Pagans Ancient and Modern

Joy Davidman, the wife of C. S. Lewis, wrote a commentary on the Ten Commandments entitled, Smoke on the Mountain. In this brilliant passage, she offered a keen observation on the difference between ancient and modern paganism:

The old pagans had to choose between a brilliant, jangling, irresponsible, chaotic universe, alive with lawless powers, and the serene and ordered universe of God and law. We modern pagans have to choose between that divine order, and the gray, dead, irresponsible, chaotic universe of atheism. And the tragedy is that we may make that choice without knowing it — not by clear conviction but by vague drifting, not by denying God, but by losing interest in him.

Atheism by losing interest — a truly apt description of modern times and temptations.

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