Three Great Books

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In the last week, three great new(ish) books have landed on my desk.

First, the Rev. Thabiti Anyabwile has taken time off from preparing my Festschrift to write an excellent little volume entitled Finding Faithful Elders and DeaconsIt is part of the 9Marks series from Crossway.  Those familiar with the series know what to expect: concise, no-nonsense biblical advice.    The author is a baptist, but the book articulates general principles which all involved in churches with elders and deacons can use.    Definitely one for all officebearers to read.

Second, the Rev. Mariano DiGangi's little book, Great Themes in Puritan PreachingIn the past, I have directed those wanting a good introduction to Puritan theology to books like J I Packer's Among God's Giants (which I think had a different title in the US).  That is still a great book, but DiGangi's is both brief and crammed full of Puritan wisdom.  This is now going to be my go-to book for the Puritan neophyte.

Third, Professor Andrew Hoffecker's biography of Charles HodgeI had the privilege of seeing this book in prepublication form.  It is a really delightful study of Hodge's life.  Ironically, with no full biography of Hodge since that done by his son in the nineteenth century, 2011 saw two appear.   The one by Paul Gutjahr is excellent too, and its arrival in paperback will make it more accessible to more people, I am sure.  If you have the time, read both: Gutjahr is very readable but where Hoffecker really shines is in his treatment of the peculiarly Presbyterian aspects of Hodge's career.  Gutjahr does not seem to see the significance, for example, of the clashes between Hodge and Thornwell and thus presents a Hodge more amenable to Everychristianman, so to speak; and while one does not need to be a Presbyterian to grasp these things, it helps -- as Hoffecker shows.  A great read.

Posted January 30, 2012 @ 9:45 AM by Carl Trueman

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