In Praise of Old Books

20 Nov

C.S. Lewis wrote of the value of reading old books as a way to ward off “chronological snobbery.” Lewis said that we tend to favor what is new, what is current and what is novel while we tend to dismiss that which is old as outdated and irrelevant. In our day, new Christian books abound. There is always some new title coming out and many of these books are very good. Yet to only read new books may keep us from valuing the insights of the past and we may even be blind to false or untested notions present in new books.

Lewis gave this rule of thumb for reading,  “It is a good rule, after reading a new book, never to allow yourself another new one till you have read an old one in between.  If that is too much for you, you should at least read one old one to every three new ones.”

With this rule in mind, I want to direct you to a wonderful collection of free ebooks on These books are by some of the great authors in the history of the church. Many of these books are in .pdf form but the ones at the bottom of the page may also be downloaded to ereaders like Nook and Kindle. What an incredible time we live in to have all these resources available. And what a shame to waste much of our time watching TV or movies or playing around on the computer. May we give ourselves to meditating on the Scriptures and reading great books. God help us in this, for His glory and our joy and the good of others.

Here is the link to the free resources . . .

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