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TBT - J. Gresham Machen

c w knerr Throw Back Thursday

J. Gresham Machen: Selected Shorter Writings

Edited by D. G. Hart
P&R Publishing, 2004
Hardback, 590 pages

 

In the 1950's three volumes were published: one containing the sermons of Machen, one a collection of articles and essays written by him, and the third a biography of his life by Ned B. Stonehouse.  The 1st and 3rd volumes are still currently in print but the middle volume has been unavailable for many decades.  D. G. Hart has taken the original content of Volume 2 and added additional essays and book reviews to bring the reader a complete overview of Machen's thoughts on such topics as the nature and mission of the church, Christian scholarship, theological education, and Christianity as it relates to the culture around it.  Some topics are limited in scope, for example his essays concerning liberalism and the Presbyterian Church, or the place of the church in war.  Others are very broad.

Machen was seen as a polarizing figure in the theological debates of his day, and, as a consequence, those holding opposing views have tended to be narrow in their assessment of his contributions whether favorable or unfavorable.  This collection of shorter writings, while perhaps introducing some to Machen for the first time, will serve to broaden other's understanding of his positions, and provide additional background by which to evaluate his viewpoint.

While this is not light reading, Machen's style is very readable and to the point.  The essays in each section are related, but also stand alone, making it conducive to dipping in here and there, though it can also be read consecutively.  Some biographical information is included as well as suggestions for further reading.

Other Machen resources available at Grace Books

 



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