Here is the latest in ‘The Long Line of Godly Men Profiles’ by the series editor. The series seeks to explore how key historical figures have been used by God to influence their generation and further Christ’s work.
The quotation that introduces the first chapter indicates why Lloyd-Jones was chosen. John MacArthur describes ‘the Doctor’ as the ‘finest biblical expositor of the twentieth century’ and arguably ‘one of the greatest preachers of all time’ (p.1).
After a brief overview of his life, the book focuses on Lloyd-Jones’ call to be a preacher and the distinctive nature of his preaching. It emphasises the necessity of the ‘call’ and the need for biblically-based expository preaching that involves careful study and aims at exalting God.
From Lloyd-Jones’ ministry, the author also shows the importance of sermons that are doctrinally grounded, theologically Reformed and spiritually empowered. Though he did not use such labels as Calvinism in his preaching, in opening up the Scriptures it was the doctrines of grace that Lloyd-Jones found there and proclaimed.
Lawson helpfully shows from the Doctor’s sermons, particularly the Romans series, that he taught total depravity, unconditional election, definite atonement, irresistible grace and preserving grace. The author also stresses how important for Lloyd-Jones was the ministry of the Holy Spirit, giving unction to the preacher and convicting power to the listeners.
The book is readable, a little repetitive at times, but always aiming at emphasising important issues for us today. Its message deserves the attention of every Christian and particularly those who aspire to be ministers of God’s Word.
Philip H. Eveson