main differences between Christian and non-Christian morality come out. “

“According to this longer scheme there are seven ‘virtues’. Four of them are called ‘Cardinal’ virtues, and the remaining three are called ‘Theological’ virtues. “

“But, fortunately, it works the other way round. Anyone who is honestly trying to be a Christian will soon find his intelligence being sharpened: one of the reasons why it needs no special education to be a Christian is that Christianity is an education itself. “

“It helps people to forget that you can be just as intemperate about lots of other things. “

“The truth is that right actions done for the wrong reason do not help to build the internal quality or character called a ‘virtue’, and it is this quality or character that really matters. “

“When Moses and Aristotle and the Christians agreed in forbidding interest (or ‘usury’ as they called it), they could not foresee the joint stock company, and were only thinking of the private moneylender, and that, therefore, we need not bother about what they said. “

“In order that he may have something to give to those in need, charity—giving to the poor—is an essential part of Christian morality. “

“It means that we must begin both jobs at once—(1) the job of seeing how ‘Do as you would be done by’ can be applied in detail to modern society, and (2) the job of becoming the sort of people who really would apply it if we saw how. “

“When a neurotic who has a pathological horror of cats forces himself to pick up a cat for some good reason, it is quite possible that in God’s eyes he has shown more courage than a healthy man may have shown in winning the V. C. “

“It is as well to put this the other way round. Some of us who seem quite nice people may, in fact, have made so little use of a good heredity and a good upbringing that we are really worse than those whom we regard as fiends. “

“When a man is getting better he understands more and more clearly the evil that is still left in him. When a man is getting worse he understands his own badness less and less. “

“The Christian rule of chastity must not be confused with the social rule of ‘modesty’ (in one sense of that word); i. e. propriety, or decency. “

“If a healthy young man indulged his sexual appetite whenever he felt inclined, and if each act produced a baby, then in ten years he might easily populate a small village. “

“The moment you look at the facts, and away from the propaganda, you see that it is not. The old Christian teachers said that if man had never fallen, sexual pleasure, instead of being less than it is now, would actually have been greater. “

“Those who really wish for help will get it; but for many modern people even the wish is difficult. “

“Many people are deterred from seriously attempting Christian chastity because they think (before trying) that it is impossible. “

“We may, indeed, be sure that perfect chastity—like perfect charity—will not be attained by any merely human efforts. “

“The Christian idea of marriage is based on Christ’s words that a man and wife are to be regarded as a single organism—for that is what the words ‘one flesh’ would be in modern English. “

“If, as modern people are always telling us, the sexual impulse is just like all our other impulses, then it ought to be treated like all our other impulses; and as their indulgence is controlled by our promises, so should its be. “

“It is hard because so many people cannot be brought to realise that when B is better than C, A may be even better than B. “

“Being in love is a good thing, but it is not the best thing. “

“It is because so few people understand this that you find many middle-aged men and women maundering about their lost youth, at the very age when new horizons ought to be appearing and new doors opening all round them. “

“Two questions obviously arise here. (1) Why should there be a head at all—why not equality. (2) Why should it be the man. “

“The relations of the family to the outer world—what might be called its foreign policy—must depend, in the last resort, upon the man, because he always ought to be, and usually is, much more just to the outsiders. “

“Christian morals ‘thy neighbour’ includes ‘thy enemy’. . there is no slightest suggestion that we are offered forgiveness on any other terms. “

“So apparently ‘Love your neighbour’ does not mean ‘feel fond of him’ or ‘find him attractive’. “

“It is, therefore, in my opinion, perfectly right for a Christian judge to sentence a man to death or a Christian soldier to kill an enemy. “

“I admit that this means loving people who have nothing lovable about them. But then, has oneself anything lovable about it. You love it simply because it is yourself. “

“Pride is essentially competitive—is competitive by its very nature—while the other vices are competitive only, so to speak, by accident. “

“Pride—the wish to be richer than some other rich man, and (still more) the wish for power. “

“Pride can often be used to beat down the simpler vices. “

“To love and admire anything outside yourself is to take one step away from utter spiritual ruin; though we shall not be well so long as we love and admire anything more than we love and admire God. “

“Charity now means simply what used to be called ‘alms’—that is, giving to the poor. “

“The difference between a Christian and a worldly man is not that the worldly man has only affections or ‘likings’ and the Christian has only ‘charity’. “

“God’s love for us is a much safer subject to think about than our love for Him. “

“It is since Christians have largely ceased to think of the other world that they have become so ineffective in this. “

“If none of my earthly pleasures satisfy it, that does not prove that the universe is a fraud. “

“A sane man accepts or rejects any statement, not because he wants to or does not want to, but because the evidence seems to him good or bad. “

“Faith, in the sense in which I am here using the word, is the art of holding on to things your reason has once accepted, in spite of your changing moods. “

“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. “

“It is after this that real life begins. “

“When I say ‘discovered’, I mean really discovered: not simply said it parrot-fashion. “

“The road back to God is a road of moral effort, of trying harder and harder. “

“Good actions are all that matter. The best good action is charity. The best kind of charity is giving money. The best thing to give money to is the Church. So hand us over £10,000 and we will see you through. “

“But this way of thinking breaks down. “

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Book 4

“Theology means ‘the science of God’, and I think any man who wants to think about God at all would like to have the clearest and most accurate ideas about Him which are available. “

“When you get down to it, is not the popular idea of Christianity simply this: that Jesus Christ was a great moral teacher and that if only we took His advice we might be able to establish a better social order and avoid another war. “

“What God begets is God; just as what man begets is man. “

“But what man, in his natural condition, has not got, is Spiritual life—the higher and different sort of life that exists in God. “

“A world of one dimension would be a straight line. In a two-dimensional world, you still get straight lines, but many lines make one figure. In a three-dimensional world, you still get figures but many figures make one solid body. “

“And when they worked it all out they found they had arrived at the Christian definition of the three-personal God. “

“Theology is, in a sense, an experimental science. “

“It is a very silly idea that in reading a book you must never ‘skip’. “

“God is not hurried along in the Time-stream of this universe any more than an author is hurried along in the imaginary time of his own novel. He has infinite attention to spare for each one of us. “

“If it does not help you, leave it alone. It is a ‘Christian idea’ in the sense that great and wise Christians have held it and there is nothing in it contrary to Christianity. “

“The result does not come after the cause. “

“In the Christian life you are not usually looking at Him. He is always acting through you. “

“The present state of things is this. The two kinds of life are now not only different (they would always have been that) but actually opposed. “

“When Christ becomes man it is not really as if you could become one particular tin soldier. “

“Remember what I said about ‘good infection’. “

“On the other hand, when you are tempted not to bother about someone else’s troubles because they are ‘no business of yours’, remember that though he is different from you he is part of the same organism as you. “

“So that, in a way, this dressing up as Christ is a piece of outrageous cheek. “

“The real Son of God is at your side. He is beginning to turn you into the same kind of thing as Himself. “

“At first, only for moments. Then for longer periods. “

“When I come to my evening prayers and try to reckon up the sins of the day, nine times out of ten the most obvious one is some sin against charity; I have sulked or snapped or sneered or snubbed or stormed. “

“In a sense you might even say it is God who does the pretending. “

“In the previous chapter we were considering the Christian idea of ‘putting on Christ’, or first ‘dressing up’ as a son of God in order that you may finally become a real son. “

“It is like that here. The terrible thing, the almost impossible thing, is to hand over your whole self—all your wishes and precautions—to Christ. But it is far easier than what we are all trying to do instead. “

“It is even doubtful, you know, whether the whole universe was created for any other purpose. “

“The only help I will give is help to become perfect. You may want something less: but I will give you nothing less. “

“On the one hand, God’s demand for perfection need not discourage you in the least in your present attempts to be good, or even in your present failures. Each time you fall He will pick you up again. “

“He intended to come and live in it Himself. “

“The change will not be completed in this life, for death is an important part of the treatment. “

“In the first place the situation in the actual world is much more complicated than that. The world does not consist of 100 per cent. Christians and 100 per cent. non-Christians. “

“In one sense (I will explain what sense in a moment) niceness hardly comes into the question. “

“It costs God nothing, so far as we know, to create nice things: but to convert rebellious wills cost His crucifixion. “

“If you are a nice person—if virtue comes easily to you—beware! Much is expected from those to whom much is given. “

“I should expect not merely difference but a new kind of difference. “

“The first instance appeared in Palestine two thousand years ago. In a sense, the change is not ‘Evolution’ at all, because it is not something arising out of the natural process of events but something coming into nature from outside. “

“The stakes are higher. By falling back at the earlier steps a creature lost, at the worst, its few years of life on this earth: very often it did not lose even that. By falling back at this step we lose a prize which is (in the strictest sense of the word) infinite. “

“It certainly sounds like it; but in fact it is not so. “

“It is something like that with Christ and us. The more we get what we now call ‘ourselves’ out of the way and let Him take us over, the more truly ourselves we become. “

“There are no real personalities anywhere else. Until you have given up your self to Him you will not have a real self. “

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