C. S. Lewis is noted as being one of the greatest Christian writers of the 20th century. While visiting Cambridge University in 1955, Billy Graham met Lewis at a luncheon at St. Mary Magdalene’s College.
Graham had this to say about the encounter:
“Among the professors I met privately with that day was C. S. Lewis. A decade before, he had captured the imagination of many in England and the United States. I was afraid I would be intimidated by him because of his brilliance, but he immediately put me at ease. I found him to be not only intelligent and witty but also gentle and gracious; he seemed genuinely interested in our meetings.”
One of the books in Mr. Graham’s collection is C. S. Lewis’s The Weight of Glory, a compilation of essays delivered by Lewis during World War II including the title essay which was preached as a sermon in the Church of St. Mary the Virgin, Oxford in June 8, 1941.
Below are some points from The Weight of Glory.
“Those who have attained everlasting life in the vision of God doubtless know very well that it is no mere bribe, but the very consummation of their earthly discipleship; but we who have not yet attained it cannot know this in the same way, and cannot even begin to know it at all except by continuing to obey and finding the first reward of our obedience in our increasing power to desire the ultimate reward.
Just in proportion as the desire grows, our fear lest it should be a mercenary desire will die away and finally be recognized as an absurdity.
The promises of Scripture may very roughly be reduced to five heads.
It is promised, firstly, that we shall be with Christ; secondly, that we shall be like Him; thirdly, with an enormous wealth of imagery, that we shall have “glory”; fourthly, that we shall, in some sense, be fed or feasted or entertained; and finally, that we shall have some sort of official position in the universe –ruling cities, judging angels, being pillars of God’s temple.
The variation of the promises does not mean that anything other than God will be our ultimate bliss.
Following Him is the essential point.
The load, or weight or burden of my neighbour’s glory should be laid daily on my back, a load so heavy that only humility can carry it, and the backs of the proud will be broken.
Next to the Blessed Sacrament itself, your neighbor is the holiest object presented to your senses. If he is your Christian neighbor he is holy in almost the same way, for in him also Christ vere latitat – the glorifier and the glorified, Glory Himself, is truly hidden.”
excerpt from “The Weight of Glory” by C. S. Lewis (1942, S.P.C.K.)