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O love that will not let me go

By Nancy Guthrie
October 2011 | Review by William Horsburgh

Synopsis

For many modern-day Christians, death has become what J. I. Packer terms 'the great unmentionable'. This attitude denies not only the reality of the human condition, but also the reality of God's promises for believers beyond this life. The church needs to think more about death in the light of the gospel. This compilation, edited by Nancy Guthrie, includes the writings of twenty-two classic and contemporary theologians and Bible teachers on how to prepare to die in faith. The short meditations are drawn from sermons, books and the writings of classic theologians, such as Jonathan Edwards and John Calvin, and of leading contemporary communicators, such as John Piper, Tim Keller, J. I. Packer and others. The writers provide a solidly scriptural and countercultural way to view the inevitability of death, explaining how and why believers can face physical death with hope, joy and confidence in God's promises for the life to come.

  • Publisher: IVP
  • ISBN: 978-1-84474-526-5
  • Pages: 160
  • Price: 8.99
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Book Review

O love that will not let me go
Ed Nancy Guthrie
IVP
160, £0.00
ISBN: 978-1-84474-526-5
Star Rating:

This excellent book should be read by as many believers as possible, and sooner rather than later. Read it while you are fit and well, though I can see that it could also be of great comfort to those who are facing the final hurdle.

      Tackling the forbidden topic of dying, it uses material from twenty two authors to address the matter Biblically in twenty two chapters grouped into four subsections: ‘A Reality that will not be denied’, ‘An Aim that Keeps Me Pressing On’, ‘A Hope that Saves Me from Despair’ and ‘A Future that will Not Disappoint.’

      Written as a result of the author’s experience of her believing sister’s courageous demise, it is designed to encourage us to ‘live now like we believe the Gospel is true’.

      Its chapters help us to identify where modern thinking about life and death has skewed our outlook and guides us to a refreshing, biblical perspective on life’s great certainty.

      Arresting quotations grab your attention:

      Lloyd-Jones is quoted as saying: ‘There is a hatred of the thought of death in the world today. People hate it because they are living entirely for this life and for this world.’

      Jonathan Edwards: ‘When a godly man dies, he enters into a world that has better inhabitants and where there is better company than the world he entered into on the day of his birth’.

      Calvin: ‘If heaven is our country, what can the earth be but a place of exile?’

      Sibbes: ‘Death dies when I die, and I begin to live when I die. It is a sweet passage to life. We never live till we die.’

      The author has done the people of God a great service in compiling this book, bringing together material which takes us back to Scripture, focuses the heart and mind on Christ and the blessed hope given us in the Gospel, so that the prospect of going to be with Him is ‘far better’  indeed.

      Spurgeon: ‘Those who die daily will die easily. Those who make themselves familiar with the tomb will find it transfigured into a bed – the charnel will become a couch.’

William Horsburgh,

Pickering.

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