C. S. Lewis on Scripture, Evolution, and the Incarnation

March 2001

"We read in Genesis (2,7) that God formed man of the dust and breathed life into him. For all the first writer knew of it, this passage might merely illustrate the survival, even in a truly creational story, of the Pagan inability to conceive true Creation, the savage, pictorial tendency to imagine God making things 'out of' something as the potter or the carpenter does. Nevertheless, whether by lucky accident or (as I think) by God's guidance, it embodies a profound principle. For on any view man is in one sense clearly made 'out of' something else. He is an animal; but an animal called to be, or raised to be, or (if you like) doomed to be, something more than an animal. On the ordinary biological view (what difficulties I have about evolution are not religious), one of the primates is changed so that he becomes man; but he remains a primate and an animal. He is taken up into a new life without relinquishing the old.... But we can trace the principle higher as well as lower. For we are taught that the Incarnation itself proceeded 'not by conversion of the Godhead into flesh, but by taking of (the) manhood into God'; in it human life becomes the vehicle of Divine life."

– From the essay "Scripture," in Reflections on the Psalms, pages 115-116.

–– Comment: Shades of Nietzsche!

John Robbins
The Trinity Foundation
March 15, 2001

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