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New E book Presents C.S. Lewis as Warrior In opposition to Evolutionary Naturalism – CEH

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C.S. Lewis: The simplest
anti-evolutionist of the final century

 

by Jerry Bergman, PhD

— Among the many most controversial books I’ve ever written
have been two books on C.S. Lewis as an anti-evolutionist.* —

*Evolution outlined as molecules to man by purely pure means.[1]

The primary ebook on Lewis, titled C.S. Lewis, Anti-Darwinist, has bought effectively. It’s in 322 main libraries and is bought on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Books-A-Million and Christianbook.com, the main on-line Christian ebook retailer.[2]

The second, C.S. Lewis’ Conflict In opposition to Scientism and Naturalism, has simply been launched, so is just not but in any library. This well-documented aspect of Lewis surprises individuals partly as a result of, of the over 300 books revealed about Lewis in English, my two books on Lewis are the one books written documenting the truth that he was an anti-evolutionist.

For varied causes, the concept that Lewis was an evolutionist has caught on, partly because of some statements that he has made prior to now which have change into orthodox, main many theistic evolutionists to tout him as championing their theistic evolution beliefs.

The Significance of Lewis

As of this writing, Lewis is the best-selling Christian creator of all time. His 29 BBC lectures given throughout World Conflict II reached an viewers estimated at 600,000.[3] Lewis has “succeeded as few others in inflicting Christianity to be mentioned critically and publicly.”[4]  As well as, a survey of 101 church leaders discovered that Lewis’s ebook Mere Christianity was [among] the highest ten most influential books they’ve ever learn.”[5]

C.S. Lewis was a professor for nearly 40 years, from 1925 till his untimely dying at age 64 in 1963. He was Professor of Medieval and Early Trendy English Literature, first at Oxford College, then at Cambridge College. He left Oxford as a result of “his refusal to cover his Christian religion below a bushel harm his possibilities for promotion.”[6]

Briefly, “C.S. Lewis . . . believed in argument, in disputation, and within the dialectic of Motive as a result of he believed that the principle enterprise of life was a daring hunt for reality.”  He feared that evolution would result in the “rejection of absolute requirements and conventional, goal values.”[7]

Opposition to the First E book

One well-known Christian who endorsed my first ebook on Lewis emailed me, informing me that he has acquired some suggestions condemning him for endorsing my ebook. Thus, though very supportive of my work, he requested that I not use his endorsement for my latest ebook on C.S. Lewis.

Understanding full effectively my first Lewis ebook was not good—no ebook written by a human is—I made a decision that, whereas engaged on my new sequel ebook, I might search the web for suggestions on my first ebook. I discovered nothing however a number of examples of ineffective name-calling, Though Amazon had 19 rankings of my first Lewis ebook and most rankings have been very optimistic.

The one very destructive overview assumed I argued for a place that I didn’t help. One other overview acknowledged, as proof I used to be flawed, wrote: “on the one hand Lewis would really like you to consider that he’s in opposition to evolution — then once more, concerning Christianity, in his ‘magnum opus’ on the subject, he would write one thing like ‘[Christianity] It’s not merely the spreading of an concept; it’s extra like evolution—a organic or super-biological truth.’ — there you may have it, whether or not Darwinist or not, evolution is the identify.” I used to be misplaced at her level right here. One other overview opined,

This ebook attracts out some necessary observations about C.S. Lewis’s creating ideas on the difficulty of Darwinism, and for anybody all in favour of Lewis, there’s a actual contribution right here. I’m finally glad I learn it.… That stated, although the case is in a number of locations overstated, the overall thesis right here is value studying and contemplating, and I vastly respect this primary try to synthesize Lewis’ varied statements on an necessary topic to which he speaks in passing pretty usually however hardly ever wrote about instantly. I hope this ebook is a beginning place that provokes better-written and extra thorough work on the topic by others sooner or later.[8]

Evolutionist and atheist Jerry Coyne visiting the grave of a person he admired vastly, John T. Scopes. See my article concerning the Scopes Trial from 6 Dec 2023.

Evolutionist Will get It

Even militant evolutionist Jerry Coyne acknowledged that C.S. Lewis rejected evolution, writing:

I puzzled what a person as sensible as Lewis would make of the speculation of evolution ….. Sadly, his views on evolution are even worse than his views on Christianity. Although Lewis died in 1963, after we already had tons of proof for evolution, Lewis was a doubter, holding the next views:

He had no objection in precept to widespread ancestry, however was skeptical about it—precisely the view that Michael Behe holds.

He was particularly skeptical about human evolution, not seeing how pure choice might create the reasoning human thoughts.

He noticed materialistic pure choice, the “unguided model,” as incapable of making novelty; it might “knock out present capabilities” however not create new ones. This in fact is a inventory argument of creationists.

In his ebook Miracles, Lewis claimed that human cause couldn’t have been produced by materialistic pure choice, for if choice is a “blind” course of, how can we regard cause as giving us the power to uncover the reality? That is similar to the arguments of Refined Theologians™ like Alvin Plantinga, and is a specious argument. I defined why in Religion Versus Reality.

Lewis additionally claimed that if people developed in a Darwinian approach, we might haven’t any cause to desire morality over immorality, as there could be “no such factor as proper or flawed.” Actual atheists must admit that, he stated.

As Lewis received older (and because the examine of evolution superior), he turned even much less accepting of evolution, proclaiming that the dogmatism of evolutionary biologists satisfied him that evolution was the “central and radical lie in the entire internet of falsehood that now governs our lives.” It’s nearly as if he thought evolution was a instrument of Devil (in whom Lewis believed).

Lastly, Lewis was an anti-accommodationist, vital of those that tried to reconcile evolution with theism. That’s the one factor he received proper![9]

I used to be stunned that, if militant evolutionist Jerry Coyne might precisely perceive C.S. Lewis’s views, why some Christians nonetheless aggressively argue he was an evolutionist? My article on C.S. Lewis’s objections to Darwinism[10] was posted on the Creation Ministries Worldwide web site.[11] The objections of 1 creationist have been quickly printed![12]

The arguments that Lewis was an evolutionist from Christian web sites, particularly from BioLogos, are widespread. One instance:

For Christians who query the concept that evolutionary science and God as creator are in battle, these beliefs can simply and faithfully be held collectively. C.S. Lewis, and others are examples of revered evangelical students who’ve overtly affirmed evolution and maintain a excessive view of biblical authority.”[13]

The proof in my new ebook reveals in any other case: Lewis opposed Darwinism.

Lewis Opposed Evolution Early On

As early as 1927, after quoting a nineteenth-century scientist, Lewis wrote in a letter to his father about evolution, dated March 30th, wherein he acknowledged that to just accept Darwinism, “you want extra religion in science than in … theology.”[14]

Towards the tip of his lengthy profession Lewis got here to the conclusion that the fashionable principle of evolutionary naturalism, usually known as Darwinism in honor of the person who was one of the crucial necessary trendy popularizers of evolution, was one of the crucial harmful concepts ever foisted on civilization.

Extra Proof

One among many conversations that present his downside with Darwinism was, when requested who he want to meet if he had a alternative of anybody who had ever lived, Lewis stated Adam. The response by a colleague,

Oxford Professor Helen Gardner advised Lewis, if there actually have been, somebody we might identify as “the primary man,” he could be a Neanderthal ape-like determine, whose dialog she couldn’t conceive of discovering fascinating. A stony silence fell on the dinner desk. Then Lewis stated gruffly, “I see we have now a Darwinian in our midst.” Helen Gardner was by no means invited to this occasion once more.[15]

C.S. Lewis letter to Bernard Acworth

One other quote by Lewis that displays his conclusions about evolution additionally explains why he shied away from overtly endorsing an anti-evolution stand. It was just because he

 feared that amongst his rising band of disciples some may take umbrage at his affiliation with anti-Darwinists: [explaining] ‘When a person has change into a well-liked Apologist …  he should watch his step. Everyone seems to be looking out for issues that may discredit him.’ Privately, nevertheless, he discovered [anti-evolutionist Bernard] Acworth’s arguments in opposition to evolution more and more compelling—and the pretensions of many biologists repellant.[16]

Later, Lewis

confessed that his perception within the unimportance of evolution was shaken whereas studying one in every of his buddy’s manuscripts,[stating]  ‘I want I have been youthful,’ …. ‘what inclines me now to suppose that you could be be proper in concerning it [evolution] as the central lie within the internet of falsehood that now governs our lives is just not a lot your arguments in opposition to it because the fanatical and twisted attitudes of its defenders.[17]

A poem he wrote supplies a lot perception about his causes for questioning evolution. This poem is quoted on the duvet of my new ebook.

Lead us, Evolution, lead us
Up the long run’s countless stair:
Chop us, change us, prod us, weed us,
For stagnation is despair:
Groping, guessing, but progressing,
Lead us, no one is aware of to the place.[18]

In abstract, Lewis was one of the crucial prolific Christian writers of the final century, and he wrote an important deal about his issues of evolutionary naturalism. Making an attempt to grasp his views on this space was a Herculean process that I’ve begun which I pray will lead different students to additional discover.

References

[1] Bergman, Jerry. C.S. Lewis: Anti-Darwinist: A Cautious Examination of the Growth of His Views on Darwinism. Wipf & Inventory Publishers, Eugene, OR, 2017; Bergman, Jerry. C.S. Lewis’ Conflict In opposition to Scientism and Naturalism. Cantaro Press, Ontario, Canada, 2023.

[2] https://www.christianbook.com/darwinist-careful-examination-development-views-darwinism/jerry-bergman/9781532607738/pd/607735.

[3] Reid, Daniel G. Dictionary of Christianity in America. InterVarsity Press, Downers Grove, IL, p. 645, 1990..

[4]Deasy, Philip. “God, Area, and C. S. Lewis.” Commonweal 68(16):421-425, p. 421, 25 July 1958.

[5] Crowell, Faye Ann. The Theme of the Dangerous Results of Science within the Works of C.S. Lewis. M.A. Thesis, Texas A & M College, Faculty Station, TX, p. 4, 1971.

[6] Murphy, Brian. C.S. Lewis (Starmont Reader’s Information, 14). Starmont Home, Mercer Island, WA, p. 11, 1983.

[7] Murphy, 1983, p. 11.

[8] https://www.amazon.com/productreviews/1532607733/ref=acr_dp_hist_3?ie=UTF8&filterByStar=three_star&reviewerType=all_reviews#reviews-filter-bar.

[9] Coyne, Jerry. “C.S. Lewis: Evolution denialist?” https://whyevolutionistrue.com/2016/09/17/c-s-lewis-evolutiondenialist/#:~:textual content=Insofarpercent20aspercent20naturalpercent20selectionpercent20were,andpercent20inpercent20partpercent20apercent20creationist, 2016.

[10] “C.S. Lewis: Creationist and Anti-evolutionist.” Journal of Creation 23(3):110-115, 2009.

[11] https://dl0.creation.com/articles/p070/c07086/j23_3_110-115.pdf.

[12] Journal of Creation 29(1); https://dl0.creation.com/articles/p100/c10056/j29_1_58-60.pdf, 2015.

[13] http://www.patheos.com/blogs/thepangeablog/; emphasis in authentic.

[14] Lewis, C.S. The Collected Letters of C. S. Lewis, Quantity 1: Household Letters, 1905-1931. HarperOne (previously HarperSanFrancisco), San Francisco, CA, p. 680, 2004.

[15] Wilson, A.N. C.S. Lewis: A Biography. Norton, New York, NY, p. 210, 1990.

[16] Numbers, Ronald. The Creationists. Harvard College Press, Cambridge, MA, p. 175, 2006.

[17] Numbers, 2006, p. 175.

[18] Whilk, Nat (pseudonym for C.S. Lewis). “Evolution Hymn.” The Cambridge Evaluation 78:227, 1957.


Dr. Jerry Bergman has taught biology, genetics, chemistry, biochemistry, anthropology, geology, and microbiology for over 40 years at a number of schools and universities together with Bowling Inexperienced State College, Medical Faculty of Ohio the place he was a analysis affiliate in experimental pathology, and The College of Toledo. He’s a graduate of the Medical Faculty of Ohio, Wayne State College in Detroit, the College of Toledo, and Bowling Inexperienced State College. He has over 1,300 publications in 12 languages and 40 books and monographs. His books and textbooks that embody chapters that he authored are in over 1,800 faculty libraries in 27 international locations. Up to now over 80,000 copies of the 60 books and monographs that he has authored or co-authored are in print. For extra articles by Dr Bergman, see his Creator Profile.

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