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Miracles (C. S. Lewis Signature Classic) (C. Lewis Signature Classic) Paperback – 7 Apr 2016

4.4 out of 5 stars 32 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 304 pages
  • Publisher: William Collins (7 April 2016)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0007461259
  • ISBN-13: 978-0007461257
  • Product Dimensions: 13 x 2.3 x 19.7 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (32 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 247,884 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product description

Review

‘…a brilliant book, abounding in lucid exposition and illuminating metaphor.’
Observer

‘This is Dr Lewis’s most substantial and persuasive essay in Christian apologetics, and it is all the more impressive because it is the work of a poet as well as a philosopher.’
Church Times

From the Back Cover

‘The central miracle asserted by Christians is the Incarnation. They say that God became Man. Every other miracle prepares the way for this, or results from this.’

This is the key statement of Miracles, in which C. S. Lewis shows that a Christian must not only accept but rejoice in miracles as a testimony of the unique personal involvement of God in his creation.

Using his characteristic lucidity and wit to develop his argument, Lewis challenges the rationalists and cynics who are mired in their lack of imagination and provides a poetic and joyous affirmation that miracles really do occur in our everyday lives.

--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
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Format: Paperback
This book is, as with many of CS Lewis's works, much-loved by many. For those sceptical about the possibility of miracles, Lewis surveys deep philosophical territory, but in a way that non-philosophers can understand: trudging through the self-contradictions of Naturalism to set the ground for his argument, and then tackling the arguments of thinkers like Hume, he comes to a satisfying conclusion.
Don't think you won't understand it- anyone who has read Lewis before will appreciate his skill at communicating difficult concepts to the layman. His arguments, I think, are still relevant today; naturalism and its (alleged) self-contradictions are still a source of much debate in the philosophical world.
Quite frankly, I would recommend this to anyone. For Christians, as it will help them think through their faith more deeply and clearly; but I think everyone will enjoy Lewis's style and clarity of argument.
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This book lacks the clarity and hearty joy of "Mere Christianity" and the fun of "The screwtape letters" and can feel like heavy going - particulary when Lewis goes on at length to prove the inherent contradictions in naturalism.

For me, the middle to end of the book was best. Lewis is fascinating when he discusses Christ as "Corn King", the prodigality of nature in consuming itself and the symbiotic relationship of all living things. Death comes from the fruit of the tree and yet, from the side of Christ, hanging on the wood (tree) of the cross, flows the blood (foreshadowing the wine of the Eucharist, which become his blood) of the new covenant. His discussion of Providence and the effects of prayer in respect of past events (a thought that had struck me two years ago) resonates deeply. There is a lot in the book - it is as if Lewis is really on to something about the relationship between nature and supernature - a new way of seeing things, which is not leavened with the naturalistic and pseudo-rationalism of the enlightenment.
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Pontificates all round the houses and his line of reasoning is very odd at times.
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brilliant book, brilliant author
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"Miracles" is a book by Christian apologist C.S. Lewis. It was first published in 1947 and subsequently revised in 1960. It's Lewis' most philosophical book, and could be read as a heavier sequel to "Mere Christianity", his most well known non-fiction work. Both books explain and defend a fairly traditional form of Christianity. Lewis was an Anglican, but usually attempted to write from a kind of all-Christian perspective. Both Protestants and Catholics appreciate his works.

"Miracles" became quite notorious due to a debate between Lewis and the analytic philosopher Elizabeth Anscombe in 1948. The latter supposedly demolished Lewis' entire argumentation, and made him withdraw from philosophy, humiliated. This version can be found in "Jack", a friendly biography of Lewis by George Sayer. Interestingly, Anscombe herself denied that this is what happened, pointing out that Lewis actually rewrote one chapter of "Miracles" to better counter her arguments - hardly an action taken by a humiliated man who broke with philosophy. Anscombe believed that it might have been *Sayer* who was shocked by her criticisms. Besides, Anscombe was a Christian herself, so the point of her arguments was hardly to disprove the existence of God.

Lewis deals with two principal issues in this book. First, he argues that the supernatural exists and that miracles are therefore possible. This is the most interesting part of the book for a non-Christian (roughly chapters 1 - 13). Second, he explains from a more theological viewpoint how the miracles of Jesus should be interpreted. He also briefly deals with some other issues, for instance the difference between theism and pantheism. The book is well written, lucid and occasionally witty.
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This is wonderfully written book of apologetics. The best writing grows not necessarily out of right thinking, but out of clear thinking. You may not agree with its central thesis or the arguments expertly outlined and colourfully illustrated in the first half of the book, but if you, like me, get an almost sensual pleasure from good writing and clear thinking then you will certainly get your fix from this book. That is the first thing to say.
If you are reading this then you have directed your eyes to this page to read these lines. Whether you will find yourself conducive to Lewis' reasoning depends on whether you think my observation above is possibly a miracle. That is, whether you believe in free will. The very thought process and resulting choice that led you to read these lines is a product of your mind. If you think your mind is equivalent to your brain then you are a machine and I would ask you not to read on: you cannot understand what I have to say: please desist. But if you have been following my argument so far then I think you will have to admit that your mind is something quite special; it possesses reason. Reason is the divine spark in us according to Lewis, because it is what makes the difference between man and brute a difference of kind and not degree. Nature does not explain itself, it just is. Through physical science man has discovered some of the laws of nature, some of 'how's'. But physical science will never give you answers to the 'why' question, the question of meaning. And yet this question is implicit in the human mind, in reason- finding reasons, not just explanations, but justifications as well.
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