The narrator is a guest on Chris Arnzen’s Iron Sharpens Iron talking about 32 years of narrating and Puritan counsels for persons in a state of spiritual depression.
This is a review of Owen’s works from the United Presbyterian 1853. It is the second review from a Presbyterian periodical for the same year. This would mean that the Goold edition of Owen’s works had just been released. They were published in Edinburgh
Here is very much said to that purpose, and all little enough, considering the many hardships they were to grapple with, throughout the course of their ministry, and their present weakness, which was such, as that, without some powerful support, they could scarcely bear even the prospect of such usage; Christ therefore shows them why they should be of good cheer.
The carnal mind is enmity to God, and the effects of this enmity are obvious. This alienation from God is voluntary, affected and chosen: men in their unconverted state, are not only strangers to God, but enemies against God, and that in their minds. A most fearful case, full of astonishment, that the very mind of man, the offspring of God—the paternal mind, as a heathen called him—that this most excellent part or power belonging to the nature of man, should be poisoned with malignity, and envenomed with enmity, against the glorious, ever-blessed God!
I find a law in my members, which hath in some degree taken possession of all my faculties, giving false light and prejudice to my mind and judgment ; a corrupt bias often to my will, putting my affections and passions in irregular and impetuous motion, and so warring against the law of my mind, that good principle and law, which God, according to the promise of the new covenant hath put in my mind, and written in my heart; so warring againt my soul (1 Pet. ii. 11) and labouring hard, and with too much success in some particular instances, to captivate me to the law of sin which is in my members.
Methinks I see how Jesus Christ presents himself to the eye of the dejected soul’s understanding, in all his glory and gallantry, in his suitableness unto the sinner’s indigencies, and sufficiency for all his necessities, with the freeness of his mercy, the fulness of his merits, the sweetness of his love; how he appears before the soul with his retinue and train of graces, comforts, his blood, his Spirit, the favour of God, freedom from sin, wrath, hell.
“The evil is running in all directions. A number of churches have experienced a revival of anger, wrath, malice, envy, and evil-speaking, without the knowledge of a single conversion— merely in consequence of a desperate attempt to introduce these new measures. Those ministers and christians who have heretofore been most and longest acquainted with revivals, are most alarmed at the spirit which has grown out of the revivals of the West. This spirit has, no doubt, greatly deteriorated by transportation. As we now have it, the great contest is among professors of religion— a civil war in Zion— a domestic broil in the household of faith. The friends of brother Finney are certainly doing him and the cause of Christ great mischief. They seem more anxious to convert ministers and christians to their peculiarities, than to convert souls to Christ.
I would by no means flatter you concerning this work, or go about to make you believe, that you shall find an easy light business of it: no, I would not have you expect any such thing. I would have you sit down and count the cost; and if you cannot find it in your hearts to engage in a great, hard, laborious, and expensive undertaking, and to persevere in it to the end of life, pretend not to be religious. Indulge yourselves in your ease; follow your pleasures; eat, drink, and be merry; even conclude to go to hell in that way, and never make any more pretenses of seeking your salvation.
This narration mostly focuses on not just the Plymouth Brethren’s erroneous views of faith and assurance, but more importantly the Scottish Presbyterian Horatius Bonar – in his book, God’s Way of Peace. ” Dr. Bonar and the Waymarks write, that assurance of hope cannot derive any of its comfort from the discovery of gracious principles and acts in ourselves, without forsaking faith and building on self-righteousness. They contradict Scripture, experience, and precepts. And we take great pleasure in staking our issue on this test, because these writers cry so loudly, “To the Bible alone!”
As one in sleep is insensible to what is passing
around him, so, in a measure, it is sometimes with the
Christian. Though not wholly lost to a sense of divine
things, they make but a feeble or slight impression
upon his soul. In this frame, he goes to the house of
God. Once he saw the glory of God in the face
of Jesus Christ ; but now he walks in darkness. Once
he had a deep sense of the worth of souls, and could
weep over perishing- sinners around him. He could
say, ” I beheld the transgressors, and was grieved.”
But now he can behold the sight almost without emotion.