Sunday, 12 August 2012

Engaging with Lloyd-Jones reviews

Since last bloging there has been quite a lot of activity on the Engaging with Martyn Lloyd-Jones front. After a bit of a wait those who see it as their calling to defend Lloyd-Jones have weighed in with their reviews of the book.

Iain Murray published a predictably crticial review in the June 2012 edition of the Banner of Truth magazine. Murray unfortunately feels unable to recommend the book to Banner readers; his criticisms consist of his customary scepticism of the orthodoxy of those evangelicals who write history from an academic standpoint, and his sense that none of us can possible understand Lloyd-Jones anyway because he was so far ahead of us mere mortals in terms of spiritual maturity. Apparently we have to wait for a religious revival in order to adequate appreciate him!

Then in inordinate detail Graham Harrison has published a two part review that seems to have begun life as a paper to the Westminster Fellowship. Its available here: part 1 and part 2. With his usual pugnaciousness, Harrison offers his fairly predictable criticisms on a chapter by chapter basis. I found his personal references to my background and current ecclesiastical position entirely unnecessary (and also factually incorrect)! But here, as with Murray's review, there was the usual beatification of Lloyd-Jones!

With rapier like accuracy Carl Trueman has offered a review of Murray's review (many of his comments can be equally applied to the Harrison pieces as well), under the brilliant title: The sin of Uzzah. On one level its an outstanding explanation and justification of how evangelicals can and should write history. But it also hits the nail squarely on the head in terms of the tendency of some towards an unhealthy obsession with defending all, or nearly all, of Lloyd-Jones' views and actions.

A couple of more balanced reviews have appeared by:

J. Whitgift

and Peter Webster.

I'll add more links as and when futher reviews appear.


Anonymous said...

Many thanks for the review links. Graham has always been pugilistic in his defence of the Doctor. In his view the Doctor could do no wrong. I have always thought the Doctor was a curate's egg. Definitely a bully in the way he used his learning to silence lesser minds. We need to be more critical of fallible men, however highly esteemed and helpful they might be. Perhaps the best biography of Lloyd-Jones will not be written till all those who knew him well have died.

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