There have been many tributes to the life and ministry of Jerry Bridges, who died on 6 March, aged 86. He is survived by two children.
Tony Reinke, staff writer for Desiring God, who conducted an interview in 2011 with Mr Bridges (http://www.desiringgod.org/interviews/jerry-bridges-1929-2016-five-lessons), said, ‘He was not only a friend, he was a big influence on my Christian life’.
On his blog, Justin Taylor, executive vice-president of Crossway, wrote, ‘There was nothing flashy about Jerry Bridges. He was a humble and unassuming man, strong in spirit, if not in voice or frame. And now we can rejoice with him in his full and final healing, as he beholds his beloved Saviour face to face’.
Quoted by the Christian Broadcast Network, Tim Challies, author and pastor for Toronto’s Grace Fellowship Church, said, ‘Very few authors have shaped me more than he did; very few books have played so important a role in my life and faith’.
Mr Challies was speaking of Mr Bridges’ seminal work The pursuit of holiness (1978), which sold more than one million copies. This was followed by 20 other books. His last book, The blessing of humility: walk within your calling, is to be published this summer.
Mr Bridges was born to Texas cotton farmers at the depths of the Great Depression. He was born deaf in one ear, cross-eyed and with spine and breastbone deformities.
When 18 years old he became a Christian. Despite his disabilities, he did active service with the US Navy, serving during the Korean War (1951-1953). After medical discharge, he became involved with the Christian organisation The Navigators and worked with them in various roles for the rest of his life.