November 28, 2007

OUTSIDE SOURCE Book Review: "The Death of Death in the Death of Christ," by John Owen

BOOK REVIEWED: "The Death of Death in the Death of Christ," by John Owen

REVIEWER: "letterman" at The Library Thing

THE REVIEW (his words, not mine): "A Christian classic. The Death of Death in the Death of Christ is a polemical work, designed to show, among other things, that the doctrine of universal redemption is unscriptural and destructive of the gospel. . . . Those who see no need for doctrinal exactness and have no time for theological debates which show up divisions between so-called Evangelicals may well regret its reappearance. Some may find the very sound of Owen's thesis so shocking that they will refuse to read his book at all. . . . But . . . there are signs today of a new upsurge of interest in the theology of the Bible: a new readiness to test traditions, to search the Scriptures and to think through the faith. It is to those who share this readiness that Owen's treatise is now offered, in the belief that it will help us in one of the most urgent tasks facing evangelical Christendom today - the recovery of the gospel.
It is safe to say that no comparable exposition of the work of redemption as planned and executed by the Triune Jehovah has ever been done since Owen published his in 1684. None has been needed.
Owen's interpretation of the texts . . . is sure; his power of theological construction is superb; nothing that needs discussing is omitted, and . . . no arguments for or against his position have been used since his day which he has not himself noted and dealt with. . . . Owen's work is a constructive, broad-based biblical analysis of the heart of the gospel, and must be taken seriously as such. . . Nobody has a right to dismiss the doctrine of the limitedness . . . of the atonement as a monstrosity of Calvinistic logic until he has refuted Owen's proof that it is part of the uniform biblical presentation of redemption, clearly taught in plain text after plain text. And nobody has done that yet." -- J.I. Packer, from the Introduction"
Packer's well balanced definition of Calvinism in the introduction to that volume [John Owen's THE DEATH OF DEATH IN THE DEATH OF CHRIST] is by far the best we have seen in 42 years of intensive reading." -- Jay P. Green, Sr. A Christian classic.
John Owen is an example of a great theologian who prescribed to independency, and was unable to attain to covenanted reformation.

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