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The Joyful Christian

4.05  ·  Rating details ·  915 ratings  ·  74 reviews

C.S. Lewis, himself a convert, wrote of being "surprised by joy" when he discovered his belief in Jesus Christ. In these 127 devotional readings, selected from Lewis's many works on faith and spirituality, Christians everywhere can share in the joy of this master theologian as he discusses topics ranging from the nature of prayer and good works to psychoanalysis and fascis

Paperback, 256 pages
Published March 1st 1999 by B&H Publishing Group (first published 1977)
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Average rating 4.05  · 
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 ·  915 ratings  ·  74 reviews

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Dec 21, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Reading sections again. Usually after scripture readings. I've been re-reading this book for a decade. Highly recommend it; after all it's Lewis.
A nice cherry picking of C.S. Lewis’ thoughts on many topics of interest: Heaven, Hell, death, apologetics, love... the list is extensive.

Dubbed as a devotional, it certainly reads as one. Could easily be nursed through many a short morning readings or whenever you want to find time to read his thoughts.

I’d recommend this to those who don’t feel compelled to read his extensive list of works (30+) and would rather get an idea of his writing. You’ll find that not all of his works are featured he
Ed Burns
Jul 21, 2011 rated it really liked it
The bibliography to the edition I read includes a book about C. S. Lewis that calls him "The Apostle to the Skeptics". It is this aspect of the author that spoke to me most. I fancy myself a fan of science and reason. I am glad the Enlightenment happened. And I consider the "all your mind" portion of Matthew 22:37 a scriptural basis for this way of thinking. Therefore, I am certainly a skeptic.

This book was a turning point in my Christian walk. The scholarly rigor with which Mr. Lewis treats su
Dianne Oliver
Oct 15, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: religion
At the end of the day, I just prefer thel entirety, rather than excerpts. However, it's Lewis...
Library Queen
Lewis is always fantastic, but I like reading full books and essays better than reading little snippets. One thing that was really good though, there was a lit of books/authors he suggested in his writing that I had not seen in the other books of his I've read, so that part was something I hadn't seen yet.
Lauren Alexander
Apr 27, 2015 rated it it was amazing
“If we find ourselves with a desire that nothing in this world can satisfy, the most probable explanation is that we were made for another world.”
-C.S. Lewis
The Joyful Christian is a collection of Lewis’ best work divided by topic. The Joyful Christian is academically challenging while being spiritually inspiring.
First sentence: If sales are signs, then C.S. Lewis is one of the most popular Christian theologians being published in the United States today.

The Joyful Christian is a collection of 127 readings taken from C.S. Lewis' nonfiction works. Some readings are longer than others--a few pages in length. Other readings are much shorter--less than a single page. Some readings seem to flow together in a particular sequence. Others not as much. Either is fine as far as I'm concerned when it comes to devot
Brittany Durr
Mar 25, 2020 rated it really liked it
This book is to be read as a devotional, as it is comprised of excerpts from Lewis' other works.

I found I missed the development that Lewis is faithful to give when he presents a subject.

Some may find this book very beneficial to devotional readings; I personally prefer Lewis' format in his other books.
Feb 02, 2019 rated it really liked it
I could read C.S. Lewis all day. And I wish I could write as clearly and persuasively as he does.
Jun 09, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Well that took a long time to read. It is an excellent book, but needs to be taken in small chunks.
Dec 05, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2017
Good stuff, but I prefer to read whole texts rather than excerpts.
Oct 24, 2008 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: people who need help with their Spiritual life or all Christians in general.
Recommended to Jenna by: library
What do you get when you take sections from C.S. Lewis' greatest theological works and put them together? THE JOYFUL CHRISTIAN. This book takes portions from C.S. Lewis' books MERE CHRISTIANITY, THE SCREWTAPE LETTERS, THE FOUR LOVES, and more and put them in order of topic to give you great insight into the mind of a great theologian. Three things that make THE JOYFUL CHRISTIAN such a wonderful thing to read is Lewis' examples of Biblical concepts, frank beliefs, and understanding of the though ...more
Aug 31, 2011 rated it really liked it
People need more joy...I find that joy can turn our perspectives completely upside down. I would much rather be joyful and happy, than to mope about and have bad attitudes. People that are unhappy, rude, and make a big deal about everything are so difficult to be around. I dislike dealing with the drama and people's puffed up opinions about themselves. I was a counselor at a Christian camp a couple weeks ago and some of the kids just weren't happy, respectful, or nice. It really saddened me. We ...more
Aug 20, 2008 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: religion
This book was not exactly what I expected, though it was very good for what it was: An Introduction to C.S. Lewis' writings. There were lots of excerpts from various of his papers, books, and speeches. Really a broad look at the theology of C.S. Lewis. There is also an excellent reference section, for further reading. I'm sure this will be a starting point for me to read more of his work.
Feb 12, 2010 rated it it was ok
Shelves: theology
It has been a while since I was reading this book, but as I recall it contains a collection of excerpts from Lewis' other works. I do not recall being super impressed with how the editors decided to cut the excerpts they did cut. Could be useful to give you a general idea of what you'll encounter in Lewis' books, as a collection of excerpts though I felt it was lacking.
Jan 04, 2014 rated it it was ok
This book has some good points, but it gets lost in the muddle of his apologetics. Quite frankly I expected a bit more from an author of his stature and fame. To be fair, this book is a collection of snippets from his larger body of work, so maybe I need to read one of these complete works.
Colette Stine
Okay, so after reading this book, I just have to say that the writings of C.S. Lewis are not conducive to excerption. It took me the first seventy-five pages or so to stop forcing myself to sit down and read this, because Lewis's thoughts tend to build on one another in a logical manner in a way that leaves much to be desired when one starts reading in the middle of one of those thoughts. I did not at all care to jump into the middle of a thought and be completely lost because I didn't know wher ...more
Dec 30, 2018 rated it really liked it
I read this book for my morning devotional over several months and although I had read most of the selections before, I enjoyed the lesser known selections like Miracles and Letters to Malcolm. He always reminds me that the centerpiece of Christianity is joy:

All joy ... emphasizes our pilgrim status: always reminds, beckons, awakes desire. Our best havings are wantings. From “Letters of C. S. Lewis”
Sep 29, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I love the intellectual rigor and orthodox theology of these 127 readings compiled from Lewis' writings. They dealt so honestly and logically with complicated ideas and gave me a morsel to ponder through the day. I'd love to read them with my kids because they are short but meaty. Will definitely re-read.
Mar 08, 2018 rated it it was ok
Shelves: nonfiction, spiritual
This collection doesn't live up to the writing itself.
The "readings" in this book are taken piecemeal from other, stronger, better, more cohesive works and cobbled together without any context whatsoever. There's no advantage to reading this book, as opposed to reading the original books, as they were before they'd been butchered and Frankensteined into this.
April Coker
Jul 22, 2017 rated it liked it
Not an easy read, but a thought-provoker. It was sometimes so deep the author lost me. I also disagree with some of his opinions, but I don't hold that against him. I can see why he is such a beloved author and theologian.
Apr 27, 2018 rated it really liked it
As usual, C.S. Lewis has a way of describing profound theology in simple, sometimes humorous, ways. I don’t know why the book is entitled “The Joyful Christian” - it doesn’t really focus on joy as I expected it would.
Oct 01, 2017 rated it really liked it
Rounded up to 4 stars.
Joseph Leskey
This is most excellent. A little bit of humor while thoroughly expounding theological concepts goes a long way.
Mark Graber
May 11, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This is a fantastic compilation of short Lewis writings. I have been reading them with breakfast!
Tommie B
Jun 27, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: catholic
A good collection of C. S. Lewis's work derived from several of his books touching on different topics. I enjoyed the first half much more but the overall book was still very good
Jul 15, 2019 rated it really liked it
Excellent excerpts to his other writings. Some were a bit challenging but overall short essays that one can read each day.
Sharon Weynand
Jul 28, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Enlightening. Especially the readings on Heaven and Hell. Will revisit!
Dec 18, 2019 rated it did not like it
I just could not get into this book. I stopped reading it after two days.
Tim VanderMeulen
Feb 14, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: christian
Lewis is a great writer, but an amateur theologian.
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Clive Staples Lewis was one of the intellectual giants of the twentieth century and arguably one of the most influential writers of his day. He was a Fellow and Tutor in English Literature at Oxford University until 1954. He was unanimously elected to the Chair of Medieval and Renaissance Literature at Cambridge

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