You then, my child, be strengthened by the grace that is in Christ Jesus, 2 Timothy 2:1
When you are oppressed with the weight of any duty and service in your calling, improve your trust in God’s power. Perhaps you find the duty of your calling too heavy for your weak shoulders: lay the heaviest end of your burden on God’s shoulder. When at any time you are sick of your work and ready with Jonah to run from it, encourage yourself with that which God said to Gideon; ‘Go in this your might’, has not God called you? Continue in the work God sets you to, and his strength will be engaged for you. If you run from your work, he will send some storm or other to bring home his runaway servant. How often has the coward been killed in a ditch, or under some hedge, when the valiant soldier that stood his ground was delivered in safety and honour? Are you called to suffer? Do not flinch because you are afraid. Do not think you will never be able to bear the cross. God can lay it so upon you that you shall not even feel it. If you find no comfort until you come to the prison door, yes, till you have one foot on the stake, or your neck on the block, do not despair. In that hour, he can give you such a look at his sweet face that a cruel death appears lovely in your eyes for his sake. He can give you so much comfort in hand, that you will acknowledge he is right with you in all the shame and pain you endure for him. In a word, Christian, rely upon your God, and make daily applications to the throne of grace for continual supplies of strength. God is so pleased that you come to him in this way, and the more often the better, and the more you come, the more often the better, and the more you come, the more you are welcome. Such a bountiful heart your God has, that while you are asking for a little peace and joy, he bids you to open your mouth wide and he will fill it. Set your needs all before the Almighty. God has strength enough to give.
Dr. Ryken’s presentation of the Puritan view and style of life is perceptive and accurate. He allows the Puritans to speak for themselves on topics ranging from “Church and Worship” to “Money” and “Marriage and Sex.” Worldly Saints offers a fine introduction to seventeenth-century Puritanism in its English and American contexts. The work is rich in quotations from Puritan worthies and is ideally suited to general readers who have not delved widely into Puritan literature.
“Ryken’s Worldly Saints offers a fine introduction to seventeenth-century Puritanism in its English and American contexts. The work is rich in quotations from Puritan worthies and is ideally suited to general readers who have not delved widely into Puritan literature. It will also be a source of information and inspiration to those who seek a clearer understanding of the Puritan roots of American Christianity.” —Harry Stout (Yale University)
“…the typical Puritans were not wild men, fierce and freaky, religious fanatics and social extremists, but sober, conscientious, and cultured citizens, persons of principle, determined and disciplined, excelling in the domestic virtues, and with no obvious shortcomings save a tendency to run to words when saying anything important, whether to God or to man. At last the record has been put straight.” —J.I. Packer (Regent College)
“Worldly Saints provides a revealing treasury of primary and secondary evidence for understanding the Puritans, who they are, what they believed, and how they acted. This is a book of value and interest for scholars and students, clergy and laity alike.” —Roland Mushat Frye (University of Pennsylvania)