A predestined minion

The doctrine of predestination, says the XVIIth Article, is ‘full of sweet, pleasant and unspeakable comfort to godly persons’. But what of ungodly persons? Inside the original experience no such question arises. There are no generalizations. We are not building a system. When we begin to do so, very troublesome problems and very dark solutions will appear. But these horrors, so familiar to the modem reader (and especially to the modem reader of fiction), are only by-products of the new theology. They are astonishingly absent from the thought of the first Protestants.

(I am speaking, of course, about initial doubts of election. Despair after apostasy …is another matter and was no Protestant novelty. When Judas hanged himself he had not been reading Calvin.)

C. S. Lewis, ‘New Learning and New Ignorance’, in English Literature in the Sixteenth Century, Excluding Drama: The Completion of the Clark Lectures, Oxford History of English Literature 3 (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1954), p. 34.