he saved us, not because of works done by us in righteousness, but according to his own mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewal of the Holy Spirit, Titus 3:5
The spring and fountain of all the pollutions of sin flow from the depraved nature of man’s faculties. This should fill us with shame. Consider rightly the vanity, darkness, and ignorance of the mind, the perverseness and stubbornness of the will, and the disorder of the affections. This depravity has given our nature its leprosy and has defiled it throughout. Who is there that can rightly recount his proneness to foolish imaginations and vanities, his aversion to spiritually and communion with God, his proneness to things sensual and evil, without being deeply affected with shame? Now, our whole evil frame was cured by the effectual working of the Holy Spirit I the renovation of our nature. He gave us a new understanding, a new heart, new affections, and renewed the whole soul into the image of God. He does this by the washing of regeneration and the restoring of the image of God unto our souls. This work is the cause of our holiness. Our minds, hearts, and affections are renewed by the Holy Spirit, and he cleanses us from all spiritual and habitual pollution. If we would be further cleansed from our sins, we must labour after and endeavor to grow in this renovation of our natures by the Spirit. The more we have of his saving light in our minds, of his heavenly love in our wills and affections, and of a constant readiness unto obedience in our hearts, the more pure we become. He purifies us by strengthening our souls in grace. Having given us the principle of purity in regeneration, he now acts in us the duties of obedience in opposition to sin. By the special application of the blood of Christ, the Holy Spirit becomes the efficient cause of the purging of our souls from all the defilements of sin.
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)