CS Lewis Podcast

A weekly podcast from Premier Unbelievable? with Professor Alister McGrath exploring C.S. Lewis’ thought, theology and teaching.

C.S. Lewis is one of the most influential voices in modern Christianity. The 20th Century British writer and lay theologian has profoundly impacted Christians around the world and brought many atheists and agnostics to faith in Jesus.

One person whose faith was greatly encouraged by the writings of C.S. Lewis is Professor Alister McGrath. Both men were raised in Northern Ireland, studied at Oxford University and went on to become professors there. They also both came to faith from atheism slightly later in life. Alister has written numerous books on C.S. Lewis, including a seminal biography C.S. Lewis – A Life.

Every Monday, Professor Alister McGrath will reflect on C.S. Lewis’ ideas, life and influence as well as trying to answer questions that impact culture today.

CS Lewis

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    The CS Lewis Podcast #67 Audience Q&A on vocation, culture and Christian witness

    2022-08-15T17:00:00+01:00

    Alister McGrath joins Justin Brierley and a panel of Christian thinkers, scientists and church leaders to take audience questions on vocation, culture and Christian witness in this continuation of last week’s session, originally recorded live at Unbelievable? the Conference 2022.

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    The CS Lewis Podcast #66 Speaking the authentic voice of Jesus in arts, science and global culture

    2022-08-08T17:00:00+01:00

    Recorded live at Unbelievable? the Conference 2022, Justin Brierley leads a panel including Alister McGrath, Sharon Dirckx, John Wyatt, Skye Jethani, and Joseph D’Souza on bringing Christian faith into the spheres of art, science, education and global justice.

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    The CS Lewis Podcast #65 Alister McGrath: How to transform our culture and not be consumed by it

    2022-08-01T17:00:00+01:00

    Prof Alister McGrath draws on CS Lewis and scripture to encourage Christians to live out ther vocation and make a difference in a confused and divided culture. This keynote address was given at Unbelievable? the Conference 2022.

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    The CS Lewis Podcast #64 On Living In An Atomic Age - CS Lewis’ essays and short writings

    2022-07-25T17:00:00+01:00

    ‘If we are all going to be destroyed by an atomic bomb, let that bomb when it comes find us doing sensible and human things’. Alister and Justin discuss the way that CS Lewis’ 1948 essay is remarkably relevant to modern crises such as Covid and the war in Ukraine.

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    The CS Lewis Podcast #63 The Weight of Glory - CS Lewis’ essays and short writings

    2022-07-18T16:00:00+01:00

    ‘The Weight of Glory’ is a sermon that CS Lewis preached at the University Church of St Mary the Virgin, Oxford in 1941. It is widely regarded as one of his most significant short works, focussing on the way our human longings in this world point to another world that we were made for.

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    The CS Lewis Podcast #62 First and Second Things - CS Lewis’ essays and short writings

    2022-07-11T16:00:00+01:00

    Originally published in 1942 this essay argues that humans often turn ‘second order’ things such as music, art, romantic love, etc into ‘first order’ things in place of God. In doings so they lose the joy of those things in the process. “You can’t get second things by putting them first; you can get second things only by putting first things first.”

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    The CS Lewis Podcast #61 Is Theology Poetry? CS Lewis’ essays and short writings

    2022-07-04T15:00:00+01:00

    Originally given as a talk in 1945, this was the first piece of Lewis’ writing that Alister Mcgrath ever read as a student and it had a profound influence on him. It includes Lewis’ memorable phrase: ‘I believe in Christianity as I believe that the Sun has risen, not only because I see it, but because by it I see everything else.’

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    The CS Lewis Podcast #60 Is Theism Important? - CS Lewis’ essays and short writings

    2022-06-27T16:00:00+01:00

    This essay originally took the form of a talk at the Socratic club in Oxford in 1952. Lewis explains the difference between ‘Faith A’ as ‘intellectual assent’ and ‘Faith B’ as ‘trust or confidence in God’, as well as the experience of awe.

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    The CS Lewis Podcast #59 The Grand Miracle - CS Lewis’ essays and short writings

    2022-06-20T18:00:00+01:00

    Originally preached a sermon in 1945, this essay by Lewis uses the imagery of a diver to explain the significance of the incarnation as God stepping into creation to ultimately redeem it.

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    The CS Lewis Podcast #58 Myth Became Fact - CS Lewis’ essays and short writings

    2022-06-13T17:00:00+01:00

    CS Lewis discusses the importance of ‘myth’ in this critique of those who want to ‘demythologise’ Christianity. He explains why Christ is the ‘true myth’ that all other stories of dying and rising gods are pointing towards.

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    The CS Lewis Podcast #57 Dogma and the Universe - CS Lewis’ essays and short writings

    2022-06-06T17:00:00+01:00

    Originally published in 1943 in a Christian magazine, ‘Dogma and the Universe’ sees Lewis look at the fact that modern science tells us the Universe had a beginning and that life will also come to an end one day.

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    The CS Lewis Podcast #56 Meditation in a Toolshed - CS Lewis’ essays and short writings

    2022-05-30T18:00:00+01:00

    We begin season 6 of the CS Lewis podcast looking at a number of CS Lewis’ shorter articles, essays and sermons. ‘Meditation in a Toolshed’ (1945) sees Lewis exploring the idea of ‘looking at’ a beam of sunlight vs ‘looking along’ the beam. Alister and Justin discuss how Lewis related this idea to the Christian faith.

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    The CS Lewis Podcast #55 Ask Alister McGrath Anything Part 2

    2022-05-23T18:00:00+01:00

    Alister McGrath continues to respond to listener questions about science, faith and doubt (and CS Lewis!) in the second part of a show first recorded as a livestream listener Q&A edition of Unbelievable? in 2020, hosted by Justin and Lucy Brierley and Ruth Jackson.

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    The CS Lewis Podcast #54 Alister McGrath journeys through science, faith and doubt

    2022-05-16T18:00:00+01:00

    Alister McGrath talks about his memoir ‘Through a Glass Darkly: Journeys Through Science, Faith & Doubt’ in the first part of a show recorded as a livestream listern Q&A edition of Unbelievable? in 2020, hosted by Justin and Lucy Brierley and Ruth Jackson.

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    The CS Lewis Podcast #53 The Four Loves

    2022-05-09T18:00:00+01:00

    The Four Loves (1960) is a reflection on four types of love - affection, friendship, eros and charity. Alister examines them and the concept of ‘Agape’ love that Lewis draws out.

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    The CS Lewis Podcast #52 Reflections on the Psalms

    2022-05-02T18:00:00+01:00

    Reflections On The Psalms (1958) is CS Lewis’ only book that directly comments on the Bible. Alister explains why Lewis chose to write about the Psalms and what lessons we can draw from it today.

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    The CS Lewis Podcast #51 Surprised by Joy

    2022-04-25T18:00:00+01:00

    Surprised By Joy (1955) is CS Lewis’ ’spiritual autobiography of his conversion experience. Alister draws out the lessons his life can give us today.

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    The CS Lewis Podcast #50 The Great Divorce

    2022-04-18T18:00:00+01:00

    The Great Divorce (1945) is an unusual story told from the perspective of passengers on a ‘day trip’ from hell to heaven. Alister explains how the story and characters draw out Lewis’ views on the nature of heaven and hell.

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    The CS Lewis Podcast #49 The Screwtape Letters

    2022-04-11T18:00:00+01:00

    The Screwtape Letters (1942) saw CS Lewis rise to international prominence as an author. Alister and Justin talk about its creative approach to conversion, temptation and the Christian life.

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    The CS Lewis Podcast #48 The Problem of Pain

    2022-04-04T18:00:00+01:00

    The Problem Of Pain (1940) was CS Lewis’ apologetic on the problem of God & suffering. Alister reviews its content and impact.

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    The CS Lewis Podcast #47 Pilgrim’s Regress

    2022-03-28T18:00:00+01:00

    Published in 1933, Pilgrim’s Regress was Lewis’ first book written after his conversion. Modelled after Bunyan’s ‘Pilgrim’s Progress’, Alister explains why it is among the least well-known of Lewis’ writings.

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    The CS Lewis Podcast #46 Season 5 - CS Lewis’ popular Christian books (intro)

    2022-03-21T18:00:00+00:00

    In this new season of the podcast hosted by Justin, Alister introduces seven of CS Lewis’ popular Christian works.

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    The CS Lewis Podcast #45 Audience Q&A on how to make the case for Jesus

    2022-03-14T18:00:00+00:00

    Alister takes audience Q&A on Jesus, CS Lewis and evangelism. From Unbelievable? the Conference 2013

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    The CS Lewis Podcast #44 Alister McGrath: Jesus the lunatic? How to make the case for Christ

    2022-03-07T18:00:00+00:00

    Alister McGrath’s talk at Unbelievable? the Conference 2013 on ‘Jesus the Lunatic?’

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    The CS Lewis Podcast #43 CS Lewis, The Lord of The Rings, myth and imagination

    2022-02-28T18:00:00+00:00

    Alister concludes this season of the podcast looking at the different ways Lewis and Tolkien expressed the Christian story through their well-known fantasy writings. 

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    The CS Lewis Podcast #42 CS Lewis and JRR Tolkien

    2022-02-21T18:00:00+00:00

    CS Lewis and JRR Tolkien, two of the greatest writers of the 20th Century,  were good friends. So how did Lewis and Tolkien influence each other’s faith and writing?

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    The CS Lewis Podcast #41 CS Lewis on the importance of friendship

    2022-02-14T18:00:00+00:00

    Why is the concept of friendship in books such as The Four Loves, so important to Lewis? How did Lewis’ friendship and romance with Joy Davidman affect his circle of friends? Alister continues to explore this theme with Justin.

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    The CS Lewis Podcast #40 CS Lewis, the Inklings and the Eagle and Child pub

    2022-02-07T18:00:00+00:00

    Who were Lewis’ closest friends from childhood and as an adult? Who were the Inklings and which pub did they actually meet at? What can we learn from Lewis about friendship? All these questions and more are explored by Alister and Justin in today’s conversation. 

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    The CS Lewis Podcast #39 CS Lewis, Mark Zuckerberg and technology

    2022-01-31T18:00:00+00:00

    Alister and Justin continue their conversation on what Lewis’ writings have to say to our modern technological age including the rise of big tech platforms such as Google and Facebook’s ‘Meta’ universe. 

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    The CS Lewis Podcast #38 CS Lewis, AI and transhumanism

    2022-01-24T18:00:00+00:00

    What do Lewis’ writings such as ‘The Abolition of Man’ and ‘That Hideous Strength’ have to say to the rise of AI and Transhumanism?

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    #37 CS Lewis, mental health and the meaning crisis

    2022-01-17T16:44:00+00:00

    Alister McGrath and Justin Brierley continue their conversation on the ‘meaning crisis’ in the West and how Lewis’ wisdom applies to today’s world and the modern mental health crisis.

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    #36 CS Lewis, Miracles and the meaning crisis

    2022-01-10T16:44:00+00:00

    In Season 4 of the podcast, Alister McGrath and Justin Brierley discuss the ‘meaning crisis’ in the West, how Lewis responded to it in his own day, and Lewis’ book Miracles.

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    #35 CS Lewis Symposium Pt 3 - Panel Q&A on 21st Century Apologetics

    2021-12-27T16:44:00+00:00

    Michael Ward, William Lane Craig, Michael Ramsden, Jeanette Sears, Peter S Williams and Judith Wolfe take part in a panel discussion on what 21st century apologetics can learn from CS Lewis. Recorded at the 2013 CS Lewis Symposium at Westminster Abbey.

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    #34 CS Lewis Symposium Pt 2 - Malcolm Guite on Imaginative Fiction

    2021-12-20T16:44:00+00:00

    Poet, priest and author Malcolm Guite speaks on “Telling the Truth Through Imaginative Fiction” in this second lecture from the 2013 CS Lewis Symposium at Westminster Abbey.

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    #33 CS Lewis Symposium Pt 1 - Alister McGrath on Rational Argument

    2021-12-13T16:44:00+00:00

    To mark the 50th Anniverary of CS Lewis’ death in 2013, Westminster Abbey hosted the CS Lewis Symposium. In this first lecture Alister McGrath gave a talk titled “Telling the Truth Through Rational Argument” followed by audience Q&A.

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    #32 Max McLean Pt 2 - CS Lewis on screen

    2021-12-06T16:44:00+00:00

    Justin Brierley continues his conversation with Max McLean, writer and star of the new movie CS Lewis: The Most Reluctant Convert.

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    #31 Max McLean Pt 1 - CS Lewis on stage

    2021-11-29T16:44:00+00:00

    Justin Brierley speaks to Max McLean, writer and star of the new movie CS Lewis: The Most Reluctant Convert.

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    #30 Michael Ward on The Abolition of Man

    2021-11-22T16:44:00+00:00

    Justin Brierley speaks to CS Lewis scholar Michael Ward about his new book ‘After Humanity: A guide to CS Lewis’ The Abolition Of Man’.

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    #29 The Last Battle

    2021-11-15T16:44:00+00:00

    Professor Alister McGrath speaks to Ruth Jackson about The Last Battle, focussing on difficult questions around topics such as racism, pluralism and death.

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    #28 The Silver Chair

    2021-11-08T16:44:00+00:00

    Professor Alister McGrath speaks to Ruth Jackson about one of the darkest books in the Narnia series – The Silver Chair. They look at how we can know that Christianity is true and unpack the relevance of Lewis’ countercultural ideas in today’s skeptical culture.

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    #27 The Voyage of the Dawn Treader

    2021-11-01T16:44:00+00:00

    Alister McGrath speaks to Ruth Jackson about The Voyage of the Dawn Treader, looking at difficult topics such as human trafficking, sin and faith and how they impact us today.

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    #26 Prince Caspian

    2021-10-25T16:44:00+01:00

    Alister McGrath speaks to Ruth Jackson about Prince Caspian, focussing on painful questions such as the apparent silence of God. They also look at how to share our faith in a culture that is saturated with opposing worldviews.

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    #25 The Horse and his Boy

    2021-10-18T16:44:00+01:00

    Professor Alister McGrath speaks to Ruth Jackson about The Horse and His Boy, looking at pertinent issues such as inequality, the treatment of women and how we should approach other religions.

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    #24 The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe

    2021-10-11T16:44:00+01:00

    Alister McGrath speaks to Ruth Jackson about Lewis’ most famous book, The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, unpacking some of its theology, such as forgiveness and the atonement.

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    #23 The Magician’s Nephew

    2021-10-04T16:44:00+01:00

    Alister McGrath speaks to Ruth Jackson about The Magician’s Nephew, focussing on topics such as creation, suffering and how the hope of the gospel can transform our hurting world today.

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    #22 An introduction to the Narnia Chronicles

    2021-09-27T16:44:00+01:00

    In the first episode of the third series of The C.S. Lewis Podcast, professor Alister McGrath speaks to Ruth Jackson about how Lewis’ famous works of fiction came to be written.

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    #21 Alister McGrath CS Lewis Apologetics Q&A

    2021-09-06T16:44:00+01:00

    Alister McGrath answers audience questions following his lecture on CS Lewis the Storyteller.

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    #20 Alister Mcgrath on CS Lewis the Storyteller

    2021-08-30T16:44:00+01:00

    Part 1 of two bonus episodes featuing a talk by Alister McGrath from Unbelievable? the Conference 2013 on the way CS Lewis uses imagination and storytelling in his apologetics.

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    #19 Mere Christianity on living in hope

    2021-08-23T16:44:00+01:00

    In the eighth episode of the second series of The C.S. Lewis Podcast, professor Alister McGrath speaks to Ruth Jackson about the impact that our Christian hope should have on our own lives and the world around us by looking at Lewis’ thoughts on this topic. They also look back ...

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    #18 Mere Christianity on the Trinity

    2021-08-16T16:44:00+01:00

    In the seventh episode of the second series of The C.S. Lewis Podcast, professor Alister McGrath speaks to Ruth Jackson about Lewis’ understanding of the nature of God and the Trinity, looking at why his thoughts are still relevant to our prayer life and Christian journey today.

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    #17 Mere Christianity on Christian behaviour

    2021-08-09T16:44:00+01:00

    In the sixth episode of the second series of The C.S. Lewis Podcast, professor Alister McGrath speaks to Ruth Jackson about how we can live as Christians today by unpacking Lewis’ thoughts around faith, reason and behaviour.

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    #16 Mere Christianity on Christ

    2021-08-02T16:44:00+01:00

    In the fifth episode of the second series of The C.S. Lewis Podcast, professor Alister McGrath speaks to Ruth Jackson about Lewis’ understanding of Jesus and how we can use Lewis’ arguments and principles to speak truth to a sceptical culture.

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    #15 Mere Christianity on the problem of evil

    2021-07-26T16:44:00+01:00

    In the fourth episode of the second series of The C.S. Lewis Podcast, professor Alister McGrath speaks to Ruth Jackson about how Lewis viewed sin and the role Christians have in fixing the brokenness of today’s world.

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    #14 Mere Christianity on Christian belief

    2021-07-19T16:44:00+01:00

    Professor Alister McGrath speaks to Ruth Jackson about Lewis’ understanding of fundamental Christian beliefs and how they continue to impact us today.

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    #13 Mere Christianity on the law of human nature

    2021-07-12T16:44:00+01:00

    Professor Alister McGrath speaks to Ruth Jackson about Lewis’ perception of the moral law and what that means for us. They also explore other important themes such as the limits of materialism and science in today’s sceptical society.

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    #12 An introduction to Mere Christianity

    2021-07-05T16:44:00+01:00

    In the first episode of the second series of The C.S. Lewis Podcast, professor Alister McGrath speaks to Ruth Jackson about how Lewis’ seminal book, Mere Christianity, came to be written and what relevance it has in today’s culture.

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    #11 Alister McGrath answers listener questions on C.S. Lewis

    2021-06-14T16:44:00+01:00

    In the second part of this special episode of The C.S. Lewis Podcast, we have delved into the Unbelievable? archives to share Professor Alister McGrath’s answers to listener questions around apologetics, Narnia, Lewis’ relationships with women and more. The programme was originally broadcast in 2013 when host Justin Brierley spoke ...

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    #10 Alister McGrath on C.S. Lewis’ faith journey

    2021-06-08T16:44:00+01:00

    In the first part of this special episode of The C.S. Lewis Podcast, we have delved into the Unbelievable? archives to share an interview with Professor Alister McGrath. Back in 2013, host Justin Brierley spoke to Alister about his seminal biography, C.S Lewis – A Life, which had just been ...

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    #09 C.S. Lewis on the hope of heaven

    2021-05-31T16:44:00+01:00

    In the ninth episode of The C.S. Lewis Podcast, professor Alister McGrath speaks to Ruth Jackson about Lewis’ thoughts on hope and heaven. They also look back over some of the topics they have covered in this first series.

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    #08 C.S. Lewis on the problem of pain

    2021-05-25T16:44:00+01:00

    In the eighth episode of The C.S. Lewis Podcast, professor Alister McGrath speaks to Ruth Jackson about Lewis’ thoughts on suffering and pain.

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    #07 C.S. Lewis on education

    2021-05-10T16:44:00+01:00

    In the seventh episode of The C.S. Lewis Podcast, professor Alister McGrath speaks to Ruth Jackson about Lewis’ thoughts on education. Alister also shares a little of the impact Lewis had on his own Christian education.

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    #06 C.S. Lewis on apologetics

    2021-05-10T16:44:00+01:00

    In the sixth episode of The C.S. Lewis Podcast, professor Alister McGrath speaks to Ruth Jackson about Lewis’ thoughts on who should do apologetics and how best to approach it.

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    #05 Alister McGrath on C.S. Lewis, Christianity and atheism

    2021-05-03T16:44:00+01:00

    In this special episode of The C.S. Lewis Podcast, we are sharing part of a livestream we recorded with Professor Alister McGrath during one of the Coronavirus lockdowns in the UK. Following the release of his memoir, Through a Glass Darkly, Alister spoke about his faith journey and the significant ...

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    #04 C.S. Lewis on Aslan

    2021-04-26T16:44:00+01:00

    In the fourth episode of our brand-new podcast on C.S. Lewis, professor Alister McGrath speaks to Ruth Jackson about the character of Aslan in the Narnia series and the Christian life.

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    #03 C.S. Lewis on stories

    2021-04-19T16:44:00+01:00

    In the third episode of our brand-new podcast on C.S. Lewis, professor Alister McGrath speaks to Ruth Jackson about the importance of storytelling and imagination, looking particularly at the Narnia series.

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    #02 C.S. Lewis on friendship

    2021-04-12T16:44:00+01:00

    In the second episode of our brand-new podcast on C.S. Lewis, professor Alister McGrath speaks to Ruth Jackson about some of Lewis’ friendships, including ‘The Lord of The Rings’ author J.R.R. Tolkien.

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    #01 C.S. Lewis on the meaning of life

    2021-03-26T16:44:00+00:00

    In the first ever episode of our brand-new podcast on C.S. Lewis, professor Alister McGrath speaks to Ruth Jackson about some of Lewis’ key thoughts as well as the impact of Lewis on Alister’s own life.

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    Official Trailer - The C.S. Lewis podcast with Professor Alister McGrath

    2021-03-24T16:44:00+00:00

    A brand new weekly podcast with Professor Alister McGrath exploring C.S. Lewis’ thought, theology and teaching. C.S. Lewis is one of the most influential voices in modern Christianity.