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Memoir and Remains of R.M. M'Cheyne Hardcover – March 1, 1966
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Were it not for Andrew Bonar we may not know much of M’Cheyne. Bonar took effort to chronicle the life of Robert M’Cheyne and the best book on the subject is titled Memoir & Remains of Robert Murray M'Cheyne. This particular work begins with a memoir to M'Cheyne relating some of his struggles, thoughts, and dealings as he went throughout his life. By using some of M’Cheyne’s journal entries we get some insight into the man. The book contains some of the letters that M'Cheyne wrote to various people with the intent of becoming more and more like Christ. Following the letters in the book come a sample of sermons by M’Cheyne. .
These sermons show the heart of M’Cheyne and how he understood and applied the Scriptures. His desire to let go of worldly enticements and seek after Christ become all the more apparent as each sermon is read. M’Cheyne’s passion also protrudes as he desires that all who hear him find their calling and life in Jesus Christ.
M’Cheyne was somewhat of a poet and would often used poetry to explain some of the thoughts and musings that he had. These poems are at the back of the book and are quite inspirational. For example, take a sample of a poem titled They Sing the Song of Moses:
And oh! When, life’s dark journey o’er
And death’s enshrouding valley past,
We plant our foot on yonder shore,
And tread yon golden strand at last
Shall we not see with deep amaze,
How grace hath led us safe along;
And whilst behind--before, we gaze,
Triumphant burst into a song! (p. 633c - 634a)
M’Cheyne loved God and the peace that would come to him upon his death. He wanted all to know this peace and some of his poetry’s heart is apparent while reading.
On a personal note, I took the challenge to read the whole Bible in one year following the readings outlined by M'Cheyne. Upon accepting this challenge, I wanted to learn more about this individual and found this particular book extremely helpful and insightful. I don't normally recommend books to everybody. However, I hardly make an exception with this book. The language may be difficult for a modern English reader but take the time to read this work. It may just be life changing to you.
*I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for my honest review.
It's one of those books that have an "unction" to them. It also contains letters that McCheyne wrote to people in different conditions. Some are encouragements to ministers others are "Letters written to a soul seeking Jesus" and the like. He wrote to many commending the Savior to them very ably. Then there are pastoral letters written to his church during a time he was away in Palestine visiting and sharing the good news with Jewish people whom he loved and prayed for and sought to bring to Christ. Their is a section that contains his sermons and finally one that has the hymns he wrote such as "I once was a stranger to grace and to God, I knew not my danger, and felt not my load..." It is one of those excellent Christian biographies, get it and read it prayerfully. May God bless it to your heart and make you sing of Christ the Rose of Sharon(McCheyne term of endearment to the Lord Jesus. I read somewhere that "Those who live in heaven while on earth get the privelege of living on earth while they are in heaven." McCheyne lives on with the savor of Christ in these pages.