Can You Separate the Preacher from His Bible?


If we are people of the Book, then how do shepherds of the church under the guidance of our Great Shepherd, conduct themselves as they feed the flock with every Word found in that Book? If the Bible is the final authority of the Christian in life here and the next, what kind of diligence should a pastor conduct to make sure the believers under his care knows ultimately a book that means life and death to his soul?

All believers are to be diligent in living out the Scriptures, but by the calling of God endowed to pastors, the preparation is different from those who are in the pew. They need to double the labor into exposing the Scriptures to give spiritual food to souls who hunger for it. That would be, more that anything, their is nothing in between a preacher and his Bible. Hard labor follows as he leads God’s people as they lean to His Word. The fruit of such labor is that God is glorified and people are changed with a zealous heart ready to share the gospel and change the world.

Such preachers that comes to mind is Jonathan Edwards who’s life had a part during a great revival. So how did Edwards became inseparable from God’s Word? Consider his sermons on Genesis and you’ll know the answer. Brian Borgman provided a study of the hermanutical life in this new book, Jonathan Edwards On Genesis.

The early part of the book is setting up how Edwards handle to Word of God to feed His flock, his impact to the evangelical world and the need research about Jonathan Edwards. It’s a bit rough to read and long but as you go on, you’ll get the hang of it.

As you read Jonathan Edwards On Genesis, Borgman shows not just the sermons on Genesis that are epic but also the not so epic. However, he points out that these sermons are part of a bigger picture not just on the development of how Edwards wrote sermons but also the life of his pastoral ministry, congregation, the revival and New England. These factors should be considered because it affects how he preaches.

You’ll see how some of the sermons of Genesis became part of a greater body of work. How it work out with other text and how Edwards connect them to create a splendid volume is a treat for readers.

As Borgman leads you to an examination of the sermons of Edwards, you are given an ample amount of what these sermons contain which got me hooked to go on reading the book. It’s fascinating to read how excellent Edwards uses typology, evangelism and pastoral care in one sermon. As Borgman points out the sermon is a lecture in some parts. Topics such as blessings, redemption, sin and image of God was addressed with precision. The last part which is about the image of God is my favorite part of this book. A fitting climax to this brief but meaty volume.

By looking at the Genesis sermons of Edwards, Borgman was able to show how Edwards excellent handling of God’s Word. He was able to put forth Edwards influences in digging the gems of the Scriptures and how he successfully exceeds those influences by bring something new on the table.

Jonathan Edwards On Genesis suites best for readers who want to research about this evangelical genius. Although a casual reader can still benefit from this book. It’s short but don’t underestimate this slim volume. It delivers a meaty servings that reinforces Edwards as a force to reckon with in handling the Scriptures. Looking forward for more studies of this important figure in Christianity.

My verdict:

4.5 out of 5

Review copy of this book was provided by Wipf and Stock Publishers

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