Puritan Papers, Volume Four is “a symposium of papers read at the annual Puritan and Reformed Studies Conference, Westminster Chapel, London between 1965 and 1967.” There are twelve contributors to this edition, including J.I. Packer and D. Martyn Lloyd-Jones. Most of the chapters are about a particular Reformer or Puritan: Ulrich Zwingli or John Owen, for example. Other topics include the place of catechism among the Puritans, and the Puritan view of spiritual gifts.
I expected to be intimidated by this book, imagining what it would be like to sit in Westminster Chapel and have these eminent scholars present their work. I was pleasantly surprised at how readable this was. Several of the subjects were unfamiliar to me, and I enjoyed discovering Oliver Heywood and Daniel Rowland. There is also a very helpful discussion of the definition of Puritanism in chapter eleven about Henry Jacob. I was, however, most excited by the final chapter on Sandemanianism. Although I was unaware of this concept by name, there are particulars in its doctrine of the nature of true saving faith that have parallels today.
These are the kind of chapters that can be read in any order, each taken as a separate unit. I am especially grateful for the endnotes. My only dilemma concerning Puritan Papers, Volume Four is that I now need to find the time to read the first three volumes. – Pam Glass, Christian Book Previews.com
The Reformers and the Puritans receive the majority of attention in this fourth volume of Puritan Papers, which is comprised of sixteen papers originally presented at the annual Puritan and Reformed Studies Conferences in London. The contributors include J.I. Packer, Martyn Lloyd-Jones, D.P. Kingdon, S.M. Houghton, W.H. Davies, J.A. Caiger, D.W. Marshall, and others. The topics treated range from Puritan views on divine communication, catechisms, and spiritual gifts to biographical sketches on such notables as Zwingli, Luther, Cranmer, Knox, Heywood, and Kuyper.