09 (September 2016)

1966 and all that: an evangelical journey

1966 and all that: an evangelical journey
John Harris John Harris retired from the pastorate at Mirfield Evangelical Church in 2006.
31 August, 2016 1 min read

1966 was a memorable year, not least for this reviewer who enjoyed the thrill of being at Wembley to see England lift the World Cup! However, of far greater significance for British evangelicalism was a meeting of the National Assembly of Evangelicals on 18 October. There, Dr Martyn Lloyd-Jones delivered his now much discussed address, calling for evangelicals in doctrinally mixed denominations to come together and unite in fellowship based on an inerrant Bible.

A great deal of ink has been spilt since then debating the issues raised by the Doctor. The author of this book has added his own contribution to the collection. This is the story of a man whose life and ministry were radically altered as a consequence of that day. He records with thankfulness of new friends and associations made and new ministries overseas that opened up for him, as a result.

He describes it as a journey, beginning with his acceptance of true biblical Christianity while studying in a liberal Baptist college. Following the meeting in October 1966, he and his church seceded from the Baptist Union. This in turn led to eviction from church premises and manse.

Although the cost was high, God honoured the stand taken. The journey continued with evidences of the Lord’s blessing, both on the church and in Howlett’s own ministry. It is delightful to read of some wonderful conversions as signs of God’s favour.

Although this is a personal account, the events reported will be fresh in the memory of many. Some will be able to share in the experiences described. It provides a fascinating record of developments in evangelicalism over the last 50 years.

The style is warm and engaging. It serves to remind us that to stand for gospel truth rarely comes without a price to be paid. But, as always, God honours those who honour him. It is recommended reading.

John Harris

Thornhill

John Harris retired from the pastorate at Mirfield Evangelical Church in 2006.
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