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The Rare Jewel of Christian Contentment Paperback – April 27, 2009

4.4 out of 5 stars 119 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

'J. I. Packer says that the Puritans are the theological and devotional Redwoods of the western world.1 My own experience is that no one comes close to the skill they have in taking the razor-like scalpel of Scripture, and lancing the boils of my corruption, cutting out the cancers of my God-belittling habits of mind, and amputating the limbs of my disobedience. They are simply in a class by themselves.' --John Piper --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

About the Author

Jeremiah Burroughs (1600–1646) was an English Congregationalist and a well-known Puritan preacher. Burroughs studied at Emmanuel College, Cambridge, and was graduated M.A. in 1624, but left the university because of non-conformity. He was assistant to Edmund Calamy at Bury St. Edmunds, and in 1631 became rector of Tivetshall, Norfolk. He was suspended for non-conformity in 1636 and soon afterward deprived, he went toRotterdam (1637) and became "teacher" of the English church there. He returned to England in 1641 and served as preacher at Stepney and Cripplegate, London. He was a member of the Westminster Assembly and one of the few who opposed the Presbyterian majority. While one of the most distinguished of the English Independents, he was one of the most moderate, acting consistently in accordance with the motto on his study door (in Latin and Greek): "Difference of belief and unity of believers are not inconsistent". --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 196 pages
  • Publisher: University of Michigan Library (April 27, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B002NEEWJQ
  • Product Dimensions: 6.2 x 0.5 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.4 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (119 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,554,122 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By John Andrew Deskins on February 19, 2003
Format: Paperback
After you've read through the first chapter of this book, you will think most modern evangelical writing should be shelved next to Dr. Seuss.
This is a fantastic and profound book, HOWEVER . . .
DON'T BUY THIS EDITION! The print is miniscule and very difficult to read! Try the Banner of Truth Edition.
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This is 'the book' on the doctrine of Christian contentment. The depth of the Puritans is rarely even approached by modern authors. Burrough's takes you through some of the ABC's of Christian living. For example on p.87-88 "We deserve nothing and therefore why should we be impatient if we do not get what we desire." Perhaps at the root of discontentment is that we really do not desire God's will in everything, at least in some things we want the Lord to rubber stamp and implement our will even if it is contrary to His. A Christian can be content no matter what their circumstances because contentment comes from the inward state of the heart and not from outward circumstances as the author ably instructs the reader. The importance of a believer learning to be content(and it is a lifelong process)would be difficult to overstate. It helps in dealing with temptation, it prepares the Christian for any type of service their Lord and Master requires of them, and it brings great comfort no matter how bleak things may appear to be. The writer also enables the reader to understand how that comfort is brought, on p.130 " Certainly our contentment does not consist in getting the thing we desire, but in God's fashioning our spirits to our conditions." God works in us to view things by faith, and by doing so , we see things more and more filtered through God's perspective. By doing that we can see a little more of the big picture of all of the Lord's dealings with His people and bring that to bear on what is happening in our life. Any Christian who learns to be more content both glorifies God and becomes increasingly useful in His service and thats why this book is so important and useful for the Lord's people.
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Look at the self-help secion and Christian Living section in bookstores and you will find hundreds if not thousands of books professing to help the reader to contentment and happiness. Very few, if any, survive the test of time much less the test of human experience.
This great book, written almost 400 years ago, addresses the basic problem of human discontent, suffering and offers a timeless and tested solution. 16th and 17th century Divines did not mince words, cater to the fickle tastes of the reading public or care about being poitically correct. They preached the truth.
True contentment, argues the author, is achieved by subtraction and not by addition; by surrender and not struggle.
Read this great work and toss all those written by people who will be forgotten next year. It will set your heart on fire and elevate your soul.
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I am still reading this book, but I've read enough to have it significantly change my outlook on life and afflictions. I have learned in abundance what it means to trust the Lord in troubles and to realize that God will bring me out of them in His time, and it is my duty to praise the Lord and devote my heart to Him. My cup runs over when I read Jeremiah Burroughs.
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The Rare Jewel of Christian Contentment is a classic "rare jewel" (especially in our modern time) on the subject of contentment based on Philippians 4:11, "I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content." Burroughs explains the nature of Christian contentment (what it is), the art and mystery of it, the excellence of it, the evils of a murmuring spirit, why we are to be content, what lessons must be learned to bring the heart to contentment, how Christ teaches contentment, and directions for us to attain contentment.
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If there is only one lesson I learn from this book, it would be on how to be contented by laboring to get a good interpretation of God's dealings in my life. But there is certainly much more to learn from the text, which I consider the best exposition on Phil 4:11. Burrough's coverage seems to be more comprehensive than that of Watson's who also wrote a treatise on the same subject 'The Art of Divine Contentment' 5 years after Burrough did. What I particularly enjoy is the lessons on the mystery of contentment, the excellence of contenment, how Christ teaches contentment, the evil and aggravation of a murmuring spirit, and how to be content. I found some examples used to clarify certain points are both humbling and humorous, whether they were intended to be so or not, some of which are given ch.7 that talks about one of the excellencies of a contented spirit being the soul is fitted to receive mercy and to do service. "No man or woman in the world is as fit to receive the grace of God, and to do the work of God, as those who have contented spirits. So if we would be vessels to receive God's mercy, and would have the Lord pour his mercy into us, we must have quiet, still hearts. We must not have hearts hurrying up and down in trouble, discontent and vexing, but still and quiet hearts, if we receive mercy from the Lord." Then two illustrations were presented which I thought are hilarious. "If a child throws and kicks up and down for a thing, you do not give it him when he cries so, but first you will have the child quiet. Even though, perhaps, you intend him to have what he cries for, you will not give it him till he is quiet, and comes, and stands still before you, and is contented without it, and then you will give it him.Read more ›
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