I forget how exactly, but a few months ago I ran across this book and bought it on impulse.After reading just the first couple pages, I knew I had met, as it were, a dear friend. There are few books that I have run across that double for windows to let in heaven’s air, but this little volume was such a book. In light of a generation of Christians growing up with the understanding that things are going from “bad to worser,” the Puritans’ interpretation of prophetical matters that this book presents might seem obscure and foreign. Iain Murray, the author, makes a compelling case that the Puritans’ view of the future was far more biblical, hopeful, and optimistic than our most common modern viewpoints.
The main takeaway for me from this book is summed up by the Spurgeon quote that concludes the book: “Oh! Spirit of God, bring back thy Church to a belief in the gospel! Bring back her ministers to preach it once again with the Holy Ghost, and not striving after wit and learning. Then shall we see thine arm made bare, O God, in the eyes of all the people, and the myriads shall be brought to rally round the throne of God and the Lamb. The Gospel must succeed; it shall succeed; it cannot be prevented from succeeding; a multitude that no man can number must be saved.” Murray, by and large, lets the voices of the Puritans themselves do most of the talking, and while they weren’t entirely uniform in all their beliefs, they were profoundly united in their optimistic view of the success of the Gospel in the earth, aided by powerful Spirit-born revivals that would bring about large numbers of converts. They believed that “the earth shall be full of the knowledge of the LORD, as the waters cover the sea” (Is. 11:9). [Read more…] about Book Review: “The Puritan Hope” by Iain Murray