We Cannot Remain Silent

June 2016


n May 1963, Sherwood E. Wirt drove to Cambridge, England to interview C.S. Lewis in his office at Magdalene College. It would turn out to be Lewis’s final interview. One of the questions Wirt asked was:

How can we foster the encounter of people with Jesus Christ?

Lewis replied:

You can’t lay down any pattern for God. There are many different ways of bringing people into His Kingdom, even some ways that I specially dislike! I have therefore learned to be cautious in my judgment.

But we can block it in many ways. As Christians we are tempted to make unnecessary concessions to those outside the Faith. We give in too much. Now, I don’t mean that we should run the risk of making a nuisance of ourselves by witnessing at improper times, but there comes a time when we must show that we disagree. We must show our Christian colours, if we are to be true to Jesus Christ. We cannot remain silent or concede everything away…1

Written more than 50 years ago, Lewis’s words resonate today more than ever. We live in a secular culture where Christians often feel strong pressure to adapt their faith to the culture, or to keep faith private. Are you sometimes too willing to compromise your faith or the truth to win people? Are there times when you remain silent when you should speak?


“Pray also for me, that whenever I speak, words may be given me so that I will fearlessly make known the mystery of the gospel, for which I am an ambassador in chains. Pray that I may declare it fearlessly, as I should.”



1 Lewis, C.S, “Cross Examination,” in God in the Dock,  (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1998), p. 262.

© 2016 C.S. Lewis Institute. “Reflections” is published monthly by the C.S. Lewis Institute.
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