The Christian's Great Interest by William Guthrie
It is an error of some to think that all the great Puritans were from England. Not so, for many of them were from Scotland. Among these was William Guthrie, a Presbyterian ousted by Charles II. This book has been often printed, and has been included in most libraries of any worth. Because of its recognized excellence, it has also been translated into other languages. It was immediately hailed by his fellow Puritans in all lands and in all faiths who believed in Salvation by Faith Alone., that is, faith is a gift of God not of oneself. Guthrie mounts a keen discussion of what it means to be a Christian, and how to become one. He writes in a clear and attractive style. The first half deals with the tests one can use to discern his status, whether a Christian, or not. The marks of faith, and of the new creature are given, contrasted with the hypocrite's false assumptions and presumptions. The last half of the book considers what the Scriptures teach as the gospel plan of saving sinners by Christ Jesus, and of the DUTY to close with God's word to this end. This latter part dealing with unrepentant sinners and their sad state is a very important part of the book. Everything, literally every statement, is proven by Scripture reference. For instance, he gives 5 Mistakes Concerning an interest in Christ: (1) It is a mistake to think that every one who is in Chris knows it. (2) All who come to know their interest do not have equal certainty about it. (3) Every one who holds a strong persuasion of his interest may falter at times. (4) Not every one who attains a good knowledge of his gracious state is able to answer all objections made against it. (5) Not everyone who is confident of his interest in Christ is actually in Him, but some are like five of the Ten Virgins in the parable. Also, all who know Him so as to find spiritual food their delight can be pleased with nothing which is curious and new. Three things are signs of the true believer: Sin is ugly; Christ is precious, and his faith will cleave to Him so as that nothing will part them. Things not to forget: All things are of Him. Through Him are all things.. To Him are all things. Study to know Him! Guthrie (1620-1665) was a Scottish Covenanting divine. He was one of those who tested prospective ministers during Cromwell's time. John Owen described Guthrie as `one of the greatest divines that ever wrote.'
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