“What we want is not more little books about Christianity, but more little books by Christians on other subjects — with their Christianity latent. You can see this most easily if you look at it the other way round. Our faith is not likely to be shaken by any book on Hinduism. But, if whenever we read an elementary book on geology, botany, politics, or astronomy, we found that its implications were Hindu, that would shake us. It is not the books written in direct defense of materialism that make the modern man a materialist; it is the materialistic assumptions in all the other books. In the same way, it is not books on Christianity that will really trouble him. But he would be troubled if, whenever he wanted a cheap popular introduction to some science, the best work on the market was always by a Christian. The first step to the reconversion of a country is books produced by Christians.”
(God in the Dock, “Christian Apologetics,” C. S. Lewis)
I find little nuggets like this all the time and wonder if Lewis would be nearly as popular with Christians if they had any clue about what he actually said. Lewis’ words, written some 40 years ago, speak intelligently in critique of issues that many still can’t get figured out today.
It seems telling that there are no voices of reason and intelligence standing out in all of the Christian publishing industry like Lewis or Chesterton did at one time. If there were somebody out there smart enough and reasonable enough to actually have something to say, he/she is constantly feeling pressure to “write more little books about Christianity”, which, of course, will never make any impression on anybody outside of the Church’s walls.
“A CBA (Christian Booksellers Association) survey released at the Convention shows Christian-product sales by CBA member suppliers through all distribution channels to be just under $4.2 billion for the year 2002…”