(Review) The Trinitarian Devotion of John Owen by Sinclair B. Ferguson
Publisher: Reformation Trust.
Genre: Nonfiction, biography, Trinitarian theology.
Source: I won a giveaway copy.
Rating: 4 stars for very good.
The Trinitarian Devotion of John Owen is apart of a series of books in A Long Line of Godly Men Profile. Examples of other great men profiled are John Knox, Martin Luther, and William Tyndale. This Goodreads link will show the listing of further books in this series. An additional link from the Ligonier website shows the complete list.
John Owen was born in 1616 and died in 1683. The year of his birth William Shakespeare died. James I was the reigning monarch at his birth. Owen lived through a tumultuous period in British history: the era of Charles I, the Commonwealth, the Protectorate, and Charles II. I state these facts because I love British history. I'm thankful John Owen survived, by the grace of God, to preach and teach and leave a strong legacy.
Sinclair B. Ferguson has brought to life a man and his contribution to the Christian church.
The Trinitarian Devotion of John Owen provides a short biography and bite size portions of his teachings in five chapters.
Chapter One "Pastor and Theologian"
Chapter Two "In the Name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit"
Chapter Three "Communion with the Father"
Chapter Four "Communion with the Son"
Chapter Five "Communion with the Holy Spirit"
This is the first book I've read on John Owen, and I do not remember reading quotes of him in other books.
John Owen is an intellectual, he is a theologian on a deeper level than other contemporaries of his age.
My favorite chapters were four and five.
In chapter four, Grace and Justification is taught. I was interested to read Owen's "background" was "medieval theology" and its "understanding of salvation." He was raised a Puritan, but the background of thinking in the Church was "sacramental grace." However, "Grace is Jesus Christ; Jesus Christ is God's grace." Owen ended the chapter by expressing the meaning of grace is exemplified in the New Testament specifically in Hebrews, where the "fullness of God dwells" in Jesus Christ.
In chapter five, the Holy Spirit is the teaching. Owen explains Christians do not understand the difference between the dwelling of the Holy Spirit in a believer, and "the manner in which He manifests that identity in and to the consciousness of the individual believer (a variable.)"
I enjoyed reading The Trinitarian Devotion of John Owen. For an average reader (like myself) a bite size portion of a Christian theologian, including a brief biography and edited portions of their beliefs and teachings, is easier to digest than a lengthy academic book.
The Truth is that we are prone to looking through the wrong end of the telescope. We move from man to God. But true thinking-that recognizes the real distinction between the Creator and the creature, between the Infinite and the finite must always begin with God.
We are often reminded (and rightly) reminded that we do not live the Christian life on the basis of our emotions, but we must never make the mistake of thinking that the gospel leaves our emotions untouched. Rather, it cleanses and transforms them by its power. We come to love what we formerly hated and to delight what we formerly despised.