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When Christians Suffer (Pocket Puritans) Paperback – October 1, 2009
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About the Author
Thomas Case (1598-1682) was born at Boxley, Kent where his father, George Case, was vicar. He seems to have been converted at a very young age. He obtained his BA (1620) and MA (1623) at Christ Church, Oxford, before being ordained in the diocese of Norwich in 1626.
Case's best-known works are his A Treatise of Afflictions (published by the Trust as When Christians Suffer, in the Pocket Puritans series) and Mount Pisgah, reprinted in recent years as A Prospect of Heaven.
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This book gave me hope when I was needing hope. I had made some bad choices and had enemies using those choices to destroy my life and this book showed me how my troubles and problems were a blessing to help me become a better person. This is an excellent book for anyone to read.
Another lesson 'God's People' learn in 'The School Of Affliction' is to pray more frequently and more fervently.An afflicted condition draws to 'A Spirit Of Prayer'(for many reasons)one being that it heightens our consciousness of how needy we are,and that state of need can only be relieved with God's help(using various instruments,no doubt)but God is the foundation for that help.
Thomas Case has this noteworthy insight- "Affliction also causes believers to understand the Word more clearly. ...it enables one to bring God's Word and God's work together." I think this rings true.When one understands Doctrinal Truth and then,when either in the midst of a trial,or when brought through it,we now see the truth that was notional only,in an experimental way.By this we come to value the Lord's providential dealings with us and also come to understand 'His Word' more fully.
Another thing God's children learn in affliction is '...The Fullness Of Jesus Christ'.What hinders believers from seeing the fullness in Him and relying upon it-"...we fill ourselves so much with the world in our prosperity...and have no room for Christ." This is one of the areas where I believe 'The Puritans' can be of great help to 21st Century Christendom.They clearly understood the importance of keeping the love(even of lawful things of this world)in their proper perspective.They saw the inverse relationship between loving this world(inordinately,and being satisfied with that)and not delighting in,above all else-Jesus Christ Our Lord.Thomas Case succinctly states it this way-"...we do not fear the unlawful use of lawful things."
The Puritans preached and wrote much on suffering,and the purpose of God,for his people,in it.There is much we can learn from them.Thomas Cases' book 'A Treatise On Affliction' is among the most helpful books re-suffering(as it relates to the saints of God)that has ever been published.