Thursday, July 06, 2006

Recommended reading: Richard Sibbes

I just finished reading Mark Dever’s book on Richard Sibbes. I highly recommend this book for a number of reasons. First, it gives an insight into the issues of the Puritan era and that all it entailed including the issues on non-conformity and conformity. A second issue is that the book revealed how we have to be careful how we read history, especially from this era as it can often leave one with the wrong impression. This is especially true of Sibbes as there was not much left to reveal who he was and that many that have written since have used others findings, at times in error.

Since reading the book about a man I had truthfully never heard of until I heard Mark Dever speak I have now seen that there are other Puritans to read, that in the end give a fuller understanding of the Puritan movement. So I have lined up two of Sibbes books: The Bruised Reed and Glorious Freedom (originally entitled The Excellency of the Gospel above the Law). Of The Bruised Reed Dr. D. Martin Lloyd-Jones said –

‘I shall never cease to be grateful to … Richard Sibbes who was balm to my soul at a period in my life when I was overworked and badly over tired, and therefore subject in an unusual manner to the onslaught of the devil… I found at that time that Richard Sibbes who was known in London in the early seventeenth century as “the Heavenly Doctor Sibbes” was an unfailing remedy… The bruised Reed… quietened, soothed, comforted, encouraged and healed me’ (From the back of the The Bruised Reed – Published by The banner of Truth Trust).

It may be good to read Dever’s book first as it does set the tone for the time and issues surrounding Sibbes when he wrote these books.

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