Seven Leaders

preachers and pastors

Rated 5.00 out of 5 based on 2 customer ratings
(2 customer reviews)
Clear
Weight 1.10 lbs
Dimensions 8.75 x 5.6 x .8 in
binding

Cloth-bound, ePub, Kindle (.mobi), Cloth-bound & Kindle, Cloth-bound & ePub

Format

Book

isbn

9781848717398

topic

History and Biography

page-count

296

Banner Pub Date

Apr 17, 2017

Endorsements

‘Murray traces the work of seven pastors over time, and he shows the consistencies in their ministries, saying “what is it about these men that distinguished them as exceptional leaders, pastors, expositors of God’s word?” And he gives insights into that, and shows that it’s the same over the centuries; it hasn’t changed. Very encouraging read, very pleasant read, and I would recommend it.’ — JEFF KINGSWOOD

Book Description

Spiritual leaders lead people to heaven. Here in Seven Leaders are accounts of seven such men, together with the distinctive features of their lives—in John Elias, the necessity of the power of the Holy Spirit; in Andrew Bonar, the reality of communion with Christ; in Archie Brown, the irresistibility of love; in Kenneth MacRae, the need for faithfulness to death; in Martyn Lloyd-Jones, theology and doctrine; in W. J. Grier, passing on the ‘sacred deposit’; and in John MacArthur, the governing authority of the word of God. An Old Testament miracle once took place at a burial. We are told that when the deceased was ‘let down and touched the bones of Elisha, he revived, and stood up on his feet’ (2 Kings 13:21). Through books, the past can be touched, and the consequence may be as much of God as when Martin Luther handled the old writings of Jan Huss. Records of faithful servants of Christ still speak and can bring new life today.

Iain Murray on Seven Leaders

REVIEWS

Table of Contents Expand ↓

  Introduction xi
1 John Elias and Revival 1
  Youth, Anglesey and Marriage 3
  An Evangelist in Times of Awakening 9
  Wider Ministry 17
  Elias as a Watchman 19
  Calvinistic Belief Challenged 27
2 Andrew A. Bonar: Fellowship with Christ 43
  The Years of Preparation 46
  The Glasgow Ministry, 1856–1892 52
  M‘Cheyne Dies and the Biography Lives 55
  Times of Revival 56
  Isabella Bonar 60
  Godliness and Usefulness 61
  What Follows from Communion with God 63
  Why Are We Impoverished? 70
3 The Rediscovery of Archie Brown 73
  Called to Christ and to Preach 76
  The Awakening at Stepney 79
  Deaths and Sorrows 82
  The Enlarged Work 85
  The Man and the Message 87
  The Place of the Holy Spirit 92
  Note: C. H. Spurgeon on How to Obtain and Retain the Attention of our Hearers 96
4 Kenneth A. MacRae: Preacher and Pastor 99
  Lessons from the Diaries of Fifty Years 101
  The Preparation 104
  Governing Principles of Ministry 110
  The Preparation of Sermons 115
  The Holy Spirit in Preaching 126
5 Understanding Martyn Lloyd-Jones 131
  Start with Theology 133
  Life-Changing Experience 136
  Controversy over the Preaching of the Gospel 139
  Public Worship 144
  Doctrine and Revival 145
  The Imprint of Faith on Life 149
  Six Rules for Preachers 150
  Note: Was Lloyd-Jones an Amyraldian? 154
6 W. J. Grier: Against Frittering Life Away 169
  Princeton Theological Seminary 176
  Presbyterians in Turmoil 180
  The Irish Evangelical Church 188
  Personal Trials 190
  The Decades which Followed 195
  Correspondence on Books and Authors 203
  The Last Years of Work 206
  Note: The Recovery of the Old Princeton Seminary Authors 211
7 John MacArthur: Preaching and Scripture 213
  Biography 216
  Faith in the Word of God 220
  Without Scripture the Knowledge of God Is Lost 222
  Without Scripture a Sense of Sin Is Lost 224
  Where the Bible is not Upheld the Church Turns to Other Means to Promote Her Influence 225
  Where Scripture Is not Honoured Doctrine Is Discounted 228
  Scripture and Unity 230
  Note: The Inerrant Word 234
  Endnotes 237
  General Index 269
  Index of Authors and Works Cited 277

Testimonials

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  1. Rated 5 out of 5

    dgumprecht

    Superb. The chapters on Elias, Bonar, and Grier were especially impactful and moving. A stirring read for any Christian—especially any pastor.

    This is also an excellent example of how the production of a book should match its content. Beautiful cloth bound covers, beautiful endpapers, and a beautiful font! Makes the reading that much more enjoyable.

  2. Rated 5 out of 5

    Bill Pence

    The author is my favorite biographer, and I’ve read several of his books. He writes that the book originated in an invitation to speak on the subject of preachers and pastors in 2014. He has previously written biographies of three of the seven men here profiled – Archibald Brown, Martyn Lloyd-Jones and John MacArthur. I was familiar with Lloyd-Jones and MacArthur, but not the others included in this volume. The author includes biographical sketches of each man, and then covers important aspects of their ministries, often quoting from their writings.
    He writes that we are to learn from leaders yet be imitators of none. While it is his hope that the book will assist younger men called to the ministry of the gospel, it is not meant for them alone.
    I highlighted a number of passages as I read through this book. Below are just a few for each man profiled. I enjoyed the book and would recommend it, especially for pastors.
    John Elias and Revival
    • John Elias was a watchman, as well as an evangelist, and warned of dangers of which the succeeding generation failed to regard.
    • He knew that if standards of membership are allowed to be relaxed, and worldliness tolerated, then it is only a matter of time before members want a type of elder and preacher suited to their condition.
    • Elias believed in divine sovereignty. If no revivals were taking place it was not because the gospel was not being made ‘wider’ and more appealing.
    • It was not only Calvinism but the Bible itself which was to be forgotten. In the 1880s Congregationalists in England were at the forefront of what Spurgeon designated the ‘down-grade controversy’. Deploring the change which was taking place, he commented, ‘We used to debate particular redemption, now the question is whether there is any redemption at all.’
    • The attempt to gain more influence and unity through a ‘modified’ gospel was a tragic failure in England and Wales. The effects of error may be slow but they are sure.
    Andrew A. Bonar: Fellowship with Christ
    • Bonar and M‘Cheyne were at the centre of a group of a dozen or more likeminded young ministers which arose in the Church of Scotland in the 1830s. Marked by their close friendship with each other, by their preaching of Christ, and their love for their people, they were prominent instruments in a remarkable era of evangelism and revival.
    • To read Bonar is to be convinced that there are great biblical lessons which we are not taking seriously enough.
    • In 1878 a larger building had to be built near West End Park, and by the 1890s over a thousand made up the congregation. By that date Bonar had become something of a legend in the city.
    • The life of Andrew Bonar shows us how closely the usefulness of servants of Christ is related to the holiness of their lives.
    • What a preacher is as a Christian is of greater consequence than his natural gifts.
    • Bonar was certain that the more he was filled with the Holy Spirit the more fully would he preach Christ.
    The Rediscovery of Archie Brown
    • It is therefore surprising to us that his ministry would largely pass from the memory of later generations until it became almost unknown.
    • Times of revival always show the same characteristics, and foremost among them, is prayerfulness.
    • He shared with Spurgeon in the Downgrade Controversy of the late 1880s, and together they were profoundly moved as so many in the churches ceased to regard all Scripture as God-given revelation.
    • There was gospel in this sermon, too, but its burden was for the awakening of the careless. Such preaching is no longer heard from many pulpits.
    • The key to Brown as a Christian and a preacher was the teaching of the Holy Spirit on the person and glory of Christ.
    Kenneth A. MacRae: Preacher and Pastor
    • For usefulness, it is the life of the man himself that matters most, and no one has ever become a true guide to others without a personal preparation at the hands of God.
    • In addition to his own congregation, he had the responsibility for three other churches at a distance from his own, where he preached regularly.
    • He believed that all that is of first importance for the life and prosperity of the church is already laid down in the word of God. This is a liberating principle.
    • Kenneth MacRae preached to within seven months of his death on May 6, 1964. Two days later, Stornoway saw the sight of a Christian funeral such as is not often seen in this world, and which these pages cannot convey. The life of the town stopped still that Friday afternoon.
    Understanding Martyn Lloyd-Jones
    • The big thing for him was theology, what he believed about God.
    • Man’s fallen condition is the biblical starting point for the presentation of gospel. While there is no one pattern of conversion, there is a common order or sequence in the way sinners are brought to Christ.
    • To miss out the preaching of repentance because people have no sense of sin, and to speak to them only of ‘accepting Christ’, is to depart from the order of the New Testament.
    • The work of the Spirit is not uniform in all periods, and Lloyd-Jones believed there is only one explanation for times of extraordinary blessing, namely, the sovereignty of God in his administration of grace.
    • Sermons born out of a concern for unbelievers, and to lead them to Christ, formed half, if not more, of his entire ministry.
    W. J. Grier: Against Frittering Life Away
    • The result was that on October 15, 1927 the small company gathered at the café in Fountain Street decided to proceed with the formation of a new church organisation. By the end of the following month, the name was settled as the ‘Irish Evangelical Church’.
    • With James Hunter now in his mid-sixties much of the burden of the new work fell upon Grier. As well as the management of the bookshop, he now had the care of two congregations.
    • Another consequence of these years was the maturing of his conviction that the doctrines of the reformed faith need to be spelt out definitely and in distinction from the ‘fundamentalist’ type of evangelicalism then prevalent in Ulster.
    • These letters which he wrote to me, beginning before the first Banner publications of 1958, ran to hundreds, and no one played a fuller or more important part in decisions on books thereafter published than he did. A number of the Trust’s reprints had their origin in his suggestion.
    • While Jim Grier reached the age of seventy in November 1972, he knew no retirement age for ministers of the gospel. He admired the words of Charles Simeon, ‘I am so near the goal that I cannot help running with all my might.’
    • The life of Jim Grier exemplifies what can be seen by those who rely on God’s word and promises when success all seems to point to the need for compromise.
    John MacArthur: Preaching and Scripture
    • MacArthur was called to Grace Community Church as a twenty-nine-year-old Californian, and in that same charge he remains to this day.
    • Obedience, not success, is the great thing. What counts supremely is the truth that is preached and in due course, one way or another, men will reap if they do not faint.
    • No subject means more to him than the sufficiency of the word of God.
    • Obedience, not success, is the great thing. What counts supremely is the truth that is preached and in due course, one way or another, men will reap if they do not faint.
    • On occasion, MacArthur has been prominent in controversies which have divided evangelicals.
    • He could never have done what he was given to do had he not also been given the support of a wide circle of fellow Christians.

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