Monday, February 06, 2006

Meditation on the Third Commandment

Some time ago I recommended Lewis's essay "Meditation on the Third Commandment" as a pre-emptive attack on the marriage of religion and politics on the part of people like Jerry Falwell and Pat Robertson, not to mention political candidates who might as well use as their slogan, "A vote for me is a vote for Jesus." In fact, I remember working in a church in 1980 and having a church newsletter column in which I pretty much cribbed Lewis's entire essay as a basis for criticizing the Moral Majority, which was just getting going at the time. Anyway, my former student Dan Schlung pointed out to me that the whole book can be booted up from Google Books, at the link I provide here.

3 comments:

Dan Schlung said...

Good Afternoon, Dr. Reppert. Unfortunately, I spoke to soon when I told you I was able to view the entire text online. After reading a page or two of the essay, I sent an email saying I had found God in the Docks on Google books. After sending my communication, I shortly thereafter realized I was not able to view the entire text & I neglected to let you know. While the entire text is scanned and indexed, Google places a page view limit on many copyrighted texts, including this one, that enabled me to read just a few pages of the essay. Luckily, my local library had a copy in stock, so it wasn't much concern to me. I've included Google's policy below, just in case you care to read it.

Anyway, I enjoy reading your blog & wish you & your readers well.

Dan Schlung
Woodstock, IL

>>Why can't I read the entire book?

>>We respect copyright law and the tremendous creative effort authors put into their work. So, unless any given book's publisher has given us permission to show sample pages, you'll only be able to see the Snippet View which, like a card catalog, shows information about the book plus a few snippets – a few sentences of your search term in context. If the book isn't under copyright at all, you can browse the entire book in the Full Book View, but the aim of Google Book Search is to help you discover books and learn where to buy or borrow them, not read them from start to finish. It's like going to a bookstore and browsing – with a Google twist.

Victor Reppert said...

Dan: I probably should have made the correction myself, though I think the first time I went in I was able to read the whole essay (which is just 3 pages) online. The next time I couldn't.

gabriel m. said...

God in the Dock, by C.S. Lewis, is my most favorite read. In it, Lewis covers a variety of subjects--politics, sex, religion, war, history, science, etc.--with the greatest of knowledge, wit, and humility. Like Tolstoy, Lewis is the master of his realm. Yet ever time you sit down to read Lewis, you never feel as if you are being lectured; you feel as if you are merely conversing with him. Lewis stands among the greats. Not because he was of the literati, but because he was of the common man---full of virtue and excellence, yet afflicted with living in the same world you and I are in.

God "broke the mold", as it were, after he created Lewis. For that, I somewhat resent him--God, that is. Ha!

gabriel