Puritans, We Greet Thee in 2008

Tim Brister —  December 12, 2007 — 97 Comments

As the 2007 year is quickly coming to a close, I wanted to offer a suggestion for this upcoming year. That suggestion would be to get acquainted with the Puritans. Allow me to offer five brief reasons why I believe this would be a worthy thing for you to do.

First, the Puritans had a relentless pursuit of God. In their writings you will find believers who knew their God deeply through a rich God-centeredness that affected every area of their lives. We are living in a day where it is hard to find folks who know their God well. Second, the Puritans were physicians of souls. These men studied themselves and had a real, experimental knowledge of Christianity. Nowhere will you find more “uses” and applications for your life than in their writings. Not only did they know God well, they knew the minds, hearts, and consciences of men well. Third, the Puritans possessed genuine piety because they knew how to fight the fight of faith. These men took direct aim at indwelling sin and fought hard for their personal sanctification. Their writings are incredibly pastoral and at the same time intimately convicting. Fourth, the Puritans were pacesetters in church history. They ran in such a way to win, and whether it is their study of Scripture, commitment to family worship, personal devotion to prayer, or caring for the souls in their community, these men ran and ran hard. Fifthly, reading the Puritans will provide you a healthy perspective so as to prevent chronological snobbery. Let’s face it. It is tempting to read only what is novel, trendy, and popular. Yet it is worthwhile to read books 100 years or older to understand how Christians lived, face struggles, dealt with issues (doctrinal, ecclesiological, ethical, etc.), and experienced God. Frankly speaking, you will not find anything close to Owen, Watson, Brooks, and Baxter on the front shelves of your local bookstore.

So allow me to offer three way to greet the Puritans in 2008.

1. Get a copy of The Valley of Vision and meditate on the prayers as part of your daily devotions. The prayers in this book are some of the most honest and humbling words you will ever read. The authors’ hearts were laid bare before God, and our hearts resonate with such authentic trembling in God’s presence and seeking God’s face.

2. Commit to reading one Puritan Paperback a month. You can do this by blocking out 30 minutes each day (~10 pages) after personal Bible reading as supplementary to your spiritual growth. To make it easy for you, I have created a sample monthly reading list below.

January: The Bruised Reed by Richard Sibbes (128 pp)
February: The Mystery of Providence by John Flavel (221 pp)
March: The Godly Man’s Picture by Thomas Watson (252 pp)
April: Precious Remedies Against Satan’s Devices by Thomas Brooks (253 pp)
May: Come and Welcome to Jesus Christ by John Bunyan (225 pp)
June: The Mortification of Sin by John Owen (130 pp)
July: A Lifting Up for the Downcast by William Bridge (287 pp)
August: The Rare Jewel of Christian Contentment by Jeremiah Burroughs (228 pp)
September: The True Bounds of Christian Freedom by Samuel Bolton (224 pp)
October: The Christian’s Great Interest by William Guthrie (207 pp)
November: The Reformed Pastor by Richard Baxter (256 pp)
December: A Sure Guide to Heaven by Joseph Alleine (148 pp)

There are several other great Puritan paperbacks, but I chose these because I wanted to have a different author each month (Owen, Bunyan, Watson, and Brooks have multiple paperbacks). I have front-loaded the reading schedule with some of the more readable Puritans and tried to balance out the topics throughout the year. Outside the Scripture, there is perhaps nothing better for your own soul than to invest in your personal sanctification by developing a reading plan of Puritan paperbacks! (Other books include: Thomas Watson, All Things for Good, The Doctrine of Repentance, The Lord’s Supper, The Great Gain of Godliness; John Owen, The Holy Spirit, The Glory of Christ, Communion with God, Apostasy from the Gospel, Temptation: Resisted and Repulsed, The Spirit and the Church; Thomas Brooks, Heaven on Earth, The Secret Key to Heaven; Richard Sibbes, Glorious Freedom; William Perkins, The Art of Prophesying; John Bunyan, All Loves Excelling, Prayer, The Jerusalem Sinner Saved, The Acceptable Sacrifice; Ralph Venning, The Sinfulness of Sin, Learning in Christ’s School; Robert Traill, Justification Vindicated; and Samuel Rutherford, Letters of Samuel Rutherford.)

3. Read about the lives and stories of the Puritans. There are some amazing parallels from their context to ours. This kind of reading may not be of immediate benefit, but it will serve you well to learn of these men and the historical and ecclesiological context in which they wrote. Some recommended books I have linked below for easier accessibility.

Meet the Puritans by Joel Beeke & Randall Pederson (exhaustive biographical list with guide to reprints)
The Puritans: Their Origins and Successors by D.M. Lloyd-Jones (from the last great Puritan himself)
A Quest for Godliness: The Puritan Vision of the Christian Life by J.I. Packer (tons of juicy quotes, very rich)
A Guide to the Puritans by Robert P. Martin (solid work with topical and scriptural indices)
Worldly Saints: The Puritans as They Really Were by Leland Ryken (really helpful)
English Puritanism: 1603-1689 by John Spurr (good historical work; highly recommended by Packer)
The Reformation of the Church: A Collection of Reformed and Puritan Documents on Church Issues by Iain Murray (breaks down some key ecclesiological issues)
The Genius of Puritanism by Peter Lewis (short but substantive)
The Devoted Life: An Invitation to the Puritan Classics by Kelly Kapic and Randall Gleason (contemporary reflections on great Puritan works)
The Puritan Hope: Revival and the Interpretation of Prophecy by Iain H. Murray (Puritan eschatology)
Puritan Papers Vol. 1-5, edited by J.I. Packer (five books comprised of a collection of papers presented during 1950s-60s)

So there you have it. Will you consider greeting the Puritans as you welcome 2008? Many of these men have become my closest spiritual advisers, and I hope they become as such to you!

>> UPDATE: Here’s to all who have shared the Puritan vision for 2008!

Tim Challies
Steve Burlew (Banner of Truth)
Zach Nielsen
Pseudo-Polymath
Ryan at Tentpeg
The Conventicle (Chris Ross)
The Puritan Board
Noah D. Lee
Ed Goode
Andrew Brims
The Blue Fish
Thirsty Theologian
Liz at a Savior Worth Having
Dan Green
Josh Gelatt
Chris Watson Lee
Ed Franklin
Andrew and Carolyn
Stephen Newell

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  • Matt

    I begin reading puritans two years ago at the age of 24 and then i came to realize what a shallow pursuit of God I had. Now, I can’t put their books down and enjoy reading much of their theology and teachings. So from one who has experienced a revival in his own soul. the puritans sure know how to present a big, glorious, holy, and awesome God who we come to know through Christ.

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Matt,

    That’s great to hear. While I picked up a number of Puritan paperbacks from my college days, I did not actually begin reading through them until a couple of years ago.

    One of the things that has really helped me internalize and remember much of what I read was to outline the books after I read them. I have saved the outlines in a Word doc and pull them out when looking for certain quotes or parts of the book. I highly recommend the idea for those who are wanting to take the reading a step further. :)

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  • http://stephennewell.wordpress.com/ Stephen Newell

    All right, you’ve convinced me. I’m in. I might follow your suggested schedule, but I might also shuffle the selections or substitute in a couple of places since at the moment I’ve got 4 paperbacks and only 3 are noted in your section, plus I’ve decided to make a year-long study of pastoral ministry in 2008. So that means I’m gonna want to read Baxter early. But oh well.

    One thing you really need to do: on your last reason to read the Puritans, you need to move the bold type back to the word “provide.” Then you’ll have perfect alliteration like a good Southern Baptist. ;-)

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  • http://pastorsteveweaver.wordpress.com/ Steve Weaver

    Timmy,

    Great idea! I will accept the Puritan challenge for 2008!

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Yay! That’s two on board.

    If anyone else takes the challenge, please let me know!

  • http://kennethclayton.wordpress.com/ kennethclayton

    I am on board with reading the puritans but I’m not sure I will do it all in ’08 it has been a goal of mine to eventually read all the books on Capitol Hill Baptist Church recommended reading list http://www.capitolhillbaptist.org/CC_Content_Page/0,,PTID324006%7CCHID682868%7CCIID,00.html I have been introduced to many modern works and several classics. I am on the last book in the “indwelling sin” by owen in the new taylor, kapic edition and it has been really great.

  • Jerry

    I am shocked, just shocked I say, that you did not recommend that all of us completely master Stephen Charnock’s “Existence and Attributes of God” during February.

    ;>)

  • http://debbie-thoughtsof.blogspot.com Debbie Kaufman

    I may be the only woman in this group, but I accept the challenge for 2008. I began reading the Puritans approximately ten years ago and found much of what you have said here. I have not read Pilgrims Progress since I was in High School in 19??(ugh yeah) but it is another book on my want to get to list. I am currently reading Jonathan Edwards The Religious Affections which would fall in the over 100 years old category.

  • http://stephennewell.wordpress.com/ Stephen Newell

    Uh, Kenneth, after one look at that list, I have only one thought:

    You’re gonna die. ;-)

    Praying you do well and get a good chunk of that list completed in ’08!

  • Adam Brown

    Glorious Freedom by Sibbes is the best book I’ve ever read, Consider added it.

  • Matt

    I am on board to continue to read the puritans. I have to admit, reading the puritans is not easy. I am presently ready Charnock and John Owen “The Glory of Christ”. I have bought the complete works of Richard Sibbes which are amazing. What if through the Southern Baptist a whole complete concept of end times might break out, since the book by Ian Murray “The Puritans Hope” has revamped my whole out look and expectation of the coming of Christ.

  • Tim Powell

    Burroughs’ Rare Jewel has been precious to me beyond words. And Owen has taught me more than anyone about dealing with sin and temptation. Just get all 16 volumes of his!

    I think it’s really funny/tragic that the Puritans have a reputation of being either a) witch-burning bigots, or b) disconnected ivory-tower academicians. There is an unmatched sweetness to (most of ) Owen’s writings, and sometimes his (literallly!) voluminous pages of practical application can be so extensive and detailed as to be almost — almost — wearying.

    Therefore, this reading plan is a great idea.

  • http://longnailsareok.wordpress.com Tim Powell

    and oh yeah…Valley of Vision: absolutely priceless.

  • http://www.jenniferpartin.blogspot.com Jennifer Partin

    Tim,
    I take the challenge too. I hope to hold myself accountable by posting on my Blog about what I am gleaning from the writings. This will be the perfect timing for me too—-I’ll just be coming out from my “postpartum brain fog”. I’ve always considered myself more of a puritan rather than a separatist so I look forward to the challenge. Thanks for taking the time to post the titles and giving us a good plan to tackle the challenge.

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    It’s great to hear how various books have impacted you all. One that I have really enjoyed lately is Watson’s The Godly Man’s Picture.

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  • http://shepherdtheflock.com Nathan White

    Excellent post. Excellent resources. Excellent challenge!!

    I’ve done almost nothing but read the Puritans this year, and they have certainly changed my life dramatically.

    There is a little pamphlet by Don Kistler entitled “Why Read the Puritans today?” that is a good primer to this subject (Soli Deo Gloria Puplications).

    But adding to your excellent list of Puritan Paperbacks is a fairly new one by Thomas Brooks entitled “The Secret Key to Heaven: the importance of Private prayer”, which is magnificent and easy to read. I’ve read many of the paperbacks, including several of the ones you list above, and this one by Brooks has to be in the top 5.

    SDG,
    Nathan

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  • http://gunny93.blogspot.com/ GUNNY HARTMAN

    That Valley of Vision rocks me like a hurricane.

    This is a great idea and some great suggestions, but I could have used a little more Burroughs and some Heaven Taken by Storm by Watson.

    But, of course …
    “You can’t have it all. Where would you put it.”
    -Steven Wright

    I guess for that matter, I could have used a little more cowbell.

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  • http://csaproductions.com/blog/ Brendt

    For those on a tighter budget, several of these authors appear on CCEL with free e-books. Maybe not the titles that Timmy suggests, but still…

  • Jerry Mick

    We began a Puritan Book Club at our church last summer. It was a great time! We read a different book each month… The Almost Christian Discovered (SDG Books), The Bruised Reed (BOTT), All Things For Good (BOTT).

    This all started after I read A Quest for Godliness. It sat on my shelf for about 3 years after I taught a series on the life & teaching of Jonathan Edwards, but when I picked it up again in 2006 it was very much alive to me, and I devoured it. Now I’ve read about a dozen Puritan books. What a blessing.

    My year in the Puritans felt like what the disciples’ walk to Emmaus with Christ must have been like; the scriptures opened and explained plainly. I have seen things in scripture I had never seen before, though they were very obviously there all along. From this I would observe that what we call good preaching today is mostly dross compared to the teaching of these giants!

  • Anja L

    I’m considering it :) I have read hardly any Puritan books, but I do really want to so thank you for the effort you put into creating the list of books to read throughout the year. I might just follow it. Thank you!

  • http://www.rodcarroll.blogspot.com Rod Carroll

    I hate to show my ignorance, but it was only a couple of years ago that I had no idea who the Puritans were. I thought they might be the people who ride the horse and buggy my parents go to see each year in Pennsylvania. Then one day I was properly introduced to them. Wow, how God has used them in my life. Their pursuit of holiness is something that is so lacking in our culture. Every time I read any of their works I come away in amazement asking; why doesn’t any talk like this anymore? And I am not referring to their English. Oh how the church needs a big shot in the arm of a Puritan pursuit of holiness.

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Jennifer,

    That’s great! I look forward to checking out your blogposts.

    Nathan,

    Good word bro. Just thought I’d add that the Brooks book you mentioned is linked in the section below the 12 month list. I decided to pick just one book per author to give readers who may not be familiar with the Puritans to read a different author per month. Of course, I would put other books by Owen, Bunyan, Watson, and Brooks if I could! They are the certainly the more read than others. But these personal recommendations by you and others are really helpful to give other people ideas of what they might want to have to comprise their reading list. Mine is only a sampling and various PP can be substituted to the one’s liking.

    Gunny,

    Yeah, I am a big fan of Burroughs and Watson. Have you read Solitude Improved by Divine Meditation? I want to read his Gospel Worship sometime soon.

    Brent,

    CCEL is a great resource, and if you can handle reading books online (I personally have not caught on to it yet), CCEL provides tools for marking and making notes in the books. Nice little touch they have added there.

    Jerry,

    What a great testament to how reading the Puritans can influence one’s walk with Christ! Thank you for sharing that with us.

    Anja,

    Thanks for commenting and expressing your interest. Yes, reading the Puritans is a little different and perhaps requires a little more time and attention, but the fruit and personal benefit you derive from them are certainly worth the effort. Please let me know if there is anything I can do to assist you should you choose to take up the challenge. :)

    Rod,

    That’s funny brother (about the horse and buggy part). The amazing thing about the Puritans is that they rejecting the “flowery” speech of the Church of England to be plain speaking folks. Yet their “plain speech” is more rich and demanding on our 21st century minds than most anything we read. I think in part this has to do with a dumbing down of our culture in the last century. Would one read anything 200-300 years ago, Christian or not, one would find the level of literature way higher than what it is today. But regarding the subject of their writings, indeed, they caught a glimpse of glory that dominated them, and I pray it dominates us as well.

  • http://www.theosource.com Tim Ashcraft

    Another good book to help you get acquainted with the Puritans is A Puritan Golden Treasury by I.D.E. Thomas. It’s also part of Banner’s Puritan Paperbacks series. It contains mostly short quotes from many different Puritans on various topics, arranged alphabetically. I read through it as part of my daily devotions one year, reading a page-spread at a time. It was a real blessing.

    For the hardcore enthusiast I would recommend Daniel Neal’s three-volume History of the Puritans. I think it’s out of print, but well worth acquiring if you can find it. Klock & Klock reprinted it in the late seventies.

  • http://www.jenniferpartin.blogspot.com Jennifer Partin

    Timmy,
    Just went to Monergism to buy the first three books. I’ve committed! Thanks for the encouragement. Here’s to Puritan reading in 2008—–Cheers!
    Jennifer

  • http://www.trophiesofhisgrace.blogspot.com Steve Burlew

    Timmy – Add my name to your “Here’s to all who have shared the Puritan vision in 2008″ list (see http://www.trophiesofhisgrace.blogspot.com). If there’s anything that we at Banner of Truth can do to help people step up to this challenge and accomplish it, please let me know (Email: steve@banneroftruth.org). And that does mean that if someone reading this would really like to do this but truly doesn’t even have the few dollars to buy one or several of the Puritan Paperback series, let me know – we have donors who give to the Banner of Truth Book Fund for that purpose of getting this literature into the hands of those who truly otherwise could not afford it.
    Thanks for the challenge, Timmy. This is great! Blessings to you, brother.
    Steve B.
    http://www.trophiesofhisgrace.blogspot.com

  • Andrew

    Hi Timmy
    I followed the link to your blog via ‘Trophies of His Grace’. This sounds like a superb challenge, and one which I would like to be part of. Count me in!
    Andrew

  • http://www.joshgelatt.com Josh Gelatt

    Timmy,

    Count me in! All of the works on your 12-month plan are old friends, but it would be great reading these again knowing other brothers and sisters are reading along with me. Except, per yearly tradition, I always read “The Reformed Pastor” in January (but….if I start reading that now…I can be done before January and be on pace with everyone else…hmmm…I’m tempted to break tradition).

  • http://www.scripturezealot.com Scripture Zealot

    Hi,
    Has anyone read God’s Passion for His Glory: Living the Vision of Jonathan Edwards by Piper and Edwards? Would this be a good first book for an introduction to Jonathan Edwards?
    Jeff

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Tim,

    A Puritan Golden Treasury indeed is a great resource. I didn’t include it in the list because it is not really a book per se, but it certainly is worth having and using in your personal study. Thanks for mentioning it!

    Jennifer,

    I love your enthusiasm for this year. One of the things I think idea can do is bring a lot of encouragement to one another along the way. How cool would it be to share edifying thoughts throughout the year as we read together the Puritans!

    Steve,

    Thank you for plugging this on the Banner of Truth blog! I really appreciate your willingness to assist anyone who may not be able to afford getting the books. If I hear of any needs, I will make them aware of your contact information.

    Andrew,

    Glad to see you on board. I had no idea how this idea would catch on with so many people!

    Josh,

    Well, you can keep to that reading schedule if you like. :) The reasoning behind my monthly schedule is to front load the reading with the most “readable” Puritans and balancing out the topics. For instance, after reading Owen’s Mortification of Sin, I felt it would be appropriate to read Bridge’s A Lifting Up of the Downcast! Also, I thought it would be good to have Bunyan’s Come and Welcome to Jesus Christ, who also wrote Reprobation Asserted. So, while there is some intentionality to the schedule, I want folks to feel flexible enough to pick the books they want to read.

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Scripture Zealot,

    I think Piper’s book is an excellent read if you are looking to read Edwards. However, for the case of this post, we are looking about a century earlier, primarily with the 17th century English Puritans, of which Edwards is an heir. Perhaps 2009 we can read Edwards together? :)

  • Jerry

    After looking at my other commitments (lots of extra time in the Greek NT in 2008) I have decided to join. Several titles were already on my shelf, and the rest were just ordered from WTS.

    I will take June off, since I am already reading Owen’s “Mortification of Sin” along with Tim Challies, and due to the fact that we are planning some special events for our 30th wedding anniversary that month.

    I have already been using “The Valley of Vision” in my daily devotions, and just finished listening to the entire RTS audio series of Packer’s lectures on the Puritans (available from iTunes for free), so the addition of these works will be a good fit.

    Tim, are you planning to “nag” us during the year so as to keep us on track and accountable? Thanks.

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Jerry,

    I also recently downloaded the RTS lectures by Packer on the Puritans and glad you mentioned it!

    I am thinking about either blogging each Saturday or Wednesday about the Puritan project. I am not sure yet.

    What do you think? Should I go weekend or midweek?

  • http://scripturezealot.wordpress.com scripturezealot

    Edwards is an heir. Perhaps 2009 we can read Edwards together?

    Timmy, I did not know that (as Johnny Carson would say). Thanks for letting me know. With all the other books on my list 2009 might be a good time for that.

    I’ll be posting a link to this page on my blog sometime next week within a post with a bunch of people’s book lists.

    Thanks for your post.

    This was my introduction to Puritans:
    http://www.eternallifeministries.org/prayers.htm
    I’ve printed them out and pray them quite a bit. I’m amazed at how every thought is Scriptural and every petition is within God’s will. I want to get the book.

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Scripture zealot,

    Well, I think Edwards in ’09 certainly would be appropriate to follow the Puritans in ’08. Of course, I will have a year to put a reading plan together!

  • http://fbcnewlondon.blogspot.com Mike Leake

    Timmy,

    Here is an idea. At Challies.com we are Reading the Classics Together. Right now it is John Owen’s Overcoming Sin and Temptation. A work like that obviously could not be covered in a months time. But, here is my suggestion. In January one blog covers
    the Bruised Reed. In February another blog covers Flavel’s work…etc. Certainly you would have to decide which blogs would host the Puritans. But I think it would be really great to go through these together. I have tried going over Jeremiah Burroughs: Rare Jewel of Christian Contentment at my blog. I am going slower in my study than I would if only given a month–but I think it could also serve to keep us accountable.

  • Jerry

    As far as timing, the beauty of the internet is that it if you post on Wednesday and I don’t get around to reading on Saturday I still don’t miss anything. Do what works for you.

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  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Jerry,

    As the year comes to a close, I will announce my plans for posting and request a full list of those who are on board.

    Thanks for your thoughts everyone!

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  • Jerry

    While we are on the topic, I have already instructed my family that should I ever fall into a coma or be otherwise incapacitated that they are to alternate playing my ESV Bible and “Valley of Vision” CDs at my bedside.

    I can think of no better way to feed the soul.

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  • http://hanz.wordpress.com JC

    I do not use iTunes (OS issues). Can someone tell me where we can get the RTS-hosted lectures on the Puritans by Packer.

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  • Randall J. Pederson

    Timmy,

    This is a wonderful idea and quite encouraging to see so many people interested in the Puritans, especially for the new year. You can add my name to the list as it is an excellent opportunity to reacquaint myself with some old (long-dead) friends!

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Randall,

    That’s great! BTW, are you currently working with the WTS bookstore? If so, would you guys be interested in partnering with a give-away/promotional for the 2008 Puritan challenge? I have been talking with a couple of publishers, and it would be great to have some book sellers involved as well. Just a thought.

    I am in the process of putting together some ideas as we get started, and I am excited about the prospect of this challenge to encourage and bless many in 2008.

  • Randall J. Pederson

    Timmy,

    I am currently working part-time at the WTS Bookstore while trying to finish a PhD at WTS. I can ask the managers if they are interested in promoting the Puritans this way. I’ll let you know what comes of it.

  • http://seminarysurvivalguide.com Mark

    Just received my copy of Valley of Vision. Thanks for the recommendation!

  • http://minormutterings.blogspot.com Jerry

    Tim,

    This project, along with Challies’ “Mortification” readings, has pushed me over the edge to the point where I will be blogging my reflections on these books along with other reading and thoughts. Only five posts since the blog began on 12/24, and no hope to be as great a presence on the internet as the “big boys”, but an opportunity to record and share my thoughts on what promises to be a great year.

    I pray that He will receive all of the glory, and that I will be molded into His likeness.

    http:minormutterings.blogspot.com

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Randall,

    Thanks for the clarification. I will try to contact you guys soon.

    Mark,

    That’s great. I am going to post VoV’s New Year’s End prayer in a couple of days.

    Jerry,

    That’s great. I will announce the plans here in a day or two. I have a couple of phone calls and emails to make before I make my next post regarding the 08 Puritan Challenge. But one thing you can expect is for me to highlight and try to give greater exposure to those who have taken up the challenge and are blogging their thoughts through the books. So keep up the good work! I look forward to reading your reflections.

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  • http://www.antblogs.blogspot.com Ant

    Monsieur! Great idea. I’m in.

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  • http://www.thehavensc.com joshuaesc
  • http://ogletownbaptist.blogspot.com Curtis Hill

    I am taking the challenge and adding it to my site!

  • http://minormutterings.blogspot.com Jerry

    My post on Chapter 1 of the Bruised Reed is now up on my blog.

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  • http://davidzavadil.com David Zavadil

    I had made the same resolution recently, challenging my readers to join me in reading a puritan a month. I will gladly join your campaign also, picking up your list in February, as I have already begun Bunyan’s Grace Abounding… for January. God Bless and Keep on!

  • John O’

    Thanks so much for encouraging people to read the puritans. I started reading John Owen about 4 years ago. I have read his collected works, and his commentary on Hebrews, which is very rich. I am currently in the works of Richard Sibbes, which are good, but not as good as Owen. I will consider some of the books on your list for this year. But my real reason for writing is, again, thanks for encouraging the Body of Christ to reopen this rich mine of material. I encourage you all to do the challenge, you won’t regret it, and you won’t be the same at the end of the year. The puritans will help you to “behold Christ”, and as you do, you will be changed more into His image.

  • http://nyc-okay.blogspot.com/ NYC

    It is official, I am insane :) Despite the fact that I have zero time because of work and school, I’m going to sign up for this reading challenge. I’m sure these books will be thought provoking, insightful and challenging.

  • http://www.seangould.wordpress.com Sean

    I am in. Thanks for all your work Timmy!

    Blessings to you, Dusti, and Nolan.

    Sean Gould

  • http://nauvoopastor.blogspot.com Martin Pitcher

    I love this idea and will promote it on my blog. Sign me up for the list.

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  • JGray

    I’m in….I am a few days late, but I’ll get started tonight.

  • http://www.dead-theologians.blogspot.com/ DT

    I will commit to this reading. Though I have several of these books I hang my head at the fact that they are buried under the new trendy books.
    You may count me in.

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  • Phil Baiden

    I’m to be ordained in 2008 and one of my tutors gave me The Reformed Pastor as a gift.
    It had such an effect on me and made me realise the responsibilities placed upon me.
    Every pastor should read it – it’s life changing. As a result of that experience I’m taking up the challenge. Eagerly waiting for the first delivery from Banner of Truth…
    Blessings to all of you taking up the challenge and to God be the glory.

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Phil,

    Hearty congrats on the upcoming ordination. May the Lord richly bless your ministry with power from on high. May the readings fuel a hot heart and a passionate mind for the glory of God and the souls of men!

  • dickkopf

    Greetings all!

    I am brand new to this site and must say that reading list is daunting.
    I began reading Edwards back in high school [1965: yeah, I hear you:-)], through the encouragement of my American History teacher, who was also Reformed Presbyterian minister.
    Anyway, I am going to avoid going down Memory Lane, and encourage everyone to check out http://www.apuritansmind.com: a wonderful site, indeed!
    I am reading Dr. Owen’s “Death of Death” right now at “A Puritan’s Mind.”

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  • Ronald MODELEY

    I love reading the PURITAN Authors they are very edyfing and help a lot in the Pastoral and Bible teaching Ministry. Every Pastor must encouraged his People to read these books
    I personally would be delighted to get them.
    Ronny

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  • http://www.remnantsofmylife.blogspot.com Mrs. L

    I’ve only recently stumbled upon this, but love the idea. I’m in!

  • http://calvaryopc.com Arthur Fox

    A Reformed and Presbyterian pastor! I subbed Greater Glory for Bruised Reed because already read. What do I sub for Reformed Pastor (read 3-4 times over the years)?

  • http://www.atstranmillis.com Harold Gibson

    I am editor of The Evangelical Presbyterian magazine in N. Ireland and we have just listed your Puritan Reading challenge in the latest issue, May/June. Some are hoping to take up the challenge.

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Thank you Harold! That is great news! I really appreciate your efforts to encourage more people to take up and read the Puritans this year.

  • Ian Kirk

    I’m coming in half-way through this reading list. But what a man to start with, arguably the greatest theologian to have lived, the great John Owen!

    I’ve set the image of all the puritan paperbacks as my desktop background as a way of reminding me what I’ve read, and those to come.

    The fight with sin is lifelong, and oh how we need someone like Owen take the spiritual scalpal and cut deep, that real change and healing for the soul may come.

    Thanks Timmy, for taking the lead.

  • Gareth

    Brilliant idea! Will start my monthly readings from September

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  • http://www.atstranmillis.com Harold Gibson

    Our church reading group met on Sunday evening after worship. There were 15 present and another 4 who have commenced the challenge!

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Harold,

    That is great news! Thank you passing this information along! I am continually amazed at how this challenge is catching on!

  • http://yahoo MICHAEL CIALONE

    THIS IS JUST INCREDIBLE—-MY FAVORITE COURSE WHILE I WAS IN A CATHOLIC COLLEGE IN CONNECTICUT WAS PURITANISM. PLEASE LET ME KNOW IF THERE IS A PURITAN STUDY GROUP IN THE CONNECTICUT — NEW YORK–NEW JERSEY AREAS. I USED TO LIVE IN SUFFIELD, CT, THE HEART OF THE JONATHAN EDWARDS WORLD. ENFIELD, CT HAS A SPECIAL PLACE FOR ME AND FOR OTHERS THAT ENJOY EDWARDS’ SERMON, “SINNERS IN THE HANDS OF AN ANGRY GOD.”

  • Jim Powell

    Is the group of Puritan Paperbacks still being offered at the present price I see here ($65.00)? I would very much like to purchase these books. I just recently discovered the challenge and am assuming that the challenge will be the same in 2009?
    Thanks.

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  • http://gshow.wordpress.com GRACIE

    I would love to take this challenge up for 2013!!