Friday, 16 January 2009

Passion for the Gospel

I have just this week completed Iain H Murray's D. Martyn Lloyd-Jones - The First Forty Years, and, my, what an inspiring read that was. I have not felt my heart so enlarged for some time as I did during the reading of this volume. It re-lit the flame within me once again for the preaching ministry. What a man of God DMLJ was! What a mentor for young and older ministers! What a pastor to Christian believers!

This book has had a profound effect for good on me, yet just how that effect will work itself out is another question altogether. The fire has been rekindled within my soul, and I long to have the opportunity to preach the Gospel of Christ once again with greater regularity.

I am so glad that this subject will be treated at the Puritan Reformed conference to be held in Belfast on 7th February 2009, and I am looking forward to hearing what Geoff Thomas has to say about the Doc. I hope he will present the true Doctor, and not a sanitised version that satisfies the taste-buds of the high orthodox. I trust also that Geoff will deal with the data that is to hand - all of it - and not try to squeeze what he thinks DMLJ ought to have been, rather than what the data presents him as.

The dishonesty that exists within reformed evangelicalism is endemic throughout the reformed churches, and this is seen in the resolute refusal to apply the Word of the Gospel to the churches themselves, but only to non-Christians, Christians and church members. Sadly, not all can recognise this dishonesty when it presents itself. Many good men prefer to hide behind their own perception of what being 'reformed' means, rather than returning to Calvin himself, and recognising the breadth and balanced biblicism of his theology.

My next reading pleasure will be Vol.2 of the DMLJ biography, a task to which I am looking forward immensely. No Christian or minister can do better than to immerse him/herself in the Doctor's preaching, as recorded in print, and to be touched profoundly by this physician of the soul's sermons.