John Newton’s autobiography introduced me to a new word: concatenation. It means a series of events (providentially) linked together. “And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to His purpose” (Romans 8:28). (from Out of the Depths, Moody Press, Chicago, 1972 A.D. edition. The 2003 Kregel edition is revised and may not even have this word). Anyway, it is recommended reading in either edition.
God found John Newton in a strange place, as we have pointed out before. A slave trader and blasphemer saved by grace. As Arthur W. Pink said: “The high favorites of Heaven are sometimes to be located in queer and unexpected places. Joseph in prison, the descendants of Abraham laboring in the brick-kilns of Egypt, Daniel in the lions’ den, Jonah in the great fish’s belly, Paul clinging to a spar in the sea, forcibly illustrate this principle. Then let us not murmur because we do not now live in as fine a house as do some of the ungodly; our 'mansions' are in Heaven!” (The Life of David, Reiner Publications, Swengel, PA,1969 A.D. edition, page 79). (emphasis his).
David was a type of Christ in many ways including:
David was a prophet as well as a king; so was our Lord.
David was anointed about the 30th year of his life; so Christ, the son of David, was baptized and anointed at 30.
David in his wars had many poor men follow him such as were in debt; so Jesus Christ had many poor men who followed Him, and became His disciples, who were heavy laden under the burden of sin, called a debt.
(Adapted from Preaching From Types and Metaphors by Benjamin Keach, Kregel Publications, Grand Rapids, MI, 1972 A.D. edition. Benjamin Keach was a Baptist Preacher in London who lived from 1640- 1704.This work was originally called Tropologia).
“The devil directs his fiercest batteries against those doctrines in the word, and those graces in the heart, which most exalt God, debase man, and bring men to their lowest subjection to their creator. Such is the doctrine and grace of justifying faith.” (Stephen Charnock (1628-1680), The Existence and Attributes of God, Baker Book House, Grand Rapids, MI ,1971 A.D. edition, page 106). Read some of his works- free. Click on link: http://www.puritansermons.com/charnock/charindx.htm
I know I am often looking at the writings of theologians of long ago, but I think it is so necessary in this day of apostasy. If you go into the average Christian bookstore, you will find so little of these classic books of yesteryear. You find a few I know, among so much lightweight, shallow reading. The most popular books in these stores are novels. Then there are the endless trinkets. I ask the clerks sometimes “Why don’t you carry Pink’s books, Spurgeon’s books, J.C. Ryle’s books, Lloyd-Jones’ books, or even R.C. Sproul’s books?” The usual answer, “We can order them, but most people don’t buy them.” That is sad, because if you are going to read anything besides your Bible, it ought to be, at least some of these classics.
Whatever you read, we owe a great debt to Johann Gutenberg (1400-1468). He is credited with inventing movable type, and a printing press that made mass printing easier. His first project was printing a Latin Bible. He saw the significance of unlocking the Bible’s treasures for the common man. He said “Religious truth is captive in a small number of little manuscripts which guard the common treasures, instead of expanding them. Let us break the seal which binds these holy things; let us give wings to truth that it may fly with the Word, no longer prepared at vast expense, but multitudes everlastingly by a machine which never wearies, to every soul which enters life.” More on this fascinating man and his work at the British Library’s site: http://www.bl.uk/treasures/gutenberg/homepage.html