Illustrated Puritans

IPS-BR People who know me know that I love reading the Puritans. I picked up my first "Puritan Paperback" in 1993 (Samuel Bolton's, The True Bounds of Christian Freedom) and have been benefitting from these saints ever since. So, when my good friend Pastor Aaron Youngren told me that he was working on a "puritan project" I was immediately interested. When he explained what he was doing I was thrilled. Now that I am holding it in my hands I can finally talk about it.

After a year and a half of hard work the Illustrated Puritan Series launches (via St. George Rides The Dragon Press). The first in the series is Richard Sibbes' classic, The Bruised Reed. This is not just another reprint. Here, The Bruised Reed is presented with original illustrations, wide margins, language helps, and in-line footnotes for each scripture referenced. In other words, this classic in this particular publication is more useful than ever before.

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Are you familiar with the Bruised Reed? Then you already know how important this book is. If you are unfamiliar with it, here is a word from the back cover of the book,

“Satan will object, Thou art a great sinner. We may answer, Christ is a strong Saviour.” What happens when a Christian sins? What should those who follow Christ do in times of doubt and despair? When do the mercies of Christ run out? These questions are the subject of Richard Sibbes’ classic, The Bruised Reed. The answers Sibbes provides are as vital and galvanizing as they were four hundred years ago, for they find their power in the timeless person and work of Christ himself.

I am hopeful that this new presentation of these classic puritan works will introduce more people to these saints. My life is immeasurable better because their writings--and this work in particular. Go get some!

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Gospel-Motivated Godliness

One of the motives we have to live a life worthy of our calling as Christians is found in what we are in Jesus. For example, Paul argues in Romans 6 that since we are no longer slaves to sin, but slaves of Jesus, we should live righteously out of the freedom we have in the Son. I was encouraged this morning when I read this meditation by Richard Sibbes.

When we find any grace wrought in us, we should have an holy esteem of ourselves; and say, when tempted to sin: What! I that am an heir of heaven, a king, a, conqueror, a son of God, shall I debase myself? God has put a crown upon my soul, and shall I cast my crown in the mire? No I will be more honourable. These are no proud thoughts, but suitable to our state.

- Richard Sibbes, Divine Meditations and Holy Contemplations, #66