Monday, January 18th, 2010...11:08 pm

A brief review of Holiness: Its Nature, Hindrances, Difficulties and Roots by J.C. Ryle

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Ever since the the first missionaries arrived on the British Isles almost two millennia ago, I don’t know if there has ever been a period of greater spiritual decline in the history of the English-speaking world than the Victorian Era.  Ryle lived in a period that was not devoid of religious profession, but where the religious character (much like that of first-century Israel) was characterized by whitewashed sepulchers and blind guides.  We are still dealing with the weeds that sprung up during this period of history, and they have proved difficult to eradicate.  J.C. Ryle was a beacon of light during this dark time.  Like Thoughts for Young Men, this volume is written with a pastoral tone and practical in nature.  While I don’t quite agree with Ryle on every particular point, I recommend this volume without reservation to all Christians.  Ryle advances a genuine and well-developed view of holiness over against the many contemporary counterfeits that were abundant in his day and ours.  Grade: A

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