Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Jesus is not just a great moral teacher

Poached-Eggs     I am trying here to prevent anyone saying the really foolish thing that people often say about Him: ‘I’m ready to accept Jesus as a great moral teacher, but I don’t accept His claim to be God.’ That is the one thing we must not say. A man who was merely a man and said the sort of things Jesus said would not be a great moral teacher. He would either be a lunatic—on a level with the man who says he is a poached egg—or else he would be the Devil of Hell. You must make your choice.  Either this man was, and is, the Son of God: or else a madman or something worse. You can shut Him up for a fool, you can spit at Him and kill Him as a demon; or you can fall at His feet and call Him Lord and God. But let us not come with any patronising nonsense about His being a great human teacher. He has not left that open to us. He did not intend to.
     We are faced, then, with a frightening alternative. This man we are talking about either was (and is) just what He said or else a lunatic, or something worse. Now it seems to me obvious that He was neither a lunatic nor a fiend: and consequently, however strange or terrifying or unlikely it may seem, I have to accept the view that He was and is God. God has landed on this enemy-occupied world in human form.

Quotes from Mere Christianity, Part 20
For enquiring minds, see the Wikipedia article: Lewis’s trilemma
C.S. Lewis, Mere Christianity (1952; Harper Collins: 2001) 52-53.


  1. Pandeism Is PossibleJuly 21, 2014 at 2:35 PM

    The problem here is that Jesus was NOT a great moral teacher. If you really look at his teachings, Jesus mostly parroted earlier wisdom, and was just wrong about some things -- for example, Jesus' whole attitude on divorce was just naive and foolish. Sometimes a marriage just doesn't work. To suggest that a couple ought to never be able to call an end to it and try to find happier circumstances elsewhere, that is actually pretty immoral.

  2. PIP, I humbly believe you've misinterpreted Jesus' point which is that when two individuals , i.e., a man and woman join together in matrimony it sets in motion consequences which cannot simply be "disappeared' as though those choices and actions had never occurred.This is especially true if children were conceived as a result! I am struck by the fact that in both Matthew and Mark when "tested' by the Pharisees on the subject He ended the theological debate by rebuking his misguided followers who were preventing children from coming to and being blessed by Him.Honestly, if Jesus was " The Living Word" would you expect him not to reaffirm earlier revelations of truth?