yet you refuse to come to me that you may have life. John 5:40
O how unreasonable is the sin of unbelief, by which the sinner rejects Christ, and all of his mercies and benefits hat alone can cure his misery. He refuses Christ who comes with heavenly light and wisdom. He is condemned by the law to eternal wrath, and yet rejects Christ, who could render him complete and perfect righteousness. He is wholly polluted by nature and practice, yet will have nothing of Christ who would become sanctification to him. He is oppressed in soul and body with the deplorable effects and miseries that sin has brought upon him. He is so in love with his bondage, that he will neither accept Christ , nor the redemption he brings. O what beasts has sin turned its subjects into! Sin has stabbed the sinner to the heart. His wounds are all deadly, and eternal death is in his face. Christ has prepared the only remedy to cure his wounds, but he will not allow him to apply it. He acts like one in love with death, and that judges it sweet to perish. He is loath to burn, yet willing to sin, though sin kindles everlasting flames. He cannot think of damnation without horror, and yet cannot think of sin, the cause of damnation, without pleasure. He is loath to perish, and yet refuses Christ as if he were an enemy, though he alone can deliver him from eternal perdition. O how men act as if they were in love with their own ruin! Many poor wretches now in the way to hell are making every effort to cast themselves away. Christ restrains them along he way by convictions, but they overcome them. They accept a cure for anything but their souls. They undo themselves by rejecting Christ in his gracious offers. Damnation is inevitable, for there is no other way to salvation. Neither heathen or devils have so aggravated their sins by willfully refusing such a wonderful and offered remedy.
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)