He is definitely one of the great, author, theologian, thinker, philosopher. Lewis is mostly known for the Chronicles of Narnia but in the protestant church many have read Mere Christianity and a handful have ventured into his great discourses on theology like The Problem of Pain and The Great Divorce. My personal favourites are his science fiction books: Out of Silent Planet, Perelandra and That Hideous Strength, stashed full of beautiful symbolism and theology.
I have noted before that Rob Bell is merely paraphrasing C.S. Lewis when he talks about Hell and it seems that finally more people are picking up on this.
Philosophy professor Jeff Cook (featured on Scot Mcknight’s blog) states that the issue is not about what Rob Bell is saying but how he is saying it ….
But that’s just it. The debate over Love Wins is not actually a fight about doctrine. It is about angst caused by different cultures and philosophical precommitments. It’s about language and how we articulate what is real. It’s about the acceptance or rejection of postmodern ways of expressing what is most vital to us. It is about two cultures crashing together like a cold and warm front and causing a storm. Sure Rob is throwing theological hand grenades in that trailer and on the back cover, but as he rightly says in the intro to Love Wins, he’s not claiming anything new. We would be wise to pursue the real dialogue—the more important dialogue—at hand in American Christianity. We need to openly converse about postmodernity and modernity, their effect on doctrine, andespecially how Christians who assume very different epistemologies can actually champion each other instead of drawing pistols every time they disagree in this new century.
So is the church tossing out one of the greats because they do not like the way Rob Bell markets or teaches what he believes in? Or are we going to engage in the dialogue, embrace our brothers and journey towards the truth together?