on July 30, 2010
The Essential Edwards Collection
On True Christianity
Owen Strachan an Doug Sweeny
This is one of a five-volume set on the life and works of Jonathon Edwards. This particular volume deals with the issue of true Christianity. This volume contains five chapters: 1) The Contemporary Problem of Nominal Christianity, 2) The Problem of Nominal Christianity in Edward's Day, 3) Edward's Answer to Nominal Christianity, 4) Powerful examples of True Christianity, and 5) Edward's Dismissal and the Contemporary Call to True Christianity.
The authors of this book point out that nominal Christianity is a real problem in our day, as it was also a problem in Edward's day. A nominal Christian is one that claims to be a Christian, but has little or no evidence of being a true disciple of Jesus Christ. "Nominal Christianity is a notoriously difficult problem to trace and spot." Pg 27 " Two things are immediately clear, though: the state of the maturity of many Christians is quite low, and many churches are failing to educate their people in the basics of Christianity." Pg 27
Jonathon Edward's was very concerned with nominal Christianity.
" He devoted considerable attention
to unmasking nominal faith by
exposing its weaknesses and
revealing its inconsistencies.
he never let himself grow satisfied
with high attendance and easy praise." Pg 50
Chapters 1-3 are negative in the sense they are dealing with the problem. Chapter 4 is very positive because it gives two outstanding examples of people living a true Christian life. These two were contemporaries of Jonathon Edwards; David Brainerd and Abigail Hutchinson. This chapter alone is worth reading this book, as the reader is able to learn a little more about these two lives. These were not perfect people by any stretch of the imagination, but you are able to get a tiny glimpse of the struggles and successes of these two who were true followers of Jesus.
Chapter 5 deals with the surprising firing of Jonathon Edwards from his church in Northampton, and how that relates to the church today in the fight for true Christianity.